Entryway Hallway The Victorian House

Choosing Window Treatments for Our Hall and Both Entryways

The big reveal of our latest One Room Challenge project went up last week! We took on the front and back entryways, along with the second and third floor hallways. The wallpaper was still in progress as of last Wednesday and it was finished up on Friday, so now we just have the repair and renovation of our back stairs to deal with. Old houses sometimes throw you a little off schedule with their fun ‘surprises’ (in this case a major plumbing leak that had us ripping open the wall all throughout that stairwell).

I’ll be delving into a few aspects of our project in more detail over the next few weeks, starting today with our window treatments from The Shade Store, one of the official One Room Challenge sponsors. They provided a shopping credit that covered the cost of shades for my ORC design.

Pink roman shade from The Shade Store, Farrow & Ball Tourbillon Wallpaper, Schoolhouse Electric brass light | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

I needed shades for five windows: one in the front entryway at the bottom of the stairs and another at the top, one at the end of the second floor hall, and another two at the top and bottom of the back stairs. All five windows had lace curtains when we moved in, and while they were period-appropriate for a Victorian house, they were not exactly my style. I left a couple of them up for privacy and I removed the rest, leaving several windows bare.

Lace Curtains in a Victorian House
Back Hallway, Before

The pink wallpaper was one of my earliest design decisions, and it’s the element I looked to when deciding everything else. Paint colors, flooring, and window treatments were all chosen with that wallpaper color and pattern in mind, and the pink linen I ended up going with was not my first instinct! Below, you can see some of the other contenders alongside one of the actual shades.

Fabric samples from The Shade Store against pink Tourbillon Farrow & Ball wallpaper

I thought about stripes. I love stripes! The trim was going white though, with black doors. I figured I already had all the contrast I needed there, so that ruled out black and white stripes and I wasn’t so keen on any other versions. Black shades were also out, in part because of the black doors and in part because I wanted to let light stream through the fabric. Polka dots were another option I had considered pretty seriously. I had actually mentioned that I would be using them when I showed the design plan in week 2, but I changed my mind when I went to place my order. Polka dots are very cute, but I had kind of filled my cute quotient. What I needed was a solid supporting fabric, not another star element.

White is too stark in my house. Even the white paint we chose for the wood trim on the second and third floors is not a super bright white if you look at it in isolation. Ivory works, but that pink linen is subtle enough to read almost as a neutral, and it just looked better than ivory against everything else. If I were making choices for resale, I would have gone with ivory, beige, or taupe, but this isn’t for resale. This is for keeps, for us. Pink it is. (And since this often comes up, yes, my husband was on board with the color too.)

Pink Linen Roman Shades from The Shade Store | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

I knew I wanted roman shades (as opposed to a roller shade or curtains), but there were several types to choose from. I liked the relaxed roman and tulip shades because they were feminine and pretty, but the flat roman shades seemed a better balance to all of the other feminine details and colors we were already using. And again, the window treatments are playing the supporting actor role here, not the lead.

There were also several control types to choose from — how would the shade be raised and lowered? There was a continuous loop or cord lock option, but I liked the idea of going with the invisible cordless option. No ball chain or cord to attach to the window frame, and the shades operate with a gentle pull (there is a hidden pull ring sewn in). They arrived about two weeks after I had placed my order — right when all of the final details were falling into place and my workload was at its busiest. I was concerned that they would take a lot of time to install that frankly, I didn’t have right then, but they were super easy! Two screws, that’s it. Insert them into the header of your shade, hold it up and eyeball the placement, mark with a pencil, drill holes, then put the shade up and tighten the screws. Done. You can also arrange for professional installation, but seriously, you can do this.

Hardware Enclosed from The Shade Store

I wasn’t a fan of the lace curtains that came with the house and I had gotten used to the bare windows, but now that our windows have proper shades, everything feels more polished. So happy with them. They play off of the wallpaper nicely, and they look great against the oak woodwork on the first floor too.

Pink Linen Roman Shades from The Shade Store, pink Tourbillon Farrow & Ball wallpaper, black doors, white trim | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Victorian Wooden Staircase | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Sources & Paint ColorsNeed design help? Let's work together.

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  • Sarah
    November 14, 2016 at 2:44 pm

    Personally, I love them! A question: are there seams in the shade? or is it one solid piece of fabric top to bottom?

    • Making it Lovely
      November 14, 2016 at 2:46 pm

      No seams — it’s one continuous piece of fabric. Our tallest of the five windows was 72″ high, but none were wider than 36″. I would expect a seam if you get over a certain width (based on most home decor fabrics being 54″ wide), but the length shouldn’t give you problems.

  • atout
    November 14, 2016 at 3:26 pm

    So good! You really knocked this one out of the park.

  • Alison Coogan
    November 14, 2016 at 5:25 pm

    That looks so good! By complete coincidence I’m having a Shade Store flat roman shade installed in my foyer on Friday… I went with natural linen/blackout lined and motorized (because a two-story situation). I’ve been counting down the days until it gets here because we’re pretty much blinded by afternoon sun from this particular window.

    • Making it Lovely
      November 15, 2016 at 9:17 am

      Nice! I forgot to mention the motorized option — a two-story situation sounds like the perfect application for it. And we went with a privacy lining, not a blackout lining. Should have mentioned that above too, in case anyone is thinking of ordering their own! We don’t need to control light from these particular windows like you do.

  • Laura
    November 14, 2016 at 6:31 pm

    The shades are perfect. What a polished look!

  • Laura
    November 14, 2016 at 9:55 pm

    Love the pink shades! Just the right color and not overly feminine,

  • Jess
    November 15, 2016 at 11:52 am

    beautiful!!! you have made all the wood look so much less heavy. well done!

  • Jen
    November 15, 2016 at 12:59 pm

    Hi! Lovely from the front hallway to the back! I am curious about the plant stand in the top picture. Is it vintage or new, and if new, would you mind sharing the source? I have been looking for a brass plant stand the same size and struggling. Thanks!

  • Sarah
    November 15, 2016 at 1:16 pm

    Love this!

  • Judy
    November 15, 2016 at 9:07 pm

    I really like this behind-the-scenes peek at your process. I would have just assumed you had planned to go with the pink all along, so it is interesting to see what other options you were considering, and how you settled on your final choice. It looks great so far! Can’t wait to see the final reveal.

  • JC
    November 17, 2016 at 10:57 am

    Any chance you could do a video walk through of the area as your final-final reveal? I’d love to see how it truly flows.

  • Elizabeth Speicher
    November 20, 2016 at 6:49 pm

    Beautiful, well done. Polished and inviting.