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Styled 19th-century summer retreat does 'Show House' turn for Ellicott City
By Sandy Alexander sun reporter

Some elements in Historic Ellicott City Inc.'s latest Decorator Show House jump out at visitors right away, like the cobalt-blue walls of the family room, the bright red embroidered curtain in the upstairs hallway and the ornate carvings on the antique dining room furniture.

When choosing window treatments, decide first whether you want them to:

  • Control light.
  • Provide privacy.
  • Block heat and ultraviolet rays.
  • Act as a focal point.
  • Serve as a backdrop.

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WINDOW COVERS

Window treatments can be overlooked, but they can often set the mood in a space.

Fussy, traditional draperies (far left) have given way to design elements such as a cornice board with streamers and bracelet accents.

By SUE DOERFLER Gannett News Service

Ah, the lowly window. It's all too often the last element we think about when we decorate a room.

Perhaps it's because we're too busy trying to decide wall color or we've spent all our extra cash on a new sofa.

Shelly Castleberry of Padden Interiors

Today, window-shade choices go far beyond the basic vinyl roller shade and into a whole world of existing fashion choices. But before you decide which shade will grace your window, it is important to analyze your needs and understand your options.

There's not much to like about a doctor's office. It's a place too often associated with pain, embarrassment and the secret dread that a lump, rash or shortness of breath may be cause for serious concern.

But what if the waiting room were more like a living room, with comfortable chairs, warm lighting and attractive paintings? What if the examination rooms were fitted with wood cabinetry instead of stainless steel? If the walls were painted with flowering vines, not hung with lurid renderings of vital organs?

An often-used room, the kitchen is a gathering spot for friends who come to dinner. A lounge chair, next to a case filled with cookbooks, is a cheery reading nook for hungry visitors waiting for the suppers the couple enjoy cooking. "I like to take older things and mix them with the modern," said Barb Hembree, leading the way out of the kitchen to the living room at the front of the house.

In defiance of the UB apartments mandate that prohibits painting, Hodges has managed to break up the creamy beige colored walls with ornate draperies

draperiesI've heard it hundreds of times, "I just can't believe how window treatments finish the room!" When a window fashion is designed specifically for you, all the elements in the room magically come together. To achieve this decorating nirvana, you should consider working with a professionally trained expert in window fashions.

The rush is already on to spiff up homes, so pull out the checkbook and get those projects started.

By Jake Klein, Special to The Times August 31, 2006

LABOR DAY may still lie ahead, but for anyone hoping to spruce up the home before Thanksgiving, the calendar is screaming something else entirely: Get moving.

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