The Virtues of Voile - Chic Shade to beat the Heat Wave!
Whilst we're still embracing the heat wave in the UK and taking every opportunity to throw open the doors and windows to let the light shine in and the fresh breeze blow;
....you have too much of a good thing and our homes are still in need of some vital sun protection and welcome shade, in exactly the same way as we are.
And whilst there seems to have been somewhat of a blinds renaissance for windows in recent years, with Venetian, vertical, roller and Roman blinds finding favour with home owners seeking stylish and functional solutions for their windows; the much maligned voile curtain has been unfairly overlooked as either a stylish or practical option for dressing windows for way too long - so let's put that right and have a look at the amazing 'Virtues of Voile!
To be honest the mere mention of voiles probably conjures up an image in most people's minds of the 'old fashioned' and 'overly fussy' or even 'frilly' net curtains of yesteryear. Not that we're knocking net curtains either, as they can still look effective and even well placed; maybe in a vintage setting for example? But voiles (or sheers as some people prefer to call them) have come a long way in the style stakes and lovely, long, hot, sunny summers are definitely a time to consider giving a stylish home to some stunning voiles!
Voiles or sheers, whichever term you prefer, basically refers to any lightweight, transparent or semi-opaque curtaining fabric rather than a solid one. These lightweight fabrics can be plain or patterned, with woven or printed detail, but either way are designed to look light, floaty and sometimes even dreamy at your windows.
They can be used as a sole window dressing to soften the look of a bare window, or can be used in conjunction with curtains in a layered arrangement which usually involves the sheers being hung first - closest to the window - and then fabric curtains over the top.
Apart from looking dreamily romantic or attractive, however, voiles, sheers and lined voiles have two valuable dual purposes - protection and privacy.
Voiles can be used on more or less any scale of window (and in any room), but are particularly effective on large scale windows. They provide a practical level of privacy on such windows without taking too much valuable daylight from the room. From inside a room you can still see a good deal of the outside view beyond the window; but from outside the view into the house/room is effectively obscured, providing privacy.
And in particularly hot and sunny weather, such as we're experiencing at the moment, voiles provide cooling shade and protection. They very effectively diffuse the strength of the sun's harmful rays achieving a two fold benefit. They reduce glare, helping to keep a room cool and shady and provide protection, helping to reduce sun fade on fabrics and furnishings, or damage to other potentially valuable articles or pieces of furniture.
Some patterned or textured voiles can actually give an attractive, dappled-lighting effect to the room as the strong sunlight passes through them creating interesting shapes and shadow patterns.
Voiles are simple and easy to hang and can be installed ina number of different ways depending on your choice of voile panel. They are available today with either an eyelet heading to slot quickly and easily onto a pole, with taped headings so that they can be installe donto a track or a pole; and with slot top (also known as rod-pocket) heading which is simply a casing or channel at the top of the voile through which a thin pole, tension rod, net rod or net wire can be inserted.
Modern production methods and techniques have further enhanced the attractiveness and appeal of voiles and sheer panels with the inclusion of reflective or metallic threads, textured embroideries and metallic foil blocking.
Get creative with some Sheer Colour! - Voiles have come a long way in colour choice as well and no longer is the palette limited to only white or cream. You can add practical shade with style and colour with today's extensive choice of coloured and patterned voiles and create some stunning summer transformations at your windows; so here's some sheer colour inspiration for you:
Plain eyelet headed voiles in a striking colour make a simplistic but stunning statement on tall or wide windows; and hang in beautiful columns to either side of the window, adding colour as well as elegant style.
Plain slot-top headings are super easy to install and look great on their own or can be dressed up a little with some coordinating lightweight tie-backs.....
...such as our Earle collection available in a veritable rainbow of eye catching colours.
These glass and satin-bead combination accessories are the perfect length and weight for lightweight curtain panels such as voiles; and the glass beads only add to the attractive, light and floaty appearance of the transparent and reflective look and feel of voile.
Fixed metal hold backs are another great way of keeping your voile panels elegantly and stylishly tucked back from your windows...
.....and create another perfect opportunity to add a bit of styling and detail to your décor or to match other accessories such as your pole or light fittings.
Patterned, floral or striped voiles can look chic and modern or pretty and feminine and can add subtle details without over doing things, so here's just a small collection of the vast range available form our extensive product range at Terry's Fabrics:
And if white and cream is too subtle for you, but you're amongst the colour cautious too, then what a bout some lovely subtle shades of grey to add some mid-tone style to your summer décor and to keep you as cool as a cucumber?