Windows in a home give a glimpse of the outside world from a safe and cozy place inside. A room brightens up when a sorely needed window is installed. So it is important to many homeowners to give a window the right covering – one that that fits the room, allows light inside (or maybe not), and doesn’t dominate the room, while leaving an unobstructed view out.
I spoke with a most charming woman who definitely connects with the elegance and functionality that can be found in the world of window coverings. Marjan Basanti of Fashion Interiors provides clients with the most comprehensive solutions for all window covering inquiries involving design and décor, whether indoors or out.
Her soft voice was backed with extensive knowledge and brought me up to speed in window fashion and functionality. I thoroughly enjoyed the conversation and soon discovered the beauty in finding the perfect solution to any window covering dilemma.
Q: What brought you into the world of window fashion?
A: Believe it or not, both my husband and I have a computer science background. My husband decided to go into the flooring business and before I knew it I was getting involved in helping customers with their home ideas for covering their windows. I soon found myself discussing draperies and shades with customers instead of working with computers and I love it.
Q: Wow. Computer business seems a long way off from the window business.
A: Yes it does seem that way! But being very detailed oriented and precise allows me a great fit into this very detailed business. There is little margin for mistake in this industry. We call it the “1/8 of an inch” business. Everything needs to fit perfectly and I am a fanatic about that. And I have to be. We custom fit most everything. That’s our nitch, utilizing motorization and complex treatment products to fit the needs of the customer. I’m also an excellent listener and I hear what the customers want to do to the home and love the challenge of finding the perfection solution for them.
Q: Tell me a little about window fashion?
A: It’s all about what the customer likes. So I would say it is based mostly on needs and likes. Function and design. The beauty of this industry is there really is no right or wrong solution to finding window coverings for your home. Everybody is different and so everyone has a different look or need they want to design into their home. What I find with the coastal homes that have fantastic scenery outside their windows people are wary of putting up coverings that distract from those views. And I agree. Yet like I said, there are solutions to everything.
Q: Are window coverings then necessary for such a home?
A: This is where the functionality of window treatments comes into play. Many times the huge panels of windows play a big factor in making a home too hot or too cold. Installing coverings to keep the hot air out, cool air in or cold air out and warm air in will save money on your utilities and make for a comfortable environment.
Q: What possible solutions are there for gracing window coverings on huge panels of glass and keeping the magnificent views?
A: One possible way is to use shades that fully disappear into the headrail when retracted and create the least obstruction to the view. I love the soft and subtle look of Silhouttes and Luminettes which doesn’t distract from the design of the home or the view outside. They have the functionality and practicality of wood blinds, but the sheer elegance, color and textural beauty of drapery. They provide precise light control with translucent or room-darkening vane opacity options, so the room can still carry the light from all the windows. You can also place shades to roll up or down from the outside of the window where it disappears out of view on the outside of the home.
Q: What’s the lastest in window fashions?
A: There are a couple of trends happening now. What has gained in great popularity are the child safety features. Every shades have the options now of being cordless. The cords can automatically be retracted into the coverings or by using remote electric shades. There is no added cost to the window coverings and are very reliable, battery operated or hardwired. The motorized versions are able to tie into part of the home automation system and can be remotely turned on or off anywhere from your iPad, iPhone or computer.
Q: And the other trend?
A: Our world here in southern California is surrounded with phenomenal weather, sunny blue sky, perfect temperature. We love to be outside and the living room and kitchen have been brought outdoors. So drapery and shades are now found outside as well, both used for design and functionality.
Q: Can you give me some suggestions when seeking out coverings?
A: Window coverings are not meant to be the focal point of any room. I like to go with neutral colors and then splash brighter colors into the room with stationary products like art, bedding, pillows, floral arrangements, and/or sculptures. These items you can change each season which is a lot easier than changing out the drapery or shades. Window coverings can take up a lot of space and the eyes can get tired of looking at a brightly colored covering that takes up half the room. Then you are stuck a few years later having to redo everything. Sometimes a colored covering can be used in a room such as a play area where colors are actually fun to use.
Marjan Bastani, Owner
9561 Irvine Center Drive
Irvine, California 92618