Choosing the size of the curtains: width, length, assembly

9 min

When choosing curtains, it is important to decide not only on the model, color and type of fabric, but also on the size of the panel, which is sometimes much more difficult. Correctly sized curtains can highlight all the advantages of a room, while too wide, long or short can ruin even the most ideal and stylish room. Therefore, before going to the store for curtains or when buying fabric for them, you need to clearly know what size curtains you need.

We carry out measurements

Naturally, the process of determining the optimal size of curtains begins with taking the necessary measurements. So, the main data that we need to get is the width and length of future curtains, and all other data, such as assembly, etc., are then calculated based on this data.

4It is worth noting that it is worth taking measurements after the cornice has been selected and installed. The cornices are different, they can be attached to the wall or ceiling, but in any case, the length of the cornice should exceed the width of the window. If this is a bedroom or other restroom, then you can fix the cornice in general to the entire width of the walls, effectively emphasizing the window area. In other rooms, the cornice should be 20-30 cm larger than the window opening so that the curtains can move, freeing the way for the sun’s rays, the exception is the kitchen, where, as a rule, only a translucent curtain hangs, and the length of the cornice is almost the same as the width of the window … Please note that now there are curtain rods with adjustable length: if desired and necessary, they can be made a little shorter or longer.

It is advisable, of course, before making measurements, to already decide on the model of curtains, since the calculation of the length and width of the required fabric will depend on the type of fabric, fastening, the number of layers of window decoration.

  • The width of the curtains can be measured with a tape measure or a soft measuring tape from the first fastening to the last.

  • The length of the curtains is measured from the eaves or from the selected fasteners, for example, rings, to the mark you need.

Determine the width of the curtain

2So, we measured the distance from the left hook to the right one, but the figure obtained does not mean the required width of the curtain, because in this case it will only hang down with a free canvas. In the vast majority of cases, drapery is needed, but how voluminous and voluminous it will be depends on the nuances of a separate room.

It is worth noting in advance that you need to be especially careful with drapery:

  • so, spacious bedrooms and living rooms will only benefit from lush, intricate draperies that will add lightness and airiness to the room,
  • but the kitchens, offices, etc. it is better to decorate with curtains with slightly noticeable drapery.

  • 1So, if you need a very light drapery and barely noticeable waves, then the length of the cornice can be multiplied by 1.5 or 2, and you can choose curtains or fabric for them, taking into account the obtained value.

  • If more lush folds are welcome, then the length of the cornice can be safely multiplied by 2.5-3.

Remember that this rule works regardless of how many panels are used to decorate the window – one or two. But in the latter case, another 15 cm is added to the calculated length of the curtains, so that the canvases, when closed, can overlap, creating a spectacular darkening.

Many years of experience of the masters in sewing curtains gave rise to the development of approximate values ​​of the width of the fabric, depending on the length of the cornice. You can use the rule described above, or you can take into account the following data:

  • for short cornices, the length of which is less than 1.4 m (these are often found in kitchens), the width of the curtains will be equal to the length of the cornice. Small windows, as a rule, are found in small rooms in which folds will be inappropriate, which is why curtains or simple curtains are chosen here without draperies;
  • 9with a cornice length of 1.5-2 m, the curtains are chosen 1.5 times wider than the cornice;

  • if the length of the cornice reaches 2-2.8 m, then this value can be safely multiplied by 2 and choose curtains of the appropriate width;
  • the length of the cornice 2.8-3.4 m can be safely multiplied by 2.5, because with such a large window opening, abundant draperies will look very appropriate and give the necessary lightness;

  • with a cornice length of 4 m or more, multiply by a factor of 2.5-3. The assembly factor itself ultimately shows how much the width of the fabric is greater than the length of the cornice.

As a rule, the size of the room and the windows is proportional, so such simple tips and calculations will help you, without unnecessary problems, determine the required width of curtains to make the room look neat and comfortable.

Please note that sometimes the width of the curtains depends on the selected models. So, for example, abundant draperies are appropriate for translucent curtains, but on massive dense curtains there should be folds, but they may already be less voluminous, so you should rely on your own taste, or use proven data on the gathering factor for each type of fabric.

So, for a curtain fabric, this coefficient is 1.7, for a veil and organza with a pattern – 2, and for a thin organza without a pattern – 3.


Width and length of Roman blinds

The width of the lambrequin corresponds to the length of the cornice, so if you decide to decorate the window with a similar element, then you will not need to use any correction factors and carry out additional calculations.

Width of Roman, roller, Japanese curtains

We should also mention such types of curtains as Roman, roller blinds, Japanese curtains and other similar designs. Roller blinds and roman blinds, as a rule, are placed directly in the window opening, so their width corresponds to the width of the window, measured from glazing bead to glazing bead. Sometimes roller blinds are placed on the wall above the window, then their width should be 10-15 cm larger than the window opening, completely covering the window and slightly going beyond the boundaries in order to hide the residents from the rays of light as much as possible.

The width of the blinds is chosen exactly according to the width of the window opening, and Japanese curtains, consisting of many panels, can go far beyond the window, or can cover only the transparent part without going beyond its borders. It all depends on the design solution and the characteristics of the room, its area, etc.

