When it comes to home decorating we often choose curtains and window coverings with our hearts first. Form over function. I’m sure this has happened to you over the years as I believe we all get caught in the ‘bought it because I loved it’ trap and then either have to learn to live with our mistakes or spend more decorating dollars to fix the trouble.
It always amazes me how curtains can make or break the ambiance of a room and how that feeling can change as the days lengthen or the sun moves to the opposite side of the house. If you’re shopping for window coverings for a room that has windows on three sides you have even more of a challenge on your hands.
The Perfect Country Curtain
First of all, don’t convince yourself that all your window treatments need to be identical around the room. You can mix and match curtains, shutters, drapes and blinds – dependent on your needs and the use of the room – and still maintain a cohesive, beautifully decorated look.
For country homes and farmhouses we love the light and airy look. This is especially true of the summer curtains. If you have the view of trees, fields or a stunning lake you’ll want to enjoy it every minute you’re stuck in the house after all. There is little need for privacy when you live in the country and you’ll find that you can leave your perfect coverage, extra secure, mini-blinds with thick curtains behind. Chances are slim that anyone will be peeking in your windows at night or walking past your house while you’re sleeping.
With that said there are times of the year when a good heavy curtain is more than appropriate. In French Country decor you’ll often find a heavier tapestry like curtain in bedrooms with center panels of lace. Similarly, in the north parts of Northern America heavy curtains keep out the winter drafts and create the toasty cabin ambiance during the darkest days of December.
How will you choose which curtains are right for the room, by the season and direction each window is facing? Here are some points on country curtain selection to keep in mind while shopping to find the right curtain for every window.
Any room where the light pours in via a window is subject to faded fabrics, wall paint, and artwork. If you need to protect these types of belongings keep them back from the sunlight or choose a window covering that is solid in construction. Heavy drapes with a UV backing or wood shutters are an excellent choice but you can also upgrade your window itself to block harmful rays while still letting in all that glorious sunlight.
Consider as well that your curtains or other window treatment will need to be cleaned regularly. While small blinds and shutters are almost as easy to clean as taking down the drapes and sending them through the washing machine, heavier drapes or large custom made blinds could pose challenges.
Finally, if you are considering blinds of any sort and children either live in or visit your home, please be mindful of the cords that control these blinds. Children have been known to play with and strangle themselves with these cords.
Have fun with your country decorating whichever style, color, or fabric curtain you choose. Country does have an air of whimsy about it that is perfect for self-expression in non-traditional decorating.