Should Curtains Be Dark Or Light In Colour?
We often discuss window treatments, but one aspect of choosing curtains tends to confuse many... Should curtains be light or dark fabric?
We all know by now, especially with the amount of information out there on this topic, that window treatments are one of the finishing touches for any room in a home. But there are plenty of options to choose from and consider for windows, from the type of fabric to the style of curtain rod or rail. It is so easy to become overwhelmed with all the choices you have before you and before you know it, you have ended up with a window treatment that does absolutely nothing for a room.
One question that is asked regularly is that of dark or light curtains. Even I battle with this question and still sit with dark brown curtains in my bedroom simply because I'm not sure what to replace them with. Wanting a change for the coming seasons ahead, I decided to do some research on this topic to see what I could discover.
FABRIC FOR CURTAINS
Unless you shop for curtains at one of the popular home decor stores, choosing the right fabric for curtains is just as difficult as selecting a colour for them. What material is best? Which fabric will last longer? Should fabric be lightweight or heavy? These are all questions you need to consider before you spend a small fortune on a set of curtains - especially if you want them to last a while.
Having custom curtains made for windows offers several benefits, even though this option can be more expensive than ready-made curtains. You can choose the style of curtains and the way that they hang and drape and you get to choose the fabric, header style and width, should you want a voluminous effect over windows.
Synthetic fabrics that contain a blend of cotton and synthetic material, especially when classified specifically for curtaining, will offer colourfastness and longevity, both of which are requirements for curtains. Today's synthetic fabrics can be manufactured to be colourfast and non-fade, which when you consider that curtains will frame a window, are qualities you need to think about.
Whatever fabric you opt for, curtains with a lining will not fade as quickly, will offer increased privacy and block out a certain amount of light if you don't want to fit block-out curtains.
DARK OR LIGHT FOR CURTAINS?
Second only to selecting the fabric for your curtains, is the colour of curtains. Several factors can help to determine which is best for a particular room and we discuss these below:
- What colour are the walls?
Both light and dark curtains can be used against light coloured walls. If you opt for a light fabric it becomes immediately obvious that the curtains fade into the background, whereas window framed with dark fabric curtains have an immediate impact on a room. So the question begs... do you want to enhance your windows for architectural detail or perhaps to frame a good view, or do you want windows to fade into the background. The choice is yours.
Darker curtain fabrics can be used to warm up an otherwise sterile or cool room.
Curtains don't necessarily distract your attention from what's outside - They can also be used to frame the view for best effect.
- Does the room need more light?
In a room that doesn't receive a lot of natural light, perhaps due to small windows or the orientation of a room facing north or south, etc., light or dark curtains can make a huge difference to how a room feels. Solid dark curtain panels won't benefit a darkly lighted room, but there is still the option to choose a dark patterned fabric, especially one that is a contrast in colour and pattern. This option is a great one if you are also looking to bring interest to a plain room with a striking pattern.
If a room is screaming out for pattern but you think curtains would be too much, think about a Roman blind.
- Use curtains for dramatic impact
We have already mentioned above about choosing light or dark curtains according to the wall colour, but what if you want to create a contrast with bold colours in a room? Dark curtains can take their colour cue from bold accents already in the room, whether it's artwork on the wall, accent pieces or even a vivid rug. In this instance, black curtains don't take all the attention in the room, they simply provide a graphic element with the colours used in a room.
When deciding upon a colour for curtains, work with the colour palette used to decorate the room and select a lighter or darker hue.
- What colour is best for curtains
The simplest way to select a colour for curtains is to work within the colour palette you have set for a particular room. This echoes the point above that allows you to make a bold statement with curtains, or to tone down the impact by selecting the main colours in a room.