Are you familiar with lambrequins? Pronounced lam-breh-kinz. They are a more traditional window treatment that has been around since the medieval times, where they were used around windows as a pretty way to keep out drafts. As with all classic design elements, the popularity of lambrequins has ebbed and flowed, but they are popping up more and more in recent years.
So what is a lambrequin? It is similar to a cornice, but it has sides that continue to the sill or even the floor.
For example, these window treatments feature cornices;
whereas, these windows are dressed with lamberquins.
When lambrequins were first being used, they were typically painted or stenciled wood, or covered in wallpaper. It wasn’t until around the Victorian Era that they became more elaborate and covered in fabric. The photo below is circa 1850 from the book “Upholstery in America & Europe from the Seventeenth Century to World War I”.
In 1873’s “Miss Beecher’s Housekeeper & Healthkeeper”, the author states “A tassel at the lowest point improves the appearance”.
Of course, the fun in a lambrequin is that they can be in any shape, style, or fabric, you choose. Tassels or no tassels.
I think they are best suited for smaller windows that you want to add excitement to. (especially if you live in a home without many architectural details like moldings, trim, etc.)
Of course, on bigger windows, they are a wow factor for sure!
You can layer shades or drapery underneath the lambrequins for more coverage from the outside elements or simply for effect.
As I was looking at these pictures, I noticed many of the windows had panes like mine. You know I am looking around now for a window that needs a lambrequin. ; ) I love designing things like that! The shapes and fabric choices get me excited!
What about you? Could you see a lambrequin in your house? Though they have probably been thought of in the past as stuffy and overly formal, I think the above photos show they can still have a modern flair, yes??