Glossary

ArchitraveA wooden surround to a window frame – also the moulding to an arch
Austrian blindA soft fabric blind which is ruched from top to bottom
BattenA thin piece of timber that slots into the base hem of a roller or Roman blind so that the fabric hangs straight
Bed ValanceA decorative cover made for a divan base
Bias cutCut diagonally across the straight grain
Box pleatsFlat symmetrical pleats formed by folding the fabric to the back at each side of the pleat
BuckramStiffened woven material used for making pelmets and curtain headings
BumpVery soft thick cotton interlining
Cafe curtainCurtains hung to cover the bottom part of a window
Cafe rodA slim rod, usually of brass, used for cafe curtains
Cartridge pleatA rounded single pleat which is stuffed with wadding
Cased/Slot headingA curtain heading consisting of a simple, hemmed top through which a rod or narrow pole may be slotted
Casement windowsWindows which open from the side
CleatA small double hook around which blind cords are wound
Cording setEquipment for drawing curtains with a pull cord
CorniceA decorative moulding at the top of a wall immediatelybelow the ceiling
Cornice poleA curtain pole with rings used for heavy curtains
CoronaCoronet or semi-circular bracket fixed to the wall above the bed head to which curtains are attached.  This can also be centrally mounted on the ceiling above the bed
Crossway strip – bias stripA strip of fabric cut across the weft and warp of the fabric
DadoLower part of interior wall decorated differently from upper part
Dado railMoulding dividing upper and lower part of wall originally designed to stop chair backs damaging wall decoration
Dead lightSpace immediately above the window and below the ceiling and cornice
Double-hung windowsWindows which slide open vertically – also known as sash windows
Draw rodsRods inserted into the heading, used to open and close curtains
Dress curtains – show curtainsCurtains that do not close but are merely hung for effect
End stopA plastic or metal fixing on the end of the track to prevent hooks and curtains from sliding off
Face clothTerm used for the main fabric of the curtains
Face fittingFixing blinds or curtains to a vertical surface as opposed to ceiling or soffit fixed
FasciaA rectangular board, set horizontally to cover a curtain heading or track fixings
FenestrationThe arrangement of windows in a building
Festoon blindA blind that is ruched down the whole length so that billows are formed
FinialDecorative end of a curtain pole
Fitted bedcoverThis has a flat top panel,  straight skirt with inverted pleats at each corner.  Skirt can also be box pleated or gathered and could be attached to a box section covering depth of mattress
Flemish headingA Goblet heading in which the pleats are linked together along the base by hand-sewn cord
French pleats – pinch pleatsOn a curtain heading hand-sewn triple pleats separated by flat areas
Glazing barsThe bars of wood or metal which hold panes of glass in place
Goblet headingA curtain heading consisting of hand-sewn tubes whose tops are stuffed with wadding or contrasting fabric
Half-testerA rectangular canopy above a bed, extending only part-way down the bed from the headboard.  Drapes at the back and either side make a shallow three-dimensional effect
Hold-backsDecorative woods or metal arms  fixed to the wall on either side of a window, curtains draped over them
InterliningSoft material sewn between a curtain and its lining to add bulk, to improve the ‘hang’ of the curtain and to improve its insulation
Inverted pleat – kick pleatA pleat formed like a box pleat in reverse, so that the edges of the pleats meet in the middle on the face side of the fabric, most often used in loose covers, bed valances and upholstery
Knife pleatsSharply pressed, narrow, closely spaced pleats, all running in the same direction
Jardiniere curtainUsually sheer, the bottom of the curtain rises in the centre to give a curved finish and reveal something of the window
LambrequinA stiff, shaped surround to a window.  Unlike a pelmet, a lambrequin continues down the side of the frame
Leading edgeThe front edge of a curtain that is the centre of the window when the curtains are drawn
LintelLoad carrying wooden or concrete beam over door or window
LiningA secondary hanging sewn in at the back of a curtain to protect it from the light and improve its hanging qualities
London blindMade with inverted pleats creating a swag and tail effect
Louvred blindsSlatted blinds – the slats are usually made of wood, metal or plastic
PelmetBoard or fabric hung at the top of the curtains to hide track and give a decorative finish
Pelmet boardA horizontal board used to support a pelmet and sometimes as a base for swags and tails
Pencil pleat headingA curtain heading formed by a tape which, when drawn up, creates a row of narrow, densely packed folds
PinolleumsVery narrow wooden slats
PipingFabric covered cording used to emphasise the edge of a curtain, pelmet or tieback – often in a seam
Portiere curtainOne which hangs over a door
Lit a la PolonnaiseA bed set lengthwise against the wall (can also be freestanding) and surmounted by a small dome
Pre-corded trackCurtain track bought with an integral cording system for closing and opening curtains
RecessThe window niche in which window is fitted
Recessed fittingCurtain or blind fixed within the recess of a window
ReturnThe part of a curtain, pelmet or valance that turns around the side of a window
RevealSide wall of window niche
Roller blindA blind/window shade operated by a spring mechanism, so that, when let up, it coils itself around the cylinder in which the mechanism is located
Roman blindA corded blind with horizontally set rods at the back, causing the blind to form a series of lateral pleats when raised
RosettesA device for focusing attention on a particular area within a curtain arrangement.  An attractive ‘finishing off’ motif for curtain headings, swags and tails and tiebacks.  Can be knife pleated, choux or bow style
Scalloped headingA heading with deep, rounded cutouts, which slots onto a rod or pole
SelvedgeThe woven finished edge of fabric (running parallel to the warp)
ShirringGathering
Smocked headingA heading of pencil pleats anchored together at regular intervals to create a honeycomb effect
SoffitThe ceiling of a recessed window
SwagA generous scoop of fabric hanging from two fixed points over a window or bed
Swags and tailsA decorative pleated arrangement of fabric hung at the top of curtains to hide the track.  Swags are draped horizontally, tails hang on either side of the curtain
TailsHanging trail of fabric, either shaped and stiffened or falling fluidly from the end of swags
Tie-backsA decorative band of fabric used to hold open curtains