Odd-shaped window treatment styles

Written by danielle hill
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Odd-shaped window treatment styles
A number of window treatments are suitable for oddly-shaped windows. (Window image by Natalia Mazur from Fotolia.com)

For unusually shaped windows, the most standard and widely-available window treatments may not suffice. Nonetheless, a range of materials and designs ideally suit oddly shaped windows, including sharp window angles (such as octagonal, peaked or raked designs) or rounded designs (such as starbursts, eyebrows, quarter-circles or colonial designs).


Irregular shapes may not accommodate the smooth functioning of curtains that open and close traditionally. Instead of using window treatments that open to allow sunlight and close to block it off, alternative materials can be used to continuously diffuse the light. Japanese-inspired papers and accordion-style shades allow light to enter, but are sufficiently translucent to cut out visibility. They can be ordered in a range of shapes to accommodate an odd shaped window and do not need to be pulled back. A similar effect can also be created by sheer fabric designs with stiff framing.


For a solution that allows you to control how much light may enter, blinds can be ordered to suit a range of irregularly shaped windows. For unusually short and wide windows, horizontal blinds are an excellent option. For windows with rounded tops, a traditional blind can be fitted to the rectangular portion of the window. The resulting half-circle can be fitted with blinds that form a fan shape or with louvered blinds that angle open and shut.

Less Is More

The rounded top of a window already adds a measure of visual interest even before adding any treatments. One solution to the irregular window shape is simply to dress the window with simple curtains and to leave the top half-circle bare. Provided the window extends high enough, this solution lets in a greater degree of natural light without leaving to interior too exposed at night-time. In addition, it shows off the window shape without overpowering it with blinds and curtains. In the case of skylights, less is also more. If necessary for privacy to apply some type of window covering to a skylight, a simple unfolded sheet can gently diffuse light without drawing excessive attention to itself.

Complementing Window Shapes

Irregular window shapes add more drama to an interior than traditional rectangles and squares. Therefore, they must be factored in aesthetically as well as practically when selecting window treatments. A sharply angled window may be the touchstone for a room’s modern and angular look. A minimalist window treatment, such as crisply pleated shades can help to achieve the look. If the sharp angle of a window creates an excessively severe or cold look, softer materials can reduce its impact. A luxurious material fanned to cover a fitted frame can complement either modern or traditional furnishings with a less severe style.

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