There are so many styles and fabrics available for your window treatments that it’s easy to forget one of the easiest ways to add another decorative touch — at the top. Valances and cornices add style and sophistication to the top of your window treatments, while also concealing the curtain rods or other hardware if necessary.
What’s the Difference?
In some ways, valances and cornices are very similar. They both add style to the top of your window treatments, but a valance is a soft treatment — similar to a very short drapery panel — while a cornice is a hard top treatment.
The style of the customer’s home usually directs our Hirshfield’s Shop at Home designers to use one or the other. Dawn Feda says valances can appear much softer while cornices have more of a hard line. However, she points out that each treatment can be dressed up or down by adding decorative trims, contrast banding or lining, or unique shapes.