Trying to measure curtains correctly can be challenging. I know I’ve asked this question before, only to spend hours on the internet looking for a simple answer. If you’re looking for a quick and easy guide to measure your curtains the right way the first time, look no further.
Step 1: Measure the Rod Length
The first step when you measure curtains is to measure the rod length. Traditionally, curtain rods are positioned about 6” above the window frame and extend about 6-8” on either side. Keep this in mind when measuring your curtain rod. If you’re using a curtain track, you’ll need to measure from end to end. For measuring a curtain pole with decorative pieces on the end, don’t include the end pieces when measuring.
Step 2: Measure the Curtain Length
Next, you’ll need to measure the curtain length. This length can be up to you, but usually, it is the distance from the curtain rod to either the floor (½” above), window sill (½” above) or just below the window sill (6” below).
Step 3: Determine How Much Curtain is Needed
To fill the window out and give it that “full” look, add some extra width to your curtains. A curtain used “flat out” would cover the exact width of the window. This is always stated when you purchase it. Here are some common curtain types and their multipliers:
- Pencil Pleat: rod length x 2
- Eyelet: rod length x 2
- Tab Top: rod length x 1.5
After you multiply the width, add around 1” to each curtain so that they overlap properly in the middle. Also, if your curtain rod has a “return”, you’ll need to add the additional width for both sides. If you want more fullness from your curtains, you can increase your multiplier to 2.5 or 3 times the rod length.
Step 4: Admire Your Window!
Lastly, step back and see how wonderful your window looks. New curtains, measured the right way can make a huge difference to the feel of any room. Use the steps listed above to get it right the first time.