Your windows can easily become a centerpiece in the house and a topic for conversation, provided you have managed to bring that something special in the room with the right window treatments. To amaze the crowds at your next dinner party, you need to adorn your windows with elegant draperies that will match the rest of your home’s design. To accomplish that you have two primary options (1) have a valance or (2) install cornice box. Both come with pre-designed and custom options for you to choose from, which makes things easier. Now, many people confuse those two and think they are the same thing. They are not. Here is a brief guide with the necessary information you need to have to make up your mind when choosing a window treatment for your bedroom. Learn how to decorate valances and cornice boxes, the best way to design them to compliment your stylish home, and many more!
But, before we begin, let’s clear the fog around valances and cornice boxes.
What is a Valance?
A valance is a piece of fabric used to hide other window treatment’s hardware. It hangs across the top of the window and adds pattern, color, and softness. The most casual and basic treatment is a simple valance and it is usually a slip of fabric attached to a rod, either with pinched pleats or clip rings. For a more casual look, you can use valances alone. If you want to give a more formal look to your bedroom, you can pair valances with shutters (here are some ideas about shutters to give you a kick start), drapes, curtains, or shades (here is all you need to know about window shades). This should add more color and pattern to the room, too. That aside, there are literally hundreds of options. For example, valances can be ruffled, shirred, pleated or trimmed with beads!
Compared to a drapery panel or curtain, a valance is a relatively short window treatment. Some people say valances are out of style, but this is just too far off. You dress the window without a full-on fabric overload so how could that ever fall out of style! Admittedly, valances are perfect for small windows that you want to keep feeling open, yet not bare. Also, rich brown materials are timeless so you can expect them to be trending for much longer. Imagine matching roman shades and valances in fiery orange and red paisley and stark white accents that mellow out the bright drapery colors and wall! Simply gorgeous!
What is a Cornice?
A cornice is nothing more than a wooden valance. It is usually custom-made and crafted from plywood. Then corner brackets and wood screws help assemble it, before it is covered with fabric, wallpaper or paint and mounted to the wall just above the window. We can say that a cornice frames the top of the window and it can be paired with curtains, drapes or fabric shades, among other soft window treatments or even used alone if you want your master suite to infuse grandeur and have a more formal look.
Tip: If your room lacks architectural interest, then cornices are ideal options as they can give a room with a lack of crown molding or a window with small trim an extra appeal.
What is a Box-Pleated Valance?
It is a stationary window treatment that comprises of a moulting board attached to the wall, with stitched pleats lying flat against it. It is a classic style and complements beautifully traditional or formal bedroom designs. Needless to say, a box-pleated valance will easily match bed skirts, furniture patterns, duvets or bedspreads.
You may also hear a word or two about swags. Swags are pieces of fabric that are wound over a tieback at every corner of a window or loosely draped and slung over a rod to add softness and style in the room. You can hang swags any way you can. A simple one is where its fabric midsection acts as a valance and the ends are either hemmed or cut into diagonals and hang down softly on each side of the window. Swags are certainly an excellent option if you want to add a romantic note to your bedroom, especially of it is a country or cottage style. Beauty is in the simplest of things, right?
However, if much privacy is required, the swag itself will fall short, unless combined with shades, blinds, curtains, shutters and other window treatments. Also, you can use swags as an appealing alternative to drapes for canopy beds, provided they are matched with cascades of fabric.
So, a valances, cornice boxes, and swags are a powerful team that can give your master bedroom a bit of the flair and décor you want for a lovely design! But, what happens when you have to choose one? Which matches your design best and which compliments your style?
Here are some pointers you might find useful:
1. The best thing about custom cornice boxes is that you are always in control regarding the look and design of the window treatment, from the smallest trim to more eye-popping features.
2. There are countless possibilities when it comes to padded wood frames. They can be soft and curved or crisp and sharp. You get to choose so let your imagination run free. Design an elaborate cornice box that suits the interior design style in your home.
3. Cover the top part of your window with a smooth wood valance or one in soft fabric, which you can have customised with different trims, styles, and pleats or use pre-made templates. As for wood valances, they add a special touch to existing shades and blinds and finish a room with a gorgeous wood finish. Although a bit more expensive than other window treatments, wood valances give you an entirely natural, crisp look that is second to none.