Tag Archives: metal curtain poles

The Scandinavian Style Opened the Door

4 Aug

A modern decor seems to exude a sense of calm even in the busiest of city apartments with the use of light both natural and artificial being the key to success by helping to create a feeling of openness and therefore space. This style of decor is based predominantly on blinds for the windows and chalky white or soft grey palettes for the walls and furnishings. This style of decor blends beautifully with classic surroundings as well as a modern town or rural home.

white roller blinds

Bring In the Modernist Materials – Glass, Metal, Stone and Tiled Floors

It all began with the arrival of Ikea  to the U.K.in 1987 which started the march into modernism,  but it wasn’t until the mid-90s that the company really started to make an impression on the look of our home interiors. In the early days Ikea apparently ran a very high-profile advertising campaign called “Chuck out your chintz” which opened the way for the contemporary look with the key note being immaculate and minimal (tidy) with everything having its place and that means out of sight so plenty of drawers and cupboards were and still are essential.

white leather upholstery

Bright Blues and Greens are a popular Scandinavian colour as they will brighten the short winter days.

Out went the polished mahogany and yew furniture, reproduction or otherwise and in came fibreboard (MDF), metal and glass. Fibreboard furniture is easy to keep clean and comes in various shades of natural wood colouring, white and black, but the jury is still out as to whether it is carcinogen to humans.  MDF furniture is however very environmentally friendly as it is mostly made from recycled wood and also from sustainable forests. Manufacturers have now begun to eliminate the use of formaldehyde which is the toxic binding agent which was one of the main toxic worries.

modern bedroom furniture

MDF Furniture is Relatively Cheap yet Can Achieve Very Striking Effects

Certain types of homes and loft apartments in particular really look good with this style of decor as the exposed rafters or beams can be left exposed and stained in a light pine colour so synonymous with the Scandinavian look. Simple vertical blinds may well be the answer to dressing odd shaped windows especially if they are large and south facing as the modern materials used for making blinds often have special properties that include heat and light resistance.

vertical blinds

Scandinavian Influences such as the Light Pine Wood Finish ensures the Effect is Light and Gives a Clean Lined Finish Coupled with the Vertical Blind

Individual rooms such as a teenager’s bedroom will absorb this style very well particularly as their rooms are usually full of computers, games consols, games etc., that will need a place to be stored in the unlikely event of a “tidy up”

There are all sorts of subtle ways you can add interest to an otherwise bland decor such as in a kitchen or bathroom that has plain white or neutral coloured tiles, by introducing grey or brown grout as this will really make the tiles stand out adding a tab of interest without spoiling the chic minimalism by making it fussy and overpowering.

white roller blind

A Combination of White and Metal will instantly Create a Sense of Order

Roller blinds particularly suit the slick streamlined finish of the Scandinavian look.

modern bedroom furniture

A Well Balanced Scheme flows through the elements with a vibrant colour being only used for Accessories or Art

This style of decor looks great punctuated with a few punchy Asian accessories – more about that in the next blog, but always be aware of the wise old saying “the devil is in the detail”.

Worth mentioning is the fact that in spite of obviously achieving great wealth, the Swedish founder of Ikea is apparently notoriously thrifty, still using public transport complete with his pensioners discount card and flying economy class. The company motto incidentally is “Happiness is not reaching your goal. Happiness is being on the way”  which is quite inspirational and I personally think that if you are as happy as you can be with your home, then happiness in the rest of your life will not be far behind.

French Connection

7 Jul

Modern French decor is often a combination of tradition elegance and modern minimalism.

French decor can take a mix of types and periods of furniture without looking disjointed

Grey and white walls and minimal curtains or blinds and Cabriole legged Louis XV style furniture for me is the epitome of a French decor and the great attraction of this type of design is that it will add a touch of glamour to modern efficiency making even the most ugly computer recede into relative obscurity.

There are many ways to give a French flavour without having to change too much and the quickest and easiest way is to introduce a Toile fabric into the room, but take care that depending on the degree of toile print used that there is not too many other design details in the room. It is very much a standalone type of fabric due to the intricate detailing, but definitely does not need to be confined to the windows.

The Toile design is the most easily recognisable of all French designs and therefore most associated with the “French Look”

Toile fabric design is available in everything from a pair of oven gloves to a complete bedroom but whatever colour toile you go for, traditionally it needs to remain the same colour throughout the scheme, combined with plains either in a matching primary colour or a complimentary neutral colouring.

