The 5 Best Curtain Styles for Sash Windows

Sash windows are a cherished feature of any traditional or contemporary home, but the right choice of curtains can prove tricky. Most homeowners don’t want to obscure the beauty of their windows however, there is still a need for privacy at certain times of the day and shade from the sun. This is especially important…

H ere are some of the best curtain style suggestions from leading interior designers, chosen to complement and not obscure your beautiful sash windows whilst also offering the practical benefits of privacy and shade when you need it. These designs work with virtually any room style and décor too.

1. Sash Window Blinds

Blinds are a great contemporary option and offer privacy, shade, controlled light, or a completely uninterrupted view of your sash windows to suit your mood, the occasion, and even the weather.

Functional and easy to use, blinds won’t interfere with anything adjacent to or underneath the window like hanging pictures or a radiator. There are also a lot of choices when it comes to transparency levels ranging from sheer to complete blackout blinds. The latter work well for bedrooms or if you have a townhouse with a nearby streetlight.

Blinds allow you to control exactly how much light comes in, especially compared to curtains which are generally far less versatile.

2. Traditional Shutters

If you have a period home, then your sash windows may already have traditional wooden shutters. If they’re absent, then you could consider reinstalling shutters to add extra authenticity as well as a practical way to manage light and privacy.

Shutters can be personalised to suit your tastes and the design of the room; they are both functional and stylish. Shutters allow light control, filtering out sunlight in the warmer months to keep the room cool and protect the furniture whilst maximising natural light during the gloomy winter season.

There are shutters and there are shutters! Café-style shutters cover the bottom half of the window, so-called to shield diners in streetside restaurants and eateries but also perfect for period properties that front busy locations. Café-style shutters provide light and privacy at the same time and won’t spoil the look of your sash windows. There are lots of design variations that you can tailor to your home and specific rooms.

3. Floor Length Curtains

Floor-length curtains can really warm a north or east-facing room and whichever way the house faces, they will add a frame to your sash windows, rather like framing a picture. Design choices and colours are limitless, and this style of curtain can be hung and tied back in lots of different ways with beautiful swag-style curtain ties. Add a decorative pelmet or use an ornate curtain pole, to complement the design of the room.

Sunlight can be limited, and privacy is increased by just letting one curtain hang across half the window. Full-length curtains also decrease draughts, the bane of period homeowners but you don’t need to rely on heavy curtains to do this as now there are plenty of modern draught-proofing methods to manage rattly, old sash windows.

4. Sheer Voile

Sheer voile is a soft sheer yarn that is lightweight and transparent. It allows a lot of light through so is a good choice for rooms that don’t have a lot of sunshine. The whole look of voile is light and airy, the complete opposite of heavy brocades and damask used for full-length curtains. Equally, voile can be combined with another style of curtain on the same window to add privacy when the main curtains are open, plus a softer more ethereal look.

Voile is beautifully complementary to sash windows, providing privacy whilst allowing in light in a naturally elegant and informal way. In rooms that are quite staid and regulated, voile adds softness and femininity. They are ideal for bedrooms but don’t offer complete privacy so would need to be combined with another style of curtain or window covering.

5. Soft Drapes

Soft drapes can partner with blinds, traditional lined curtains, or shutters so if you want to window dress then these make the perfect partner with another type of window covering. Add colour or a soft, floaty look to the room. Muslin or voile is the best fabric choice for drapes, and because the material is light and easy to manipulate, there are endless interesting design options to suit the interior.

Before you hit on the curtain style you really like, just figure out what the curtains need to deliver in terms of practicality. Protection from the sun could be a top priority or a complete blackout at night time, perhaps privacy is a big concern due to the location of your home. Always make sure the design delivers on a functional level as well as looking good.

We repair, restore and manufacture sash windows for all types of properties, from ultra-modern houses to historic period homes. Our workshop can produce windows in any size, specification, and style with an infinite choice of paint colours. We are proud to blend traditional craftsmanship with the very best of modern materials and techniques to provide privacy, noise control, draught-proofing, thermal regulation, and security as well as simply beautiful sash and casement windows.

Contact us here to find out more about bespoke sash window design and our repair and restoration services.