Block out the light

by Caroline
(Nottingham )

We have large Victorian bays and a single window in our bedroom. We want to achieve as near blackout as possible in both the bay and adjacent side window. Currently we have floor length black out curtains but a lot of light comes in around the top and sides of the curtains.

There is cornice moulding which projects out on the ceiling by about 12 cm and with the bay window there is 20 cm of wall within the bay. And the single sash window currently has a single blackout curtain as it is only 70cm wide.

Ideally we would like to use our existing heavy blackout curtains. What would be the best position to end your bay ceiling track to ensure total or as near total as possible black out and to achieve blackout from the nearby single sash.

We have tried many different options over the years. Our decorating style is modern Scandinavian so we would like a simple a look as possible without a pelmet!

Thank you, Lee and I look forward to your reply.

Hi Caroline

Thanks for asking your question and thanks for the photos. They do really help with understanding what is happening :-)

I will start with the narrow single curtain window at 70cm wide. There are a couple of things that will improve the light leakage from over the top and the sides.

The first thing you can do is to fit my regular white metal track. Only this time make it wider than your existing one. I would probably say make it about 100cm wide. This way your curtains will hang over the wall on each side more when the curtain is closed. This will block more light.

By the look of it your track is fitted to the top of the window surround. The benefit of using my white metaal track rather a plastic one is strength. You will be able have the last bracket on each side in the same place fixed to the window surroundas now. This will the track to project another 15cm out from the last bracket and will be strong enough to support itself.

The next thing you can do is to fit the new track on flush fit brackets. I have added a photo just below showing how narrow the gap between the window and the track will be. This reduces thge gap by at least half over your existing track.

flush fit curtain track

Now on to your bay windows. There are several things you can do. Again it will mean buying new tracks. As the one above using flush fit brackets. THis will reduce the gap between the back of the track and the frame/wall to about 3 to 4mm. This will reduce the amount of light leaking from the top of your curtains.

Also making your track longer again. So your bay track sits on the walls on each side within the bay. I have attached a diagram of how the track would fit.

5 sided bay curtain track

The third thing you can do is to have the track made with a centre overlap. This will allow one curtain to overlap the other when closed. So blocking that little light gap that you end up with right at the top when you close curtains on a single track.

curtain track overlap

So as you can see there are several improvements you can make. Obviously it will cost to make this happen. If you send me some full window photos. I can then give you an idea of how much it is likely to cost. You can do this through the contact form here. If you have any more questions. Then please feel free to ask.

All the best


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