As for the walls, brightly coloured curtains, bedding and blinds are more easily integrated into a neutral background, but in the case of a Toile, one feature wall is acceptable in a matching wallpaper, with stunning results.

The liberal use of Chunky Cushions and Large Statement Ornaments make very much a Continental Statement.

Comfortable chunky traditional seating is a must with lots of large yet simple ornaments grouped in a table or mantel scape. Perhaps a trip across the channel to a French flea market could be a good source for your accessories as us Brits are often a little more conservative with our ornamental displays.

This delightful furniture Says it All

A large armoire wardrobe or cupboard and an oversized decorative mirror will also give a French feel – but shop carefully as the French style of furniture is making a comeback, being reproduced, often rather badly which can cheapen the look, moving the room from having a sophisticated elegance to having a gaudy overdone feel. 

metal curtain pole

A Sizeable Room with a High Ceiling can take a Large Statement Light

  

Choose what is to be the main detail and in this case, it is clearly the intricate detailing of the light, so keep the curtains simple, perhaps complimenting the metal finish of the light with a similarly coloured metal or wooden curtain pole.

Cameron Fuller Curtain Pole

Box pleat headings on curtains will give an informal feel especially if the fabric is a natural linen or a softly textured neutral fabric and there are plenty of metal or wooden curtain poles that can be decorative in their own right such as the Cameron Fuller curtain pole, without stealing the limelight. 

Blinds are relatively popular in France, but of course it is very common to have shutters at the windows which are shut fast often quite early in the evening giving the feeling as you drive through a French village that everyone has gone to Mars.

 

Contact Poles and Blinds – For all your curtain poles and window blinds.

 

Tel: 0845 4650101 International Calls: 00441243 586660

 

Email: info@polesandblinds.com

 

Embrace your Dented Walls and Scruffy Furniture

27 Jun

One very obvious look for a Mediterranean house is the use of lots of wrought iron both inside and out, but unless you live in California or indeed the Mediterranean, fancy wrought iron bars at the windows, whilst they may seem appealing in the current era of household theft and are ideal for keeping unwanted intruders out, will look ridiculous in the U.K.

decorative curtains

Swags and Tails offer a Timeless Elegance Anywhere

Curtains on this type of window are often rather decorative to draw the eye away from the metal bars, which can give the feeling to the overseas visitor that you are being “detained at Her Majesty’s pleasure”. Swags and Tails are still used quite extensively for a more formal look, but usually dressed from a wooden curtain pole.

Plain wooden curtain poles can be jazzed up a bit still using a simple curtain treatment such as a skirted heading, but with the use of a matching fringe edging the skirt and possibly matching curtain holdbacks.

Curtain pelmets with decorative fringe

The Art of Interior Design is to Carry a Theme or Colour Effortlessly

Wrought iron or black painted curtain poles are a great way to introduce this kind of look and will compliment the Moorish lights and accessories.

And with todays innovative design ideas, you will not be restricted to a Shepards Crook or Fleur de Lys finial.

black curtain poles

There is sure to be a Finial Shape to Tempt the Most Discerning

Arches, alcoves and niches also feature highly in this style of home and can make a useful space or feature design detail out of the smallest of areas. This often rather fanciful decor can be used to make a fun feature out of perhaps the cupboard under the stairs that used to house the vacuum cleaner, paint tins and cleaning “stuff”. Painted in a contrasting colour to the hallway, a small wash basin, perhaps a loo where the slope of the stairs makes standing impossible and an exotic Moorish ceiling light will make an invaluable addition to the house, with not too much expense.

Work around the natural light levels of the room. If it is dark, then warm it up with a lovely yellow stucco effect wall finish and if the room is already light and bright, then embrace it and go for white. This could be a great look for your home if your walls are badly plastered, chipped or dented – the distressed look. Special paint effects such as sponging or dragging with a colour wash will turn a disastrous wall into one with a rather aged attractive finish, the play of light over the different surfaces offering an appropriately textured finish. A miss-match of old furniture is also perfectly acceptable, but unify them with some common feature such as matching cushions or throws.

As with all decor decisions, more is not necessarily better.

