Drapery Hardware Adds Artistry to the Window Drapery Hardware Adds Artistry to the Window

Drapery hardware may be thought of as a supporting character at the window-hidden behind elaborate side panels and fabric top treatments. However, it's increasingly common to see decorative drapery rods, poles, finials, tie-backs, brackets and accent pieces as the focal point of the window-and, indeed in some cases, of the entire room.

Classic drapery hardware looks prevail, proving the old axiom that "everything old is new again." Particularly prominent are wrought-iron and cast-iron shapes, such as arrows, scrolls, spiral balls and fleur de lis designs.

Among the companies highlighting these looks is Spring Window Fashions, featuring the Iron Artistry collection under its Graber brand. The collection highlights three sculptured wire finial designs in two sizes that can be paired with metal or colored wood poles. The fleur de lis and crown finial motifs come in a traditional distressed black, while the spiral ball design is available in the black as well as an antique gold finish.

In addition, the company expanded the Graber Classic Creations Wrought Iron program to include verdigris and crackled, antique white finishes. Among the designs are a traditional spear, French spear, shepherd's crook, fleur de lis and twisted bird cage.

Springs also has expanded the popular Graber NeoClassic Collection, which features decorative brackets reminiscent of classic Greek patterns. The new bracket styles include a rose garden, cove and simple scroll design, added to the existing acanthus leaf and scroll brackets as well as the pineapple and traditional shell finials.

Another drapery hardware company, Kirsch, offers iron poles, brackets and finials in its Design Trends collection. A new embellishment to this collection is the addition of cast-metal centerpieces. They are available in Vineyard, Cottage and Lace styles to coordinate with three existing finials.

The top-of-the-line collection from Kirsch is the C.W. Kirsch Signature Series. This series includes the Buckingham Collection, featuring such classic finial designs as Acanthus Leaf, Rose Wreath, Pine Cone, Shell and Grape Leaves. The newest addition to the C.W. Kirsch Signature Series is The Tiffany Collection, a unique line of drapery poles and multi-colored glass finials and holdbacks reminiscent of the namesake 19th-century decorative art glass. The classically shaped panels are in the traditional Tiffany color scheme of amber, blue and red as well as in mother of pearl.

Curtains Up, a new product line from the Canadian-based Steptoe & Wife Antiques Ltd., also features ironwork drapery hardware styles. The company's products cover a wide gamut of finial and tie-back styles, including sleek arrows, traditional pineapples, elegant baskets, spirals and classic bishop's crooks. Finishes range from antique brass and antique copper to bright brass, black and verdigris.

Claesson, a division of Conso Products, meanwhile, has emphasized the artistry of drapery hardware with Piper's Window Art and Window Jewelry, a line of decorative curtain hardware made of iron, copper and brass. Among the finial selections are a male dancing figure, a female dancing figure and a large star. Smaller stars, intended as window jewelry, also are featured in the collection. The company also offers the Piper's garden collection, featuring a variety of fruit-pineapples, strawberries, pears, apples and so on-in both finial and holdback styles.

These examples show that drapery hardware can take creativity to new heights. With such products available, any window can be transformed into a work of art. See your local decorating products center for options.

Courtesy of the Paint and Decorating Retailers Association -www.pdra.org

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