How To Dress Bay Windows

Bay windows are treasured for their ability to provide an unparalleled view. They also make rooms feel much larger than they are, but dressing a bay window can present unique challenges. Our clients often ask for ideas on how to dress bay windows.

From a boxed pleat valance or faux roman shade to the most functional hardware, there are many questions about the best approach. Parkway Window Works has the answers on how to dress a bay window.

Box Pleat Valance

Img 4271 1
Box pleat valance on a bay window

The box pleat valance is a valance made up of inverted pleats. The pleats can be of the same fabric or a contrasting fabric with a peek-a-boo effect. Traditionally box pleat valances have a straight hem (hence the name “box”!). They can also have shaped hems such as an arch, a scallop, serpentine or angled.

Img 4273 1

The key to designing a box pleat valance for a bay window is choosing the box sizes so that the inverted pleats align with the corners of the bay. This allows the valance to fall seamlessly as it bends at the angled walls.


Jb Img 4072 3 Adjust
A cornice is similar to a valance, but has a wood frame

One of the challenges to dressing a bay window can be the size and shape of the window. Having multiple angles and even window sizes in the bay makes deciding on an optimal window treatment difficult. A cornice offers a unique solution.

Because cornices are actually upholstered wooden frames, it’s easier to customize for your window. Each section of the bay can have its own cornice or multiple cornices can be attached together with a hinge. The fabric is pulled tight over the board, and there are many possible embellishments such as decorative cord, banding, buttons or nailheads.

Drapery Panels

Img 3661 1

While cornices and box pleat valances can dress up a bay window and add warmth to a room, they don’t provide light control or privacy. Drapes, however, can add texture and functionality to a room while providing privacy and light control. Drapes on a bay window deliver the the best of both worlds.

Img 3664

Something to remember is that with a bay window, you cannot simply use traditional rods when employing drapery. The angles of a bay window must be taken into consideration. Many hardware lines offer adjustable corner elbows to fit the angle of the bay.

Img 5366
Custom operable drapes with a baton draw on a custom bent French rod

For a seamless look, the hardware can be custom bent for a perfect fit. Accurate measurements and a template are key to achieving the end result with either hardware solution.

Img 5370
Stationary drapes on a custom bent French rod

With the right hardware and precise measurements, your drapes can move across the angled windows effortlessly.

Shawl Valance

how to dress bay windows: shawl valance

The shawl valance gets its name from how the fabric softly cascades down the sides of the valance (just like the folds hanging down from a shawl around your shoulders). It’s the perfect finishing touch to dress the bay window in this dining room. Tailored valances are usually flat, and gathered valances have fullness. The shawl valance is the perfect combination of flat and fullness. The flat arched center of the valance displays the motif of the fabric and the soft cascading sides add softness to your bay window. 

How to dress bay windows? Parkway Window Works can help

Choosing the appropriate treatment for your bay window is an important part of dressing the windows in your design projects. This is why a supportive and knowledgeable workroom partner can make all the difference.

Parkway Window Works is an award-winning workroom.  Our fabrication expertise and attention to detail are what truly sets us apart. We can recommend window treatments for dressing bay windows on your next design project. Contact us to get started.

No Comment
Leave a Comment

Pin It on Pinterest