Careful Thought to What Matches

And What Looks a Jumbled Mess Is Important

Don’t despair, if your heart is set on this type of decor but the finances are a little stretched at the moment, then simply changing your window treatments perhaps to a pair of curtains or a new roller blind will inject a little sunshine into the room – the rest can come later !!!!

sunny coloured roller blind

Light and Bright Colours are Ideal – Avoid Muddy Clouded Colours

There are many Spanish-style chandeliers and secondary lighting readily available and in most home furnishing departments and shops there is always an absolute abundance of Moorish style lanterns and candle holders featuring quatrefoil cut outs which will always be guaranteed to add a sense of romance – particularly relevant in dining rooms and bedrooms.

Moorish Themed Lights and Accessories Can Cross the Bounderies between Modern and Traditional

Choose your accessories wisely and a theme can be set merely by your choice of artwork and ornaments – lighting also of course plays a large part in setting the scene.

Themed Artwork can Take you There

Contact Poles and Blinds – For all your curtain poles and window blinds.

Tel: 0845 4650101 International Calls: 00441243 586660

Email: info@polesandblinds.com

Take the Leap from Safe Neutrals to Imaginative Brights and Black

7 May

Winter colours especially as curtains and blinds give you an opportunity to catch everyones attention with a palette of receding and advancing colours. Punctuations of brightness in the stunning black and white decor below are offered by a particularly vibrant orange and the reflective surface of the tiled floor gives a very contemporary, not to mention light and airy finish to the room.

red home accessories

Highlights of Bright Colours have the Capacity to Transform a Neutral Decor

Metal curtain poles such as the Rolls Neo will perfectly match the look and feel of this room –

modern metal curtain tracks

Modern Metal Curtain Poles In Special Metal Effect Finishes

 but there is a new very trendy form of curtain track available which is especially suited to a modern decor …. the Byron and Byron polmet.

Modern curtain tracks

Your Curtains will be Influenced by the Shape and Type of Curtain Pole or Track

This innovative curtain track makes a design statement in its own right, the black mirrored effect of the surface being given an extra dimension by the bevelled edge of the track. Any form of curtain heading, but especially double pinch pleat or pencil pleat will suit this modern track, but make sure that when you measure for the curtains you measure for them to hang just below the track or the clean horizontal look of the track will be broken.

It is often better to hang the track or curtain pole before making or ordering readymade curtains or worse still having expensive made to measure curtains and finding they are the wrong length. Curtains that are too long can usually have the curtain hook position lowered which will obviously lift the curtains higher to slightly compensate, but this may well cause the curtain heading to foul the curtain pole or track. Curtains that are too short stand out for all the wrong reasons and to most people are as offensive as trousers that are too short.

Curtain tracks are now readily available in various colours and Aluminium tracks such as the Fineline metal curtain track are also very easy to fit around tricky bay windows as they can be bent by hand.

metal curtain track

Ideal for Straight or Bay windows

A black feature wall makes the perfect setting for a collage of art work, the pictures looking richer and the details more defined.

feature wall colours

A Black Feature Wall will Highlight the Colours of the Artwork as well as Marry Them Together to Form a Group

Black furniture or as in the case of this stunning bath are perfectly matched to white or off-white walls, although to my mind a black and white decor definitely has more masculine overtones, whereas grey and white being softer is by definition, more of a feminine looking decor.

black bath

Stunning, but to my mind the Simple Clean Lines of the Bath and Bathroom needs the imput of a Warming Winter Primary Colour

But before you steam ahead with copious amounts of black and deep earthy primaries make sure the room has adequate space and light to be able to cope with these colours or the room will look depressing and overpowering.

modern blinds

Metal Venetian Blinds are Particularly Good as a Medium for Introducing Just Enough Vibrant Colouring to Blend with Brightly Coloured Home Accessories.

 I was once asked to re-do a show house that an “interior designer” had supposedly done. It was a complete disaster because clearly the designer loved terracotta and had themed the whole scheme around it, not bothering to first look out of the window of the living room, which is after all almost the first place a potential buyer looks.

The show house was completely overshadowed by large, protected trees and was built in red brick which would not normally be noticed from the inside. This particular house however backed on to the garages of the new estate, the view from the living room window therefore being dominated by red brick. With the garden being virtually only 2 metres square this was clearly an issue that need to be considered.

Everything in terracotta including the curtains, three piece suite and cushions had to go; all that remained in terracotta were a few candles and a splash of terracotta in the paintings. I went neutral to lighten the load of the wall and lift the dismal mood of the room created by the shade of the trees and included plenty of lighting of course.

