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Hang & Layer Curtains with Valance


“The details are not the details, they make the design,” said Charles Eames, legendary American architect and designer. Each decor element must be evaluated on its own performance as well as on how it syncs with the ambiance. When hanging curtains with a valance, therefore, consider those details that ‘make the design’.

While curtains have a function to fulfil, valances are purely aesthetic and spill the beans on your eye for detail. Without proper guidance, mistakes can abound as much as creativity. So, this blog post brings you thoughts on how to hang curtains with valances

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Why Hang Valances with Curtains


Spiffy Spools' Valances & Curtains


When it comes to window treatments, stopping at the point where light and privacy control are made manageable is doing the minimum. Topping it up with some pizzazz is but a choice hinging on personal aesthetic goals. Valances show the extent to which you can go in caring for and decorating your home.

That valances are there for their pretty looks is indisputable, but how exactly they add to the artistic arrangement of the home is worth some thought. Here comes a litany, to say the least, of how hanging curtains with a valance helps your home decor:


When done strategically, hanging curtains with valances can make the window look much taller than it is because of the valance’s occupancy of vertical space above it. The trick is worked out by mounting the valance above the window on the wall, spanning to as much as a fourth of the window, and slightly overlapping the window trim. Not being able to discern the upper trim produces the illusion of a taller window and a higher ceiling.


Whether you want to mix two colors or a color and a pattern, hanging valances with curtains offers a fantastic opportunity. Design your valance in the color or pattern that you want to inject in a small dose into the space. A patterned valance with solid curtains or vice versa brings both elements together in good taste and perfect balance. Therefore, valances are assets to maximalist or traditional settings that thrive on the layering of solids and patterns. 


Hanging curtains with valances is a great way to conceal architectural flaws and avoid embarrassing mistakes. For example, the awkwardness of two adjacent windows apparently of the same size but not so in fact needs camouflage. Since valances can hype the window height, these awkward measurement differences can be made up for discreetly.


Different types of windows call for different types of treatments. While it is practically wise, they can sometimes break the flow of the design. By using the same valance over every window, you can address the coherence factor with ease. The valance will act as a common theme among various window treatments.


If your curtain header is of a very simple construct such as a flat panel top, you can add the much-missed garnishment through a befittingly ornamented valance.


Valances, like all other decor accessories, add depth and dimension to the space. They offer a surface that can host yet another color, texture, or pattern to make the room more elegant and tied together.


If your curtain accessories/hardware at the top are not show-worthy or you don’t like their industrial look, you can hang valances with curtains to cover them off. But avoid valances that show their own hardware lest you land up in the same situation that you wished to evade.


Valances can relay your style with the tiny optical space that they occupy in the most convincing manner. For example, a swag above the curtain is an open statement of your traditional maximalist approach.




Spiffy Spools Window Valances & Swags


Spiffy Spools custom window treatments


If you’re in awe of the sheer potential that valances encapsulate in their subtle structure, we’re not surprised. And so, it’s time to introduce you to our treasure chest from which you may choose valances that best suit your home. Spiffy Spools offers a gamut of almost two dozen styles of valances and over 3000 fabrics to choose from. So, it will be hard not to find a valance that intrigues your aesthetic sensibilities.

If you’re ready for the trip, we will take you through the various styles of valances on offer. Our valances can be broadly classified into two categories based on their mounting technique:


Board-Mounted Valances


Board mounted valance with curtains


This type of valance is constructed by attaching the valance onto a lumber board with velcro. The fabric portion can be removed for cleaning and fixed back easily. The valance comes with the hardware ready-to-mount.

Since the board provides the structure for the valance, it has a very architectural look. Homes with minimalistic leanings can go for board-mounted valances as they give away clean lines with finesse. Home offices and formal rooms profit the most from their matter-of-fact appeal.

These valances conceal the drapery hardware and do not expose any hardware of their own. 




Pole-Mounted Valances


Pole mounted valance



These valances are hung on drapery poles, just like curtains. Their free-flowing look makes them perfect picks for casual spaces.

You can choose from various styles ranging from simple rod pockets to ornate pinch pleats. Some styles show the valance hardware whereas others don’t – offering you more options to suit your preferences.

