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Different Types of Curtains: From Frugal to Fancy

Setting up a new set of curtains for your living room? Looking for a way to update your bedroom valances? Just ​hoping to give your home windows a fresh, new look?

Whatever you’re ​intentions, having a good knowledge of the different types of curtains out there can be very empowering when it comes to designing a new look for a room.

There are plenty of options available, so getting stuck on only one can be a wasted design opportunity. You can make your home look amazing with the right ​set ​of curtains.

W​ith the availability and choices online, you’re not just limited to your local discount retailer either. So, read up on the amazing options you have for curtains in any room!

And don’t forget to find the perfect candles for your window to top off your perfect look.

20 Different Types of Curtains and Their Details

To understand the different types of curtains that you can choose from, we’re going to explain them in-depth. You’ll not only learn how they’re made and how they look, but you’ll also learn how you can get the most out of them.

1. Austrian or Brail Curtains

Also known as the “Puff Drape,” an Austrian curtain has different poufs of fabrics that form a scallop-like pattern. This gives an attractive yet seemingly elegant touch to the design.

They are used for a wide array of purposes – going from theatre presentations to decoration at weddings and other religious celebrations.

For homes, they can be placed almost anywhere and will match well with classic styles.

This type of curtain is usually made with silky fabrics like charmeuse and velour. And they come in a wide array of colors and sizes.

2. Balloon Shade

Utterly decorative, the balloon shade curtain portrays a classical style, with a fabric body that folds on when it is not being used.

Instead of pushing the curtain to the sides, balloon shades need to be folded up. That gives a touch of convenience without losing the beauty it offers.

The materials can vary, going from silky fabrics to cotton, and more. Similarly, they come in a wide array of designs and colors to match different home styles.

3. Blackout Curtains

For the most practical types of curtains, you’ll find blackout ones.

They’re among the heaviest and can be some of the less attractive options, but they offer the chance to block entire windows, doors, and entrances from the sun – blacking out rooms in houses.

The construction of a blackout curtain usually consists of dense fabric with a foam backing. Most of the time, they are thick and heavy – but they can be found in a wide array of colors and designs.

4. Curtain Pairs

When you find two identical panels on the sides of the windows – then that’s a curtain pair.

They usually look and feel the same with similar construction. This allows a more symmetric look on home windows. Typically, they go on tiebacks to make them easier to move back and forth if needed.

You can find curtain pairs on a wide array of places and used them for different purposes. Regularly, they work as attractive decorations, especially because you can find them on thick cotton fabrics as well as silky or soft ones.

5. Curtain Panels

Among the other types of curtains for the living room, you’ll find curtain panels. In contrast with curtain pairs, this refers to a single piece of fabric placed on a tube.

But just like curtain pairs, you can hook them up with tiebacks and keep them in place when required.

This usually works well in small to medium-sized windows. For larger ones, two curtain panels can be ideal.

The materials can vary a lot as well, going through the entire spectrum.

6. Door Panels

When a garden or porch door has big windows, you use door panels to cover them up.

These sheets are usually small enough to fit in single doors, and sometimes large to fit on the largest ones.

The design may be thinner in the middle, so they can be cinched with a tieback or similar object. You can find them in different fabrics, going from cotton to linen, and more.

7. Grommet Panels

Another type of curtain is the grommet panel. These are more casual in style, and a lot simpler in appearance.

But, grommet panels still offer a unique touch, starting from the corrugated/wavy style. This happens thanks to the metal rings they’re suspended from, usually fed on a curtain rod.

The fabric is usually thick, and it can be soft or silky, rough, or sometimes plastic-like. So you can find it in a wide array of materials and colors.

8. Lace Curtains

For those who love classical styles, a pair of lace curtains will beautify their home like nothing else.

They usually boast a white color with different patterns to choose from, going from flowers to seashells, damask, and more.

That’s why they’re mostly decorative and go on windows, mainly because the fabric is openwork/thin most of the time. Luckily, this adds a unique style you won’t find anywhere else.

9. Outdoor Curtains

Thick and resilient, outdoor curtains can withstand even the most difficult exterior weather with ease.

You can use them for pergolas, patios, porches, and even replace living room entrances connected to backyards with them.

They should be totally water-resistant, UV-protected, and thick. So most of the time, they come with nylon, canvas, and similar constructions. Yet, they boast a wide array of colors and designs accordingly.

