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Which curtain heading is right for your living room?

When it comes to shopping for curtains, it is easy to get distracted by the spectacular shades and intricate patterns. However, window dressing isn’t just about flicking through colour samples and feeling fabrics.

To find the perfect pair, you need to tilt your head upwards and inspect your curtain headings. From statement styles to ambience, this small and often overlooked feature makes a big difference to the overall look of your living room.

But how do you know which is the right curtain heading type for your space? Read on for our expert styling tips.

Pencil pleats

green pencil pleat curtain

For as long as windows have needed dressing, pencil pleat curtains have reigned supreme and they continue to be the most popular type of curtains today.

True to their title, the pleats on these curtains take on the look of a neat row of pencils. The result is a delicate drop and a smooth rippled effect, which is ideal for airy living rooms which bask in plenty of natural light.

To double down on this formal design, opt for a pared back palette. Our Arran Cream, for example, is a modest, yet stylish addition to any space. Neutral colours also pair perfectly with any bold accent pieces in your living room, allowing colourful cushions or a modern armchair to take the spotlight.

Pinch pleats

tropical pinch pleat curtains

The initial ‘pinch’ bunches up curtain fabric into neat folds on this curtain type, while the rest of the fabric is left to freely flow around window areas.

Sophisticated and with a serene look, pinch pleat curtains are best suited to traditional décors. But don’t worry if traditional isn’t your chosen theme – pinch pleat curtain headings can be tweaked to suit any style.

Before hanging, for instance, you can play around with the number of pleating ‘fingers’ on your curtain header. There are typically four options you can choose from: two, three, four or five fingers. Generally speaking, the more pleats, the more old-fashioned a curtain style can look, so bear that in mind when decorating your space.

When you turn your attention to colours and patterns, elegant and luxurious hues will be your best bet. Think deep jewel tones, such as Cardinal Wine, for a heavy block of colour, or go the other way with light pastel tones for a soft and simple finish.


embroidered eyelet curtains

Contemporary, inexpensive and oh-so simple, eyelet curtains are ideal for minimalist decors.

In keeping with the minimalist theme, colours and patterns should stay true to the low-key aesthetic. Neutral tones like Evie Taupe or Halo Ivory, for instance, are a dream match for Scandi-inspired living rooms.

What’s more, with no intricate pleats or deep folds to capture your attention, eyelet curtains are free to become the bold centrepiece of your living room. Pair with Blenheim Saffron or Astral Teal to immediately inject colour and intrigue into your décor.

Eyelet curtains are also just as easy to hang up as they are easy on the eye. Unlike other curtain headers, there are no clips or tape to fiddle with; just thread a curtain pole through the metal rings at the top of the fabric and you’re done.

Now you know which heading is best suited to your décor, it’s time to find some living room curtain ideas – and there’s no better place to start than Plumbs. Not only do we offer over 1,000 different fabric options but we also do all the measuring for you. Simple!

Sophie Page
Sophie Page

Sophie is a great granddaughter of the founders of the business - so fabrics and furniture are almost part of her DNA! Her interests include home interiors and upcycling, and her favourite show to watch after work is The Repair Shop. Some of the topics she covers on the Plumbs blog include sofa reupholstery and furniture protection.

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UK-wide service
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Family business
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Free in-home consultation
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Over 800 fabrics
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Quality guarantee

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