{window treatment wednesday}

Decorative hardware can be used to enhance many different styles of custom window treatments. Any decor style from traditional to contemporary to casual or eclectic can be found to suit your decorating scheme. Choosing the right drapery hardware is not only important for the design of your treatment but also the function of your treatment.

Does your drapery hardware need to function so that you can move draperies with ease or do you need a pole to hang panels or valances from?

If needing to move panels back and forth there are a few things you should consider when selecting hardware. Heavier pinch pleated draperies are best suited for traverse rods which allows you to open and close your panels across a window by using a draw cord. These rods are typically supported properly, so that the rod can hold the weight of the drapery.

Drapery panels can also be hung by using clip rings, tabs and grommets. This type of drapery is hung onto a decorative pole and requires you to draw the panels by hand. One thing to consider is that if you have a wider window to cover, your rod should have a center support. Hand draw draperies will not move over a center support, so a one way draw will not work. Consider using this type of treatment with a split draw drapery. Hand draw draperies do not always move easily back and forth and require the user to “dress out” or fix the panels to look nice in their resting position.


Decorative hardware is also used to hang stationary side panels and fixed treatments like open swags. For this application there is a wide variety of holders, poles and end pieces or finials available. For the more challenging window designs, there are even specialty brackets that can create a bay or bow rod.


Decorative drapery hardware is available in a limitless array of materials, styles, colors and finishes. Most decorative poles are constructed of wood, brass or iron and are capped at the ends with decorative finials. Selecting the right hardware can make or break the overall appearances of your custom window treatment. Many times I have been in a home furnished with beautiful custom draperies or valances and the overall appearance is compromised by unattractive hardware.

Working with a Hirshfield’s Window Treatment Specialist such as myself, you can achieve a custom home decor that provides a desired function with a unity of design. Call me!

Guest post from Andrea Mandel, Hirshfield’s Shop at Home

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{expert painting tips : painting plastic shutters}

Finishing touches make all the difference when it comes to the overall look of your home. The window boxes full of colorful flowers, the paver stones winding through the backyard, and the classic shutters adorning your windows.

Even though these “finishing touches” may be subtle, they still deserve the proper attention and upkeep needed to keep them looking great, and your home looking fresh and well-put-together.

If you are noticing that your plastic shutters are in need of some touch-up work, investing in some paint and elbow grease should be all it takes to make them look like new again. However, there are a few tips you’ll want to keep in mind as you’re working.

expert paint tips Minnesota

House Beautiful

Mark Masica, a color and paint expert at Hirshfield’s, offers these tips for painting plastic shutters:

  • Consult the guidelines: The most important thing to keep in mind when buying or painting plastic shutters is to refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines. Some may need to be primed, while others may require a specific kind of paint. Most plastic shutters will call for a good quality, 100% acrylic paint.
  • Choose your paint color carefully: Be cautious when going darker with the color of your plastic shutters. Darker colors absorb more light, causing the plastic to warp and ripple. You can always go lighter with your paint color, but consult the manufacturer’s guidelines or an exterior paint professional when considering going more than a few shades darker. (Check out Mark’s picks for the best exterior paint colors for your home.)
  • When in doubt, prime: Older shutters need to be Read the rest of this entry »

{when to splurge and when to save when decorating your home}

Furnishing a home can be a major investment. You have the necessities – a table, bed, dinnerware, and a place to sit. Then you have the “nice to haves” – wall art, fancy lighting, a glam rug, and accessories to tie the space together. When you’re excited about decorating, and anxious to get started, the line can easily become blurry between the two categories. Which is why we love Apartment Therapy’s post on when to splurge and when to save when furnishing your home.

Here are some of their tips:

Splurge where your health is concerned.
This means mattresses, office chairs and work surfaces at the proper height for the job at hand. If you’re lucky you may find these items at a bargain price, but generally I’d suggest budgeting more for items which directly affect your health and comfort.

A comfortable looking office, color on the wall is Benjamin Moore Hot Apple Spice 2005-20.

We would also add that along with furniture that affects your health, products that affect your health. Consider going with a low or no VOC paint to cut down on odor. Hirshfield’s offers Preserve LOW VOC INTERIOR LATEX FLAT with Microban® antimicrobial product protection and Benjamin Moore Natura® Zero-VOC Interior Paint.

Splurge on statement pieces.
These are the pieces that you love, that you’ll take with you when you move, that make your home feel like yours. The Eames chair which detracts from the big-box store sofa, or the vintage armoire which makes putting away the laundry fun. It goes without saying that falling in love with pieces that are also functional is advisable, but it doesn’t always work out that way.

Read the rest of this entry »

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