Sunday, March 2, 2014

Curtains--How to Choose?

In case you missed the First Step in our living room decorating, we have a new couch. I am loving it! It is so wonderfully comfortable and both hubby and I can stretch out as much as want for movie watching. When I walk in the door from work, I just smile when I see it. But, like with many things in life, gaining one thing just makes me want another. Now I'm not really confessing discontentment but just the natural decorating itch to take the next step. I've really been feeling that the next step for our living room is curtains. Curtains because I am craving some color and curtains because it is too dang cold to work in our garage to make a coffee table until...oh maybe July.

I have spent a couple hours this past week "researching" for curtain inspiration. This entailed lots of Pinterest and blog hopping. I found plenty of inspiration but still have no idea which fabric/curtain to choose!? However, I DID still accomplish my February Goal to narrow down my options. When you look through the pictures you may think it's not very narrow at all but trust me, there's a lot of great fabric I said "no" to.

Originally I had thought I wanted a multi-colored fabric to tie in all the decor ideas I have for this room. As I perused, I came across really only one multi-colored choice that I liked. I did some more thinking (mostly when I should have been sleeping) and decided that I want to go with just one color (or two if you consider color + white as multi). I am leaning towards a coral design. It's got to be the right coral though, not too orange and not too pink. This is subject to change of course. :)

So first, let's look at my main inspiration for living rooms and curtains.

I am in love with this living room from "Four Generations One Roof". The light and airy feel, the rustic chic look and the cool color palette is exactly what I want. I love her TV console! We have an old dresser and I will be thinking of hers when we re-do ours. The lanterns and bird are such a fun touch and yet keep the room simple.
 Yum! Jessica, I hope it's okay if I try to copy you! :) I really like her DIY burlap curtains, which you can read about how to make here. While, I don't think these curtains will work well in my living room, I may consider them for a room upstairs at some point.

Okay, inspiration living room #2 belongs to Abbie at "M is for Mama". This woman loves color and she knows how to use it! You can see more pictures of her beautiful living room here. I love reading Abbie's blog and I especially love seeing any of her home decorating and DIY projects.
Her use of color, thrifty ways, and overall decorating style usually have me wishing she would come spend a month at my house and help me decorate. I plan to decorate using the same color as her: coral, blues and yellows. I even almost bought that "In This House" canvas from TJMax after seeing it on her blog. For some bizarre reason I decided to wait and when I went back a couple weeks later they were sold out. Learned my lesson there! I love the bird pillow and really all the different pillows coordinated together. I skimmed all the comments left on her blog post to find out where those curtains were from. She said they were called Volary from I immediately opened a new tab and searched only to find out that this too was no longer available. So while some copying is out of the question here, I do hope to find a nice coral/white fabric and then some great colorful pillows to start adding the excitement that my living room so desperately needs.

 My third living room inspiration I originally found on Pinterest and then followed the link to the magazine website "House Beautiful". Once again, I love the light, airy feel and the splashes of multiple colors.

So those were the three living rooms that really inspired me. Now I have some curtains and fabrics that I love and just can't decide which route to go.

First are these somewhat striped coral curtains from Anthropoligie which I saw on Pinterest. But (insert heavy sigh) these also are no longer available. Probably just as well since I love them SO much I would have really struggled to bring myself to pay over $100 for one panel. But maybe they could have been on clearance! (another sigh)

So while they don't have the ones above anymore, they do have a few similar alternatives. I'm not in love with either one as much and the price tag is still a problem for me. But let's just look anyways, shall we?

These ones are called "Crochet Spliced Curtains" and have a crocheted type of stripe which I think is really cute and gives the whole stripe style a new sensation. However, when you compare it to the one above, I think this may be too far on the orange side of coral for me.

The next is called "Swing Stripe Curtains." This one again has a fun style of stripe. They are little pom poms. I think its a creative idea but I'm not sure I love the 3Dish effect the curtains would have. Also, as they would be behind my couch, I would like to have the color be more dominant than the neutral tone to offset my couch and the white walls.

