I've been told by folks (including architects) that architects generally do not approve of window treatments. For some reason them wacky architects think curtains and blinds adversely impact the architecture. But Mies van der Rohe (he of "Less is more.") used curtains in his houses:
People who live in glass houses not only do not throw stones but also have curtains. (source)
A couple close-ups in case you doubt what I say:
I bet they're watching House Hunters International behind those Corbu Curtains! (source)
Even freakin' Frank Lloyd Wright designed curtains:
How can it be wrong if it's Wright? (source)
So if an architect starts to pish and posh your frilly curtains, puff up and boom "So you think you're a better architect than Frank Lloyd Wright, Mies van der Rohe, and Le Corbusier?!?!?!"
Since we were afraid to bring up curtains with our architects (for the record, we don't know where they stand on curtains, but why tempt ugly confrontation when you don't have to...), we went to visit the good people at JoAnnie's Fabrics for a free window treatment consultation with a nice lady in a hoop dress named Dee Meener. After making fun of architects for a few (really almost twenty...) minutes, Ms. Meener settled down to discuss our options.
Given the bland colors in the house we decided, under the careful tutelage of our curtain advisor, to choose something that pops, that really brings the place alive yet provides privacy (and darkness) when we decide to watch House Hunter reruns in our privies. That takes us from this in our living room:
Those are nice! The curves of the valance, the bit across the top, helps to soften the harsh aluminum lines of the window. And the gold tassles are a nice touch and not only look good, contrasted as they are against the red velour, but hold the respective curtains in place until needed (form AND function: can't get more Modern than that!). Those tassles also remind us of graduations long ago (in fact, if we can find our UT tassels, we could save a few bucks by using those instead of getting new ones).
I know what you're thinking: "Man! With a window that large, what will you do to keep large aquatic birds from hitting it when the curtains are open?" We hear ya. And we have the solution: Large scale pelican decals:
Nothing says "Pelicans: Stay away!!!" better than large-scale pelican decals.
We still have a lot of windows to triage in the house. Something tells me we'll be spending a lot of time with Ms. Dee Meener over the next couple of months as we appoint our Modern masterpiece...