How To Hang Curtains the Right Way

You should consider hanging curtains if you are looking for a simple home improvement project to help your house feel a little cozier. Curtains can help small rooms appear grander. They can give you privacy or be opened wide to let in fresh air and sunlight. A pretty patterned curtain can add color and texture to an otherwise simple room. Blue curtains protect your eyes from the early morning sunlight without making your bedroom feel too dark. 

To hang curtains in your home you will need: 

  • A tape measure
  • A level 
  • Cardboard (optional)
  • Tape (optional)
  • A drill or screwdriver
  • Screws 
  • A curtain rod with brackets
  •  Wall anchors (optional)
  • Curtain rings (optional)
  • Curtains 

Step One: Measure Your Windows 

You want to make sure the curtains you choose adequately cover your windows. Measure from the floor to the height you want to hang the curtain rod Curtains that reach the floor will elongate your room and help your space feel larger. Decide where you want to place your curtain rod. It should be at least four inches above the window frame, but you can hang your curtains just a few inches below the ceiling for a more dramatic effect. If you plan on using your curtains to block light or for privacy, make sure the width is at least double the width of the window frame. 

You’ll also want to consider whether or not you want your curtains to puddle at the bottom and drape a few inches beyond the floor. Puddling can add a dramatic effect but makes cleaning a bit more challenging. For curtains, you can open and close easily choose a length that will barely dust the floor. Most curtains online come in standard sizes. Choose longer lengths if the curtain measurements fall between your window measurements. Otherwise, consider ordering custom curtains that you can guarantee will fit. 

Finally, note how thick the trim is above your window frame. You want to choose a curtain rod that will jut out beyond the trim, so your curtains gracefully fall to the floor. To open up your space and can help a small room feel larger, the rod should extend a few inches past the window. You should be able to open the curtains completely on either side. 

Step Two: Purchase Your Materials 

You may be tempted to choose your curtains first. Just wait to order them until you’ve taken measurements. Now, you can be sure you’ll choose a rod that suits your window frame and curtains that are the proper length for your walls. If you prefer a particular style, you may need to purchase curtain rings or other hardware to hang them. 

Step Three: Plan the Placement 

Once you have your curtains and rod ready, you can use your level and pencil to plan the placement of the rods. If you are hanging the same curtains on two or more windows in a room, you can use the cardboard and tape to make a template to ensure your curtain hangs from the same height on each window. Simply measure the corner of your window and cut and tape cardboard together to create the template. You can then hold this up to each window to mark the placement of each rod. 

Step Four: Screw in the Brackets 

Use a drill or screwdriver to attach the brackets to the wall at the spots you marked. Check that your rod placement will be level before each screw. If you choose to install particularly heavy curtains, like velvet, you may want to use wall anchors for reinforcement. Drywall is too weak to hang things from effectively, so you may also need drywall anchors to hold your screws in place. 

Step Five: Attach Curtains to Rod 

It is much easier to get curtains on the rod before hanging. Use a rod pocket or grommets to string the curtain along the rod. If you choose a pleated or ring top design, you’ll first need to attach the curtain rings and then thread the curtain to the rod. Sometimes your curtains might arrive creased from shipping. Check the manufacturer’s directions, but you can iron most curtains on low heat to remove creases before hanging. 

Step Six: Hang Your Curtains 

Lift the rod onto the brackets to hang your curtains and cover your window. If your window is especially wide or your curtains heavy, make sure to ask for assistance. 

Once your curtains are in place your room will feel more welcoming during the day and keep your home private at night. You’ll sleep deeper when the sunlight doesn’t peek through the cracks to wake you up. Now that you’ve conquered this home improvement job, what will you tackle next?