Extra Privateness at Residence, Because of This Inside Designer Trick

LOOKING FOR some type and privateness—maybe greater than ever—with out shifting partitions? Contemplate including hanging material panels in a doorway, a favourite trick of inside designers. “Portieres are a intelligent and versatile instrument,” mentioned Birmingham, Ala., inside inside designer Stephanie Lyton. When the drapes are closed, relations know to remain away (”I’m working!”). Inside drapes additionally dampen noise and verify the chilliness coming from actual doorways that open onto the blustery world at massive. On the adorning entrance, they soften exhausting edges and make investments plain outdated portals with a little bit of thriller and drama. Right here, a number of particulars.

The Enchantment

Portieres effectively add shade, sample and texture to 2 rooms. “Plus, they carry a touch of romance,” mentioned Stephanie Lynton, an inside designer in Birmingham, Ala., who added extra pink to a big room’s rose-inflected décor by hanging blush linen portieres within the door frames. Ms. Lynton additionally notes that portieres deliver the coziness and fantastic thing about drapes to a room with few or no home windows, or to a generously windowed room whose gentle or views you’ll quite not block with typical curtains.

Portieres soften an entrance in designer Stephanie Lynton’s Birmingham, Ala., dwelling.


Jean Allsopp

On the sensible aspect, portieres present privateness and the power to separate, every time life requires, areas that join with no strong door—say, a kitchen and a eating room doubling as a house workplace. The rosy drapes that Ms. Lynton deployed helped block drafts from close by exterior exits. Atlanta inside designer Jackye Lanham discovered one other pragmatic use for a material barrier: sealing off a hallway that results in visitor rooms. “When they’re closed, I do know my company are nonetheless sleeping.”

The Ideas

When selecting the material, take into account the portieres’ operate. Must you wish to block a draft or noise, dense velvet works properly. Simply be sure your rod is powerful sufficient to help the material’s weight, cautioned Ms. Lynton. Light-weight supplies will soften a room with much more Gatsby-esque billow, however Ms. Lanham recommends shunning stretchy materials “that can lose form and sag over time.”

Ms. Lanham likes to make use of two complementary materials for both aspect of a portiere’s panels to orchestrate a special visible expertise in every connecting area, and hews to the rule that materials ought to align with the general inside décor. To transition from a marble-tiled lobby to a heart-of-pine front room in a stately Atlanta home, for instance, Ms. Lanham used a de Gournay silk edged with hand-tied knots. “You wish to take into account the specified fullness as properly,” she mentioned, explaining that in a contemporary context, tailor-made panels look finest, however for extra romantic rooms, a flouncier remedy with tiebacks would possibly stir hearts extra successfully. And get artistic along with your supplies, she mentioned. Classic textiles, embroideries, desk linens and even quilts may be conscripted as portieres.

The Caveats

Portieres’ nice selling-point—that they adorn two rooms without delay—obliges you to pay extra. Seen from each side, they require twice as a lot material as window drapes, which is probably dear. Additionally, you’ll be able to’t set up them wherever which may impede their operate, “comparable to too near an oven door or to drawers that pull out,” mentioned Ms. Lynton. Nonetheless, mentioned Ms. Lanham, “I believe portieres work in most areas, even in more-contemporary designs.”


What’s your favourite trick for breaking apart an area with out partitions? Be part of the dialog beneath.


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Appeared within the March 5, 2022, print version as ‘When Is a Door Not a Door? When It’s a Portiere.’