Tips for Buying Curtain Fabrics

There is a lot that goes into decorating a home. Attention to detail is important if you want to achieve a good result.

It is particularly important to dress your windows well. In most homes, windows are a big feature. When you walk into a room, your eye is drawn to the window, so you need to get the look and feel right at this point in your room, which means buying the right curtains.

Here is a brief guide to how to choose the right material to make your curtains from.

Quality is important

When it comes to curtain fabrics quality is an important consideration. If you plan to keep the same curtains for several years, you need to buy material that is up to the job.

The material needs to be able to withstand sitting in direct sunlight all day every day. If you buy cheap curtain material in a few years, your curtains could literally end up falling apart. Often buying cheap curtain material turns out to be a false economy.

Will the fabric fade?

The sun will fade most fabrics. However, manufacturers have come up with finishes that can help to slow this process down, and lining your curtains will help with this. However, you still need to check how fade resistant the material you are planning to buy is.

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Is the fabric thick enough?

If your curtains are functional as well as decorative you need to buy material that is thick enough to keep the light out. This is particularly important when you are buying curtains for a bedroom. Of course, you can opt for lining your curtains, but bear in mind that doing so will add cost and making curtains with a heavy lining is more difficult.

If your curtains are purely there for the purposes of decoration the thickness of the fabric is not as important. However, you still need to consider how thin fabric will hang. Generally speaking, the thicker the fabric is the better it will hang. Even if you are after a floaty look, you still need to try to buy a fabric with a high fibre count to get it to hang well. If you do opt to buy a heavy fabric be sure to buy good quality rails that can carry the weight of this type of material.

Fabric Printing Processes

There are five main methods for fabric printing, these being the block, roller, screen, heat transfer and ink-jet methods. The heat transfer method differs from the others in that it involves the transfer of color from the design printed on paper through the vapor phase into the fibers of the fabric.

With the other methods the dye or pigment is applied to the fabric surface through a print paste medium. The ink jet printing process however is a comparatively recent innovation and is referred to as a ‘non-impact’ method, because the print paste is fired on to the textile from a jet which is not actually in contact with the fabric.

How easy will the curtains be to care for?

It is also important to consider how easy the material is to care for. If you are going to have to take your curtains down regularly, you may be better off opting for a machine washable fabric rather than one that has to be dry-cleaned.

Where to buy the right fabric

Taking time to shop around and buy the right material is important. It is now easy to find and buy the right fabric online. However, it is important to buy your fabric from a well-established company that offers a warranty with your purchase and has a fair returns policy.

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