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  • Writer's pictureKirstin Adolfson

How to Choose the Right Curtains

Curtains can make or break a room. There are many different types of curtains to choose from with different purposes and types of styles. Do you want a super dark room or would you rather have the sunlight seep in? Are you going for a more simple, minimalistic look or do you want to try out something unique? Will you want bright colors that stand out or neutral colors? Sheer or not sheer? There are many different components that go into picking out the right curtains to frame your room. Here are some great tips to follow when you’re in search of the perfect curtains.

Source: West Elm

Step #1: Figure out how long they need to be:

Before you start, measure your window and get an idea of how you want the curtains to cover your window. There are four different types of curtains that have certain lengths. The different types of curtain names can be used as keywords when you look them up online or ask for them in a store.

Apron Curtains: Curtains that don’t quite hit the floor, but hang just below the bottom of the window. This type of curtain is very popular, low maintenance and can look good in just about any room!

Floor Curtains: These curtains make it to the floor! Usually just barely touching the floor, this style thrives when the curtain rod is above the window, near the ceiling.

Puddle Curtains: These curtains will leave a luxurious pile of pudding curtain on the floor. Although they are harder to maintain, they look fancy and you will definitely want to place that rod closer to the ceiling to maintain that high-end feel.

Tier Curtains: These curtains are extra short and only cover a portion of a window. They are typically seen in bathrooms or kitchens.

Step #2: Choose your fabric:

There are so many different fabrics to choose from, it can get overwhelming! To narrow it down, we are going to go through how the type of fabric affects the amount of light that will pass through. Heavier fabrics will keep more light out and lighter, more sheer fabrics will let light in.

Let there be light!

If you want a lot of light for those plants on your counter or it just simply puts you in a better mood, you will want sheer or cotton fabric for your curtains. Even if you get these types of fabrics in darker colors, they will still let in a lot of natural light.

In the middle.

If you want a little bit of light, but not too much, linen curtains are for you! These curtains have a textured weave that allows for some light but not too much.

No light for me!

If you like to sleep, or the sunlight is too distracting, there are two options for you. Velvet curtains will do the trick while also offering a textured look. Blackout curtains are also an option and come in a variety of styles. Blackout curtains feature a special lining Source: Anthropologie

and will keep sunlight out entirely. Each fabric option will have many different styles to choose from. Go bold and pick unique patterns that will match the rest of your decor if you want your curtains to stand out. If you don’t want the curtains take away from other focal points in your space, choose neutral colors, solid colors or simple designs.

#4: Things to consider:

Are your curtains washer machine friendly or dry clean only?

This can often get overlooked. If there is a certain way to wash your curtains, make sure you know this beforehand. Not washing them properly can result in the color fading or getting ruined altogether.

Is the room you're working with getting a lot of sunlight?

It might be a good idea to choose a durable fabric that won't fade or wear down from the sunlight. Constant sunlight can cause the color to fade or the fabric to weaken.

TIP: If you want to make your windows appear wider and higher, add a few inches to your measurements. You can go as high as a few inches to the ceiling for a more subtle look, or for maximum drama, you can measure all the way up to the ceiling. Typically, curtain rods are hung about four inches up from the top of the window. You can definitely go up from the standard measurements, but try not to go lower.

Need help with upcoming interior design projects around your house? Call Adolfson Interior Design at (651) 468-6208 or email

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