Window Treatments for Arched Windows

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Arched Window Treatment Solutions

Arched windows can be quite a daunting task to dress–especially if there is an arch over the top center of three rectangular windows. It appears like a separate arch at the top and three rectangular large windows at the bottom. However, there are a few tricks that designers use to make arches beautiful in your home or business.

Arched windows are truly a delight in any room to bring an architectural style and beauty in your area. When you decide you want window coverings though, the arches can be a separate pane of glass, built into the bottom rectangle of glass window or the arch may be more of a point at the top or a gentle curve. There is little room at the top of most arches before it meets the ceiling, so it can be difficult to hang draperies. Taking all of these items into account plus the size differences leaves you with one great choice–custom window treatments with the help from a designer.

Dress the Entire Window

You can dress the entire window with custom draperies without calling attention to the arch at the top. A thin drapery rod can be placed at the top of the wall where it meets the ceiling above the arched area. A great look is to use is two loosely woven wool drapery panels that reach from the ceiling to the floor. This type of window covering makes your room look much taller when the drapes are closed or partially open. The choice of your fabric and color dictate how formal this window treatment appears, so you can adjust it by the fabric choice.

Delicate and Balanced Beauty

If you want a formal but delicate appearance on your arched window, choose a drapery rod that is highly decorative with a crest or any type of symbol on the center of it to draw the eye to the gracefully arched windows. You can choose lovely flowing fabric in an off white and a neutral color such as a tan to put on each side of the window, so that when the two sides are closed, it is white in the middle and tan on the sides. Linen fabric works great as does sheer fabrics for this application. When both panels are partially open, it gives the illusion of an extra window in the area of the archway.

Showcase Your Architectural Aspects

This style of draperies for an arched window is best in solid colors to match your decor in any room. The top of the window arch is covered with a fabric valance that mounts inside the window casing. It looks best if it covers about one third of the window and has a polished appearance with a scalloped bottom on the valance. This look showcases your arched window when you leave the bottom of the window uncovered so you can let light in your room but block some of the glare high on the window.

Softening a Loft

Upstairs lofts quite often have exposed pipes or beams that are needed for the integrity of the space. You can dress up a loft with a drapery rod that mounts at the ceiling on the wall over your arched window behind any exposed items. The best bet is to soften it with sheer panels with some detailing such as embossed squares on the two drapery panels to pick up accents of color in your room.

A Shaded View

This idea for arched window treatments is used often by interior decorators so that the archway at the top is not covered to celebrate the design. This works well when you have a room with an arched window that requires privacy from a neighbor. You place any window treatment of your choice from side to side just below the arched portion of the window so you still get light through the top of the arch, but you have privacy with the bottom section of the window covered.

A Stunning Outdoor View

If your arched window looks out to a courtyard or another beautiful area of your landscape, you may not want to cover the window at all. Some interior designers choose to place decorative mullions from the bottom of the window up to the area where the archway starts on both sides of the window casing. This idea is great for especially large expanses of glass in a very tall arched window. In a sense, it frames your worthy landscape view and it is quite glorious.

Arched French Door Design

An archway above French doors is a combination of two lovely designs together. In this situation, most homeowners will leave the arched area open at the top and use sheer drapery panels in a soft and flowing fabric to cover the actual doors for privacy. The combination of French doors and an overhead archway is commonly used in a master bedroom. Choose a fabric with a solid color that matches your other textiles in your bedroom or a fabric with a small pattern in it to accent your color scheme.

Combination of an Arched Window and a Rectangular Window

Many times a home will have the combination of a regular rectangular window with an arched window next to it to flank an item, such as a stove in the kitchen or a fireplace in the living room. Your goal with this type of orientation is to unite the two windows of different shapes on both sides of the object. This is achieved by using swags on a drapery rod placed at the top of the rectangular window and across the bottom of the arched window while leaving the archway open. The drapery rod will usually have one swag for each of the two windows to create a symmetrical line between the two and form unity.

Two Corner Arched Windows

Sometimes you will have two arched windows at the corner of a room on walls adjacent to each other. You will likely want to be able to have window treatments that are functional so you can open and close them. A great designer decoy idea is to have two custom drapery panels that are sewn together to form one continuous panel in an “L” shape in the corner of the room. This allows you to hide the actual corner of the room behind the draperies when it is open and closed because you open the two sides by sliding them towards each other so that they stack in the corner over the frames.

Three Arched Window Panels

Some arched windows form the arch across the entire top with a wider window in the middle and two more narrow windows on each side of it to form one large and gentle arch over the three windowpanes. In this case, you will usually have very nice woodwork between the three sections that you want to showcase. In this case, it’s best to have a drapery rod horizontally at the middle height of the set of three windows. this solution allows you to have privacy at the bottom while still letting in natural lighting at the top and showcasing the arch.

Follow the Curve

This design accents the curve in the arched window. You put a curved drapery rod along the curve just above the window with two drapery panels that curve at the top and then travel down the expanse of the window to pool softly and evenly on the floor. This is a very dramatic window treatment that celebrates your arched windows and it works best with sheer to medium weight fabric.

French Doors with a Flattened Arch

Some French doors are combined with a flattened arch at the top that is as wide as both doors, but not very tall in the center. This combination can be a challenge for window treatments. The best idea is to embrace the details and cover the top archway with a very light fabric that is stationary and doesn’t open. For the bottom French doors, horizontal blinds work really well. The colors of your flattened arch over the doors should usually be in a neutral color to match the horizontal blinds.

Creating a Faux Arch

You can create the illusion of a arched window on a regular rectangular window with fabric. This is accomplished by attaching a sheer fabric to the wall at ceiling height in the middle and making an arch with it that comes down to the actual window top on both sides. Then you add another layer of fabric in a balloon style valance underneath the sheer fabric and across the top of the window. This layer should be shorter in the middle and all the way to the bottom of the window on the sides to create this arched window illusion.

You can now imagine how you want to dress your arched windows to get the light control, privacy and the design that best suits your needs with a custom window treatment that is all your own.

Picture of Bobby Nakamura

Bobby Nakamura

Third-generation of Naka's legacy, Bobby brings over 30 years of industry experience, a passion for design, and a love for food and travel.

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