When it comes to choosing curtains, the fabric they are made with will affect your windows more than any other factor. Curtain fabrics vary widely from simple linens to luxurious silks. Becoming familiar with fabrics, before you shop for curtains, will help you make the best choice for each window of your home.
Chintz is a lightweight cotton fabric that drapes well and looks elegant. However, some chintz fabrics are heavily glazed, which can make them appear stiff. Chintz fabric is easily damaged by exposure to sunlight. Using cotton liners behind chintz curtains will help to avoid sun damage without detracting from their elegant appearance.
Damask fabric is woven from silk, cotton, linen, or other fibers. It has a contrasting satiny and matte appearance. Damask curtains are best used in full lengths on a window, as they create a luxurious look that can be a focal point in a living room, bedroom, or dining room. They provide privacy and work well with any decorating theme.
Linen fabric is derived from the flax plant. It is a smooth, strong, and sophisticated material. It is often blended with cotton to create additional softness. It creases well and drapes stiffly. Linen works great with a country or farmhouse style of decorating.
Silk is the perfect fabric if you want curtains that are soft and graceful. Silk curtains look fantastic in a nursery or a bedroom. They are prone to fading from the sunlight, so use with curtain liners or window shades to protect their delicate finish.
Wool is a strong fabric that wears well and drapes and flows nicely. It is a perfect fabric for long windows. An added benefit is that wool curtains can block out heat and cold, which makes them a perfect year-round choice. However, it is one of the costliest curtain fabric options on the market today.
Taffeta is a crisp, plain-weave fabric that retains its shape with little support. It is considered a high-end fabric and is used to make a sophisticated designer statement in window treatments. Use it in any room of your home where elegance is desired.
Polyester fabric blends well with other fibers without compromising their best features. It resists wrinkles well. It is resilient and will hold up to repeated cleanings. It will also hold pressed-in pleats well. It's a good choice where frequent cleaning may be necessary, such as in a kitchen or a bathroom.
Learning the basics about curtain fabrics is the first step to choosing curtains for your home. You will likely find each room of your home is suited for a different fabric choice. Knowing what's best for each room will help you to make a wise choice that will enhance the beauty of your home design.