Decor Distinctions – What To Look Out For When Buying Curtains Online

Before buying curtains online, consider these important things!

Photo: Hoi Ning Wong

Decorating can be such a joy for those with creativity and the fortitude to see any styling project through to its end. From choosing the colours of paint on your wall to selecting pieces of furniture for a space, DIY decorators can create a classic look for their home. They can design with a bohemian feel in mind, or just go plain whimsical and fun. However, even with the best ideas, a living room can go from looking perfect to looking slightly off if you don’t follow a few simple guidelines.

This applies, especially, to hanging curtains. Whether buying curtains online or in-store, homeowners are tasked with having to imagine what the curtains will look like on the wall, keeping in mind the tone and style of the room. Choosing the right style and colour for the right price are all considerations to keep in mind when purchasing curtains online.

Let’s take a closer look at what to look for when shopping for curtains online, so you can select the best drapes for your room.

Photo: Keough Stearns Interiors

Mood Of The Room

Just as with any part of the decorating process, pay attention to the mood of the room. If the walls and furniture are dark, then the space is going to look smaller. If the room draws natural light in, then the room can look bigger. Designers can go with either dark or light curtains, but dark colours might make the room look swamped, dim and smaller, but bright coloured curtains can make a room pop. Conversely, light-coloured curtains in a room that is well-lit by natural light with brighter coloured painted walls might be equally as overwhelming.

Colour And Texture

Look at the texture of the fabric when deciding on curtains. Curtains come in a variety of fabrics, and this as well as colour, can influence the overall look of the room. You can find curtains that range from plain cotton blends to sateen, silky-rayon blends and even velvety textures for more practical uses. For more formal rooms, consider 100% velvet or silk fabrics.

Pay attention to texture to because some curtains can look too heavy for a room. Curtains that will serve a functional use like insulating the room or blocking out intense light are great, but you also have to measure the practical use with the aesthetic appeal. In other words, when looking for curtains, fabric plays a role in either complementing the design as a whole or clashing with other parts of the room.

Photo: Tobi Fairley Interior Design


If you want to play with patterns, remember too much makes a room look very busy, and worse yet, distracting to visitors. If the major pieces of furniture in the room are solid, patterned curtains can enhance the space. Conversely, if the furniture upholstery is patterned, then consider solid curtains so as not to overwhelm the room. When it comes to choosing curtains, you want to avoid patterned curtains in a room that already has patterned furniture.


Curtain length is up to the designer’s taste. Typically though, longer curtains make a room appear more formal, stately even. Unless there is some object in the way like a radiator, longer curtains are the way to go because they can add height to the room, especially if the curtain poles are hung high above the top of the window.

Essentially, you can achieve a few looks with longer curtains. Pleated at the top and draping onto the floor will make the window dressing more appealing. For a more classical look, consider adding extra length, as the curtains will gather on the floor.

Choose Curtains That Complement Your Space

A general rule of thumb is the heavier the fabric and the purer the blend, the more expensive the curtain will be. However, one way to see whether the fabric is worth the purchase is to go into a fabric store to actually see what the curtain really looks and feels like. If the fabric works for the space, you can then search online for the perfect set to complement your room.

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