Top tips for measuring for curtains from Good Homes' Editor

Correctly measuring for curtains is essential if you want to get the right size. Whether you are buying made to measure or easy-fit ready-made curtains. Good Homes' Editor, Karen Walker, talks us through her step by step guide for measuring curtains to accurately the fit your windows. As many interior designers will tell you, curtains can make a room – but only if they are chosen and fitted well.

The elements to consider are the pole or track, fabric and lining, as well as the style of the heading and accurate measurements. Bespoke or ready-made, they add warmth in winter, and when opened they will frame the window, softening hard edges and allowing plenty of light in. Whatever curtains you end up buying, you should follow the golden rule: always use a metal tape to ensure that all dimensions are correct. Here's our handy guide on how to measure for curtains. 

Attach pole first

Fit the pole or track 15cm above the window before you measure. Extend 15-20cm either side.

Curtain width

For width, measure the track or pole, excluding finials. With pencil-pleat or eyelet curtains, double this. For tab top designs, multiply by 1.5. Add 2.5cm to allow them to overlap in the middle.

Sill or floor length?

Decide where to end: sill-length (1.25cm above sill), below the sill (15cm under window) or full-length (1.25cm above floor).

Ensure not to cover radiators

With a radiator below the window, a curtain should finish 3cm above, to allow for heat circulation.

Curtain length

Measure the length, or drop, from the track’s top to the end point.

Consider your curtain's features

To make a feature of pencil-pleat drapes and the pole, measure from the centre of the curtain-ring eye.

From the Good Homes Magazine editors.

Good Homes