Live.Laugh.Design. Lets Talk Curtains
Curtains to a room are like jewelry to an outfit. Here are some pro tips to help you hang and select the perfect curtain for your space!
- Function: While curtains serve an important aesthetic purpose, they can also be functional. Start by asking yourself if the room you are hanging curtains in need to block sunlight for a sleeping baby, add privacy from neighbors or are strictly for looks.
- Cotton – This is a versatile fabric that can be used with nearly any room decor. The tighter the fabric weave, the more light blocking they are. If you are looking for a cotton product that is heavier, try canvas or duck canvas. Cotton curtains do not need to be lined to have them hang and fall properly. Additionally, cotton curtains can most often be washed in your washing machine and ironed as needed.
- Linen – Linen serves as more of an aesthetic option than functional because of its loose weave. Linen will require dry cleaning for laundering. If you wish to create a cozy, relaxed, warm space – linen will accomplish that! Not to mention, it pools and hangs beautifully without being lined.
- Polyester – This durable fabric is by far the most affordable and easiest to care for. If you are looking for a complete blackout curtain, a polyester cotton blend is best. Keep in mind, polyester holds odours and is very flammable so avoid hanging in areas such as the kitchens or dining rooms.
- Acrylic – If you need curtains in an outdoor space or bathroom, look no further than acrylic. It disperses moisture, is hypoallergenic and resists mold or mildew. It is lightweight, provides great insulation and drapes like a dream. Acrylic is relatively low maintenance and can most often be machine washable, but should not put in a dryer.
- Silk – Going for formal or luxurious, silk is your gal! However, silk is best suited for purely aesthetic purposes. This fabric is very susceptible to sun damage so make sure if you opt to use silk, your windows also have blinds installed. Additionally, silk is a high maintenance fabric so you’ll need to head to the dry cleaners for laundering and they will need to be lined to hang properly. If you love the silk look, but want something with less maintenance, opt for polyester.
- Velvet – Going for drama or glamour, a velvet curtain will get you there. This thick, heavy fabric will block light and sound. Bonus, its draping game is spot on. Velvet can be machine washable, but make sure you pay attention to the care instructions.
- Brocade – Anyone working to achieve an elegant formal feel, look no further than brocade. This historical thick, woven fabric has a lustrous sheen and must be lined. This fabric is high maintenance and should be dry cleaned due to the delicate nature of the fabrics weave.
- Voile – Last but certainly not least, voile is exceptional at creating a light, airy vibe. Voile lets in natural sunlight, yet still provides privacy. It can help open up spaces and can be used to layer. Voile can be washed by hand or in a delicate cycle on your machine.
BONUS TIP: Want an elegant look without dealing with a high maintenance fabric? Stick with a plain cotton curtain and add an elegant trim piece with hot glue or iron-on-tape.
3. Hanging Curtain Rod: Now that you have selected the right fabric for your space, it’s time to determine your curtain length and width. The most common mistakes people make when hanging their curtains are:
- Not hanging them high enough or too high
- Ordering the wrong length
- Not wide enough or not enough panels
Avoid a curtain fail by hanging your curtain rod first to determine your curtain size. Curtains should help draw your eye upwards, creating visual height to the space and window. To ensure you nail it, here are some helpful guidelines:
4. Curtain Length: Now that your curtain rod is hung, measure from the rod to the floor to determine your curtain length. Standard full curtain lengths are 95”, 108” and 120”. If your height is more than 120” you will likely need to have them custom made. If in between a standard size, default to the next longest size. Remember, longer is always better! Ideally your curtain should just hit the floor or pool on the floor.
SIDE NOTE: Two additional standard size curtains are 63” or sill length and should hit just at the window sill. Cafe length or 84” should hit the bottom of window trim.
Make sure your curtain width fits the size of the window. If they are not wide enough, they may not create the impact you were hoping for. If necessary, you will need to order multiple panels to provide you with enough width.