The Nester recently wrote a post about curtains and whether or not your windows are wearing capris. It is quite hilarious but a valid and simple decor trick. Her point is to hang the curtains as high and wide as possible.
I have always been a fan of hanging curtains high but it wasn't until I read her post that I was inspired to really let my windows let in that glorious summer light. Previously we had three panels hanging in our dining room. Here is what they looked like last year at Christmas time...very traditional and feminine:
And currently (well, before we finished our floors) we now have just the two. I also pulled the two panels out as far as possible, letting in as much window and light as I could. I think it really opens up the space.
In the kitchen we previously had a set of shorter curtains. Since we had two tables against the wall I never changed out the curtains when we upgraded to nicer Ikea curtains that are in every other room of the house. Before:
I grabbed the curtain I took down from the dining room and it's partner I had stored away and I had brand new high, wide, and glorious curtains in our kitchen (for free!).
Just a few simple swaps that took me less than an hour. And in my case, completely free. My windows are singing with happiness. Go make your curtains high and wide. The natural light will thank you.