Standard Curtain Lengths For Interior Spaces

Determining a standard curtain length is easy. Curtain length depends on the window and interior space. Personal preference is another factor. If you’re the type who marches to the beat of their own drum, hang curtains as long or short as you want. 

According to recent figures, the global window covering market is projected to grow from $12.42 billion in 2021 to $17.43 billion in 2028.

Standard Curtain LengthsView in gallery

As a rule of thumb, the more info you have, the easier it will be to make a decision. If you want a tailored look, be prepared to spend more. The extra cost will be worth it if you want a stylish space. 

To be clear, we’re talking about window curtains. If you want advice on shower curtains, check out this shower curtain size guide instead. The curtains are not interchangeable. We feel certain you already knew that, but wanted to be sure.  

What Is The Standard Curtain Size?

What Is The Standard Curtain Size?View in gallery
Standard curtain length for your interior spaces depends on you.

While size varies depending on the window, standard curtains are 96 inches long. The single size is sometimes labeled as 95-inches or 96-inches.

Curtain width depends on the window. The panels allow you to draw the curtains back to let light in. 

Curtains that let in light are popular. Homeowners look for such features more so than others. A room with a good flow will have plenty of natural light. 

Standard Curtain Length 

Standard Curtain Lengths View in gallery
Chloe Warner

There are a few standard curtain lengths found in households. The right length isn’t defined by a number but by how long they are relative to the window.

Looking for the right curtain length would be like looking for King Arthur’s golden chalice. In other words, there is no such thing as “the right curtain length.” Though a few curtain types are not mentioned here, we’ll show you the most common curtain lengths for windows. So, if you don’t choose from one of our examples, you can find custom curtains to fit your design.

Apron Standard Curtain Length

Apron-length curtains fall just a few inches below the windowsill. They’re a great option if you want to place something under the window. It’s also better for kids and pets who play with long curtains. 

Apron curtains also look cottagey and cute. They can be used in any room, but are more common in rooms where you want the entire floor to show. These are the most common type of bathroom curtains. 

Floor Length

bedroom Standard Curtain Lengths View in gallery
Kitchens & Baths, Linda Burkhardt

Long curtains that hang from above the window and end when they touch the floor are considered floor-length curtains. They will either end less than a 1/4in. above the floor or just barely touch it.

They are great for bedrooms, living rooms, and even dining rooms. However, they don’t work well for other rooms like kitchens and bathrooms. Long curtains are unsanitary and would clutter the rooms. 

Alternative floor curtains start at the ceiling rather than just above the window. The curtains are as tall as the wall. They cover multiple windows and have a built-in curtain rod on the ceiling. 

Café Standard Curtain Lengths

Café curtains stop just above the window sill. The curtains are cute and formal. They’re common in children’s rooms and kitchens. 

Café curtains are like apron curtains but they stop before the window sill, while apron curtains stop shortly after. This is how you distinguish them from each other. Cafe curtains are a great option for kitchens. 

Puddle Length

This is a long curtain-type. The curtains touch the floor, with a few inches folding on the ground to make a “puddle” look. In rooms with high ceilings puddle curtains are recommended if you want to achieve an elegant look. The puddle curtains draw the ceiling and floor together.

The curtain style isn’t recommended if you have pets or children. Toddlers will pull on the curtains and accidents could happen. Also, a puppy could use the bathroom on the curtain or it could attract animal dander. Apply similar cleaning methods to remove dog pee from the carpet

Types Of Curtains

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Curtains are categorized according to material. Custom curtains can be any length you prefer and made with any material.  

For example, blackout curtains are floor-length. They prevent light from entering the space. Lace curtains are cafe or apron length so they’re clean and light.  

Standard Cotton

This is the most common curtain material. Cotton is plentiful, affordable, and easy to care for. They are thin but not sheer.

This was also one of the oldest types of curtains. Cotton and linen were both ancient materials used to create drapes and standard curtain lengths. Cotton is a solid choice and is machine washable

Linen Curtains

A lot of people get linen and cotton mixed up, believing that the two are one and the same. Real linen is made from flax, though the term linen can refer to “fabrics” or materials. 

