From curtain styles to materials, this concise list will help you get on your way to putting the finishing touches on your home!
Windows are a permanent fixture in all homes. So, when it comes to adorning them, and also blocking out light on those oh-so-sunny lazy Sunday mornings, there are a plethora of options available.
Whether you want to go for blinds, shutters, shades or curtains – the choices within those choices are also endless.
If your choice is curtains, it’s not as easy as picking your favorite pattern and moving. You need to choose everything from the rod, attachment, hanging style, material and pattern.
There is a lot that goes into making a home a home, but, hopefully, this list of different curtains (curtain types and attachment styles) will make the journey of endless decision-making a little easier!
Table of Contents
- Attachment Type
- Curtains vs Drapes vs Shades vs Blinds
- Thickness Types of Curtains
- Various Curtain Length Options
- How to Hang Your Curtains
- What Are the Best Curtains for a Bedroom?
- What Are the Different Types of Curtain Tops?
There are many different ways to hang curtains; whether you want them on a rod or pulley, concealed, embellished and the list goes on. Here are a few popular styles you can choose from:
1. Box Pleated Curtains
Usually used for formal rooms like the study or dining areas, these pleated curtains look neat and tailored with their perfect deep folds that flow along the length of the curtains.
2. Pinch Pleated Curtains
These curtains can vary between 2 to 5 finger pinch pleats depending on your preference. They are meant to give the folds in a curtain a decorative finish at the top, giving the curtains a more formal look.
3. Goblet Pleated Curtains
This style is usually seen in extremely formal rooms, such as ballrooms or formal dining areas. The pleats at the top of the curtain resemble an inverted wine bottle – these pleats are usually made with lining for structure reinforcement.
4. Rod Pocket Curtains
This casual style of hanging curtains requires a pocket to be sewn at the top of the chosen fabric. The curtain rod is fed through this pocket and out the other side. The pocket can be embellished for a more formal look.
5. Tab Top Curtains
Tab top curtains are also hung exclusively on rods; they are hung by fabric loops that the rod is threaded through. These loops are often seen with buttons stitched on as a decorative element. This is a more contemporary style to hang your curtains.
6. Eyelet Curtains
These easily opened and closed curtains feature a ring sewn into the curtain where the rod slides through. The fabric does not hang on the rings that are on the rod like a shower curtain, rather the ring that lies in the fabric is large enough for the rod to pass through.
Depending on your need, curtains exist in all types of styles. Small windows in kitchens require short curtains, usually featuring a pattern, while a French door requires a panel curtain usually cinched in the middle. Here are a few styles to help you determine what you need:
This is a purely decorative addition to preexisting curtains. It is a short curtain added to the top, usually to conceal the rod and give a more formal appearance.
8. Austrian Curtains
This ornately scalloped curtain is used to give a regal look to a room; the style is reminiscent of palaces out of Disney movies; it can either look luxurious or out-dated; this style is definitely not for everyone.
9. Window Scarf
Another style solely for embellishment, this is a thin, usually sheer piece of fabric that is draped on top of the rod. One side is usually left longer than the other to create a dramatic effect.
This is a pair of valances designed to flow elegantly down on either side of the window
11. Café Curtains
These curtains are usually used in kitchens; they are short, eyelet curtains that can be used on small windows or where you want partial view into the room.
12. Single or Pair Panel
Pair panels are the more common style where two fabric panels make up the curtain, while a single panel is a large panel of fabric which sits only on one side of the rod when open.
13. Priscilla Curtains
These curtains are ruffled and usually made of lace and mounted on two separate rods to create a criss-crossed, overlapping effect; these are used for decorative purposes rather than function.
Whether you want to block out light with heavy-duty fabric, want to be fancy with velvet or rustic with burlap, curtains come in all sorts of materials and opacity. Here we are discussing two types and what they are used for:
14. Sheer Curtains
Sheer curtains are made of semi-transparent fabric like net – they are usually featured in rooms that don’t need to block out any light. They give an airy, open feel to a room.
15. Blackout Curtains
Black out curtains exist for the purpose of blocking out all light. They are usually a little more than floor length and are seen mainly in bedrooms. They block light that might filter in through other curtains.
We hope this guide helped you with making your decision for your home! Just remember, there is no right or wrong choice; just your preference.
Curtains vs Drapes vs Shades vs Blinds
There are many different types of window treatments to choose from and it can be confusing to know which is which. People often use terms such as curtains and drapes interchangeably even though they are two different things.
Curtains are panels made of different fabrics and they come in a variety of widths, lengths, colors, and patterns. You can find them for any window, so they are a popular choice in any room. They normally hang from a curtain rod and there are different options here as well. Normally, curtains are not lined, so they won’t filter out all of the light during the day.
