Decorating with Sheer
Sheer curtains are translucent drapes which cover a window while allowing the maximum amount light to still stream through, meaning the curtains can be kept closed. Their purpose is to screen largely to add “some” privacy while not cutting the room off from any beauty emanating in from the outside.
Sheer drapes are made of fine, delicate fabric so they allow daylight into the room while ensuring privacy. Any sort of open-weave fabric will fulfill this purpose - net or lace curtains are popular in most suburban homes.
A great alternative for those who want plain drapes without any pattern or frills is muslin, a thin fabric made of cotton. Printed muslin is also available - for instance white muslin with a white printed pattern such as a fleur de lis looks particularly striking. Plain muslin is translucent and the printed pattern is opaque so the pattern shows up when the sun is shining.
Other popular materials include voile which often contains silk – making it a slightly pricier option – yet one that can add a natural softness to any room.
Layering and combining different shades (printed and plain) can result in some of the most magnificent and dramatic effects being created. Experiment with having sheer drapes in two or more different colors, say plain white underneath and fuchsia pink sheer curtains over the top - the combination will shut out more light but still be translucent enough to give a glowing effect through the curtains.
Sheer curtains can either be the sole window dressing or can be supplemented with heavier curtains or blinds – possibly in the event when the need for privacy overshadows the need for natural light.