Contact Poles and Blinds – For all your curtain poles and window blinds.

Tel: 0845 4650101 International Calls: 00441243 586660

Email: info@polesandblinds.com

Winter colours – ideal for curtains and blinds

30 Apr
black blinds and cushions are very modern

Black and Cream is the Ultimate Chic Look

Black is of course the colour most synonymous with winter, but it will need the negative impact to be warmed by other deep winter colours such as red, terracotta and mauve or be neutralised by creams and soft naturals. Any of these combinations will ensure a decor with a touch of glamour, mystery and romance but too much black or any other of these deep colours will be difficult colours to live with in rooms that are in constant use which is where window blinds, curtains and cushions make a great vehicle for introducing these colours. Vertical, roller, roman and in the case of the fabulous room set below, wooden venetian blinds make a wonderful window treatment for people who like to alter their decor on a frequent basis, perhaps in time with the changing seasons.

blinds are ideal for bay windows

Deep Mauve is a very Sensual Colour twinned with Neutrals

Layered window treatments make a wonderful visual as well as practical treatment for rooms dressed to impress. Blinds, especially roller or roman can be used as the main working treatment for the window, with perhaps unlined floaty voiles as the curtain treatment in the summer which can then be replaced by more substantial lined curtains in the winter which can be pulled at night to give a feeling of security and warmth.

curtains and voiles in a layered window finish

Voile curtains or Blinds used in a Layered Window Treatment Always Makes a Stylish Statement

Black is the only colour that is not found in nature and when used in a decorative scheme, it needs to be in a room with sufficient space not to appear smaller because it is being dwarfed by a colour that can be a draining force. Cream and other soft neutrals make great partners to black and is the ideal combination for a contemporary chic decor. With so much black in a modern living room in the form of a flat screen tv, speakers etc., a decor with black accents will help to camouflage the equipment enabling you to perhaps discard the painting or mirror over the fireplace or indeed the seldomly used fireplace and make a feature of the television screen.

Deep Winter Colours Always Look Fabulous with Gold Accessories

Winter colours of deep plums, burgundy’s and mauves look fabulous with gold accessories, brass curtain poles being an idea choice to fit your curtains on if they are in any of these colours. Brass curtain poles tend to be more readily available in traditional styling as many are reproductions based on the elegant era of the Regency and Victorian times.

decorative brass curtain pole

This fabulous Galleria brass curtain pole strikes a happy medium as it encorporates the traditional colouring of a brass curtain pole with a modern eclectic finish which is achieved by the stunning studded curtain finial.

Winter nights and indeed many winter days will often be dull and dreary, so make sure you have plenty of good lighting, both mood and task lighting. Table lamps are great for creating warming pools of light which will give certain chosen areas added comfort – I hate the new light bulbs. I know we are supposed to be doing our bit for the planet, but they are so dull.

vertical blinds in bay windows

Warm Colours will Ensure a Welcoming Reception Area

Many modern office reception areas are very bright white and chrome, ideal for a trendy suite of London offices, but a warm winter colour on a feature wall twinned with a soft window treatment such as this attractive cream vertical blind will put everyone at ease – it’s not always about creating an impressive impression, it’s also about making clients feel comfortable with your company.

 

 

Contact Poles and Blinds – For all your curtain poles and window blinds.

Tel: 0845 4650101 International Calls: 00441243 586660

Email: info@polesandblinds.com

Autumn Colours

19 Apr

Autumn colours are related to the fire element, they are warm colours that have black added in varying amounts – burgundy, mustard and burnt orange being classic examples.

warm coloured curtains and blinds

These Cheerful Warming Colours Make Great Curtains and Blinds

These colours look particularly striking in a modern home with wooden elements in the décor such as flooring or wooden blinds. The intensity will give character to a neutral contemporary décor with just perhaps a feature wall, a scatter rug and a few cushions.

wooden floors and window blinds

Autumn Colours will Create a Room with Character

The brilliance of these colours work most successfully in rooms used for lounging and entertaining, but avoid using bright white for your walls as they will absorb the strong colour, turning the walls a very pale peach.