Drapes are also fabric panels but the primary difference is that they are lined. They are often made with heavier fabric, and they are popular in bedrooms because they can black out outdoor light. They usually run from the top of the window to the floor and they are often made with luxurious materials, such as velvet or silk. They can be solid or patterned and they are often pleated at the top. They give the room a more formal appearance. Similarly to curtains, they hang from a rod with different fasteners.
Shades are usually made of soft fabric and they will be attached to the upper frame of the window or a rod. They are usually sized to fit within the window frame and they can be raised to let light in. The shade can roll around a rod or bunch as it lifts and there are many different styles to choose from. Some are inexpensive, while others can be fancier and cost more. They can be casual or formal and they are often used under sheer curtains.
Blinds are made of wood, bamboo, aluminum, or some other stiff material and they are a series of individual slats that can be tilted to let in light or closed for privacy. They operate with two cords: one for lifting and the other for tilting. They come in different colors and wood tones and they can be used under sheer curtains or a valance.
Thickness Types of Curtains
Curtains come in different thicknesses ranging from sheer to opaque blackout styles. You should choose your curtains based on how you want them to function in the room. You will want to use more opaque curtains in a bedroom where you may want to black out the light.
- Sheer curtains allow a lot of light to filter in through the window but you can still see outside. They add softness to the room and they can be used underneath drapes or over blinds or shades. They are great when you want to soften the room and filter out some of the direct light but maintain your view. However, they do not provide a lot of privacy.
- Semi-sheer curtains allow light to filter into the room but they give you more privacy. They are often used by people who want to let as much light in as possible but who have windows that face high traffic areas. They are not very different from sheer curtains but they do provide a little more privacy.
- Semi-opaque curtains give you privacy while allowing some light to enter the room. They will obstruct your view of the outdoors, but your room will not be completely dark. They come in a variety of styles, including pleated, Roman, and others, so they work with different types of decor. They are popular because they are versatile and allow you to choose how you filter your light.
- Opaque curtains are also called room-darkening curtains, and they do not block out all of the light because there are gaps on each side. Light will not come through the curtains and they are often styled as Roman, pleated, or cellulars. They are not blackout curtains but they will eliminate a lot of the light. They also obstruct your view of the outdoors. People use them in bedrooms.
- Blackout curtains will eliminate all of the light and they are most often used in bedrooms or media rooms. They are great for people who need to sleep when it is light outside and they are usually lined with a blackout liner.
Various Curtain Length Options
Curtains come in several different standard lengths but you can always have them custom made to fit your windows and your style. Standard lengths include 63”, 84”, 95”, 108”, and 120.” There are different types of curtains as well.
Window sill curtains end right at the window sill and they are often used in rooms such as the kitchen where you have an elevated window.
Apron curtains are a little bit longer and they usually extend four inches below the window sill. They are great in casual rooms such as an eat-in kitchen or a breakfast room and they work well if you have a radiator under the window.
Floor-length curtains come all the way to the floor and they are flush with the floor. They are the most common choice and they are popular in formal rooms such as your living room or your dining room. They are easy to maintain and they have an elegant look.
Another type of curtain is puddle length. These curtains have one to three inches of fabric that forms a puddle on the ground. This is a very formal look and they require more maintenance than other types because they can collect dust over time. They are elegant and popular in formal dining rooms and formal living rooms.
How to Hang Your Curtains
When you plan to hang your curtains, you will need to decide which style you plan to use. If you are hanging curtains in any standard style, you simply install the rod and brackets, and then hang the curtains. However, you can create certain effects with certain styles of hanging.
Floating curtains dangle just above the floor. You don’t want more than one inch of space between the curtains and the floor so that they give the appearance of floating.
Another length is Kiss the Floor, where the curtain is exactly to the floor. This style requires that you take exact measurements when you hang them.
Puddle is where the curtains have one to three inches of fabric that puddles on the floor. This style is commonly used for more formal curtains.
No matter which style you are using, you need to take measurements before you begin. Then, you can install the rod at the appropriate height for the desired length.
What Are the Best Curtains for a Bedroom?
Although different people prefer different patterns, styles, and lengths of curtains in the bedroom, blackout privacy curtains are considered the best. They can block out all light, which makes them ideal for children and the elderly. If you don’t want an entire blackout curtain, you can try a blackout shade behind a sheer curtain.
The most popular fabric is cotton because it is light, breathable, and easy to care for. You should choose a color or pattern that is calming and soothing and ties in with your decor. The key is to make your bedroom a cozy and relaxing space while having the ability to black out the outside light when you are sleeping.
What Are the Different Types of Curtain Tops?
There are different styles of curtain headers and you can choose the one that complements your decor.
Pleated curtains are popular and they come in different pleat styles. You can also choose table-top headers, where there are loops above the curtain that go around the rod.
A rod pocket has a pocket along the back of the curtain that hides the rod, and an eyelet has holes in the top of the curtain where the rod runs through.
Finally, you can have a wave-style curtain top where the curtain top is in the shape of waves.
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