The first thing you'll learn in Window Design 101 is that valances aren't part of your curtains – they're an accessory that vastly improves everything about your curtains. While they don't serve a functional role, valances might be one of the most important purely aesthetic touches in your home. Not only do they hide the curtain fittings, they provide a colorful complement to the curtain itself as well as the rest of the room. Remove them, and the fittings look boring or – worse – naked.

So how do you find the perfect valances for your windows? You'll want to start with the best windows around. Marvin replacement windows in New Jersey are each works of art, whether you go with a casement, double hung or hopper design. From exterior cladding to interior framing materials, these fiberglass replacement windows are sure to become the focal points of any room. Now keep these other considerations in mind.

What do your rooms require?
Every room is different, from its decor to its layout, and you'll want to keep all this in mind as you're choosing valances. For instance, as Houzz points out, a basic upholstered valance can attractively lower the height of too-tall ceilings in rooms where you desire a more intimate and cozy look, like the bedroom. On the other hand, a pleated, skirt-style valance might make a better fit for a nursery, lending the windows a traditional yet playful look.

Houzz notes that Southern homes filled with other Dixie design elements might be one of the only homes that can pull off formal swag-style valances. It goes to show that there's a valance for every home design if you look hard enough.

What's your budget?
Valances can be a costly investment, and while quality windows like Marvin's are worth every penny, you might hesitate to pay much for your curtain accompaniments. After all, valances aren't securing your home against weather, improving your energy efficiency or providing the other functional bonuses that great fiberglass replacement windows do. But, luckily, valances also make for an easy do-it-yourself activity.

For instance, Houzz suggests that homeowners try upholstering a piece of cornice board. Basic and clean, it conceals the curtain fittings and provides a nice highlight close to the ceiling. Or, if you've got a little more money on hand and want to add a nice touch to your kitchen or any other room, an architectural wood cornice can be incorporated above your window. It takes a bit more effort than the upholstered cornice board, but pays off as a great way to combine indoor architecture and valances.

You can also check out other options, such as crochet valances, which gives your windows a latticework style, according to DIY Network, where there are a number of suggestions. As one of the most popular do-it-yourself projects out there, the Internet is filled with great valance ideas.

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