Tab top curtains are one of the best ways to dress a window if you’re looking for something simple, elegant and easy to do-it-yourself. They’re also an excellent choice for renters because they can be hung without causing too much alteration to the existing hardware or damaging the walls, and then they can be pulled down and taken to the next residence with ease.
Since curtains with a tab top heading are so versatile, you can use a range of decorative rods to achieve a more ‘finished’ look. Sure it’s fine to thread the tabs onto a simple metal or wooden rod and place it on top of a couple of holders but you can turn these simple wonders into fine pieces of soft furnishing too.
Decorative wooden dowel or gorgeous iron rods are available in a few sizes but the most appropriate for this application are ¾”, 1 3/8”, 2” or 3”.
Dress up or Down
Of course, if it’s not your intent to expose the curtain rods, you can hang tab top curtains on plain ones and then fit a pelmet over the front to hide them. This also makes your curtains appear more expensive and custom designed, always a good thing.
One of the great things about hanging tab top curtains is that you can hang as many drops as you like. You can space them out or group them more closely together but as long as the drops are available you can have them any way you like. This is ideal for those long windows that you don’t know what to do with. Simply hang them in even numbers so that when they are drawn open, they are equal on both sides.
You can even double-hang tab top curtains. Try a block-out fabric at the front and something sheer and lovely like an organza or lace at the back. Having double rods means you can have one lot open while the other is closed, and the extra layer of material gives you more versatility for any look you’d like to create in a particular room.
Department stores sell expansion rods which are in effect, curtain rods that you can extend or shorten according to your needs. This saves on measuring window widths and you can also take these with you to your next home and use them on windows that may not be the same size as in your current place. In reference to the above point, you will also be able to remove extra curtain drops that are not needed for narrower windows.
Using tab top curtains opens up a world of choices and offers a range of reasons for getting rid of those old sheets up at the windows:
• Because they are often far less expensive than other kinds, you can afford to hang them more lavishly by either adding more drops or by buying better quality ones.
• When you first move into a house and money is tight, it’s easy to hang tab top curtains in a temporary manner, say on cheap wood dowel until you can afford to lash out on better, decorative rods.
• They don’t require a comprehensive tool box. If you can use a cordless drill and some screws, you can hang tab top curtains.
Inexpensive, practical, easy to hang and available in lots of colors and fabrics, tab top curtains are the ideal solution for your window dressing needs.
photo by Christine Majul – CreativeCommons Attribution