European Window Treatments

Written by cathy welch
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European Window Treatments
European window treatments can be as distinct as its architecture. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Well-chosen window coverings can add the panache of European design to your home's interior. French, Italian, English, Irish or Scandinavian styles are easily recognisable as European in flavour. Curtain styles created on the European continent influenced design style in other parts of the globe. Today, there are iconic choices you can make to bring a distinct European style to your decor

Irish Simplicity

Irish interior design is often whimsical and full of colour. The drab cold and damp of the Irish landscape that made the days dark and gloomy influenced the country's designers to use a lot of bright colours in their designers. Dress your bedroom window and your bed with felted red wool rod pocket curtains edged in red or metallic gold fringe. Since this country is usually cold and damp, heavier lined treatments are a necessity.

European Window Treatments
Windows in Ireland are often adorned with lace. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

French Flair

The French create attention-grabbing window treatments by using swathes of fabric. Upholster and hang a pelmet over your side drape treatments. A pelmet or palmette, is a short window topper that conceals the hardware used to hang your drapes. Line a parlour wall with vertically striped chocolate and white fabric in the rod-pocket curtain style. Pull back these drapes with brown corded rope finished with brown tassels weighed down by a glass orb and five strings of small glass beads affixed to the orbs.

European Window Treatments
Elaborate window treatments blend well with French tapestries. ( Images)

Mediterranean Style

Window treatments in Italy, Spain or Greece are a lightweight affair of white or natural fabrics and are often minimal. Mediterranean window treatments can be attached to the window frame itself rather than hung from rods. Renaissance cutwork material is a cotton fabric with designs cut out of the material. These panels are hung from thin rods in flat configurations to better show off the curtains design. Wrought iron handles, rods and wall art are decorative adornments that define a Mediterranean-style window.

English Net Curtains

Curtain panels constructed with net fabric are prevalent in English design. Cafe curtains and jardinières are different forms of embroidered and flounced net curtains. In use since the 18th century, net curtains allow light to enter your window while ensuring privacy for your home. Originally made of wool, cotton or silk, today's net curtains are made from polyester making them affordable for the average homeowner. Flounce nets are curtains with an added section of hanging hem made from a different style of lace. Cafe net curtains are hung on the bottom half of your window from a thin rod. The can be used alone to allow the sunlight in or paired with a shorter valance hung from the top of the window frame. Typically, they measure 12 to 16 inches high. And jardinière are full-length net curtains that are arched in the middle to allow a view of the outdoors, but they cover more of the window than cafe curtains. Toile is also a popular fabric material in England. From light yellow to bright red and white, toile is available in many different colours and materials. Embroidered sheer curtains with taffeta underpinnings are beautiful additions for a young girl's room.

European Window Treatments
Flounce net curtains have a ruffled border on the bottom edge. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

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