Creative Kitchen Window Treatments
Farmhouse Kitchen With Apron-Front Sink
No farmhouse kitchen is complete without an apron-front sink. This white one flows seamlessly with the white cabinetry and light gray countertops and backsplash.
Ordinary window coverings can work for just about any window style or size. Creative kitchen window treatments can be the best way to express your personal style. Unique window covering ideas that use everyday materials in unexpected ways can make a tremendous impact on your kitchen.
Twice as Nice
For the ultimate in flexibility, consider shades that can be raised and lowered from the top or bottom as needed. “These simple and sleek shades by Kirsch can drop down from the top or raised up from the bottom to allow you to control the view or the sunlight as needed," says the retailer.
To create a tailored look in a simple, monochromatic kitchen, designer Teri Thomas chose a valance and Roman shade in the same fabric. She used a custom-printed fabric from Galbraith and Paul for both the shade and its box-pleated topper, says contractor Duane Johns of Advanced Renovations.
In a kitchen with simple style and a mostly white color palette, a splash of pattern can add personality. "Help frame a beautiful view with a valance mounted above the window. This ikat-patterned fabric, Bansuri in Slate, has a rich neutral that adds interest to the solid white cabinets," says the manufacturer.
Light and Lively
Window treatments not only add softness and style, but also control light, protecting interior furnishings and materials from damaging UV rays. “Flat Roman fabric shades from Smith & Noble are available with a privacy lining that offers sun protection,” says Kara Roberts, Director of Merchandising for the company. Shown here is a Flat Roman Fabric Shade in Samara/Stone with privacy lining.
Designer Robin Baron gave this elegant country kitchen the perfect finishing touch with an ornate scalloped valance above the sink. “I always say ‘great design is in the details’ and this beautiful valance is a perfect example,” says Baron. “I used the detail of iron hooks to create the dramatic pleating in lieu of a traditional pole and embellished the classic linen floral fabric with tassel trim, and matching tape, giving weight and importance to this country-inspired valance.”
If you want to filter light and soften the look of your kitchen window – but don’t want anything heavy or opaque, consider using a fabric with a loose weave, such as linen, for example. Here, designer Annette English complemented the otherwise pared-down look of the space with lightly textured material from Dan Marty Fabric.
“When planning a kitchen layout, placing the sink under a window is a great option,” says designer Karen Sealy. “Having a nice view can make washing the dishes or prepping food more enjoyable.” In this space she specified shutters to complete the room’s transitional style. “Using shutters is a low-maintenance alternative to drapery that still controls light levels and views,” she says.
When they remodeled an older family home with French architectural details, kitchen designers Marvin Daniel and Brian Pilgrim of KDW Home wanted to give it an open and airy look that still felt in keeping with the style of the home. Roman shades in a French provincial fabric added just the Old World accent the updated space required.
“Fabric shades are like great art: They transform a space and its inhabitants,” says Kara Roberts, Director of Merchandising for Smith & Noble, the manufacturer of the Moroccan-style shades shown here. Flat Roman shades fold up at the top when fully raised and lie flat when lowered, creating a low profile look that works with a wide range of fabrics and prints.
Fabric-based window treatments are a great way to balance all the hard surfaces in the kitchen while also adding pattern and color. This custom arched shade can raise and lower to control sunlight and privacy. “Whether up or down, the shade keeps the kitchen feeling sunny with splashes of yellow from this Thom Filicia fabric, Prospect in Shadow,” says the manufacturer. Continue the look by using fabric in places like lampshades (see the shades on the wall sconces), barstools, chairs and even Fido's bed.
Window treatments do not need to be expensive to look nice. There are many different kinds of options that can involve a fusion of existing treatments, custom ideas, or the creation of your own window decorations through your own DIY project. The shape and style of window, along with a budget, will help you determine the scope of the project.
The material for window coverings makes the difference in how easy it is to maintain your kitchen window treatments. Anything near a stove or sink can absorb odors and soak up spatter. For example, you can launder café curtains and other draperies. You can also wipe down synthetic blinds, shutters, and solar shades with soapy water. But maintenance gets more tedious when you have to manage wood blinds and shutters, which have to be cleaned and conditioned with wood cleaner.
If privacy is a concern, have you thought to perform a quick check before starting your project? Turn on the lights in the kitchen one evening and venture outside and see what others can view through your windows. For privacy, look for screening materials that let you see out but allow some daylight to pass while blocking views from the outside; consider Roman shades and roller shades made from translucent or woven materials, or try sheer fabric curtain panels. Frosted vinyl is also a simple, affordable solution. Frosted vinyl is a good design fix for windows that require both privacy and light.
Where privacy is not an issue, a swag of patterned fabric draped over a single window can also make a statement. Consider no-sew—burlap, bed linens, bathroom curtains, fabric napkins, floor-length drapery panels hung horizontally, beads, just to name a few. This is the opportunity for creativity to shine.
Do you have big or oddly shaped windows? Floor-length curtain panels are ideal and offer opportunity for color and pattern when framing a large bay window or French doors.
Valances and cornices are like accent marks over windows you want to showcase. Asymmetrical applications could be wood or fabric, offering a more modern feeling to the kitchen.
Curtain rods can be a simple secured pipe spanning an entire wall to achieve grandeur and openness. Tree-branches secured over the windows bring nature in and act as a decorative valance or rod.
For the most personalized effect, choose resources that express your lifestyle: materials, texture, colors and design. Creative kitchen window solutions add just the right amount of personalization to finish your custom kitchen window treatments.
- HGTV Dream Home 2011: In the Kitchen With John
- HGTV Dream Home 2013 Kitchen Extras
- Homeowner Profile: McCurdys
- HGTV Dream Home 2013: Kitchen
- The Kitchen: Heart of the Home
- Flipping the Block: Kitchen 4