Pelmets: back in fashion

Pelmets: back in fashion

I have done a lot of upholstered pelmets over the last year so I’d say they’re definitely back in vogue.

The pelmets of my childhood were nasty looking plywood painted with white gloss paint but if this is what you think of as a pelmet, think again! I construct the base from plywood and upholster with wadding and a fabric that matches or contrasts with the curtains or blinds hung behind them. These can be crisp and tailored for a formal look or padded with lots of layers for a softer look. Pelmets don’t use a lot of fabric so are an economical way of adding an extra dimension to a window treatment whilst making the most of striking patterns or colours.

A pelmet with just one layer of wadding for a crisp, tailored look

This can completely change the look of a window or an entire room by playing with the proportions or enhancing or disguising certain features; for instance, a pelmet can use up dead space above a window and/ or increase the apparent size of a window. Where windows on the same wall or in the same room are at different heights or of different sizes the careful use of pelmets can even differences out. An ugly window can be disguised and a beautiful window can be enhanced.

Pelmet and curtains

Curtains and pelmet in contrasting fabrics

Roman blind with small pelmet: this gives a neat finish.

Contrast piping or using a contrasting fabric to the curtains or blind below can add an extra layer of interest and the pelmet can be shaped (see my last post).

Piping and contrasting fabric detail on a pelmet

Carefully chosen trims can add extra charm.