14 Tricky-shaped Windows and How to Dress Them
Some of the most beautiful homes can have the quirkiest windows, but how to dress them? It needn’t be difficult, as these ideas demonstrate
This large, circular window is beautifully paired with a slipper bath, creating a showpiece bathroom. Clearly, you wouldn’t want to draw the attention of your neighbours, but forget searching for that elusive circular window dressing and keep things simple.
This lightweight, white curtain, hung from a track at ceiling height, blends into the walls and provides the perfect privacy without detracting from the window and bath.
Check out more ideas for privacy-enhancing window treatments
Bay windows are very common in British homes, particularly Victorian, Edwardian and 1930s ones, and there are many ways to dress them, depending on the shape of the bay and the window size.
A built-in window seat paired with Roman blinds offers comfort in style. Mix and match prints and plains for your blinds, upholstery and cushions to create that perfect spot to watch the world go by.
The symmetry and proportion of this bay window is classically elegant. These look like working curtains that can be drawn, but a similar effect could be achieved with less full drapes, called dress curtains, which are purely for decoration.
This arrangement of four curtains makes an interesting change from a single pair drawn to either side of the bay, and emphasises the shape of the windows.
The café-style shutters provide privacy and balance out the height of the windows. Shutters are made to fit, so can be ideal for unusual-shaped windows, including curved ones.
Get expert advice on choosing shutters for your windows
This beautiful arched window would be very hard to dress with curtains or blinds. If you have a window similar to this one and privacy is the only requirement, then replace lower panes with frosted glass or apply an etched-effect film. Window film can be found in varying degrees of opacity and you can choose from numerous striking designs, as well as plains and coloured film.
Conservatory ceilings and large roof lights, like the ones in this luxury kitchen, can be a challenge. A traditional option is to use pinoleum, or wood-weave, blinds, as these homeowners have, which gently filter light and can be raised and lowered as required. They are also built to withstand the intense heat and light of a glass roof.
This small window – another circular design – creates a fantastic focal point and has been finished with wooden shutters, which visually square-off the window and allow privacy in an instant.
These curtains really soften the angles of this apex window and offer privacy and light-filtering. They also ‘puddle’ perfectly on the floor, creating a soft, romantic look.
Special corded tracks are needed to control the drape and gather of curtains at a 45 degree angle. The simple box pelmet at the top gives a smart, crisp finish and conceals the tracks and curtain headers.
This window has some interesting angles. To dress it, both the asymmetrical shape and the fact that it abuts to the walls either side would have had to have been taken into consideration.
The solution? The designer has created a curtain shaped to the window. When closed, it attaches by means of a hook and eye or Velcro to the angled wall on the left-hand side; when open, it’s gathered tidily away from the bifold doors with a fabric holdback. It’s a very neat solution to a tricky window shape.
This unusual bay with stunning arched windows has been dressed to perfection with individual Roman blinds. Because the window frames are squared off rather than echoing the arches of the glass, and provide a band of wood above the curve of each window, the blinds are able to clear the tops of the arches when raised, maximising light and showing off their architectural beauty.
This window arrangement could have been problematic. It’s off-centre and there’s no room for stacking a curtain on the right-hand side. By hanging a pair of pictures in line with the window height, the designer has created visual balance. The simple, sheer roller blind is neat and functional, and it allows in plenty of light.
This elegant room shows clever use of curtains to balance out asymmetrical windows. Rather than obscure the arch with curtains and pelmet, or a swag, the designer has hung sheers across both large windows.
If more privacy were needed, for example in a ground-floor room or a bedroom, then a double track could be fitted, so sheers and curtains could be combined.
The grand arched windows in this former church certainly earn their place in this contemporary conversion. Floor-to-ceiling curtains would have looked out of proportion and it would have been difficult for them to clear the window on both sides. The solution is eyelet curtains hung on a pole just above door height – clean and simple with a nod to the ecclesiastical past.
As this is a living space rather than a bedroom, blocking out light isn’t a primary consideration, so the upper portion of the window has been left undressed.
How beautiful is that doll’s house? But we’re talking curtains and these semi-sheer Roman blinds are a great solution for this angled conservatory wall. The light is filtered rather than blocked, and the floral design really adds to the scheme.
By using a series of individual Roman blinds, the shading can also be adjusted throughout the day as the sun moves round, just limiting light where it’s needed, rather than across the whole width of the window.
This is also a good potential solution for a wall of patio doors.
Get inspired with thousands more photos of conservatories.
This room in a Scottish castle certainly has the wow factor. The windows are double height and shaped into a corner bay. The curtains and coordinating pelmet demonstrate the importance of proportion and scale with any window treatment. A pelmet should be one fifth to one sixth the overall drop of the curtains. (Even if you don’t have double-height windows, the same pelmet-to-curtain ratio still applies.)
The tiebacks create drape and a waistline effect to the curtains and, in this case, are set just above head height for anyone luxuriating on the gorgeous window seat.
What smart solutions have you seen – or used – for dressing awkward-shaped windows? Share your tips and photos in the Comments below.