A Vintage Crate + TIME




The basic definition of portiere is a "curtain hung over a door". Portiere curtains or panels are a beautiful way to treat an interior opening. This may be an opening near an exterior door to help eliminate drafts, a door to a master bath to provide privacy or just as a decoration between a living and dining room to provide a beautiful and dramatic softness and drape.

Just like when dressing windows, door casements can also be dressed with any style of panels, valances and more. Probably the most common image that comes to mind when doorway curtains or portiere are mention is in historic interiors such as Victorian decor. The most famous drapery moment in film was when Scarlet O'Hare remade Miss Ellen's green velvet portiere into a dress (and of course the Carol Burnett parody is perhaps one of the funniest comedy scenes in television history).

A more simple door curtain is popular fo many different types of homes from Arts & Crafts to Japanese. With simple Arts & Crafts inspired decoration, the pair of panels below are not only an attractive accent but can be opened and closed to keep out drafts, block light or create a private room where a swinging door would not fit.


This traditional Japanese door covering is called a "noren" and consists of very simple, flat woven panels with a split in the center.


One method for fabricating Portiere is to make a double sided panel. In other words the center seam becomes the leading edge with one panel for one side to match that room and the other panel to match the opposing room colors and decor. This is shown in the sample below (sample by Susan W. Schurz).

When installing on hardware the drapery pin hooks share an eyelet in the rings except for the drapery pin in the very center, it will have it's own eyelet/ring. This provides a double sided panel that looks great from both rooms.

Consider installing portiere in rooms without windows. This will give the softness and warmth that drapery panels provide and is a beautiful way to frame an entrance with color and pattern.

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