Decorating & Design

December 10, 2008

Kitchen Window Coverings

Where there’s no room for drapes, try roller blinds, roman shades or wood shutters.

Q. We just renovated our kitchen. The cabinets are in off-white and espresso, and we need window coverings. I was thinking about roman blinds, possibly cotton/linen with stripes. Any suggestions are appreciated.

A. Congratulations on your renovation! Your kitchen looks beautiful. Since you have some dark elements in your kitchen, like the floor, cabinets and countertops, think about keeping the window coverings light in colour and translucency. Heavy curtains or drapes are out of the question, firstly because you don’t have enough room on either side of the window for the drapes, and secondly because they would be too heavy and formal for the room.

Roman blinds are a good consideration, as they can be installed inside the window frame, allowing the pretty moulding to be exposed, and can be pulled up most of the time, to allow the light into the kitchen. No matter what window covering you choose, try to opt for the “inside mount” so the covering doesn’t overwhelm the wall.

Roller shades can now be made using your own choice of fabric, which is then laminated onto a vinyl roller blind. Since the roll is only a couple of inches in diameter when drawn, you won’t have much gathered fabric at the top of the window as with roman blinds.

While regular roman blinds are popular, consider “bottom-up” roman blinds. These are made with a valance on top, to hide the hardware. The bulk of the fabric of the blinds stays at the bottom of the window instead of the top, and can be pulled up to provide privacy, but still allow natural light in through the top of the window. Since your window is quite low, this type of blind might work well for you. If you do choose a fabric covering, a cream-based ticking stripe with a chocolate brown and maybe a red would be eye-catching, or go for a natural look with bamboo or woven wood.

A final option is plantation-style painted wood shutters. Installed at half the height of your window (or higher) to allow for both privacy and light, shutters painted the same off-white as your trim would be functional and suit the style of your kitchen.