When I was a little girl, my mum would swap our curtains depending on the season. We had lighter ones in summer and thick, floor-length velvet ones in the winter. It’s still a good way to help winterproof your home! Especially if you live in an older property that may be a little on the draughty side. Or you simply want to save energy and reduce your heating bills.
With winter soon approaching, now is the perfect time to think about curtain choices to see you through the cold weather, keeping you extra warm, cosy and cocooned in your home. So today I wanted to provide a little bit of curtain inspiration, in partnership with made to measure curtain experts, Couture Living:
Choosing curtains by colour/design
Curtains are such a classic window dressing. Although blinds can be practical and popular, sometimes a room deserves a beautiful pair of curtains! Especially in a bedroom or living room where you may want a little more drama or character. Or if you have a particular window that would suit curtains, for example, a bay or french windows.
The winter months provide a great opportunity to go to town with elegant, eye-catching drapes. Think about the colours and fabrics that appeal to you. A great, luxe choice for winter is velvet which not only looks stunning and opulent but is a thicker fabric, better at holding onto the heat in your room.
Popular colours for winter are often those described as jewel colours, so ruby reds, ochre yellows, teal greens and indigo blues. Bold hues can lift the mood and take away a little of the greyness of these days. According to colour psychology, ‘warmer’ tones may help you feel cosier in general – rich reds, cocoa browns and rusty oranges as opposed to cooler greys, icy turquoise, greens and blues.
With your choice of curtains, you can opt for solid colours that pick out furniture or other accents in your room, or for a bit more personality you could choose a patterned fabric with a quirky design. Fun motifs such as pineapples, birds, dragonflies etc are great for adding individuality. If you think they won’t work in your room, sometimes all you need is to pick out some of the shades and tones in the design and introduce them by means of a new wall colour or simply in your cushions, lampshades, vases and wall art etc. Not only that, it’s a great way to shake up a room in general and make you fall in love with it again!
If you prefer a more muted palette, though, something a little more neutral and understated, why not consider a lovely ‘winter white’ look. Adding a gorgeous cream shaggy rug or sheepskin, plus bringing in lots of other textures such as macrame cushions and wool or linen curtains, plus candles, lanterns or string lights can create an incredibly warm, winter wonderland feel. These lighter brighter hues can certainly help to lift a room and your spirits if you don’t like the darker nights and the enclosed feel of winter. In this mood board I’ve included a wool fabric by Sanderson called Portland, in Eggshell:
Ordering curtains online
Maybe the thought of shopping for curtains has put your off changing them before now. But it couldn’t be easier with Couture Living. If you’re spoilt for choice, they can send samples through the post before you commit to a particular fabric so you can see it in your room. This is so handy if you are creating a mood board (always recommended) with paint swatches etc. It really helps you pull the room together.
Couture Living even has a handy 3-D curtain visualiser tool on the website so you can decide about pencil pleats or the length of your curtains etc. You can simply add in your dimensions and play around to find the right style and design of curtains. This is particularly useful if you don’t have standard sized windows because your curtains will be made to measure. Just because you may have a short window, don’t rule out going for longer curtains. They can help insulate where there may be skirting board/floor-level gaps and draughts, plus floor-length curtains can add drama to a room and even help make it appear larger than it is. Alternatively, some people prefer to have curtains that fall just below the windowsill in order to tuck them neatly behind radiators at night to stop the heat escaping through the windows.
A wide choice of curtain fabrics
As mentioned above, velvet can be a nice choice of fabric for winter curtains due to their heavier, more insulating nature. This year it has become a key interior design feature, not only in curtains but armchairs, pouffes and sofas, too. Velvet comes in an array of beautiful colours from the softest dusty pink to incredible fiery oranges and deep plums. Couture Living has a stunning array of velvets to choose from. In this mood board I’ve included the gorgeous Forenza fabric in a Cinnamon shade of velvet:
But other fabrics can work perfectly for winter, too, such as wool, woven tapestry styles, cosy chenille, textured slub fabrics and linen.
For the ultimate in cosy windows, consider your choice of lining. Having blackout or interlined curtains really helps to insulate a room and a thinner fabric can be greatly enhanced by having a lining. Not only do they fall more nicely when lined, curtains become much more energy efficient, blocking draughts and preventing warm air escaping the room too easily. Anything between 10-25% thermal energy escapes through the windows so it makes sense to cut this down as much as possible.
Finally our nesting instinct might be to keep curtains closed as much as possible during winter, but in the day it’s better to make sure your curtains are open to try and invite some of that daylight and natural warmth in, before closing them at dusk to trap in whatever precious heat there is. And don’t forget to ‘layer up’ your room with furry throws, knitted blankets, candles and warm light bulbs – all these things really help you to embrace the hygge way of life. Why not treat these months as a time to hit the pause and reset button on life. Self-care and catching up on all the quiet pursuits you love, whether that’s reading, crafting or watching box sets and movies back to back. Embrace the winter months behind your cosy curtains!