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Expert advice: choosing velvet curtains

Discover why more and more people are opting for this wonderful fabric at their windows
Expert advice: choosing velvet curtains

American interior designer Peter Dunham refers to curtains as, ‘the lipstick of decorating’. We couldn’t agree more, curtains finish a room; they’re the final flourish. One of our favourite fabrics for curtains is velvet, it transcends trends and styles beautifully. Its subtle sheen makes it fitting for a glamorous room, but it is also equally at home in a relaxed space. ‘You achieve something quite different from any other fabric when using velvets,’ says curtain maker, Jessica Higgins. ‘Everything appears richer and deeper; it always adds a little bit of drama.’ Linwood’s extensive velvets come in an array of colours, designs and finishes, making it a great fabric choice for every home and every window.


Kami – Emerald/Linwood

Style punch

Printed velvet curtains are a wonderful way to add instant pattern. Our Kami collection, shown here in Emerald, would look beautiful in a simple scheme allowing its beauty to shine through. For those who prefer something a little more classic in flavour, Mountain Retreat in Onyx could be the perfect solution; it’s a dreamy design with a sophisticated Oriental mood. Maybe surprising for some, that eternal favourite, toile, is also available in velvet. Our Heat of the Night is a classic toile with a tropical feel that would lend a refined air to any living room. For an interesting look, mix velvets with natural linens and cottons; a clever trick is to frame your chosen print by adding a band of plain fabric. Velvet is a heavy fabric, so it keeps out the cold which is useful for drafty windows and it blocks out light, providing extra privacy and the perfect environment for sleep. So not only is velvet beautiful, it is practical as well.


Cosmos Velvet – Mouse/Linwood

Keep it simple

Curtains have had a rather bad rap in some quarters, particularly for those of you whose taste falls into the contemporary. They imagine metres of fabric sitting in their windows with ruffles and pelmets – gosh, it sounds perfect – but we understand how this could be off-putting for some. Even the modern home should embrace curtains though, and while there are many plains available consider introducing crushed velvet curtains for a little twist. Just imagine Cosmos Velvet’s Waterfall in a city apartment with a choice selection of mid-century pieces. Or Neptune in Shadow would also look very smart; it’s a delicate animal print in an accessible palette. Don’t buy too much though as you don’t want them to be too full or to fall in puddles; they should be fitted into the ceiling, so they merge into the overall room creating a feeling of being hardly there but also adding a gentle softness that’s at first is hard to define but just makes the room feel more inviting.


 Omega – Mantis/Linwood

Opt for colour

Velvets in softer shades are always alluring, but it looks particularly amazing when you opt for richer colours, and this style statement is very on trend. For the second half of this year, the design world is embracing colours that envelop us and make us feel cozy; helping turning our homes into retreats. Top of the list is an earthy green – Omega Pistachio would look great in any room as it would offer a soothing note. Dark, moody blues are all the rage too; check out Omega Navy. And coming up the ranks are yellows and golds; full of warmth and energy. Omega Canary would be fun if you want to go bright. A pink would also look beautiful in the right space. Remember to line your curtains though, as sunlight can easily fade vivid hues quickly.


Omega Prints II/Java – Lotus/Linwood


The unexpected

Velvet curtains don't have to be restricted to the living room or bedroom. Our Omega Prints II collection – as with many of the ranges we offer – is particularly hardwearing due to it being stain resistant, so it can certainly take the knocks of everyday life. This means it's perfectly suited to busier areas of the home such as the hall or even the kitchen. There are numerous designs to choose from, including this fun, multicoloured weave, Java, but for something a little more traditional try English Oakmaybe as a smart pencil pleat curtain. This timeless design takes its inspiration from a tapestry and was hand painted by Linwood's creative team.


Omega Prints/On the River – Marine/Linwood 

Choose a blind

Blinds can be just as effective as curtains and they are particularly good at showcasing a pattern to its full. Look how wonderful On the River in Marine looks in this study with its complementary navy walls. For something more subtle, try Kerplunk in Steel Grey, the tonal colours lend this versatile geometric a contemporary note. Velvet isn’t a good choice for roller blinds, but Roman blinds with their cascading folds of fabric are the ideal option. Velvet blinds can be used alone or effectively layered under curtains to create added interest at any window.


Ready-to-go curtains are obviously easily available but like a well-tailored suit, bespoke, made to measure curtains are a cut above - and even though they are likely to be higher in price, your living space will thank you for it. So, visit your local interior designers or curtain maker for access to a wide range or curtain fabrics and to discuss your project in more detail. To find your nearest stockist, simply add your postcode here. And remember, velvet is like leather or a good wine; it only gets better with age, so is the ideal choice for every well-dressed window.