Determine the length of the curtain

8The length of the curtains is even more important than their width. Here you need not only to measure everything correctly, but also to imagine in advance what length of curtains will be more appropriate. The choice depends on the functional purpose of the room, as well as on its features: area, height, illumination, etc. If this is a room with low ceilings, then long curtains may be inappropriate, the exception is translucent tulle with a vertical stripe. In kitchens, in most cases, long curtains are also not suitable: they will interfere and clutter up already predominantly cramped rooms. But if the kitchen is spacious, and there is a lot of free space near the window, there is no stove or sink, there is a dining area, then you can experiment with curtains on the floor. Rooms such as the bedroom, nursery and living room require the use of long curtains that will cover the entire window opening and fall to the floor.

So, when you have decided where the curtains will end, it is time to take measurements. Measure the length from the eaves to the floor or to the windowsill, or to any desired point. Please note that you need to think over the curtain fastening system in advance, and if these are hooks or rings, then you will need to measure the length of the curtains from them, and not from the cornice.

7In living rooms and bedrooms, many experts recommend choosing the length of the curtains so that another 3-4 cm remains to the floor – for reasons of comfort and convenience. If the window decoration will consist of several layers, then the curtains should be several centimeters longer than the curtains in order to completely cover their edge.

Many apartments cannot boast of a flat floor or ceiling, in which case it is better to measure the length of the curtain on the left, right and in the middle, then use either the average or maximum value, depending on the deviation present.

Even if you plan to choose floor-length curtains for the room, it is better to follow the practice of professional seamstresses and measure the distance from the eaves to the windowsill and from the windowsill to the floor. When you come to the store and start choosing a certain model, there is a high degree of probability that you will like cascading curtains, with tiebacks or other elements. In this case, you will know for sure all the parameters of your window opening.

The length of the lambrequin can be anything: it all depends on your preferences and the interior features of the room.

6If you buy fabric for sewing curtains, then you need to add 5 cm to the obtained data on the length and width, which will be spent on hemming and processing.

There are models of curtains that effectively fall on the floor: if you want to hang the same ones at home, then another 20-50 cm is added to the measured length to form a spectacular wave.

If you want to sew curtains with your own hands and choose a fabric with a pattern, and the curtains, for example, will consist of two parts, then you need to correctly combine the pattern. If the ornament is repetitive, then you need to measure that part of it that is constantly duplicated. For example, it will be 70 cm, and add the result to the final value of the fabric length.

Another important point: artificial fabrics are now widespread, which are very durable in operation and almost do not shrink when washing, so if you want to sew curtains from them, you should not do any additional allowances for shrinkage. If the fabric contains more than 60% of natural fibers, then the likelihood that it will shrink a little after washing increases, so the fabric in this case is taken with a margin of about 10%.

Calculation example

When all the necessary measurements have been taken, it is time to calculate the width and length of the curtains or fabric for them. If the resulting width of the window area is 2 m, and the length is 2.7 m, and it is necessary to purchase curtains and drapes, then you can safely use the assembly factor (KC) = 2 and then we get that the width should be 4 m for a given length.

5If you want the window to be decorated with original and unique curtains that are not on sale in the store, then you need to buy the required amount of fabric to sew them. So, how much fabric is needed for curtains and curtains for our conditional window?

The standard width of a roll of translucent tulle is 2.8 m, which should be enough for a standard window height, so the issue of length remains resolved. As for the width, for a given window width and the selected COP, fabrics of 2 * 2 = 4 m will be required.But since it leaves 5 cm for the allowances on the sides, the total amount of fabric will be 4.1 m.

The width of the curtain fabric is usually 1.4, 2.8 or 3.0 meters. It is good if the width of the canvas ideally matches the length of the window opening, but it may be that the width is insufficient, and then you will have to measure the fabric along and use several canvases to close the window opening. Here it is important not to forget about the combination of the pattern and the length of the rapport – a repeating element of the ornament. In this case, you can sew between a special canvas of fabric, or maybe just make curtains in two parts.

The calculation in this case will be as follows:

amount of fabric = ((height of the window opening + allowance) * number of canvases) + rapport * (number of canvases – 1)

curtains in the kitchenIf the width of the window is 2 m and KS = 2, and the width of the fabric in a roll is 1.4 m, then for the manufacture of curtains, for example, you need 3 canvases: 1.4 * 3 = 4.2 m, with a rapport value of 0.35 m we get the following data:

amount of fabric = ((2.7 + 0.2) * 3) + 0.35 * 2 = 9.4 m

If, after cutting the fabric and sewing the curtains, a lot of fabric remains, and this may be when a large pattern was selected, then from the remains it will be possible to sew curtain hooks or small pillows on the sofa. When curtains and other textiles in the room are made in the same style, this gives a special effect to the room.

The most common models of curtains are easy to sew on your own, but if you doubt your professionalism or are thinking of decorating the window with an elaborate model, then it is better to resort to the services of specialists.

In conclusion

The length and width of the curtains are important parameters of window decoration, which must be given no less importance than fabric, pattern and color. A correctly selected size will decorate the room and make it more comfortable, therefore, before going to the store for ready-made curtains or for fabric for them, you need to take all the necessary measurements from the window opening, write them down and start from them when choosing.

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Passionate about DIY for over 10 years and all the new tools, I give you through this blog all my advice, tips, tests in all areas: carpentry, electricity, masonry, gardening, home automation ...


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