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Make an Interesting Display

Roman Shades Work Best for French Doors
Designing Dilemmas December 2005

Make an Interesting Display

Dear Designing Solutions: My husband and I have 3 children and live on the Eastern Shore of MD in Chestertown. Being the avid hunter and outdoor"GUY" (which is probably the start of this problem), he loves ducks, geese, etc. I think my house will fly away if he brings in any more decoys. I need ideas on how to rectify the influx of feathered friends and how to create an organized, eye-pleasing display rather that a bunch of birds on a shelf. Any foyer ideas would be great too! Sally

Dear Sally: First, if the decoys bother you, see if your husband will agree to edit his duck decoy display to just a few carefully chosen pieces. For the ducks that he insists on showing, there are more appealing ways to display them than just lining them up on a shelf. Place a few on acrylic risers to give some height differential- which would make the shelf of ducks much more interesting to look at. You could also light up the shelves to make your displays more dramatic. When arranging the decoys, look for groupings that have the same color or details so that your display make sense and has a common theme. And you can mix the ducks up with other items. Try positioning the decoys to serve as book ends, for example. Finally, get some ducks off the shelves and try grouping some on top of kitchen cabinetry or stacked on pyramid-shaped, standing wrought iron pot racks.

For help with your foyer, please check out my new video. It covers all the fundamentals for a functional, stylish foyer and it's available for free, right now, on my website at www.mydesigningsolutions.com.

Roman Shades Work Best for French Doors

Dear Designing Solutions: I have a family room with quad French doors and windows. What window treatment would best enhance the beauty of the doors/windows during the day but provide privacy in the evening? Brenda

Dear Brenda: To answer your question, I am going to assume that your style is more traditional than contemporary. Now if I'm right, then I'll vote for a soft-fold fabric Roman shade- something you can draw up in soft layered folds of fabric during the day and draw down to cover the glass and give you privacy at night. Mount the shade just above the glass panes, on the wood and make it just long enough to cover the glass at the bottom. In width, make it just an inch wider than the width of the glass panes. The goal here is to leave as much wood exposed as possible so that whether down or up, the beauty of the French doors is always revealed and the beauty of the shade is that it only conceals the glass.

What to use for fabric? That's harder. On the low end of the budget, a solid linen in a color that complements the room's furnishings will set you back about anywhere from $12 - $20 per yard. Prints and textured fabric in cotton blends and silk will cost more per yard. Consult with a fabric store and/or window shop to review all of your fabric options, shade styles and costs.

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