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How to Choose the Perfect Curtain Size: Your Ultimate Guide + Free Printable Curtain Size Chart!

Discover the secrets to perfectly sized curtains on a budget with a free curtain size chart and an in-depth guide for stylish window treatments.

Have you ever found yourself standing in front of a window, unsure of what size curtains to choose? Maybe you’ve experienced the frustration of curtains that are too short, too long, or simply don’t fit your window properly.

If so, you’re not alone. Selecting the right curtain size can be a challenging task, especially when you’re working within a budget. But fear not, I’m here to help!

In this guide, we’ll demystify curtain sizing, helping you confidently transform your windows with style, all within your budget. You’ll also find tips on customizing store-bought curtains, using curtains in rental homes or apartments, placement tips, and a free printable curtain panel sizes chart.

Curtain Lengths Chart with Standard Curtain Lengths
Curtain Lengths Chart with Standard Curtain Lengths

Understanding Common Curtain Sizes in Inches

First things first, let’s talk about the most common standard sizes you’ll encounter:

  • Standard Window Sizes: Most windows in homes and apartments fall into standard size ranges. These typically range from around 24 inches to 48 inches in width and 36 inches to 72 inches in height. Keep these measurements in mind as we move forward.

  • Common Curtain Panel Widths: Curtain panels come in various widths, but the most common range is typically between 42 inches to 54 inches. These widths accommodate standard window sizes and provide enough fabric for a nicely gathered look when the curtains are closed.

  • Common Curtain Lengths: Floor-length curtains typically extend to the floor, creating a dramatic and elegant look. This length is often favored for formal living rooms, dining rooms, and bedrooms. Standard floor-length curtains measure around 84 inches to 96 inches long.

  • Sill-Length: Sill-length curtains hang just below the window sill, providing a clean and tailored appearance. This length is suitable for windows with sills and is commonly used in kitchens, bathrooms, and casual living spaces. Standard sill-length curtains measure around 63 inches to 72 inches long.

  • Apron-Length: Apron-length curtains fall a few inches below the window sill, offering a relaxed and informal look. This length is ideal for windows without sills or for a more laid-back aesthetic. Standard apron-length curtains measure around 54 inches to 60 inches long.

  • Café-Length: Café-length curtains cover only the lower portion of the window, typically stopping at or just below the halfway point. This length allows for privacy while still letting in plenty of natural light, making it perfect for kitchens, breakfast nooks, and casual dining areas. Standard café-length curtains measure around 24 inches to 36 inches long.
Up to Date Interiors blog sharing colorful and eclectic maximalist interiors. A baby grand piano is in front of a picture window with dark green walls with a long teal floral curtains length. A fringed arch lamp hangs over it.  Window curtains lengths for 8 ft ceilings are 96 inches.
Window Curtain Lengths for my 8 Ft ceilings are 96 Inches

Determining Width: How Wide Should Curtain Panels Be?

So, you’ve measured your window and you’re ready to shop for curtains but how many panels? Let’s break down how wide should curtains be step by step for floor and sill-length curtains:

  • Standard Fullness: When it comes to achieving that lush, full look with your curtains, a good rule of thumb is to aim for 1.5 to 2 times the width of your window. So, if your window is 40 inches wide, you’d want curtains with a total width of 60 to 80 inches for standard fullness.

  • Extra Fullness: For those who love a more luxurious look, consider going for even more fullness. Aim for 2.5 to 3 times the width of your window. This extra fabric creates beautiful folds and adds a touch of elegance to your window treatments.

  • Café-length or Apron Curtains: you can try a standard fullness but you also have the option to create a tailored-minimal look by staying close to the width of your window with only a few extra inches for soft folds or exact measurements for a modern-tailored aesthetic.
Girl's room with bird wallpaper and pink walls. A woven basket trunk is at the foot of the bed for extra toy storage. Beautiful velvet curtain and free curtain length chart in post.
The length of drapes should almost always reach the floor.

Finding the Right Length: How Long Should Curtains Be?

When it comes to the length of curtains, getting it just right can make all the difference in the look and feel of your space. Here are the general curtain length rules for different styles.

  • Traditional floor-length curtains: The most popular method for getting the most out of window treatments and natural light is to hang your curtain rod at least 3-6 inches from the top of the window or 6 inches from the ceiling. Extend the rod up to 12 inches from each side of the window. Hang curtains so they touch or skim the floor. This is the classic choice for creating an elegant and sophisticated look in living rooms, bedrooms, and dining areas. Measure from rod to floor for length needed.

