How to use vintage window treatments

How To Use Vintage Window Treatments

So you just bought a refurbished home?

Congratulations! There is nothing quite as cool as living in a home with some serious history behind it. However, to truly get in the spirit of the time your home was created, you’ll probably want to decorate it accurately. Here is where window treatments come in.

Whether soft, delicate lace panels or solid interior shutters, great window covering helps add a pop of décor to any space while protecting the privacy of your indoor space by obscuring the view from outside. Great window treatments also help with energy efficiency, blocking out unwanted drafts from old windows during the cold winters or stopping the sun from leaking in during the hotter months.

In The Architecture of Country Houses, a book by 1850s tastemaker A.J. Downing writers, “Nothing ‘furnishes’ a room so much as curtains to the window…not merely because they take away from the bareness of plain casings and subdue the glare of light, but because there are always pleasing and graceful lines in the folds of hanging drapery—even of the plainest material.”

Having well-thought-out cheapest blinds for windows can help tie a home together. However, getting the wrong ones can be seemingly off-putting for people who step foot into your home. Here are a few ideas for those who want to transform their period home into something historical and fantastic.

Interior Shutters

How to use vintage window treatments

Shutters have been around for thousands of years. Even the ancient Greek used shutters to protect their interiors, block out sunlight, and provide those in the home with ventilation. Shutters were very common in warmer parts of the world, particularly in the deep South. You’ll probably recognize these shutters with wide blades that open and close with the touch of a central rod.

Beyond refurbished homes, these types of “plantation shutters” are in a bit of a renaissance at this time. More and more we see them in newer and refurbished homes and they are near always available from window treatment manufacturers.

Plus, if you don’t want to spend the money on real wood shutters, which can be quite expensive, you can go for faux wood. Faux wood is very durable, easy to keep clean, and looks great.


Curtains were often used to protect those inside the house from drafts. Historians believe that the first incarnations of curtains in American homes were plain fabric panels. However, once European influence crept its way into the American lifestyle, window treatment received a total makeover. Curtains became longer, topped by gilded or painted wooden cornices and covered with embellishments.

To capture the look of that era with authenticity, you are going to need to spend a bit of money. We recommend looking for Victoria-era curtains made of velvet, rayon, lace, silk, or chintz.

Finding the Right Window Treatments For Your Vintage Home

Of course, you could move beyond the “what you’d expect” décor for your vintage home and go with something a bit more unique too, such as roller shades, see this wide range of cellular shades blackout, wooden Venetian blinds, or lace window coverings. Just make sure to do your research to find the right affordable blinds and look for your home!

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