Wooden Venetian blinds and Woodweave blinds suit perfectly these earthy colours.

oak effect venetian blinds

Wooden Venetian Blinds Are Available in Many Wood Effect Finishes

Countries close to the equator are not able to be influenced by the changing colours and temperatures of the seasons it’s more a question of whether it’s a wet or dry season. They do not have the wonderful long summers evenings, their daylight hours remaining more or less constant which is why their decor often uses plenty of autumn and winter colours, the powerful decorative element lightening the mood.

home accessories in bold autumn colours

A Quick Change of Suitably Coloured Artwork and Cushions Will Instantly Alter the Whole Look and Feel of a Room

I realise that by the same token, they do not have the long dark winters evenings, but brightly coloured autumn and winter décor details and good lighting, especially good task lighting, certainly helps our  winters along – imagine in days gone by when all you could do was huddle around a fire with nothing to do except try to stay warm.

Metal venetian blinds certainly give you a wide range of colours to choose from, these vivacious shades really looking at their best as the metal blades of the blind take particularly well to the paint finishes.

metal venetian blinds

Metal Venetian Blinds come in a Dazzling Array of Colours

Brass and bronze effect curtain poles balance well with the assertive earthy tones of the autumn colours.

Modern metal curtain poles in stainless steel and chrome are more in tune with a bright summer décor, the glass finials of this particular pole adding to the airy feel.

Roller blinds are a great and also economical way to grab attention and can easily be changed with the seasons. Just moving a few things around, altering your cushions and blind colours and perhaps some artwork will keep your décor interesting. Spring and summer colours are all about airy freshness and autumn and winter colours are all about cosy comfort.

Contact Poles and Blinds – For all your curtain poles and window blinds.

Tel: 0845 4650101 International Calls: 00441243 586660

Email: info@polesandblinds.com

Colours, Climate and Culture – Spring cont.

28 Mar

The epitome of an English Country décor is based on a cottage garden in the spring and summer, so curtains or blinds made of pretty floral prints in a mixture of warm and cool colours will make a good starting point to build the rest of the décor around, ensuring your home is a warm and comfortable place to be.

Floral curtains and contrasting roman blind

Layered Window Treatments offer the Best of Both Worlds

Fitting blinds and curtains to the same window not only gives more impact to your decor, but also gives the choice of having good levels of light and privacy control offered by the blind and the fabulous imput of a stunning pair of curtains that can remain “dressed” to the side of the window, making life easier in the mornings when all that is needed is a pull of the blind cord instead of having to re-arrange your curtains.

delicate spring colours for blinds and bedding are ideal for a spring decor

Soft Pastel Blinds, Bedding and Wallcoverings are the Epitome of a Spring Decor

Window blinds, especially rollers and romans are great for modern bedrooms especially if they have the added benefit of a blackout lining or finish.

If curtains are your preferred choice of window treatment for a more informal look, then keep to a fairly simple curtain heading such as eyelet curtains.  Make sure that subtle details such as the eyelet rings of the curtains match the metal finish of the curtain pole, such details may appear trivial, but after years of furnishing and dressing out show homes, I know that the smallest of details that “no-one will notice” in fact makes the difference between a perfect finish and just another show home.

We have a large selection of eyelet curtain poles such as the Speedy Eyelet Curtain Pole

speedy curtain pole with glass finial

The Shimmering Glass Finial of the Eyelet Curtain Pole is in Keeping with the Light and Airy Look you are Trying to Create.

A quick scan of the internet shows that most “foreigners” consider a typical English décor is achieved by a visit to the local second hand furniture shops and buying a jumble of odd bits of furniture, especially in pine, some nic nacs – and of course anything Laura Ashley or heavily floral will be fine.

Whilst The Floral Wallpaper and the Poor Stags Head could be seen as the Epitome of English Decor, but not together please.

Some people in their quest for an English décor completely miss the point.

neutral coloured kitchen blind

Bay Windows or Straight Windows can be Fitted with Blinds, Ideal Particularly for Kitchens and Bathrooms

Neutral decors are often favoured by chic city dwellers, but city living can be crowded and grey and without a garden,  uplifting colours such as green, yellow, blue, lilac and pink will lighten the mood and ambience of the room.

Yellow roller blind

This Yellow Roller Blind will be Much Admired, be very Practical and will Define the Colour Scheme of the Kitchen

And for a Spring feeling if you are not inclined to change your decor, all it may take is just a bunch of daffodils and a walk in the country.

Spring-A New Beginning for Some

Happy Easter

Contact Poles and Blinds – For all your curtain poles and window blinds. Tel: 0845 4650101 International Calls: 00441243 586660 Email: info@polesandblinds.com

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