  • Consider Floor-Length Drama: Floor-length curtains extend to the floor, pooling slightly for a luxurious effect. This length adds height to the room and creates a sense of grandeur, making it perfect for formal spaces or rooms with high ceilings. Measure from rod to floor and add 6-12 inches for pooling.

  • Opt for Sill-Length for Casual Vibes: If you prefer a more casual and laid-back look, consider sill-length curtains. These curtains hang just below the window sill and are ideal for kitchens, bathrooms, and informal living areas. Measure from the rod to the bottom of the sill to determine the length needed.

  • Apron-Length for Relaxed Charm: Apron-length curtains fall a few inches below the window sill, offering a relaxed and informal vibe. This length is perfect for windows without sills or for achieving a cozy, cottage-inspired look. Measure from the rod to a few inches below the sill to find the right length.

  • Café-Length for Light and Airy Spaces: For a charming and airy feel, opt for café-length curtains that cover only the lower portion of the window. These curtains are perfect for kitchens, breakfast nooks, and spaces where privacy is needed without blocking natural light. Measure from the rod to the desired length below the window to determine the appropriate curtain length sizes.
Parisian Inspired Bedroom Color with custom curtain sizes length with DIY no sew curtains.
No-Sew Custom Curtains for the Bedroom

Curtain Rod Lengths: Choosing the Right Hardware

Curtain rods are more than just functional hardware – they’re a key element in your window treatment’s overall aesthetic. Let’s explore how to choose the perfect curtain rod length for your windows:

  • Measure Your Window Width: Start by measuring the width of your window. This measurement will serve as your guide when selecting the appropriate curtain rod length. Be sure to account for any window trim or molding that may affect the width.

  • Consider Rod Extenders: If your window is wider than standard curtain rod lengths, don’t worry! Many curtain rod manufacturers offer extenders or telescoping rods that can adjust to fit larger windows. Alternatively, you can use multiple smaller rods and brackets to cover the entire window span.

  • Allow for Overhang: When determining the length of your curtain rod, it’s essential to allow for overhang on both sides of the window frame. A general rule of thumb is to extend the rod by 6 to 12 inches beyond each side of the window. This overhang ensures that the curtains can be fully drawn to the side, allowing maximum light and visibility when desired.

  • Consider Curtain Fullness: Take into account the fullness of your curtains when selecting rod length. If you prefer curtains with extra fullness, you may need a longer rod to accommodate the additional fabric when the curtains are drawn closed.

  • Choose the Right Mounting Style: Curtain rods come in various mounting styles, including wall mount, ceiling mount, and inside mount. Consider your window’s architecture and the desired look when choosing the mounting style for your curtain rod.

  • Selecting the Rod Material: Curtain rods are available in a wide range of materials, including metal, wood, and acrylic. Choose a material that complements your decor style and provides the necessary support for your curtains. For heavier or longer curtains, opt for a sturdy metal rod with strong brackets for added stability.
Add trim to store bought curtain sizes width to turn them into custom window treatments.
Add Trim to Standard Curtain Sizes Width for Custom Window Treatments

Customizing Your Curtains on a Budget: DIY Custom Curtain Sizes

Now that you understand different drapery lengths, widths, and styles you may quickly realize that having custom curtains or custom sizes can get expensive quickly. Here are my favorite ways to get around them!

  • Faking a Pinch and Pleat: If you want the look of pinch pleat curtains without the hassle, try this trick. Attach curtain rings evenly spaced across the top of your curtains. Then, gather the fabric at each ring and secure it with curtain clips or fabric ties. Adjust the gathers until you achieve the appearance of traditional pinch pleats.

  • Extending Too-Short Curtains: Don’t let short curtains cramp your style! You can lengthen them by adding a fabric border to the bottom. Measure the desired extension, cut fabric strips to match, and attach them to the curtains using fabric glue, fusible tape, or simple stitching. It’s a quick fix to make your curtains the perfect length.

  • Embracing too short curtains: So many times I’ve hung sheers to cover blinds in rentals but really didn’t have any budget to buy more curtains. My quick solution is to tie off lightweight curtains in a knot near the window sill edge to create a whispy cozy vibe.

