Monday, November 24, 2014

The Complete Photo Guide to Window Treatments

Title: The Complete Photo Guide to Window Treatments: Do-It-Yourself Draperies, Curtains, Valances, Swags, and Shades
Edited By: Linda Neubauer
BlurbThe most comprehensive DIY window book on the market. The Complete Photo Guide to Window Treatments makes it easy to choose and construct today's most popular window treatments - 20 styles of valances, swags, and cornices; 20 styles of curtains and draperies; plus 10 types of window shades. Room photographs show each style in a variety of decorating styles, fabrics, and hardware. Each project has step-by-step instructions from beginning to end: measuring the window, cutting the fabric with confidence, sewing or constructing the project, and installing the treatment the professional way. Over 500 how-to photographs and diagrams make it easy to have professional results. This is the big book of DIY window treatments!

Review: This book, a library borrow, impressed me so much I bought it on Amazon. I got an used copy for $5 with shipping, but it honestly would be worth the "new" price if it were ever stocked new again. 

Now, I'm going to do something slightly unusual for a book review, but this book is worth the extra effort. Behold... pictures!

Ok, firstly, this book has amazing photos.  Every new chapter begins with a full page photo that is beautifully styled with drop dead gorgeous rooms.

Look at this bedroom! I would love that room! I want to make those curtains and swags and the bedding and everything!

The photos are backed up by extensive, detailed instructions on how to make each window treatment. Many of the pages have step by step photos included.

Some have more detail with fewer photos, probably because the steps being discussed are not so complicated or difficult that they need so much illustration. 

Some pages have no photos at all, but the information included is excellent. I don't feel that any pictures are necessary, but she does include drawings if she feels that a 1,000 words would be too many. (Geddit? Picture is worth 1,000 words. Huh? Huh? Sigh... moving on.) 

But any time there is a lot of explaining to do, she goes right back to as many photos or drawings as you might wish for, to help ensure you fully understand each step of the process. 

It's not all sewing either. She is not afraid to wield a screwdriver or stapler when necessary. 

There are 304 pages in this old-fashioned-phone-book-sized guide, and each one is packed to the brim with interesting, useful information, instructions, and photos. You may have noticed in some of the pics above that there are different colors heading the pages. The book is color coded by section. 

In the Top Treatments section, she covers swags, jabots, toppers, valances and cornices. 

In the Curtains and Draperies section you get flat panel, grommet, tab, scalloped, tape, and rod pocket curtains; curtains with cuffs, fancy headings, and attached valances, and style information for stretch, hourglass, tent-flap, pleats, banded and interlined treatments. She also goes over types of tiebacks - and there's a gorgeous braided one I'd love to try!

Moving on to Shades, did you know you get Hobbled Roman Shades? Me neither, but this is one of the ten types of shades you'll learn to DIY with this nifty companion. 

The book closes with a discussion on window treatment basics. I would not have thought there'd be much in this section, but was surprised to discover there is a LOT to consider! Not only is hardware covered, but there is also a comprehensive review of installation methods.

Overall, a sterling book that I can see myself using a lot in the future. I own several curtain/window dressing books. I think I shall donate the others to the thrift store, because this one replaces them all!

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