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Arched Window Treatments DIY: Designer Tips

Designer Maia Roffey of Black Sheep Interior Design shares Arched Window Treatments in three different solutions for this common design dilemma. Find out when it’s appropriate to use drapes and where to hang the rod, and discover whether roman blinds are the right option. Whether you have standard ceilings, an expansive space or arched walls, Maia has a smart arched window treatment idea for every scenario.

Arched Window Treatments

To put it plainly, as the designer arched window is like the bane of my existence. They are so difficult to treat properly. They frequently come with some other constraints like the slope of the ceiling, or where they’re placed on a wall. So, they come up for me and a couple of projects recently and I thought I’d share some solutions that we’ve been looking into.

arched window treatments

Ideal World

So in an ideal world, you have a nice big arched window and a high ceiling clear space. Either side you can dress it with just a nice simple rod and drapery down. You can pull across for nice privacy. They can be sheers, they can be solid, whatever your needs are.

arched window treatments photo

Arch Window Treatments Blackout

The other option if you don’t need full blackout coverage, for instance in a living room. If you’ve got a really nice high wall, you can run your curtain rod across the base of the arch. So at the bottom of the semicircle, you can do drapery pulling across. So, I would do this only if that’s well above head height otherwise it’s going to look funny and awkward that you’ve got a curtain rod below the top of the room. But if you’ve got nice generous 10-foot ceilings who are we kidding, your life’s pretty golden, you’ll be fine either way.

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The Roof

But the problems that I’ve been encountering with arched window treatments usually happen because an arched window is put into a point in the architecture where the roof is slopping. So they’re actually bringing in that curve, as the roof comes to a peak on the exterior. This means on the inside you have a sloped ceiling.

arched window treatments diy

Arched Window Treatments Lowes

So, if you take a look at this window, I’m not able to put a curtain rod across. I don’t have enough space at the height necessary to hang a curtain rod. So it would just end up looking really pinched, tight, not decorative and expansive and lovely. Usually, this is what you want with such a nice architectural design detail like arched window treatments. You don’t want to dress it in a way that’s compromising how nice it is.

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So there are a few different options for how to treat this. If you don’t need full blackout privacy, you can again do a lower hung curtain rod. Again, provided you have the necessary height for that not to look cramped. This will expose the arch.

arched window treatments design

Unhook Them

One solution that we’ve come up with and we’ve used in a couple of nurseries recently is, for lack of a better term the swoopy peg solution. You end up mounting hardware around the arch. Then you have to drapery panels, you attach them, so that they come across the top of the window and cross over each other, and then down either side. When you’re ready to draw them across you just unhook them, and they cover the full window. It is a little decorative and feminine so I would tend to limit it to nurseries and very softly finished bedrooms. I don’t think it’s a great look for say a living room or a dining room. It’s a little too fussy.

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Roman Shades for Arched Window Treatments

But my personal favorite solution is to do it with a custom made Roman blind. So, you get the blind, cut and installed to cover the upper arch and this portion is fixed. So, the downside is that you’re going to always be covering the arch on the interior design. Then the Roman blind operates up and down from that point.

arched window treatments ideas

Arch Window Blinds that Open and Close

So you’re gonna cover your window slightly, but if you need a little bit more privacy, this is I think a really nice solution it tends to be quite elegant, very tailored and fitted. You can add some nice details. You can also do even say a rattan Roman on the inside put a curtain rod across the bottom of the arch and do a nice sheer. It would give you a soft really layered casual look.

arched window treatments picture


Arched window treatments are gorgeous if they are treated well. They add so much architectural interest both outside and inside a house but they can be a pain to dress. I think we can all agree though if this is the biggest problem in your life, you’re laughing.


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