What is the best length for curtains?
There’s more than one answer but the key is to choose from the right options.
Occasionally, the answer is dictated by where the window is positioned in a space or by what else is going on around a window…like floor vents in the worst place possible.
Today, I’m going to take the guess work out of this question.
Choosing the right curtain length is not the same as choosing the best curtain for your space. Once you’ve chosen the style there are options within that style that are the best choice.
Whenever possible, choose long panels. They add warmth and style to a room that a simple valance just can’t accomplish.
Rods can be installed…
1. 4″ to 6″ above the top of the window
2. Half way between the top of the window and the ceiling/crown molding
3. To the ceiling
Floor Length Panels
With floor length panels you have the option of…
1. 1/4″ off the floor.
2. Barely touching the floor
3. Breaking on the floor
4. Puddling on the floor
The most common lengths my clients prefer are barely touching the floor or breaking on the floor. With the term “breaking” on the floor (see photo below) think of how a man’s dress pants “break” on their shoes. Touching the floor and causing the fabric to bend.
Floor length panels “breaking” on the floor.
Next is Cafe Curtains.
This is a very popular choice and my favorite next to floor length panels.
Merriam-Webster defines a cafe curtain as “a plain straight-hanging curtain usually hung in pairs on a pole by loops or rings and used to cover the lower part of a window or door.”
Such a blah definition for these beauties.
When considering cafe curtain first determine where you will install the rod.
Cafe Curtain Installation
Whenever possible, install cafe curtains between 2/3rds to 3/4ths the height of the window.
Sill length cafe curtains
For reference, the above window is 59″ tall. The cafe curtain rod is mounted 43″ from the sill. The valance is installed 9.5″ above the window and there’s 68.5″ from the top of the valance to the sill. The valance is 18″ long. In this case the cafe rod is mounted just over 2/3rd’s the height of the window.
The most common valance lengths are between 18″ to 24″.
Cafe Curtain Lengths
1. To the sill
2. To the bottom of the sill
3. To the floor (see below)
To the bottom of the sill length cafe curtains.
To the floor cafe curtains
The next length is To The Sill Panels
These can hit at the sill or just below the sill.
When purchasing or making curtains it is best to avoid the dreaded (at least to me) curtain that hits somewhere between the bottom of the sill and the floor.
Be confident and choose one or the other (preferably floor length). This length makes it appear you couldn’t decided between the sill or the floor or even worse you ran out of fabric.
With this knowledge you can confidently choose the best length for your curtains!
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate! Ask away in the comment section below!