Thursday, April 17, 2014

Multiple treatments for versatility

So many windows would benefit from multiple treatments.  You want light control, temperature moderation, sound insulation, and beauty. Throughout the day and the seasons your needs change; as many as three or four treatments on some windows would not be unrealistic, to achieve various combinations of sheer, semi-sheer, lined, or blackout layers. 

Anyhow, my clients needed two layers of treatments on their kitchen windows, and there was no room for a curtain layer, so we did two shades.  Underneath is a sheer linen relaxed roman shade, and on top a split roman, so they have multiple options for privacy and light control.
Both shades are trimmed with the sweetest most delicious grosgrain ribbon- REAL grosgrain, French, in subtle organic greens, from Hyman Hendler in NYC.

For the split romans, the grosgrain serves as binding.  Since it's tiny- just 7/8" to start then folded in half- the whole shade was basted together beforehand, to keep all the parts in place.  Sometimes you see buttons used to cinch the split  together, but here the ring tacks do the job.  This style can be dressed out, too, with a scrunchie effect between the cinches.  Plain white sateen is used in the pleat.  We chose not to add microcord at the pleat, instead letting the shadow of the meticulously trimmed seam allowance define the pleat line.
The ribbon on the undershade is aligned with the split in the roman shade.
Each shade is on its own board, and there is a linen valance on the window-side of the board to disguise the mechanisms from view from the outside.
There were so many ways to lay out the motifs on this Pierre Frey botannical print.  We wanted to lose as little pattern as possible, and didn't want both shades to be identical.  I took half a dozen photos along the lines of these with different layouts to choose from.  The goal was not so much centering as it was tonal balance.


  1. I don't understand the decision to go with a split roman for the botanical print - interrupting the pattern that way. A flat or hobbled would have been a better choice, in my opinion. Was there a reason?

  2. Merlyn, the homeowner/designer loved the split Roman when she saw a picture- and- well- there were certain areas of the pattern that she loved and wanted to feature. So this was the choice. She loves to mix and layer pattern, scale, and color- and in this house it works- a 19th century farmhouse.
    Personally- I too love to mix things up; I don't necessarily seek symmetry; I like to chop things up and create a new balance of pattern and scale; I like surprises and a little off-balanced-ness..... I guess that's why she and I work well together!
    I know this would drive some people crazy. But in this set of circumstances it's good. There's a sister shade to this one, not in the picture,on the other side of the bench, and it features completely different areas of the pattern. So the choppiness makes more sense in the bigger picture.