More on window treatments

I'm familiar with the saying "measure twice, cut once" but there is no saying for someone who buys a curtain only to realize the molding above her window precludes her from installing a standard curtain rod. Doh!

This falls into the category of acts I have committed that I would rather not admit to but I figure I'd come clean in exchange for some advice.

This is my dining room/kitchen

If you recall, I'm putting those patterned restoration hardware chairs in here along with yet to be found wood chairs. My plan was to add to the drama of the dining room side by putting up a beautiful drapery. I lusted after these Restoration Hardware curtains for my bedroom but because I needed 6 of them, they were certainly out of the budget. However, I happened to find a single drape on ebay for 1/4 of the retail price. So I pounced on it and was very proud of myself for finally winning something on ebay (I never win the auctions I really want!).
Restoration Hardware Silk Taffeta Drapes

That was until I took a closer look at the area above the window. I had planned to install a rod in the smooth wooden frieze area between the larger crown and the window frame. See the key word in that sentence? Planned.
Its hard to see here (apologies for the bad photo) but the molding in this room is set up in such a way that there is a center piece of molding that juts out right where one side of the curtain rod bracket would be installed. So installing a regular curtain rod is a no-go. I also can't install a rod above the molding altogether because the molding sticks out considerably from the wall and the wall itself is curved into a cove so the curtains wouldn't hang straight.

My first thought was using some sort of tension rod but the weight of this drape is pretty substantial. I don't think a little rod meant for cafe curtains is going to hold up. Not to mention, I think a thin rod here would look out of place.

I'm most definitely NOT wise in the way of window treatments so perhaps there is a good solution to this problem. Anyone know what that magical solution might be? If there isn't, should I just give up on having my curtain and go with a shade instead?


  1. well, it is a bit difficult to see how much that piece juts out... and I am still not exactly sure where you planned to place the rod...but if I have it right.... could you just get a longer bracket made for the left side of the window so that it equals the distance the right side bracket would stick out ? you should be able to get brackets that would stick out far enough to let the drapes hang nicely but not look awkward?> Even if I don't have it right...perhaps it will give you some food for thought....

  2. Hi Bumblevee. Thanks for the suggestion. Since its all painted the same its hard to see the depth but the profile is pretty extreme. The bracket would work to get the curtain up there but it sticks out quite a lot so the curtains would be 10+ inches away from the window. Thats too far for my taste and I think it would look odd to have the curtain so far from the wall.

  3. I have a levelor rod that I recently bought at Homedepot, it is really nice the finials look like old house door knobs and it was cheap $60.00 for a long rod( looks like restoration hardware stuff), the thing is that the brackets are extendable , so one can stick out from the recessed bit and problem solved, I imagine just for things like this.

  4. I had the same issue and had my rod installed on the ceiling a few cm away from the wall so the curtains hang straight down. Does this make sense; not sure I'm explaining it properly (if you need a photos, I can email one). It works wonderfully!

  5. Chris - Ill take a look at Home Depot but I think the extension would have to be too far. The profile is pretty substantial.

    S- Thanks for the offer. I can't affix it to my ceiling since I have a curved cove that meets up with the original plast detail work on the ceiling. I wouldn't drill holes through it.

  6. can you post a photo of the TOP of the window - close up ? its hard to see if there is any room to attach a rod INSIDE the window...

    but with a photo maybe

  7. I don't have my camera handy but Ill post a photo of the details so its a little easier to see.

  8. oh, okay, I understand. Shoot. In that case, I might go with some beautiful linen shades.

  9. You might not have to give up on the idea of a tension rod. We found one at Linens & Things or Bed, Bath & Beyond that is rather substantial and actually very pretty - it's brushed nickel so it works for several uses. We had it up as a shower curtain holder for awhile ... I wonder where it is in our house now. *scratches head*

  10. Instead of a tension rod, you should get something like a shower curtain rod so that the ends of the rod screw into the sides of the moulding. Same layout as a tension rod, but a much more secure installation.

    Btw-I love your blog which I've just stumbled upon and your home is fabulous.

  11. what about plumbers copper thin piping installed-
    i saw this in a gorgeous park ave. town home-
    it becomes decorative and functional.

  12. Ok, maybe I need to explore the tension rod again.

    Pve - The copper is actually a really cool idea. I don't think it would go in this room (too many other metals already) but I may have to use that idea somewhere else. Thanks!!

  13. I just found your blog and love it!! What a sense of satisfaction you will have... and very soon!

    About the curtains, it is hard to tell from the pictures but could you use a rod like this one

    where the mounting pieces can be placed anywhere along the rod? The down side is that you won't have the decorative finials.

    I have faux drapes all over my house and I have always just used these rods

    because mine have valances covering the very top of the drapes. The idea seems like it may work for your window because you can get it very close to the corner but you'd need something prettier than the white rod if any will be showing.

    Good luck!

  14. Are you sure you even WANT to hide these beautiful moldings with curtains? I would go for some roman blinds installed inside the window instead.

  15. Happy - I don't think that first rod will work b/c the space isn't very wide.

    Laila - Im trying to add a bit of drama in here. Roman shades just don't seem to have the same effect. I have these moldings everywhere so Im not too worried about partially hiding them with a single drape. Also a consideration is that a custom roman shade is going to cost me $300+! That seems like a hell of a lot considering I have a lot of windows to cover in here.

  16. How about a wide louver wood shutter? They fit inside the window frame.

  17. You could fit curtains inside the windows, but then there is not much window left...

    The choise of fabric could make a roman blind very dramatic... And you can sew them yourself, a whole lot cheaper than to get them sewn for you.

    Or you could fit a piece of wood in the right depth so it sticks out as much as you need. It won't show under the curtain, and I'm sure you can get someone to make it look like it belongs there...

    Anyway, I'm sure you'll figure out something clever. I just love your house and what you have turned it into. Beautiful!

  18. One more suggestion. Since you are not worried about hiding the molding in here, why not hang the curtains from the ceiling. I did that in my bedroom, and it looks very good.

  19. I am also in favor of the "from the ceiling", but I wonder how the panel will hit the molding that juts out. Any other pictures?

  20. Also, is this just one panel? You could get a left side mounted swing out rod that comes just to where that molding juts out, then use a pull back on the left side. Big, swanky fabric, draped to one side. Thoughts?

  21. OMG, forget it, I just realized this is from 2008!


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