Window fashion professionals and home decorating enthusiasts have a comprehensive new resource for inspiration and technical information for window coverings and soft treatments of all kinds.
“Designer Window Fashions,” the latest offering from respected author Charles Randall, was published earlier this year. The 448-page book covers all aspects of window treatment design and use, including how to select window treatments, types of soft and hard window coverings, and options for motorization. For professionals, there is advice on window decorating software and resources such as yardage and pleating charts. For consumers, there are tips for selecting an interior designer and a guide to what types of treatments work best for different styles of window, doors and skylights.
All readers will love the hundreds of full-color photographs from designers around the country. There are also copious illustrations showing different cornice styles, lambrequin shapes, types of swags and other details.
“Designer Window Fashions” devotes a whole chapter to window treatment hardware and trims. There is a separate section on bed coverings that showcases styles of canopies, bed crowns, bedspreads, pillows, headboards, dust ruffles and benches.
This award-winning project from Elizabeth Gerdes at Stitch Above the Rest in the Atlanta area is one of many designs featured in “Designer Window Fashions.”
Randall has written two previous books about window treatments: “The Window Decorating Book” and “The Encyclopedia of Window Fashions,” the latter of which has sold more than a million copies and is considered the go-to reference for window fashions. “I had thought about combining these two books into one new comprehensive book for a few years,” he says. His wife, Patricia, was the one who pushed him to come out of retirement and write the manuscript.
Randall brings decades of experience in the window covering industry to the book. He started installing draperies in 1976, then transitioned to selling window coverings for Drapery World in Garden Grove, CA. He opened his own company, Window Fashions, in 1980 and ran it for many years. “I decorated more than 60,000 windows before writing ‘The Encyclopedia of Window Fashions,’” he says.
His favorite window treatment combination starts with honeycomb shades or shutters as a first line of defense against heat and noise. “After that, subtle sheers to soften the glare when the shades or louvers are opened. Finally, custom draperies with lining and a fabulous top treatment.”
He hopes to see more homeowners request soft window treatments in the coming years. “I do not think hard window coverings will ever dethrone soft window coverings,” he says. “I am delighted by the way suppliers have incorporated soft and hard window coverings. A great example is soft shadings. These are my favorite window coverings if one does not want draperies.”
Given this, it’s no surprise that he cites chapter two, which covers curtains and draperies, as his favorite part of the book. “I’ve always loved fabric coverings on windows,” he says. “When I installed draperies, I loved the feel and even the smell of the fabric. There is something magical about fabric-covered windows.”