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Blackout Curtains

When you’re choosing window treatments to put the final touches on a room, there are a few things to consider. For many, style and effect are some of the most important considerations; while also useful, curtains are certainly an integral part of a room’s decor, with the ability to give it warmth, coolness and boldness. For others, the usefulness of the curtain is a more important point. If it’s a room where you’d like a fair amount of privacy, thicker curtains can help you accomplish the job with ease. And if it’s a room that faces the bright morning sun, you may want to consider adding blackout curtains. Blackout curtains come in a range of stylish fabrics to suit your tastes, and if you need extra coverage, west elm gives you fantastic choices at your fingertips when it comes to your window treatment selections. Whether your style preference is bold, patterned, striped or solid, there’s a vast selection of different blackout curtains and panels that are sure to fit the bill for any room or space within your home.

When shopping blackout curtains, it helps to understand the difference between curtains and drapes, as they are not exactly the same. Curtains are often lighter and constructed with just one layer of fabric, while drapes combine several layers of fabric to create a thicker curtain. When you’re selecting the sheerest of window treatments, for example, these are called curtains, and window treatments that provide you with a moderate amount of coverage are referred to as drapes. When it comes to blackout curtains only, this is important to consider because, with a blackout curtain, the blackout panel is typically sewn into the fabric. With a drape, you typically need to purchase a separate blackout panel to gain that extra coverage you’re looking for – for example, in your bedroom. An additional benefit of knowing the difference is the fact that you can often purchase separate blackout panels for existing drapes, allowing any window treatment in your home to become a blackout curtain for perhaps only part of the year.

There are many benefits to blackout curtains and panels that go beyond the need for extra privacy. If you’re applying window treatments to a room that receives a lot of bright sunlight, blackout curtains can help block the UV rays from entering your home and fading furniture, paintings and other precious items. Over time, furniture, collectibles and other items will fade, and may even warp when you keep them in direct sunlight for long periods without sun protection. In addition, blackout curtains and panels are very energy efficient and can help with your heating and cooling costs all year long by insulating your windows. These types of panels help keep heat in and cold out during the winter, with a vice-versa effect in the summer. While you may not want to dress every window with a blackout panel, if you live in an area with particularly stormy winters, it’s a great time to add a panel to windows for only part of the year.

The blackout curtains and panels you choose are, of course, a reflection of your personal style. Blackout curtains are commonly available in easy-care cotton fabric, but are also available in a myriad of other choices – everything from Belgian flax linen to velvet. Choosing blackout curtains doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice on style; decide on bold, eye-popping colors and patterns, or select a subtle neutral hue to complement your existing room decor. In addition, there are many pieces of complementary window hardware to choose from, such as rods, rings and finials in various finishes such as nickel, bronze and brass. To block even more light as well as add some variety to your room’s decor, pair blackout curtains with venetian blinds or Roman shades for the utmost in privacy.