• Selecting the Right Draperies

    bigstock Young woman with fabric sample 2124341321 - Selecting the Right Draperies You just moved into your East Bay home or want to get a fresh look for your interior. New draperies can do wonders but where do you begin? Which one do you choose? Here are some factors to consider in making your choice.

    The fabric is going to be the critical element in creating new draperies for your home. Because they are such a large element in the room, drapery can direct and change the whole styling of your space.

    Style meets function

    The style of drapery panels will go hand-in-hand with a fabric selection. For instance, if your area gets a large amount of sunlight, a thicker fabric will help receives large quantities of sunlight, then you will want to select a thicker fabric for energy efficience and to provide better temperature control. However, if the view is imporatant, then a more translucent fabric may provide what you need.

    Solid colors

    One of the easiest choices for fabric is solid colors. A general rule of thumb is to choose a shade that is slightly darker or lighter than your wall color. The choice is generally a personal preference. By going in this direction, everything stays uniform and creates a beautiful room.


    While solids are easy, patterned fabrics can give the “WOW” look. This results in having one of the largest impacts through patterns. Large patterns grant a clear direction for the style of your room. You use this pattern as your room’s inspiration point. Should you like patterns but you don’t feel good about a “screaming” pattern, select a medium- to small-patterned. If you much prefer a more conservative look, a smaller-scale pattern will work flawlessly into a much larger plan.


    If you are looking to have a “taller” looking room, vertical stripes will help to raise the ceiling of a room and provide an overall height boost. In contrast, horizontal stripes can help to widen the look of a room. Another beautiful aspect of stripes is that a room can truly become whole by having a good color combo within the stripes.

    Specialty fabrics

    Beyond the colors and patters, the actual fabric can really add styling to the room. Hand-painted fabrics, crewel linens, metallic-glazed fabrics and three-dimensional fabrics are just naming a few. The beauty and uniqueness of these fabrics do come at a cost. However, they make them originals. If you fall in love when seeing one of these fabrics, don’t hesitate as the cost could be well worth it.

    Weight and texture

    A final aspect of the selection is the weight and texture of the fabric. This is a more logical point as the wight of a fabric can affect the way the draperies hang or function. If you use velvet for your draperies and you foresee opening and closing it regularly, then keep in mind that it wall not be easy to open and close it easily. Another aspect would be how the draperies hang on the floor. Lighter fabrics will generally drape along the floor perfectly as the weight won’t have an impact. Related to this, softer, looser-woven fabrics have a tendency to stretch with time and lose their shape. Lastly, heavier fabrices will require better hardward support to avoid them collapsing. Also, a heavier-weight drapery fabric requires substantial hardware support.

    Keep the above factors in mind when choosing your draperies. If you want expert advice, Armand’s has over 60 years of experience decorating the area with hundreds of fabric options. We provide complimentary in-home consultations, contact us today at 925-283-8717 . We have an East Bay showroom but service homes from Livermore to Pleasanton to Alamo to Berkeley and everything in between.

  • Keys to Window Coverings

    bigstock 1658639871 - Keys to Window Coverings Whether your home has a view of the Tri-Valley, Mt. Diablo, or one of your neighbors, Bay Area residents love their windows and views. The natural light that we have access to most of the year due to our weather allows us the luxury of capturing a lot of sun and daylight. However, many of us need our privacy or the ability to keep our energy costs low by protecting our home from the heat in the summer or the dreary rainy days in the winter. As a result, most of us commonly use a combination of shutters, blinds, and draperies for window coverings. These provide us with home decoration, security, and energy conversation.

    This is at least how we used to think of things. Nowadays, our view of window coverings has been technologized. We no longer think about blinds and draperies as merely instruments that we have to use those old strings or sticks to move around. We have access to controlling these through our phones, tablets, and other electronics. We can even program them to adjust based on the time of day similar to your heating and AC.

    So what are some of the things to keep in mind for window decorations and coverings:

    Save Energy and Protect Belongings

    Windows shades are considered one of the easiest ways to save of energy use. Shutters, blinds, and shades provide protection from light, heat, and cold. Motorized shades give homeowners the ability to quickly, and conveniently, raise and lower shades to attain the desired effect. Such window coverings form a system to stay cool in the summer and warm in the winter as it either captures or blocks solar heat. In addition, these same window coverings will protect your belongings in the home from furniture, area rugs, art, and many types of surfaces. With a motorized shade system, this can be controlled remotely so should unexpected weather conditions arise or if you forget, you are able to adjust it accordingly.


    Window coverings come in many types of materials, shapes, fabrics, and designs. Thus, it is no longer merely a window shade but also a key accent to your home decor. When looking at options, you usually have different needs for each part of the home. Solar screen shades and blackout shades are the two most popular options to consider, depending on your needs. Some of the most common styles are the following:

    Roller Shades – Solar and Blackout – battery powered options available
    Horizontal Sheer Blinds – Pairs the soft elegance of a sheer with the precise control of a blind
    Pleated Shades – Pleated form of roller shade with crisp, Z-shaped pleats
    Honeycomb Shades – Cellular design that adds elegant textures and depth
    Wood/Venetian Blinds – Effective way to ensure privacy, while allowing sunlight to filter into the space
    Drapery Track System – Provides quiet, motorized, and convenient control of draperies
    Vertical Drapery System – Unique design provides great access to windows and views by eliminating the creation of stack back
    Roman Shades – Reliable, smooth and virtually silent shade movment

    Security & Safety

    When window coverings are left unattended, it could signal to a potential criminal that the house is unattended. Utilizing a whole-home windows covering system for simultaneous control of all shades can offer a great solution to solve this. Should you be away for a period of time, this can be used to move the coverings enough to impact the message you are send to individuals observing your home. Motorized shades can be automated to be opened in the morning, and closed in the evening, creating the appearance that a house is occupied. Automated window treatments, combined with preset interior and exterior lighting control, are two excellent security solutions that significantly make a home less vulnerable to a potential burglar.


    Managing daylight is not restricted to a single wall station in your home. Shading systems can be controlled using a myriad of keypads, IR remote controls, wireless tabletop controls, or set to an astronomic time clock for automatic adjustment of shades. Motorized shading systems are the perfect compliment to lighting control. Shade control buttons can be integrated into lighting keypads to create the perfect balance of aesthetics and functionality.

    Consquently, windows coverings have come a long way over the past 10 years. They are now a source of security, comfort, energy conservation, and home decor. We have been in the industry for over 60 years and have seen the modernization of our industry. Contact our experts today for a free in-home consultation.