Dress, don't overdress, windows By Design: Sometimes simplicity is the best solution; other times an odd-size window needs more work.


Window dressing is one element in the total design of a room that can easily be overdone. I don't mean to imply that curtains, draperies and other treatments should be seen as unimportant, but I do want to make clear that a hands-off approach is sometimes the best solution.

Windows don't always have to be decorative elements. Especially in children's rooms or in small spaces, it may be quite sufficient to add only a blind or shutter in the same color as the surrounding wall. Besides looking perfectly appropriate, such a sparse treatment will serve to expand the room's dimensions visually.

At other times, however, an overly large or under-scaled window in a child's room may well require something a bit more frivolous. In those instances, it's worth considering the sort of treatment shown in the photo.

This young girl's bedroom has the usual white, pink and green color scheme on the furniture, bedspread and mini-striped wall-covering. The window is unusually large for a room of this size, accentuating the need for privacy and light control. The multipaned opening cries out for some sort of softening design effect. Ease of operation was another consideration in the choice of a window treatment for this setting.

The solution here is a custom-sized shade from Hunter Douglas. This line features a wide variety of color and fabric choices as well as an array of hem styles and trims.

Detailing is what distinguishes this shade from the standard opaque roller blind. In this innovative design, a heavy-duty roller system and wrapped bottom rail are obscured by a semi-opaque cotton fabric in subtle pink. It conceals all the mechanisms and ensures privacy while at the same time allowing light to filter into the room.

In order to introduce just a little more of that decorative feminine touch, the window was then bordered with a loosely shagged sheer fabric. A swag at the top of the window with rosette-type detailing at each end allows the gently gathered side curtains to serve as a framing device.

In this case, that little fillip does give the window a prettier appearance. No one will think the treatment is overdone.

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