  • No-Sew Custom Drapery: Hate sewing? No problem! You can create custom-length curtains without touching a needle. Iron-on hem tape is your new best friend. Simply measure and mark the desired length for your curtains, fold and press the fabric using the hem tape, and trim any excess fabric. Hang them up using curtain rings or a rod pocket for a seamless finish.
Add extra fabric to the bottom of too short curtains for a color block stylish look.
Add a Pop of Color to Standard White Curtains for a Custom Length and Look
A girls bedroom with DIY custom curtains from Store bought inexpensive white panels.
DIY Custom Curtains from Store Bought Inexpensive Panels

For Rental Homes and Apartment Dwellers: My Favorite Hacks

Living in a rental home or apartment often comes with limitations on making permanent changes to your space. However, there are plenty of creative solutions for enhancing your windows with curtains while respecting your lease agreement. Here are some tips tailored specifically for renters:

  • Storing Blinds or Other Eye Sores Safely: If your rental comes with standard-issue blinds or other window treatments that don’t suit your style, don’t fret! You can safely store them away while you enjoy the curtains of your choice. Consider storing blinds in a closet or under the bed, making sure to keep them in good condition for future use. Be sure to check your lease agreement for any specific guidelines regarding the storage of provided furnishings.

  • Hanging Curtains Without Adding Holes: Avoiding damage to walls is a top priority for renters. Luckily, there are several methods for hanging curtains without drilling holes. Tension rods are a renter’s best friend. Simply twist and adjust them to fit snugly inside your window frame. Alternatively, adhesive hooks or clips can be used to hang curtains from the ceiling or existing fixtures. Be sure to use high-quality adhesive products designed for heavy-duty use and always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for removal to avoid damage.

  • Embracing Too Short Curtains: So many times I’ve hung sheers to cover blinds in rentals that were too short to reach the floor but didn’t have any budget to buy more curtains. A quick solution is to tie off lightweight curtains in a knot near the window sill edge to create a whispy cozy vibe.

  • Using Curtain Bracket Extenders to Cover Vertical Blinds: Dealing with unsightly vertical blinds in your rental? Curtain bracket extenders offer a simple solution. These extenders attach securely to your existing curtain rod brackets, allowing you to hang curtains in front of vertical blinds without interference. This not only hides the blinds but also adds a touch of style to your space. Look for extenders that are adjustable to fit various window sizes and can support the weight of your chosen curtains.
knotted curtains in a rental living room with lots of windows
Knot Too-Short Light Weight Curtains or Sheers for an Easy Fix

Printable Standard Curtain Dimensions Chart: Your Handy Reference

  1. Download the printable curtain size chart here or the button below.
  2. Print out the chart for easy reference when shopping for curtains or planning window treatments.
  3. Use the chart to compare standard curtain dimensions and measurements for different window sizes and styles.

In conclusion, my friend, selecting the perfect curtains for your windows is about enhancing your space aesthetically and creating a comfortable and functional environment that reflects your style. It is also one of the easiest ways to transform a room without much effort.

Whether you’re a homeowner looking to refresh your decor or a renter seeking temporary solutions, the tips and techniques shared in this guide empower you to make informed decisions and transform your windows with confidence. From understanding curtain sizes to exploring DIY customization options, a world of possibilities awaits.

So, embrace your creativity, experiment with different styles, and let your curtains reflect your unique personality and taste. With the right curtains, your windows will not only frame the view outside but also add warmth, texture, and character to your interior spaces, making your house a space you love.

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  1. This is truly amazing to see. You’re definitely talented with window treatments and have great tips. I also read you’re post on 8 tips to decorate for renters. I’m incredibly inspired.

    1. I’m so glad the window treatments and tips for renters inspired you!! Thanks for stopping by and the sweet comment. Have a lovely weekend. 🙂

  2. Love these! Do you know where the sheer, white curtains in the first knotted curtain image (next to the dresser/bust) are from?? They are EXACTLY what I’ve been keeping my eye out for!

    1. Thanks Amelia! I bought those curtains at Target. I’m not sure if they still carry them. They were either Threshold or nate Berkus brand.

  3. I agree that good looking fabric is an effective way to cover ugly blinds. After all, if you’re renting, it’s not like you can just trash the blinds. The landlord, of course, would have no qualms with you covering them up with fabric.

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