CHALLENGE: I have recently installed 3 1/2-inch shutters throughout my clients’ home. They love them. The walls are wonderful warm sandy beige, and the shutters blend in well with the walls, as I specified.
In the family room the clients have sliding shutters on the sliding
door that opens to the patio. These are a great solution for a slider
and the functional capabilities of a sliding shutter are great.
But I am hoping you can offer a solution for a type of over treatment
above the sliding shutters. Is this even possible? I am not sure
how this will look. Please offer your expertise, as you seem to
always give the greatest suggestions.
My client is having trouble figuring out what type of window treatments
to go with in the room. I want to be sure to give the impression
that the room is balanced, even though it isn’t. Also, the
door leads onto a covered patio and deck area, so we need something
that will not hinder the client from using the door.
I am strongly suggesting that the window treatments have some room
darkening aspect to them because it is a bedroom we’re working
on. I also want to create something elegant, because it is the master
SOLUTION: Thank you
for the kind words. It is always great to hear from the readers
of the magazine.
Shutters add such a wonderful personality to a home’s interior.
They are energy efficient and increase the value of the home. These
are two great advantages to shutters.
I am always receiving comments about the added color or texture
that may be needed in a room once the shutters are installed. This
is especially the case when a neutral palette is used throughout
the room or home. Our clients need that little extra finishing touch
to the room.
There are some possibilities for you for above your client’s
patio slider. The first consideration is the size louvers you have
chosen. With a 3 1/2-inch louver, you need to make sure that your
over treatment—which might be just a top treatment or include
draperies, either stationary side panels or operable traverse draperies,
as well—be made a fabric and in a style that will handle the
large scale of the louvers.
If there are about 12 inches or more above the top of the shutter
to the ceiling, I would start the over treatment at the ceiling.
This depth is important in keeping with the scale of the window,
the shutter louvers and the overall appearance of the final window
treatment. A pinch pleated valance, swag valance or cornice valance
would be excellent choices.
The fabric choice should be one that cannot be seen through. A medium-weight
fabric would work well. The fabric fullness should be about three
times or 300 percent. As to the scale of the fabric design, this
will depend on your style throughout the room. Again, in keeping
with the scale of the sliding door and shutters, the depth of your
window treatment style is important—it should not be too short.
As to the installation and fabrication of a valance treatment, you
must remember that the returns need to protrude from the wall far
enough so there will be enough clearance at the top of the shutter
frame. This way there will be no interference when the shutter slides
open or closed. Your professional drapery workroom will be of help
to you here and be able to offer additional suggestions. If needed,
the workroom professional can be asked to give a detailed final
measure to assure that your over treatment design will install correctly.
It is worth this added cost to have the final measure verified,
rather than trying to figure it out on your own. A drapery workroom
in your area also will be able to offer design expertise for your
The over treatment, once installed over the patio sliding doors,
will offer the final, beautiful touch to your client’s shutters.
Editor’s note: This is a continuing series of articles written
by Sharon L. Anderson that will answer some of the many questions
we receive at Draperies & Window Coverings as well as questions
Anderson has encountered in her own business. If you have a question
you would like Anderson to address, please send it to:
c/o Draperies & Window Coverings
1724 E. Grand Ave.
Lindenhurst, IL 60046
Fax: (847) 356-9013
Sharon L. Anderson has more than 20 years experience in the residential
and commercial areas of interior design. She is currently a faculty
member at two Southern California colleges. Anderson has been featured
in numerous books and publications.