How do I Choose the Best Curtains for Bay Windows?

Sheri Cyprus
Sheri Cyprus
Curtains, roll-up shades or blinds can be used in bay windows.
Curtains, roll-up shades or blinds can be used in bay windows.

There are many different styles of curtains for bay windows available today; the best ones are those that accent the specific architectural features of your window. While all bay windows have one large center window and two smaller side ones, the details can be very different. You should take the style of your home in consideration as well, rather than just the window. Whether the rest of your interior decor is modern, traditional, rustic, romantic or something else, the bay window curtains should tie in attractively with it.

Roll-up balloon shades or Roman blinds in a floral print can be ideal for bay windows in a romantic interior. Whether the window trim is natural or painted, make sure the curtain colors coordinate with it. Solid color, sheer flowing paneled curtains for bay windows can look romantic as well as elegant — especially if they're long enough to puddle on the floor. If you choose sheer curtains for a bay window, make sure your view warrants it. Also, for privacy reasons, you may want to install a roll-up blind on each of the three parts of the bay window.

Wood matchstick blinds are typically inexpensive. They can be a great choice for bay windows in a rustic decor setting or to add interest to inexpensive curtains hung over them and tied back. Heavily textured curtains for bay windows are another great option for rustic interiors. Pleated curtains are available for bay windows and these especially suit more traditional decors. Neutral colored pleated drapery can look especially sophisticated, but the color should coordinate with the window trim's wood or paint.

Clean-lined, tailored Roman blinds can give modern interiors the right touch. For a funky feeling, a modern graph printed style of curtains for bay windows may be used. If more polish than pizazz is preferred though, solid colored blinds that are muted or neutral often work best. No matter what style of curtains you decide on for your bay window, you may want to coordinate the fabric to window seat pads and throw pillows. If your bay window doesn't have a seat, placing potted plants on the sills can add more appeal to plainer, modern-styled curtains.

Don't forget about the tops of your curtains for bay windows. Bay style windows can look pulled together with a matching set of toppers, or valances. For a kitchen bay window, cafe curtains with a valance, plus a lower section can let maximum light in as the center part of the window remains bare. The bareness helps create a focal point of attractive bay window features such as interesting angles and stylish trim.

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Discussion Comments


@heavanet- You make a good point. I never thought about it, but heavy curtains don't let the attractive features of a bay window show through.

I think sheers that also have a lacy design would look nice in a bay window, especially in the sunny spring and summer months. Not only will they allow the looks of the window to be seen, but lacy curtains will also let the sun into the room.


I have a bay window in a room where privacy is not an issue. Sheer curtains look great on this type of window, because part of the beauty of it is its style. You can see the structure of a bay widow when you use sheer curtains.

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    • Curtains, roll-up shades or blinds can be used in bay windows.
      By: george kuna
      Curtains, roll-up shades or blinds can be used in bay windows.