Linen curtains are thicker than cotton curtains and have a different feel.

Sheer Curtains

Linen Curtain lengthsView in gallery

Sheer curtains are made from a variety of materials, but most often are polyester. Standard curtain lengths aren’t defined by material but by the way they look and the way they feel. And most important, transparency. 

The curtains are thin and light. The look isn’t achieved with materials but by using a loose-thread technique that isn’t dense nor tightly woven. 

Blackout Standard Curtain Lengths

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Blackout curtains are made of velvet or polyester. The objective of blackout curtains is to prevent light from entering your space. Such custom curtains may seem like odd choices, but for those who work nights and sleep during the days, they’re your best option.

Lace Curtains

Lace curtains are similar to sheer curtains. The curtains are thin and transparent. Older material is used to make lace, which makes them desirable.  

Though lace curtains are easy to clean and take care of, there is a process you must follow. If you take care of the curtains, they will last a lifetime. Lace curtains are made with cotton or silk. 

Polyester Curtains 

Polyester is a synthetic material made of petroleum or polymer. The curtain material is popular in US households.  When in doubt of the material, chances are your curtains are polyester. The material is cheap, durable, and easy to clean.

As a rule of thumb, polyester isn’t recommended if you want natural curtains. Better options include linen or cotton. The curtains are affordable and made with organic material.  

Thermal Curtains

A thermal curtain has insulating material woven between two fabric layers. The layer facing inside is decorative, while the outer layer functions as a vapor barrier. The insulating material in the middle is made of high-density foam. The foam reduces thermal exchanges.

If you live in a colder environment, thermal curtains will help you save money. Surprisingly, the curtains are also good in warmer climates as they help prevent cool air from escaping your home.  

Thermal curtains are more expensive, but they’re also an investment. Their upfront costs will help you save money in the long-term.

Curtain Length

How Long Are Most Curtains?View in gallery
The Shade Company

While custom lengths are available, your choices are limited to pre made curtains. Curtain panels come in five lengths: 63, 84, 95, 108, and 120 inches. Longer lengths are for puddling and shorter ones are for apron curtains. 

A valance curtain is one alternative. Valance curtains hang on the top side of a window in one piece. They’re a few inches long, and rarely longer than a foot or two.

Curtain Width

The width of your curtains depend on the width of the window. If the window in question is not a normal size, you will need to use custom curtains to cover it. Interior design relies on common sense more than some may think. Determining curtain width isn’t quantum physics. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

How To Choose The Right Curtain Length?

With interior design methods, find what length works for your space without compromising your vision. Make a list of what you don’t want. For example, puddle curtains with curious dogs. 

What Is Tempo Tape?

If you want your curtains to have an even, undulating shape, then tempo tape will help. It works with curtain rods or track systems and creates a less formal yet contemporary aesthetic.

What Are The Four Types Of Curtain Lengths?

The four types of curtain lengths are sill, apron, floor, and pooling. Sill curtains hang a half-inch above a windowsill. Apron curtains hang between two and four inches above a window sill.

Floor length curtains hang half an inch from the ground. Pooling curtains are two to eight inches longer than the window. The excess curtain length will rest on the floor. 

Which Curtain Length Is Best For Casement Windows?

Apron length curtains look best with casement windows. The curtain length will hang above the windowsill. 

Standard Curtain Length Conclusion

With interior design, choosing the right curtain length is simple. You don’t need a professional  professional designer or a PhD to determine which curtain length is best for a window. The only thing you need to know when hanging curtains is that they should complement the space.

Comparing bedroom curtains with living room curtains is like comparing apples and oranges. Yes,  they both belong to the fruit family, but they don’t have the same taste. The same logic is applied to curtains designed for specific rooms.  Long curtains are for bedrooms. However, curtain length is determined by the size of the window. 

Window treatments won’t impact curtain length. If you’re having problems making a decision, install a curtain rod and measure the distance from top to bottom. Low ceilings may prove to be challenging. And never rule out smaller curtains.