Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Draperies that break on the floor can add a relaxed feeling to a room.

I love the feeling you get when you break a drapery on the floor. There are many benefits to breaking draperies on the floor. One of the reasons I like to break draperies on the floor is that it gives a more relaxed feel to a space. Another benefit is when it comes time to clean; it is much easier to dress a drapery that slightly breaks on the floor as opposed to a drapery that puddles on the floor. Draperies that break on the floor also appear fuller since the bottom section of the drapery spreads out slightly.

A break can vary from 1/2" - 1 1/2" verses a puddle which can vary from 5" - 12". Years ago it was fashionable to puddle draperies on the floor, now most designers recommend draperies break instead of puddle.

There are certain circumstances when it might not be advisable to break a drapery on the floor; a breakfast room and maybe a bathroom. Many windows in breakfast rooms are close to the table and therefore, leaving the draperies at constant vulnerability. There are also times in a bathroom the window just screams for a drapery to cozy up the bathroom, however, since there is so much activity in this room and debris on the floor it might not be best choice to have a drapery break in this room.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Make a Room Feel Larger

Everyone wants their home to feel warm and inviting but we also want the room to appear larger. As a rule, we recommend mounting window treatments several inches above the window. For example, say you have an 8' ceiling height and you mount your window treatment under your crown molding or just below the ceiling, not only will the room appear larger but the ceiling height will appear taller as well.

Another mistake a homeowner might make would be to add a cornice with a straight bottom and then mount that cornice at the top of the window. Below I have created a rendering with our "Minutes Matter Studio" graphic design software to illustrate the different look achieved when the cornice is mounted near the crown molding or ceiling opposed to mounting at the top of the window. See how much taller the ceiling height appears and how much larger the room looks.

Here is another design tip when trying to make a ceiling look higher. Add a shape to the bottom of the cornice. By adding movement to the bottom of the cornice it can trick the eye into moving up and down so the eye does not stop at the longest point of the cornice.

You could also accomplish extra height with drapery panels and a decorative rod. Notice the difference when you mount the drapery rod at the top of the window or when you mount the rod under the crown molding or near the ceiling.

We recommend giving every room that extra lift! Would you like to see how new window treatments could change your room? As part of our service we create renderings to help our clients visualize how new window treatments will look on their windows.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Paint Those Baseboards Dark ~ See the Difference

When you want an inexpensive way to dramatically change a room; consider changing your paint color. Doing something as simple as changing a paint color not only will freshen up the room, but create a totally new mood in the room. When you decide to paint your walls a different color, you should also consider painting your trim and baseboards. The furniture and the window treatments did not change; only the wall color and the trim color changed. I did add an oversized mirror over the fireplace and a few new prints that I found at High Point Market.

Years ago almost everyone painted their trim a white color. Now trends have changed and trim is being painted much warmer colors. We recommend to clients with hardwood floors that they paint their baseboard a dark color. Most people paint their baseboard the same color as the other trim in the room. I am not talking just two shades darker than the trim, I mean really dark; I decided on "Sarsaparilla" from Porter Paints. When you paint your baseboard a dark color it helps ground the floor. Take a look and see the difference, I think you'll agree.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Hunter Douglas Shades Reduce Energy Costs

Hunter Douglas window shading not only adds beauty to your home but did you know the right window shades or window treatments can also cut energy bills. In an average home about 10% of the exterior walls are made up of windows. That does not sound like a lot but windows can generate about 50% of our homes energy cost. The walls of a average home typically have an R-value of 19, while standard double-pane windows only have an R-value of about 2. R-values measure resistance to heat flow. Homes that have a lot of window are at risk for much larger amounts of energy loss.

Recently attended a Hunter Douglas seminar "How Windows Impact the Environment" which addressed the use of various window treatments to control heat loss and heat gain through windows. During the winter we try to keep the heat in our home and in the summer we try to keep the heat out. The better we can control heat gain or loss the more efficient and (Green) our home will be. Less energy used translates to a lesser utility bill.

Adding Hunter Douglas Duette Architella Opaque honeycomb shades can increase an additional +4 R-value to an existing 2 R-value window thus increasing the efficiency of an average double-pane window by 200%. Architella shades have a double cell adding even more R-vaule than a normal honeycomb shade. A Duette Semi-Opaque honeycomb shade can add an additional +2 R-value. Hunter Douglas Vignette Modern Roman shades, Hunter Douglas Silhouette, and Pirouette window shades can add an additional +1 R-value to your windows.

It’s easy to see that these Hunter Douglas products can easily pay for their cost in a short period of time. Not only do you add fashion to your home you cut energy consumption and cost.