I recently heard someone compare furniture to makeup, and how the curtains are like the mascara…the finishing touch that makes everything look complete. And it couldn’t be any more true!
But before we can apply the mascara…aka the curtains… there are so many different options to consider. I’m sure that’s why you’re reading this in the first place, right?
So, let’s simplify things and get into the types of curtains and drapes. Now, to be fair, we’re talking about floor length curtains, and truly, the only differentiating factor is the top portion of the curtain, called the heading. So let’s get into the five types of curtains and drapes.
They each have their pros and cons, and so let’s break down each style and figure out which one will be best to fit your needs!
These tab top curtains are as simple and basic as it gets! They have a very informal and casual feel, and in my opinion, they should be reserved for those casual rooms… like a kids room or nursery.
Easy to slide across the rod, readily available, lots of options, and inexpensive
Dated-looking, too casual for most rooms.
Rod pocket curtains has a slot at the top (or backside, depending on the style) for the rod to slide into. These styles are almost impossible to open and close, so avoid them at all costs unless it’s for decorative purposes only.
On the other hand, some high-end curtains have loops sewn on the back, so you can hang them with clips and rings. The metal rings will make sliding the curtains across the rod sooo much easier!
Readily available, inexpensive.
Can have a weird ruffle-looking top, can be hard to open and close.
Pleated curtains come and go as the trends do, but as of late I’m seeing this look become more and more popular. This style has a very classic and slightly formal feel to it, giving it a timeless essence. But….these pleated curtains can tend come at a hefty price.
If you like this style then it’s worth noting that there are a handful of different types of pleats out there. Some are simple looking, like the pinch pleat pictured above, and others are more intricate, like the goblet pleat, pencil pleat, cartridge pleat, box pleats, and a few others.
Classic style, looks expensive and custom, lots of pleat styles to choose from.
Usually on the expensive side, and can be hard to find.
Grommet curtains have large metal rings punched through the top of the panel, and that’s where the rod fits through. This look was popular starting in the early 2000s, and I sorta think it should stay there! But, before I shame this style…I will say that they are easy to slide across the rod and they do have a beautifully consistent zig zag shape. But other than that, they aren’t my favorite choice.
Easy to use and find, easy to move on the rod
Looks like a shower curtain, dated
I’m saving the best for last here, because this one happens to be one of my personal favorites! It’s just so simple and clean looking! You can’t see the bulky hardware of the curtain rod, and it just looks effortless…staying in a perfect zig-zag shape. This is the perfect alternative to the grommet curtains because they looks similar but they aren’t as bulky and don’t give me a shower curtain vibe.
These drapes are usually custom, and it mostly has to do with a special track and hardware to perfectly space the ripples.
Simple and modern looking, very easy to slide across the track.
Special hardware and tape is necessary, can be expensive.
I hope this post helped you figure out some of the different pros and cons of each curtain style! There are so many options out there, but in my opinion, only a couple of them will give you that designer-look and that’s pleated curtains or ripple-fold drapery. I’m working on perfecting that ripple-fold look for less, so stay tuned for a blog post in the next couple of months. Until then, what other questions do you have about curtains and drapes? Let me know in the comments below!
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savvy room planner
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