Valanced window treatments can say a lot with only a little fabric. One of the least understood precepts of good design is that it doesn't take a lot to say a lot. This holds true in window treatment designs, too. To call the most attention to a window, the dressing doesn't have to be full and flowing. Instead, it can be nothing more than a well-designed valance that highlights the architecture of the window and dramatizes the room decor at the same time.
A sure approach in using the valance successfully is to go for the unexpected -- perhaps a valance in a beautiful vintage lace, to stand in soft contrast to the geometry of a country checked wall. Or the valance can be the room's focal point through use of a totally different pattern and color from the dominant covering at the walls. The key is to venture outside the norm, into creative territory.