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The most common misconceptions with made to measure curtains is that they are super expensive and difficult to measure. Well … we’ll let you in on a little secret … they’re not!
Yes, having unique curtains made to your specific fabric, size, heading and lining requirements is slightly more expensive than readymade off-the-shelf alternatives, but not as expensive as you may think. There are plenty of options out there that don’t break the bank yet give your home a unique style.
First of all, you need to decide which heading you would like. You can choose from eyelet, which is modern and nice and simple for a contemporary room. Pencil pleat is the standard curtain tape top and you’ll most likely already be familiar with this. For a more decorative look, you could choose pinch pleat which has a really luxurious feel!
First of all, you need to measure your window space. There’s a full guide to measuring for curtains on our website, but here are our essential tips:
Once you have your width measurements, you have to decide how much gather you would like. The recommended amount of gather for pinch pleat and pencil pleat curtains is twice the width of your window. For heavy, thick curtains or eyelet curtains, you can get away with 1.5 times the width.
Before you order your curtains we strongly recommend you order a sample of your chosen fabric so you can hold it up in your room and decide if it’s the right choice. This is also useful for taking to the shops to purchase paint, wallpaper and matching accessories!
When it comes to buying curtains it’s really important to make sure you measure for them properly. It’s not just a case of measuring the size of your window recess – there are several other things you must take into consideration to make sure the end result is top notch.
So, to help you out, we’ve put together a step by step guide. Before you get started, grab a metal tape measure, some sturdy step ladders and a pen and paper. It’s also a good idea to have a handy assistant nearby to hold the step ladders for you and jot down measurements.
Measuring for and fitting your pole
Once you have decided whether your curtains will hang from a track or pole, it’s time to get measuring. We recommend that you fit your curtain pole or track first because it will help you to measure for your curtains much more accurately. Don’t worry if you don’t have time to do this though, we’ll explain a bit further down how to measure for your curtains without the track or pole in place.
You should position your pole or track a minimum of 3-5 inches above the window frame and 6-8 inches either side. That way, enough light will come through the window when your curtains are open and light will not be visible when they are closed either. After all, there’s nothing more annoying than the glow of a street lamp shining through the side of your curtains is there?!
Measuring curtain width
Once you have fitted your pole, you’re ready to measure for your curtains and should begin by measuring the width – this will always be the first measurement listed when buying curtains so is a good place to start!
You should measure the whole width of the curtain track or pole, but don’t include the finial (this is the fancy bit at the end of a curtain pole that stops your curtains sliding off!).
If you’re forced to measure for curtains without a pole, measure the window recess and add a minimum of 6 inches on both sides. When buying readymade curtains the width of one curtain will be approximately the width of your curtain pole or track. This is where your curtain gather comes from.
Measuring curtain drop
The amount of drop you require will largely depend upon whether your curtains are hanging from a track or a pole. If they will hang from a track, measure from the very top of the track, if they are going to hang from a pole then you should measure from the bottom of the ring on the pole.
You should measure to 1.5 inches below the window sill, or to half an inch above the floor depending on your preference – they can also hang in between if desired.
If your curtains have an eyelet or tab top heading, you must measure from the top of the curtain pole.