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MN cowgirl
Frequent Contributor


Im my family room, there is a grey/brown paneling on the far wall with cathedral ceiling...there is a large rustic star star on this wall above a bay window....


so I thought for now, I would do this room in a cowboy/rustic decor.   I have somethings already that will work in this room.  But there are white lace curtains on 3 windows that do not go with the rest of the room.  So, other than Pennys., where should I look for you know a good site? Also, the blinds are a cheap plastic, so might replace them too...are mini blinds in now?  I don't keep up with the trends. 

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Re: Curtains. might want to check out ......they have some nice choices. 


Wooden blinds are in right now.  They are a much nicer look than the old plastic mini blinds.  They come in wood tones and in white tones.  I would like to install them in my office somtimes soon.  Those windows are only abut 45 inches high so the cost would not be too bad.  Lowes has some nice wooden blinds. 


Even if your windows are tall, you could do the wooden blinds on the bottom half or so...then leave the top open...


For your decorating theme maybe wooden interior shutters would be a good option.  You could put them on the bottom and open them to let in the amount of light you want.  You could leave the top open to the light unless heating and cooling is an issue. has some insulated drapes that can help with heating and cooling issues. 


When we bought this house, I was emphatic that the drapes be included in the sale.  There are 23 windows that ALL need 84 inch drapes (all rooms in this old house have at least 10 foot ceilings...some higher) so I knew the cost to replace what was there would be substantial.  I am so glad I got to keep them.  They were good quality, neutral, insulated, and could be moved from room to room as I did some redecorating. 


That was in 2004 so they are at least 7 years old plus however long they had been here before.  I am noticing that some will need to be replaced over the next couple of years and I am not looking forward to the cost to replace. 


I also think that in their home catalog has some window treatments....might want to check them out.   

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MN cowgirl
Frequent Contributor

Re: Curtains.

thanks so much soilbabe!  I hadn't thought of wooden blinds but they might go nicely in there.  The wooden interior shutters is a cool idea too!  will check out all the sites you mentioned.

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Re: Curtains.

Penneys does have a very good selection of fabric Roman shades and things like wooden rolldown blinds.  I also like the quilts and matching matchwork valances they often carry.   More on that below. 

Some home improvement stores like Lowe's and Home Depot may carry some shades, blinds and shutters, too.  There are many Western catalogs that feature curtains in themes like you describe.  There is also a lot of Western fabric print material out there, if you have any stores that carry yardage nearby. 

For some different textures and materials - for example, I got the paper shades in my office from them  - I like to browse Pier One.  I used lined homemade valances in a neat feather print I found at Walmart to pick up the waterfowl/pond theme from my Claire Murray rug out there. 

My only family room privacy shade is one of Pier One's neutral "straw" rolldowns, with a topper scarf tied over two metal tiebacks, one at the top corner of the window frame on each side.  I am about ready to change out this arrangement, since this is really the last fabric window treatment in the house itself...I just cannot cope with the dust that gathers on cloth anymore.  (I need to take down this for good, and remove the office valances and wash them, but cannot contemplate it with the lung crud I've got going on right now.  Those rods have pine cones screwed onto each end with a double-ended screw!)    

Now, about the quilts I mentioned above...when we first lived here, I got some matching, inexpensive quilts from Penneys, and sewed drapery rod casings (you can buy it by the yard at a fabric store, or probably online) along one edge of each one.  Ran a wooden closet rod through them, and screwed a wooden finial on the ends, hanging them in wooden brackets.  Lowe's has all of this stuff relatively cheap, and you can stain or paint it any color.  The quilts were colorful and had some insulating properties, and the backing colors are usually ligtht-colored neutrals, that act as lining and look okay from the street side...unlined fabric prints at a window look really tacky to me.   

This gets to the crux of your need:  Do you need to cover the windows to hold in heat/to give yourself privacy, or do you want to open them up more for light and views of your yard and beyond?  That will sort of drive your decisions to me. 

In places where I want light, but still need privacy, I may install a privacy film, or I've built with glass block to obscure the sightline, but allow in the light.  Sometimes, as Soilbabe mentions, it is only necessary to cover the lower portion of the window with a shutter or cafe' curtain, and let light in above.  Sometimes, the whole window needs covering to provide the privacy and security needs of the family inside. 

For example, we have one window opening that faces from our bedroom into a hallway where there are large windows facing the driveway and garage.  Our farm serviceman and the employee who delivers vaccines are in and out of the garage, stocking and accessing vaccines and other farm supplies, several times a week. I just used an old window sash salvaged from another house to set panes of stained glass in, to cover the bottom half of that opening.  Lets us have privacy and lots of color there, with no dustcatcher. 

A couple other neat sources for window treatments could be Pottery Barn and Cabela's, which has a lot of outdoorsy drapes. 

I've also used those printed garden flags for curtains (especially on door lites, hung on a magnetic rod), and have one tiny window in my laundry area that has some aprons my girls used when they were small strung along in front of it.  In the past, I've turned over a casing on some pretty, woven dish towels, and hung them for cafe' curtains, and have seen people use antique feedbags, flour sacks, tablecloths. etc., for curtains, too.

Rods can be tricky on a bay window, so plan ahead.  In a darker-walled room like you describe, unless I needed heavy curtains to hold in heat, or privacy was a concern, I'd want to let light in as much as possible.  Open the present window treatments and let that help you decide. 

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