10. Patio Panels

They look and feel pretty similar to outdoor curtains, but without the resilience.

These mostly go on windows and/or doors that give direct access to patios or backyards. And they’re also thick and good-looking with different colors and designs.

Most patio panels can also be used to replace entire doors, making it easy to access different parts of a house accordingly.

While they’re not as resilient as outdoor curtains, they can still withstand different conditions.

11. Pinch Pleat Drapes

Mostly used for their practical design and serious appearance, pinch pleat drapes boast a unique ruffled design that cinches in sections.

They’re usually woven in sturdy yet soft materials like linen and cotton. But they tend to boast a wide array of colors and designs to match different house styles.

You can find them available for windows, doors, and more. They’re super practical and easy to use with their metal hooks-on-rod design.

12. Priscilla Curtains

Among the window curtain types, you’ll find the Priscilla curtains. This is a beautiful and highly decorative option for those who like classical styles at home.

The curtains are usually ruffled in white or creamy colors, coming in two panels separated in the same rod.

What makes them unique is the crisscrossed pattern when they’re cinched up, giving a soft an overlapping effect that looks super enticing.

These curtains are usually made of lace or openwork fabrics.

13. Room Darkening Curtains

Another hugely practical type of curtain includes the room-darkening model.

These are pretty similar to blackout curtains in terms of appearance, yet slightly thicker but softer to the touch.

This happens because it uses a foam-like backing on soft fabric. So it manages to deliver the darkening effect without harming its appearance or texture.

You can find room-darkening curtains in a wide array of colors and designs.

14. Shades

Pretty small sections of fabric that go on small or medium-sized windows – they’re super handy and allow a lot of light to go inside the house.

While their primary use is to cover windows, most people use them as decoration over anything else.

You can use shades alongside other types of curtains to add an even more functional and/or good-looking effect.

These can boast soft fabrics or sturdy ones. And they can also come in a broad set of colors and designs.

15. Sheer Curtains

Usually semi-transparent with an openwork set of designs, sheer curtains are both practical and highly decorative.

While they can darken out entire rooms a little, their primary use is to provide privacy by blurring out house interiors.

You can find them made of thin cotton or poly-cotton blends. Most of the time, they’re white or with creamy tones.

16. Swags

Offering a cascade-like effect on windows, they are mostly decorative with tons of different colors and shapes to go for.

Most swag curtains come in three pieces instead of one or two. That allows the extra decorative touch, usually referring to a center drape that attaches to the borders where the other two drapes are. This gives a cascading effect to the fabric.

Swags work wonderfully on classical-style homes and for people who like elegant touches.

17. Tab Top Panels

Simple and straightforward, tap-top panels are mostly for covering windows without adding much style or decorative touches.

The construction is based on a thick polyester-like fabric with fabric loops on the top, suspending the fabric down, forming ruffled-like shapes.

Tap top panels are ideal for people who want to cover their windows without getting highly decorative or bulky curtains.

18. Thermal Curtains

Among the more practical types of curtains for your home, you’ll find thermal curtains.

You could say it is a combination of a room-darkening drape along with the construction of a grommet panel. However, you’ll need to add a layer of foam or acrylic material that delivers the thermal advantage.

These are perfect for insulating rooms, blocking sunlight completely, or just dampening outside/interior sound. They’re more practical than they are decorative, so they’re simple-looking.

19. Cafe Tier Curtains

Ultra-short drapes that may cover either the bottom or the top part of a bathroom or kitchen window – café tiers are extra handy.

Thanks to the small design, they can boast hundreds of different designs and/or colors. And they can match a wide array of decorations.

Most café tier curtains are made of soft materials like cotton or linen. But you may also find them in lace or polyester.

20. Valances

To finish our article on types of curtain styles, you need to consider valances.

While they can be confused with café tier curtains, these come with a way more ruffled design.

You will mostly find them covering the top of windows or doors. And they also work wonderfully with other types of curtains if needed.

The job of valances is mostly decorative. And you can find them in different materials like linen, cotton, silky fabrics, lace, and polyester/nylon.

Different Types of Curtains – Final Thoughts

So, ​we’re hoping that you learned a ton about what options you have and that you feel a lot more knowledgeable when it comes to the different types of curtains on the market.

There’s surely something out there for you – so have some fun doing your research, make a confident choice, and renovate your home now!

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