Curtain fabric types: main materials and practical selection tips with photos

Curtain fabric types: main materials and practical selection tips with photos

It is not a secret that, lately, many people tend to arrange their home decor in a minimalist style, which involves fewer elements for a simpler but original setting. Furthermore, more and more reject the idea of window treatment when it comes to this part. We would like to convince you of the contrary. The appropriate curtains can even add to the aesthetic you are willing to establish in the room. It should be noted that an essential part is played by the fabric of the curtains that should be both practical and fit into the general picture of your interior design.

If you are looking for ideas regarding the type of material for your curtains, stay with us, and we will reveal to you the basic rules to be considered before taking this step and the best curtain fabrics to be applied when it comes to the window treatment. There is no doubt the journey will be long. Take your seat, and let’s dive into this adventure. We promise you will like both the process and the result.

Curtain fabric choice: 4 starting steps to be considered

  • The use of the curtains. Are you going to use them to get some privacy from your neighbors? Do you want to add curtains to filter the daylight, or is it just an element to add some beauty to your room decor? Are there any blinds at your window as well? These are a bunch of questions you have to answer for yourself first before deciding upon the curtains. Don’t forget that curtains should be both practical and beautiful.
  • Curtains style. There is not enough space in this article to show you all the styles of curtains there are. We will start with the basics: there are floor-length and window-length curtains, formal and casual, full and in pairs, and so on. What you have to do is think of how a specific type of curtains will go with the other elements of the interior design of your room. The easiest way to do that is by finding the answers to the next questions: do you want the curtains to make the room bigger or smaller? Do you want to make a statement or use them as a simple functional and decorative unit? Do they match the background color or draw too much attention?
  • Curtains hardware. This is a small element in contrast with the curtain itself, but they play an important role as well. When it comes to this part, you should think about the color of the curtain holder, the type of rod you would like to use, their visibility on the background of the curtains, the distance between the curtains and the wall.
  • Curtains height and length. It depends on you, whether you want short curtains to cover the windows, or long ones to brush the floor. Either way, you have to take the right measurements. It should be noted that higher-hung curtains make the room taller and add elegance.

When we speak about the window treatment, it is worth mentioning that one of the main aspects is the fabric. A particular material type influences the way the curtains look, and such nuances as the texture, durability, and how easy it is to work with them when it comes to laundering. We suggest you go through the list of curtain fabrics we provided you with and decide upon the appropriate curtain material that would fit into your room decor and match your preferences.


This type of fabric is a common one due to its durability and the fact that it is affordable. Another interesting thing about it is that it resists stretching. As you have probably noticed, it is low maintenance and would work well for those who are at the beginning of the road when it comes to curtains purchase.

We would also like to point out the fact that this material is convenient for living room or bedroom curtains. Do you know where you should not use such fabric for the curtains? In the kitchen this material tends to absorb smells and plays as an obstacle for the air circulation.

As regards the variations within this type of fabric, there are various colors, styles, and patterns you could choose from. We suggest you consider a darker shade if, for one or another reason, there is a high probability that your curtains will get touched by particular stains as they are difficult to be removed.


This fabric is heavier than any other one. It brings a romantic sparkle to your room. Silk curtains are usually hung in bedrooms or dining rooms of a formal style. It should be noted that the laundering of this type of curtains will take you longer as only dry cleaning is peculiar to this fabric. One more thing to be considered: if your room receives an enormous quantity of daylight, opt, additionally, for blinds to protect the curtains.

It should be noted that there are also faux silk curtains. You would probably like to consider this type as they suppose an easier laundering, and they prevail in means of durability as well. Either way, silk curtains will offer the room a sense of luxury.


This type of fabric is perfect for a dining room, bedroom, or living room. We suggest you consider this material if you want your room to be filled with daylight as linen does not block it. It should be noted that only dry cleaning is peculiar to this fabric. One more thing: linen curtains should be immediately hung after they were cleaned because of the wrinkling.

Our suggestion is that you opt for this fabric for your curtains as it will bring a touch of freshness to your room and match perfectly with any decor.


This type of fabric is versatile as it can fit either a modern or traditional style. It is a perfect option for the dining room. At the same time, if you want to block the daylight in a room that is kissed by the sun, we suggest you consider tight weave curtains. On the other hand, if you would like to bring as much daylight as possible into your room, opt for sheer curtains.

It should be noted that this type of curtain is easy to take care of. This is why you should consider cotton curtains if there is a high possibility that they could get stains.


Velvet is a heavy material, which means that it keeps the room warm. If your windows are drafty, we suggest you consider this option. Furthermore, velvet curtains will suit you if you are looking for some privacy as the thickness of this fabric will block the extra lights and sounds.

This type of curtains is perfect for the dining room, living room, or bedroom of a formal style. It offers your room a sense of elegance, especially when its color matches the decor.


This type of fabric is sheer and tends to offer your room a touch of freshness and a lot of daylight. Lace curtains are perfect for the dining room if you would like to offer a romantic look to the traditional style. Furthermore, we suggest you consider this type of curtains for a French door as they cover a substantial part of them without blocking the daylight.

As regards the color, this fabric is usually available in neutral shades. Therefore, they will fit into any room decor. It should be noted that there are lace curtains that can be cleaned in the usual way, but there are particular ones that can only be dry cleaned. This information is to be found on the label.


If you want some privacy in your bedroom or would like to block the sunlight in any particular room, consider this type of fabric. It is perfect for those who like or have to sleep during the day.

They are made of opaque fabric, which offers thickness and stops the light from penetrating the room. There are various colors you can choose from. Don’t forget to match them with the background of your room.

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