These are totally not coral, but if I were going to make a major color shift, I think these would be it (well in a world where the price tag doesn't matter again). These are Pottery Barn's Classic Stripe Drapes in Porcelain Blue. I love how it can't really decide if it's green or blue and I think that would work well with my decor style where multiple shades of a color will appear together and (hopefully) not look weird. I do wish the neutral stripe was more tan than white though.||NoFacet-_-NoFacet-_--_-

***Insert totally unrelated curtains into the blog post about curtains for the living room. ***

(the bird ones, not the blue floral),default,pd.html?cgid=curtain-length
I would not put Applique Birds on a Wire Curtain from Pier1 in my living room for a couple reasons, but their more reasonable price tag (still a little more than I would like to spend) and my absolute love of them is causing me to rack my brain for WHICH room I CAN put them in. I would not put them in my living room because as I said before, the neutral is too dominant to go right by my couch and white walls. Also, the couch would hide half the birdies and that would be so wrong! I am wondering and kinda hoping they could work over the slider in our dining room. It is on the same wall as the living room window and only separated by about 3 1/2 feet of wall but that distance from the couch might be enough. Plus, if I do get a colored curtain for the living room they would balance each other out. I totally off track in design world and the curtains for both should be the exact same? Someone with more decor savvy please tell me! :)

I just looked online again and discovered that they are available at the store 5 minutes from my house. Yikes! I now have the urge to go buy them and hold them up in different rooms and make a decision before the return date. What do you think?

An entirely different route would be for me to buy some fabric and make my own curtains, which is going to be the cheapest route. It's just a matter, once again, of choosing.

Abbie at M is for Mama posted not too long ago about "27 Vibrant Home Decor Fabrics for Under $25/yard". As I was perusing, I realized that at one points or another, I had tabs open for 6 of her 12 fabrics here! Check out her blog to see more picks, find out what these are all called, and just to pay her a visit because she is so wonderful!

After a couple hours looking through pages and pages of home decor fabrics, here are my top picks! Some would be curtain options, some maybe for throw pillows or something else.
1. Zig Zag Khaki 2. Gotcha Ocean 3. Suzani White/Coral 4. Vertical Ticking Stripe Ivory/Brown
5. Stripe Slub Salmon 6. Swavelle/Mill Creek Renette Floral Sundance 7. Lulu Stripe True Turquoise 8. Fynn Ocean 9. Claridge Dots Jacquard Tango Mango 10. Duralee Home Birdcage Canary

When I was still highly considering multi-colored curtains, #6 was high on the list. #10 also comes in coral and grey which are equally wonderful.

Here are my last top pics for fun coral prints!

This is called Poppies Coral by "Birch Organic Fabrics" in their line "Elk Grove Knits". The only problem is I don't think a knit would be a good fabric for curtains. Also, it's a little too pink for what I want.

This is Chevron Melon by "Dear Stella" in the "Mercer" line. That whole line is such a fun mix of navy and coral!

 This lovely fabric is Honey House Peach by designer Bonnie Christine in her line "Sweet as Honey."

The last one is Beekeeper Coral also by Bonnie Christine and also in the line "Sweet as Honey."

So many beautiful living rooms, curtains, and fabric! How is a girl to choose? Help me out! I'd appreciate any design advice or votes! 


  1. If I had advice about curtains I guess I would HAVE curtains! I say go, and go NOW to get those birdie drapes and try them out somewhere - the dining room, the guest room, the office. They are so cute! Soooo many decisions. I do hope someone can help you. You could always order/buy some of your favorites and put them up and see what you think. If you don't like the look take them back. <3

  2. Well, obviously I love the anthropologie ones. ;) But those are ALWAYS too expensive! I agree with the person above that sometimes it takes buying them, putting them up and returning them to know what you'll like! Curtains are tricky because they do dominate so much of the room when they are closed. Because of that, I lean towards ones that aren't as bold of a print. Or that have a monochromatic print like the chevrons. I find I tire of really bold prints quickly. That's just me though! It totally comes down to personal preference! My philosophy though is to go more neutral with the curtains (or a bright solid color), and go bold prints with the pillows which can be swapped out seasonally. Hope that helps!

  3. When choosing curtains, you must take into account the size of the room. If it's a small room, it is best to opt for neutral colors in shades such as white or beige. Summerdale Mills help you to choose curtain you are looking for.