After weeks (or months) of decorating, it's finally paid off. Your room transformation is officially complete. Before you invite guests over to celebrate your refreshed space, make sure you haven't overlooked one crucial aspect: your windows. "Window treatments add an extra layer of style and texture to a room while providing privacy and softness," explains interior designer Kerrie Kelly of Kerrie Kelly Design Lab. "Whether you choose to implement fun colors and patterns, or keep it simple with a textured solid, window treatments provide the finishing touch."
To figure out which type of curtains are right for your space, take a long look at the surroundings. "Choosing the right curtains will depend on what you have going on in the rest of the room," says Kelly. "If this is your master bedroom and you are going for a more romantic look, go for a soft or silky material that puddles slightly on the floor. A family room may call for a more simple drape that stacks back and just reaches the floor for a look that's clean and out of the way." Even the most stunning set of curtains will look sloppy if they're not properly hung. Read our quick guide to choosing and installing the perfect drapes for your space.
Step One: Choose Your Style
First, decide what kind of window treatment you'd like in the room. If you're decorating a common area like a family room, you may opt for a sheer curtain to let the light in. Conversely, if it's for a bedroom, you might consider a heavier fabric to block morning light out. Then you'll want to think about length since—you can choose curtains that stop at the windowsill, ones that brush the ground, or ones that pool at the floor based on the look you're trying to achieve. Finally, what kind of fabric do you like? For a more casual feel, try a lightweight material like linen or cotton. To add drama to a room, choose a heavier material like velvet or suede. Curtains also enhance the aesthetic of a room, so think about incorporating a hue from your overall color palette or making a statement with colorful patterned curtains instead.
Step Two: Install a Curtain Rod
Before you actually start installing your curtain rod, make sure you have one that's long enough to clear the window on either side (about 8 to 12 inches should do it). This ensures that the drapes have room to be tied back when you want them to, advises Kelly. Then, install the brackets that support the rod. "The length of the drapes as well the style of drape will determine what height these brackets and rods need to be placed," she adds. For example, if you are using a drape that requires clip rings, you will want to account for drape height as well as how much the clip rings will add to that length; whether you want the curtains to just reach the floor or puddle on the ground also impacts where you'll install the rod. It's always a good idea to add an extra middle bracket to support the rod if you're hanging the curtains over a large window. "That extra layer of support will ensure that your rod doesn't bow," says Kerry.
Step Three: Hang Curtains
When hanging a curtain with a rod pocket or grommet, simply slide the panel on to the rod, says Kelly. If you're hanging a curtain that requires clip rings, lay the curtain out and space your clip rings out evenly. Clip and slide the rings onto the rod. Be sure to keep a couple rings behind the bracket to get a more evenly spaced drape.