by Lynn Byrne
” If you are going to walk the walk, you should talk the talk”
“The beginning of wisdom is the definition of terms.”- Socrates
PORTIERE: (Rhymes with affair). Derived from the French word for door, or “porte”, a portiere is a curtain that hangs over a door or over a doorless entry to another room. They were quite common in wealthier households during the Victorian era both for decoration and to keep out drafts.
Portieres when used today, are not as overwrought as they were in the Victorian era and can be quite elegant.
Here the portieres are being used to define spaces, In the photo below, you can see another one in the rear.
This portiere frames a reading nook.
These portieres are being used to create privacy, when needed.
To take the portiere full circle, here is another set designed by Alexa Hampton from her book Decorating in Detail, showing how plain portieres can be–it doesn’t have to be all swags and trim.
A portiere is a useful tool in the designer’s shed.
Photo credits: Portiere designed by Alexa Hampton for her space at Hickory Chair during the Spring 2014 High Point Market, photo by Lynn Byrne. Victorian Portiere via Old House Interiors Oct. -Nov. 2003. Yellow pattern portiere. Front door curtain Scott Yetman pink portiere casual portiere master bedroom portiere.