9 Creative, Folksy Window Treatment Ideas

Are you in the process of planning or creating a folksy makeover for one or more rooms in your home? If so, we can help you with some ideas for decorative window treatments that fit right in with any warm, down-to-earth room décor featuring classic and traditional furnishings and accents. The neat thing about these ideas is that they don't require a huge investment of time or money. In fact, they can be a fun home craft project that offers long-term decorative benefits.

Flowers and Mason Jars

Sometimes the most uniquely stunning ideas are also the simplest. This is certainly the case when it comes to using Mason jars as window décor. These iconic glass jars are often used for canning fruits and vegetables, making them a staple, low-cost item that is easy to find. For this project, you should pick up a supply of clear or blue-colored Mason jars (enough to hang across the entire window), sturdy jute twine and hooks that can be attached to a wooden pane. The twine is used to decorate the Mason jars and create a long lanyard-style loop to hang over the hooks.

Fill jars halfway with water and place fresh flowers or faux flowers inside. Alternatively, you can install a rod and hang jars from clear acrylic or wood curtain hooks. This looks best with no curtains or sheer white curtains.

Create Extra Shelf Space

If storage space is at a premium, one way you can expand storage space is to utilize the space between the top of the window frame and the ceiling. Install a single shelf directly above the top frame, measuring the width to extend past the frame at least several inches on both sides. The shelf color can be natural, white or match your wall color. It's a great place to store toys or other odds and ends that need organizing.

Remnant Fabric Trim

Remnant fabric are pieces of fabric that are left over from manufacturing furnishings and other items. You can often find these remnants in a range of solid colors and colorful prints. Best of all, they're inexpensive. You can easily repurpose this fabric as decorative trimming for your existing curtains. For example, you may decide to choose a solid color fabric trim for print curtains and vice versa for solid curtains.

For this to work, you should make sure you get enough yardage to cover sides, tops and bottoms of each panel. Or enhance a kitchen or bathroom curtain with a single fabric trimming across the curtain's width.

Make a Paper Garland Valance

Do you have some old books sitting around collecting dust? Put those book pages to good use by turning them into a decorative garland you can use as a window valance. When it comes to selecting books to use for this project, smaller book pages are more aesthetically pleasing. As for what's written on its pages, that doesn't matter much since most of the text is going to be hidden from view. The size of your garland depends on the number of pages, so you may need two or three books to create one that spans the entire window horizontally.

Once you've selected your books for disassembly, select a ribbon color that complements the curtains hanging in the window. The ribbon should be much longer than the paper portion to ensure all paper stays secure. Carefully remove pages from the book spine and cut holes in the center or side of the page so you can slide the page onto the ribbon. Continue to add pages until you're satisfied with the garland's length. Install with clips or hooks.

Foam Board Cornice

Creating a cornice from scratch used to be a hassle, but now you can make your own window cornice without wood, nails and hammer. How? With foam board you can find at your local craft store. Other supplies to have on hand are fabric, fabric trim, a lightweight cutting tool, fabric glue and scissors. The fun starts by creating a simple pattern on a piece of cardboard or packing paper after measuring the window. Your cornice should be wide enough for sides to bend, creating a 3-D look. Use your pattern to cut out a shape and then use tools and accessories to cover it with fabric and trim.

Outdoor Shutters Indoors

So, you love the look of exterior window shutters, but they're not right for your home's exterior? No problem. You can still enjoy the charm of wooden shutters by adapting them for indoor use. If you can find vintage shutters that fit the size of your windows, that's ideal. If not, consider new indoor shutters fashioned in the café style. If you want to use shutters only as decorative accents, you can always block out light using sheers or opaque window film.

Handmade Art Stamping and Stenciling

Give plain curtains a whole new look with handmade stamping and stenciling. Fabric made of burlap or cotton works best for this project. What's great about this idea is that you can stencil just about any kind of pattern onto fabric to make unique curtains that feel right for your space.

Easy vegetable art stamping method. Gather together vegetables such as a fresh stalk of celery, a stalk of bok choy, a corn cob and okra. Cut away the bottom using a sharp knife to reveal a natural pattern that's perfect for a stamp impression. You can also use other types of low water content veggies. Brush the exposed bottoms with acrylic paint in your choice of colors. Use your veggie stamps to create unique patterns on each curtain panel.

Simple stenciling method. Select an attractive stencil and plain curtain panels ready for decoration. Place the stencil onto a section of the panel and apply acrylic paint over the stencil using a sponge. Remove the stencil and repeat.