Although Queen Victoria died in 1901, her influence in the design world was still felt well into the 20th century. Victorian style is known for being detailed, high-spirited and busy with ornamentation. However, in the kitchen, a more subdued and practical approach needs to be taken to window treatments in order to keep the room as a functional space. It is possible to create custom-looking, Victorian-style window treatments for your kitchen and still maintain modern practicality.
The valance is the standard Victorian window treatment. Typically they are box shaped, with variations in embellishment, edging style and accessories. A valance is a scarf for the window top, mooring it to the room. Victorian valances were known to integrate various clothing styles of the day: the festoon and the cascade. The festoon detail was comprised of a ribbon of fabric, draped or scooped to create a folded, teardrop affect. A Victorian kitchen curtain may have two or more festoons across the front to give fullness to the valance and show off rich fabric. The cascade, a panel placed on the sides of the valance, was a tapered, gathered piece that went down the sides of the window. It’s particularly good for the kitchen because it is up out of the way, and lets in natural light while adding color and texture to the décor. The valance will also hide the curtain rod or top of the blinds .A valance can be detailed with fringe, tassels or beading for an even more ornate Victorian flair.
Another practical kitchen window design element is the wooden or bamboo window blind. In the late 1800s a variety of window coverings made from coated hardwood or bamboo made for sturdy, functional shades to darken a room. In the kitchen, blinds are practical and lend a modern link between traditional Victorian decor and contemporary design. Pair your blinds with a stenciled curtain or tasseled valance and your kitchen window treatment will look authentically Victorian.
Another window “treatment” that was extremely popular during the Victorian period was stained glass. The late Victorian era was influenced by Tiffany’s fluid, organic designs. Purchasing and installing a stained glass window can be prohibitive. Etch Art Stained Glass design has an easy way to transform any window into beautiful stained glass that will look like it cost hundreds of dollars. The privacy design obscures visibility through the glass during the day and night. The film adheres to smooth glass using static electricity instead of glue or adhesives and is completely reusable. In fact, Etch Art window films incorporate real glass for an authentic sparkle and shimmer and filters 95 percent of the sun’s harmful UV rays. Add a lace valance and your kitchen is on its way to Victorian elegance.