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Window Treatments - Part 1

If you are remodeling a room, an entire home or contemplating the design of a new home or addition, one item that is often overlooked is the window treatments, window toppers, window coverings and the window decor, as shown in Figure 1. Windows are often chosen for their energy savings and their aesthetic values. They should also be chosen based on what window treatments, window toppers, window coverings or window decor that you will want to use because they appeal to you.

Wood blinds with 1" slats housed within window frame

Figure 1 - Window treatements - Wood blinds with 1" slats housed within window frame

It should be noted that many of the 3D software packages will allow you to see your remodeled room, home or addition in its finished state, complete with window treatments, window toppers, window coverings, window decor and drapes. If you are building a new home or adding an addition the 3D software packages are a worthwhile investment.

Architects are generally not interior designers and there choice of windows is generally based on the aesthetic value, when viewing the home from the outside and when viewing the room from the inside, without window treatements, window coverings, window toppers, window decor or drapes.

Because architects are not an interior designers they seldom consider how the windows will be covered when doing their architectural plans. Window decor, window treatements, window toppers, window coverings and/or drapes are something that happens after homeowners take possession of their new house.

There is a host of different internal window coverings, window treatements, window toppers, window decor and drapes. Homeowners can choose from horizontal and vertical blinds, to shutters, drapes and shades and each of those comes in a variety of shapes andphysical attributes.

Many require that window frames be of certain depths in order to mount them properly.

Inside window depth can determine what window treatments can and cannot be used.

Figure 2 - Inside window depth can determine what window treatments can and cannot be used.

Without proper consideration for the window treatments it is easy to invest a lot of money in windows for your new home and yet still have windows that are difficult to apply a specific group of window treatments or limit the types and styles of window coverings that can be implemented.

Depth Of Inside Window Frame:

The depth of the window, as shown in Figure 2, is the measurement from the outside of the window frame to the inner window frame. This dimension determines whether or not you can mount any specific window treatment within the window frame.

It is best, for window treatements, if the window depth at its narrowest point is a minimum of 2 1/2 inches. This will allow for the installation of shutters and 2 inch plantation blinds on the inside of the window frame, which is the accepted practice for that style of window covering, without having them protrude into the room.

As Figure 2 illustrates, both single and double hung windows have a narrow bottom depth and a wide upper depth. It is the narrowest depth that determines what window covering can be installed properly.

If your desired window treatment was to install a 4 inch plantation shutter you would need to have a depth of 4 1/2 inches at the narrowest point of the window for the shutter to hang properly.

Window treatments - Vertical blinds on outside of sliding glass door

Figure 3 - Window treatements - Vertical blinds on outside of sliding glass door

You should use a minimum window depth that is calculated based on the depth of the window covering plus a 1/2 inch clearance between the inside of the window covering or window treatment and the inside frame of the window.

Note: When measuring the window depth it is important that you take into account any window hardware such as window latches which often protrude past the edge of the window frame.

If you want to place vertical blinds on the inside of a sliding glass door, as some homeowners do not like the appearance of vertical blinds mounted outside the door frame, as shown in Figure 3, the window frame will have to have an available depth of at least 4 inches plus the amount, if any, that the sliding glass door handle protrudes into the room.

Continued......

Part 2 Part 3