Bay windows are beautiful additions to any home. For those lucky enough to have them, they create secluded nooks and useful spaces for furniture, as well as flooding the room with light. Some people find them difficult to dress, though, or are unsure how to make the most of them as a feature. Fortunately, there are a number of simple techniques which can accentuate the space, control the amount of light and make use of any quirky shapes.
Curtains with blinds
Combining curtains and blinds may seem mad, but it was actually quite common in Regency England, when they sometimes had two sets of curtains with blinds. Today, it can be an incredibly practical and elegant solution for those who want to keep out strong sunlight, have more privacy or keep in the warmth. The blinds can either cover the entire window or just the bottom half, for a balance between privacy and light. Contrasting colours and patterns can create a really dramatic effect.
A common problem with bay windows is that people find it difficult to find curtain poles which really fit. It can also be difficult to open and close the curtains because of the awkward shape or height of the space, or a piece of furniture may be in the way. Corded curtain tracks can be a good solution, as you only need to be able to reach the cord, not the curtain itself. A bespoke pole can be bent to fit, preventing the need for lots of short poles.
A track also allows delicate and expensive fabrics to be used without the worry of them getting dirtied or damage. A romantic effect can be created using light, floaty material, or silk can be used for pure glamour.
Another attractive look can be created by using more than one set of curtains. If the bay has three windows, a pair of curtains in the middle can be flanked by an extra one either side. Tie-backs can then be added so that the windows are framed even when the curtains are drawn. Although it would be possible to achieve this look with multiple curtain poles, having a continuous track or pole gives more flexibility and looks less cluttered.
As bay windows let in so much light, they can be the perfect place for pot plants. Many house plants are originally from sub-tropical and tropical environments, and like as much light and warmth as possible. Be careful not to let the plants dry out, though, and make sure they are light-loving varieties. They can be placed on the sill if there is space, or in a larger pot on a stand.
Add a valance
To link the separate windows together, it can be useful to have a draped valance that circles the entire wall of the bay. Valances are available in many different styles, from elaborately ruched to plain and simple. While these are usually chosen to match the colour of the main curtains, it is perfectly possible to have a valance on its own.
For more information on curtain tracks and poles for bay windows, feel free to contact Tracks Direct. Our experts have years of experience and will be happy to talk through your requirements.