It is not just how the valance is mounted that decides how formal or casual it gets, but also how it is stitched. Not all board-mounted valances are outright formal and not all pole-mounted valances are all-out casual. 

A board-mounted Sheffield valance, for example, has a tailored look because of its backing board but also looks easy-going with its stylish curves. So, factor in the stitching style to meet your exact aesthetic goals. Let’s introduce you to the various styles of valances on offer. We may broadly classify our valances into three categories based on stitching style:




Flat Surfaced Valances 


Box pleated valance with curtains


As the name suggests evidently, these valances are flat without gather. They span the width of the pole or board from end to end in exact measure without any pleats or folds. These are great options for minimalists who want to go as sparse as possible with the details, or for clients who want to show off the pattern without distortions.


Pleated/Gathered Valances


Pleated Valance


These valances are very similar to curtain headers as they hang with either stitched-in pleats or grommets or fabric loops, enabling the fabric to gather into elegant folds. The gathered valances such as tab tops, grommet tops, and rod pockets are great for casual spaces. The styles which have tailored stitched-in pleats are perfect for formal spaces.




Swag Valance with curtains


These valances are non-conforming to standard shapes and are synonymous with opulence. Their freely flowing sumptuous pleats make them perfect decor accessories for luxurious entertainment zones and opulent living rooms. No doubt, this is an ultra-formal option for a maximalist home.




How to Hang Curtains with Valances


White Curtains with Valance


Designing a home is a process as much as a challenge. ‘Shop wise, not twice’ is easier said than done. When hanging curtains with valances, it is important to consider how they get along with each other and how they sync with the space as a whole. So, let our experts counsel you with their tips so you can get the right valance-curtains pair for your home. 


Consider Overall Style and Mood While Hanging Curtains with Valances


Yellow Curtains with Valance


Valances perform in tandem with the overall decor style and mood of the room, and are meant to air them more emphatically. So, evaluate where you may position your style on the spectrum between the two extremes of maximalism and minimalism. Also, consider on a room-to-room basis, whether you need to keep it formal or casual. And choose your valance accordingly. 


Minimalist homes must ideally opt for board-mounted valances for their clean lines and refined finishes. Similarly, formal spaces will profit from their grandeur and striking appeal. Pole-mounted valances, especially those that reveal their hardware, are more apt for casual spaces. 


Fans of stark minimalism should love the looks of the straight-bottomed valances. These echo the clean lines characterizing their spaces. Whereas, the ones with curved bottoms strike a chord with maximalist ethics of sumptuousness and intricate detailing.


Valances that feature flat frontage are most capable of displaying patterns with clarity. Their scarce detailing certainly tunes with minimalism. The pleated and gathered valances, on the other hand, vouch for maximalism. Pleated valances’ ornate details are perfect pieces for dressed-up formal rooms. While the gathered valances such as tab tops, grommet tops, and rod pockets, are more casual in their visual appeal.

In summary, we may say that it is a combination of the three factors mentioned above that works perfectly for each space. For example, a rod pocket valance rhymes well with a family space like kitchen and a board-mounted pinch pleat scalloped valance completes a formal living room of a traditional home. An ultra-formal party hall finds board-mounted swags matching the grandeur while a pole-mounted tab top valance is all it takes to spice up the family living room.

Homes that are on the extreme end of the scales of traditionalist maximalism may opt for one of the scalloped or pleated board-mounted valances to relay the stateliness of the space. And those that are high on modern minimalism may choose from one of the flat-surfaced and flat-bottomed valances.


Decide on Material, Palette, Pattern Before Hanging Curtains with Valances


Matching Patterns with Solids


Not just the style of the valance, but also the making of its fabric has a say in the home design. Since windows take up huge optical space, they can relay the color story and the overall appeal of the room emphatically. Hence, these are some of the big decisions you will take regarding the designing of the window decor when hanging curtains with valances.


Let your curtains and valances be of the same family so that they get along well. That means, opulent silks and velvets are a match with each other but replacing one of them with linen would be a big mistake. Similarly cotton and linen are a good pair. 

As much as possible, let the material composition match exactly for perfect cohesiveness. So, you can match a shiny gauzy sheer curtain, for example, with a silk valance or a linen drapery with a cotton valance.


