Outdoor curtains are a simple, stylish way to cut glare and add shade or privacy to your outdoor spaces. These can be added to any outdoor space that is fitted with some sort of structure, such as a pergola or roof covering. Take a look at the points below for some great ideas on how to bring the benefits and elegance of outdoor curtains to your hardscape design.
Types of outdoor curtains
The best outdoor curtains are either light and quick drying or water proof. Avoid heavy cotton and thick material that will soak up moisture and may become affected by mildew. Depending on your choice of hanging style, their weight, once wet, may also not be supported by its railing. Light curtains create a comfortable, airy atmosphere, but tend to become a nuisance in the breeze, so they may have to be weighted at the bottom or tied back during blustery weather. Waterproof curtains have the benefit of being a little heavier, but you may have to sacrifice some light, depending on their thickness. Here are some popular options:
Voile is soft, light and semi-translucent. While it may only provide limited functionality in terms of shade and privacy, the elegant decorative effect of voile is worth the expense. Functionally, voile’s high percentage of cotton does provide some UV protection. It’s range of colors makes it a versatile and attractive option. Voile makes for a gentle, ambient lighting and dreamy environment.
Like voile, net curtains are transparent, providing some light protection without making the space too dark. Net curtains are often made from synthetic material, so have the tendency to be tougher and more water resistant than voile. Unlike voile, netting is predominantly white.
For more effective light screening, most polyester curtains provide an opaque screen for your patio, while some thinner varieties are slightly translucent. The opacity of polyester can make a patio too dark, but this can be balanced by selectively drawing curtains to provide shade only to key areas. Polyester curtains come in an infinite variety of colors and styles and are both durable and waterproof.
Burlap curtains are perfectly suited to rustic and country style patios. Burlap is a hardy material with a characterful texture and mocha coloring. Although burlap becomes heavy when wet, it dries quickly and comes treated against rot and mold. Burlap is woven so allows pinpricks of light through, making them ideal for blocking glare while maintaining a light environment.
Hanging styles can be used to complement your backyard theme. Choose the best style for your exact project which will depend on their exact placement and purpose. Here are a few common methods used for mounting outdoor curtains.
Rod and grommet or loop style
While certainly not the only option, rod and grommet style mounting remains a popular choice for outdoor curtains because of its simplicity and reliability. Both rod and whatever form of loop or grommet should be weather resistant and rust proof to avoid staining your curtains. This method is one that works while remaining stylish and functional.
Ceiling mounted methods may be necessary where a wall cannot be used for mounting or when the rod cannot be supported by a buttressing wall. Hanging mounts also allow full 360 degree, uninterrupted curtaining. Rod and grommet mounting is effective for most kinds of patios and patio structure including wooden pergolas and concrete structures.
Provide a novel approach and can create a palatial and even classical look, depending on the style of the hooks. This method is chosen primarily for it’s aesthetic, because while the curtains can be tied back or allowed to hang, they cannot be drawn in the traditional sense. Decorative hooks also allow for heavier curtains than most rod set ups.
Rope hung curtains have a makeshift appeal good for cottage style themes like shabby chic. Although not the most permanent of designs, rope hung curtains enable you to quickly and easily remove your curtains for washing or for a seasonal change of decor. The character of the rope can also contribute a great deal to your theme, be it a rugged hemp rope or golden weave.
Tie backs provide an additional opportunity to add a personal touch to your outdoor curtain. These can come in the form of a wrought iron curtain hook, swathes matching your curtains, or decorative rope. Be sure to select something that matches the style and color theme of your patio material and design.
For more inspiration for creating the perfect outdoor living space for your home, be sure to check out the Unilock Design Ideas Catalog here!