When it comes to window dressing, there are many options out there. Make sure you choose the right one for your windows.
1. Are curtains back in style?
If you stay away from swags and tails (the bells & whistles), curtains are in. They give you the warmth that a home should have. It is the warmth that you can’t find between the blinds in your office. It’s the cosiness of a hug that comes with having curtains in your house. So no, the right curtains are not outdated. They're actually on the verge of a strong comeback.
2. Curtains, blinds or shutters?
For colonial houses going with curtains, maybe with classic single or triple pinch finishing is the best. For modern houses, the S Wave or the box pleat are ideal. Apartment - blinds and sheer in front for softening the atmosphere. Shutters are ideal for short windows.
3. Hotel-like curtains?
If you ask for a hotel like blackout - make sure the lining / curtain provides it. Turn on the flash light of your phone and put it against the fabric. The amount of light passing through is the same that will tickle your cheeks in the morning, as you wake up in the strong summer morning sun.
4. How much fabric should gather to make the fullness of a curtain?
Curtains usually come with 2 meters of fabric per one meter of track. For sheers to look fuller, you can go to 2.5 meters, but stay away from the wedding dress effect and don’t go any further than that. Usually if you are going for a patterned fabric lined by blackout, it is ok to choose 1.5 meters. So when you stack on sides, you can still grab the bunched curtain in your arms’s hug. Make sure the fullness of the curtain is the one you asked and paid for.
5. How long should the curtains drop on the floor?
When there is carpet or rug underneath, it’s better to keep them off the floor, maybe 1cm. The roughness of the rug would mess with the neatly fall of the curtains. Plus, you don’t want to suck it in the vacuum cleaner whilst doing your Freddy Mercury moves. If you really want dragging curtains (I must admit they have their charm - a bit like boyfriend’s oversized jeans) than it’s better when there is wooden or tiled floor, so that they drag without impediments. Though expect fur balls of dust hidden underneath the folds if you postpone the cleaning for more than a week.
6. How wide should curtains be?
With larger windows or doors that are wider than 3 meters, the curtains should be 30 to 40cm past the window/door frame to allow for stacking against the wall and keep the glass clear.
7. Sun light or privacy from neighbours?
Sheer curtains will give you complete privacy in daytime, while allowing for the sunlight to come in. At night, with lights on, sheers would give a slight protection and neighbours can’t see details, but they can see shades. So if you want to put one a show, getting dancing at nighttime with the lights on. If you don’t feel like it, then get some curtains or blockout blinds that you can close once the indoor lights come out.
8. Are curtains easy to wash?
If you go for polyester curtains (95% of the Australian market) than yes. I have white sheers in my living room and two kids 5yo and 7yo. Washing hands after a meal takes them a split of a second - this means they just moist the grease and food on their hands just enough to rub it on the sheers as they pull them open to run outside. If it’s a heavy stain like chocolate, coffee or red wine, then kitchen wet wipes are the best. Soak them in the fabric and the stains should easily go away. Baby wipes are even better for whom has some around. If it’s just regular cleaning or dust concerns, then the washing machine under 30 degrees on a delicate program will do the job.
9. Are there curtains that keep the cold out in winter and the heat out in summer?
Triple weave fabrics have a black middle layer that has that property. It also acts as a sound proof layer between your room and the outside noise. Many fabrics have this feature and all blackout linings do. In the long run, a thermally insulating layer can save you hundreds of $ on electricity.
10. Why are curtains expensive?
Custom made curtains require particular labour in having them manufactured, compared to a mass production style and Australia has expensive labour. It is worth having them at the right size. No two windows are the same size or require the same product. If you wish to cut the costs, here are some ways to do so:
- ask to install them yourself (it is not rocket science) and well given instructions should be easy to follow
- ask for less fabric (1.5 fold instead of standard 2)
- just ask for a discount if you are looking to cover more than 5 windows.
- buy them from a retailer that manufactures in Europe (hint hint Scarlet's Way) and rest assured you don't comprise on quality.
11. Who sells curtains near me?
Most curtain makers are willing to travel for a free measure and quote in the immediate vicinity of their base. With two stores in Crows Nest and Castle Hill, Scarlet’s Way covers the greater Sydney area and an appointment for a free measure and quote is just a phone call away.
What curtains go with grey or blue walls? How about with wallpaper? What colour curtains go best with a grey or brown couch or bedhead?
Let us help you further during a free 60 minutes consultation that can be booked at 02 80067058.