Designing both the curtain and the valance from the same solid-colored fabric is a sophisticated approach. This is as minimalist and formal as it can get. 

If you want to use the same fabric and yet would love to add color, trims are the way to go. Depending on your style of decor, use tassel trims or ribbon trims or any trim of your choice in the second tone that you wish to introduce.

A more liberal decor style may involve a diverse palette for the valance and the curtains. You can either use a stark contrast as in the case of black and white for a dramatic impact. Or, choose colors that complement like blue and yellow or cream and brown. Note that if you design the valance in the bolder tone, it will make the eye gravitate upward, thus producing an illusion of height. 

Another way to coordinate the palette is to accessorize the drapes with trims and match the valance to that trim’s color.


For an eye-catching recipe, mixing the two design elements can be highly successful. So, hanging a patterned valance with solid curtains or a solid-colored valance with a patterned drapery is an arresting couple. Their bonding is ensured by echoing the pattern’s accents in the solid element. 

An impressive way to hang curtains with valances is to coordinate them with each other. Employing the valance’s fabric for the curtain tiebacks is a made-for-each-other-look that can foster a custom look.

Depending on whether you want patterns or solids to dominate the room, choose which of the two should don patterns. Since valances are proportionately smaller, they can reduce the overbearing tone of busy patterns. While, if the patterns are very simplistic and understated in coloration, even long drapes won’t make them look overpowering.

When pairing solids and patterns, remember that patterns of any sort engage more visual interest than solids. Hence, if you want to make the eye gravitate upward to gauge the height of the space, you need to design the valance from the patterned fabric.

Avoid using patterned fabric for the sake of it, though. It is important that the pattern sits well with the patterns already used in the room. 

In case, you want to highlight a motif intensely, you can design both the curtain and the valance from the same patterned fabric. And trim them with befitting solid-colored trims. 

Be wary of using busy patterns though, as overuse can be disturbing to the eyes. Also, ensure that their scales are minuscule so they can elevate the space with unique character rather than make it feel kitschy.




Coordinate with Other Decor Accessories


Co-ordinated room decor


The tips discussed above are related to coordinating the curtains with valances as per the decor style. The tips that follow are about coordinating the pair with other elements in the room. 

We highly recommend running this extra mile to foster a custom look for your home. Executing Eames’ golden words ‘details make the design’ can’t get any better than this when hanging curtains with valances. So, here are the golden tips:


It’s the room that’s most private and meant to give your day a good start and end. So, designing the bedroom in a harmonized manner is worth the toil. Splurging on creating a pretty bedroom shows how much you value your ‘me-space’ and ‘me-time’. 

Consider making a delightful family of tastefully decorated bed runners, pillows in all sizes, upholstered armchairs and valances from the same fabric, preferably, a printed one. If not all four, coordinate at least two of the elements, and the appeal of the space will still be very chic. It’s not just a beautiful way to make a statement with a motif but also an excellent way to personalize this private space.


While private spaces must be treated with favor for being your exclusive luxury, entertainment zones must get their due because socializing is important and delightful. If you love entertaining guests, then you’ll be glad to know that Spiffy Spools can help you create a tied-together dining room too. Here’s how. 

Get your valances or curtains to strike a cohesive unity with your table runner or your tablecloth. Our table runners are stitched with the same fabric on both sides for a wholesome appeal. And this bespoke treatment is what your custom dining table truly merits, especially, if it is non-standard size. So, you don’t just get the right measurements taken into account but also get the ‘dressed-to-kill’ looks.


By now, you may guess how you can let the design flow with rhythm in the living area. Get the valance and throw pillows to shake hands with each other, celebrating their kinship and your refined taste.  If this is the room where visitors step in as they enter the home, it is only fair to give them a taste of your thought-invested home design at the very outset.


In Closing


Valance with trims


So, you now know really well how to hang curtains with valances. We’re so excited to assist you in your designing project and can’t wait to see the end results. Remember that if you need more guidance, we’re just a call away.

Order Custom Curtains & Valances from Spiffy Spools

Let our collection of custom curtains and valances inspire you more, so browse through our site and trust your instinct, now enlightened sufficiently by this blog. Happy browsing, happy shopping!



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