If you want expensive looking curtains for cheap here are all the tricks and hacks you need to learn how to style curtains.

Before you even read another sentence, here's one thing that will CHANGE THE GAME — my free curtain calculator. Hop over and pin it, because it will make picking and hanging curtains wildly easy.

how to style curtains to make them look expensive, tips featured by top interior design blogger, Never Skip Brunch

Check out the how-to video below and don't forget to pin this post for later.


go-to setup

Picking the right curtains and hardware make all the difference. Before we get in to how to hang them, lets chat about my go-to favorites for chic-looking curtains.

I love gold, so I love these gold faceted rods from Target. I've tried many an expensive curtain rod and still find myself going back to these. The grey tone is super gorgeous and they're easy to hang and slide to customize the size.

My go-to rings are these modern gold curtain clip rings. They match the rod perfectly and I love the modern look.

For curtains, my favorite ever panels are from Ikea. Again, I've tried super expensive panels, but just keep coming back to these. They have a gorgeous linen texture and the fabric weight is thick, but allows light in, which I love. For blackout, I use these panels and attach a blackout liner to the back.

I get the 118" Ritva Curtain Panels which gives me plenty of length to hang them high (a designer trick we'll talk about in a second) and if I'm hanging on a large window, I sometimes double up panels on the sides for extra volume.

Again, the free curtain calculator will tell you how much total panel width you need.


free curtain calculator

just enter your window width, height from floor to the top, and distance from ceiling to the top and it takes care of EVERYTHING else.


make curtains look custom

go high.

Hanging your curtains higher than the window will help draw your eye up and make the room feel taller and the window visually bigger.

A good rule of thumb is hanging them 2/3 of the way up between the top of the window and the ceiling (this is what the curtain calculator will custom calculate for you) but don't be afraid to go higher!

Curtain panel height will vary based on the look you're going for. If you want an opulent look, you might choose a length 7-10 inches longer than the distance from your curtain rod to the floor to puddle them. If you want a more tailored look, you can have your curtains skim the floor (hanging just above the floor) and for a more casual look, you can have them kiss the floor — about 1" longer than the distance from your curtain rod to the floor.

go wide.

The total width of your curtain panels should be at least two times the width of your window. This will help them look fuller when they are pushed to the sides and make sure they cover the window completely when you pull them together.

Hanging your hardware wide — at least 10" outside your window casing — helps the window look visually larger and let's you push the curtains fully to the side of the window.

steam your panels!

This is a rookie mistake I used to make a lot. Even if your curtains aren't super wrinkly, steaming them helps get out any kinks and gives them a super smooth, polished look.


p.s. This post on how to style curtains may contain affiliate linking for your convenience. These links don’t cost extra for you to use + I always share my honest opinion.

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I'm Cara, the designer & diy queen behind Never Skip Brunch. I'm a color & prints obsessed DIY queen who's here to help you create a beautifully lived-in life through home design advice and chic DIY tutorials

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One Comment

  1. Hello. Thanks for this post. I had a question. I have 9 foot cielings (108 inches) and the top of my windows are at 9 feet. Would you normally install a 108″ curtain close to the cieling and have the bottom kiss the floor. I’d rather not have a puddle look or the vacuum may get entangled. Or would you do a 96″ curtain that just covers the window. It seems taller is better but wanted your opinion.


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