When choosing new drapes, deciding on an appropriate fabric is one of the most important factors. There are many different fabrics to choose from and although there might be more than one option that would work out just great for you, you’ll want to keep some things in mind about the uses of different drapery material and the positive and negative aspects of each.
Aside from style and suiting your decor, your drapery fabric must contain the right properties for the window treatments you are using it for. Here is an overview of popular drapery fabrics.
Cotton has a number of desirable characteristics, including strength, a vast range of available patterns and colors, ease of care, and a variety of weights and weaves. But, also keep in mind that cotton can wrinkle easily. It can also shrink or stretch with multiple washings, so cleaning must be done with care. Also, sunlight weakens and can fade cotton.
If looking for a particularly strong fabric, linen can be an excellent choice. When choosing linen, be aware that it can wrinkle easily and is not elastic. Linen is also generally expensive, stiff, and can be prone to shrinking unless it is treated.
As we all know, silk is a beautiful, delicate-looking, shiny, and luxurious fabric. While silk can make for a gorgeous window treatment, keep in mind that silk can be water-damaged and sun-damaged. It is also on the expensive side.
Rayon is a fabric that drapes exceptionally well, but it does require careful handling. Rayon can crease easily and has the tendency to shrink or stretch unless treated against doing so.
Acrylic blends can provide a wooly-looking appearance, which can be appealing. While acrylics do tend to pill, this is generally not an issue with using this material for drapes, as their day-to-day use will cause little abrasion.
Polyester, which is often blended with cotton, can be an affordable and crease-resistant choice. This blend is strong and will resist stretching. An added bonus is that it is often easy to clean.
Opt for polyester blends (often used with cotton) for an affordable, crease-resistant choice. It’s strong and resists stretching, and it’s usually easy to clean – but pure polyesters tend to pill. Pure polyester does have the tendency to pill, but this is generally not an issue with blends.
An economical alternative silk, acetate has a silky look and drapes well. However, it is weak and can be easily damaged by the sun, so this choice might not be the most long-lasting.
Another reasonably priced drapery option is nylon. Because of its durability, ease of washing, and inexpensive price, nylon is a frequently used in sheers.