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A Guide to Curtain Headers, and How to Choose the Right One

Curtains can be a great element to style your home. However, it’s also important to choose the right curtain headers. It might be challenging, as there are many types of them.

5-Minute Crafts has prepared this guide to help you choose the perfect kind of curtain header to create the style you are looking for.

1. Pencil pleat

This curtain header is the most popular one. The design looks a lot like a row of pencils standing on their ends — that’s where its name probably comes from. It’s advisable to use a 3-inch (7.62 cm) header for short curtains and a 6-inch one (15.24 cm) for full-length curtains.

Pencil pleat headers are best suited for contemporary and period homes.

2. Pinch pleat

This header consists of bunches of pleats and gaps between them. You need to measure your track or pole attentively before making this type of header, as curtains are made to an exact fit. There are double, triple, and even single pinch pleats available. However, triple is the most common one and costs more since extra pleats require more fabric and labor.

Go for pinch pleat headers if you have a modern or traditionally styled home. Experts also recommend choosing a pole over a track for them.

3. Wave

Wave curtains have become extremely popular over the last couple of years. It doesn’t visually destroy the fabric pattern and can create the effect of a floor-to-ceiling curtain. This will help you to complement the smart, elegant style of your house.

Wave headers are the best solution for contemporary homes, especially ones with large windows or glass walls.

4. Tab top

It’s also a great header for contemporary-styled homes. You need to put the pole through the tabs so soft folds are formed. But if your aim is to have a blackout effect, try to choose another type of header, as the light will shine between the tab tops and the main curtain.

5. Eyelet

The main distinctive feature of this header’s type is metal rings (eyelets) that are threaded through the pole. For that reason, you don’t need to buy curtain rings. You can find silver, chrome, or brass eyelets, according to your preferences.

The eyelet design is the best choice for a modern home. Also, metal rings remind us of portholes or eyelets used for sails. So, if you have a nautical-themed home, these headers will be a perfect match for it.

6. Cottage pleat

This will create an informal gathered look in the room. Cottage pleats are a great option for lightweight curtains in the kitchen or bedroom. Here, you can use both tracks or poles.

7. Rod pocket

This header design is simple: the fabric folds over on the top of the curtain to create the pocket. This makes it perfect for a casual look. A good choice for the sheer layer in a double-layer curtain setup. However, it can be difficult to make it slide over the pole if you choose thicker fabrics.

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