Many of the newer homes in the Toledo area have French Doors. It seems that these have replaced the functional (but not so attractive) “sliding glass door”. They look great but then when it comes time to decorating, many homeowners are stumped about what to do. So, one of the most common questions I get asked is, “What can I do with my French Doors?”
Just to clarify what I mean, a French Door is a door that has one or more panes of glass set into the whole length of the door, so it also functions as a window. (You usually find them in pairs, side-by-side.)
Actually, the solution (or solutions) is really not that difficult. The key is to think of French Doors as windows! When you look at them from that perspective, it’s pretty simple to come up with an answer that’s not only practical but that will look great and complement the rest of your home. (French Doors are also known as French Windows – go figure!)
The most important factor is how much privacy do you want? Next, how much light do you want to come through, and will this vary? (Do you want to be able to let light in during the day and close them at night? Do you want to be able to adjust the amount of sunlight during the day?)
Next, consider your decor. You may want to match the window treatments you have on your other windows, especially if those windows are nearby. If not, then you have more flexibility. In that case, maybe you want to just complement the colors and textures in the room. Or, maybe you’d like to set off your doors by using something completely different in terms of texture and color. And then, of course, there’s the consideration of price.
Wood blinds and faux wood blinds are one common solution. With French Doors, the two main concerns you have as far as structure goes is the door handle. (This seems to always be the biggest problem!) Whatever you choose, the window treatment will have to navigate around those door handles…not always a simple thing to do! With blinds, you may have to adjust the slats (carefully!) to fit over the handles. If you have enough depth in the windows, you may be able to have the blinds mounted inside the frame of the window. This will help, but it doesn’t completely solve the door handle problem.
I usually have “hold-down” brackets installed at the bottom of the window to hold the blind securely against the door to keep it from banging against the door every time it’s opened or closed. (That gets old after a while, trust me!)
There’s a company that makes door handles extend outward, and this is a great help. Unfortunately, these are a little “pricey” (over $100), so I haven’t used them in quite a while.
Another idea is a cellular shade. The advantage with these is that cellular shades can usually fit between the door and handle fairly easily. (Because they have a “low-profile” head, they can usually be mounted inside the window frame, which helps.)
Drapery sheers and curtains are another way to go. Again, the big consideration is how they will be mounted to the door at the top. Depending upon the window covering, you may be able to use a type of metal dowel rod or small brackets.
These are the most common ideas, probably because they’re practical, not very expensive and they all look great. So, if you’re struggling with ideas about what type of window treatments to put on those French Doors, remember, just look at them as “windows” and ask yourself the same questions you’d ask about all of the other windows in your home.
Have you had to deal with French Doors in your home and if so, what did you come with as a solution? Or if you just have some other ideas, I’d love to hear about them!
And do me a favor, please “Like” and “Share” this page. And feel free to send this post to someone you know who may be trying to solve the “French Door dilemma!”