The Best Fabrics for Curtains

The popularity of blinds as a window treatment has in no way diminished the appeal of curtains for the same purpose. Aside from personal preference, there are times when curtains work better than blinds or complement the blinds to elevate your décor.

However, with a wealth of fabrics and designs to choose from, it can be intimidating to approach. But there is no need to be deterred by the prospect of deciding between natural, synthetic, or blended fabrics. Each can work equally well in your home depending on where they are being hung, and what the primary purpose is. Let’s look at what influences what the best fabrics for curtains are.

The Level of Light Control

A significant influence on the fabric you choose for your curtains is the level of light control you expect or want. Voile–a lightweight sheer cotton fabric–and lace are both great at softly diffusing light while adding a degree of privacy without blocking your view completely. But lace is very traditional and can look dated, with voile a more contemporary choice that won’t look out of place in any home.

For greater light control you can opt for cottons and linens–lined or unlined. The caveat here is that cottons and linens drape best when lined, though unless you add a blockout lining this won’t always translate into a darker room.

And for maximum light control–with added noise-blocking and insulation properties–you can consider more dramatic velvet or brocade fabrics, or heavier lining. But remember that these curtains are not only heavier, they also only work when paired with the right décor.

Alternatively, you can always use fabrics with a loose weave and pair it with roller blinds or plantation shutters for a stylish finish that also allows for greater light control and privacy when needed.

Durability & Maintenance

Linen, satin, silk, velvet, and brocade are undeniably luxurious in look and feel. But that comes at the cost of durability and ease of maintenance. These fabrics are dry clean only, with natural linens also prone to wrinkling easily. Linen blends won’t wrinkle as easily. Satins and silks drape beautifully and do diffuse light but are very susceptible to sun damage. You can minimise this somewhat by having them lined or consider synthetic satins or silks, but for windows that are exposed to a lot of sunlight you might want to rather stick to a more durable fabric.

Many cottons and cotton blends would be more durable and easier to clean, but always get professional advice on which to choose.

The Room & Décor

The function and décor of the room in which you want to hang curtains will also influence your choice of fabric. The luxuriousness of velvet, brocade–and even silk–means they don’t work well in certain rooms, and especially with certain décor. Before committing to anything, book an obligation-free measure and quote with Adorn Blinds. It includes a complimentary design consultation that will help ensure you not only select the best fabrics for all your curtains, but also fabrics that work well with your existing décor and are as durable as they need to be.