Making Ripples, The Secret To Curtain Fullness


Making Ripples, The Secret To Curtain Fullness



There are many things to consider when decorating with curtains. Color, pattern, and fabric are all important variables, of course, but there is another that sometimes gets overlooked: curtain fullness. Curtain fullness refers to how many ripples, or folds, are present when the curtain is closed. How full the curtain panel looks can significantly change the look of the curtain, but how full is “full,” and how do you determine how much curtain to buy?





It should come as no surprise that the wider a curtain is, the more ripples it will have when hung. In general, a curtain that has 60% fullness will have ripples top to bottom and look sufficiently "full" for aesthetic purposes. So how much curtain do you need to have 60% fullness? Well, don't panic, but you will have to do a little math to find out. Your curtain width will need to be your track length multiplied by 0.60 and then added to your original track length. So for example, if your track is 96 inches wide:


96 X 0.60 = 57; 57+96 = 153 inches


You will need to order curtains with a width of 153 inches, to have 60% fullness. If you want narrower ripples, you will be looking for 100% fullness, which is two times the length of the track (i.e. 96 X 2 = 192 inches of curtain). If you want to do a wrap-around return on each side of the track, add three more inches per side.



Using snap tape is a great way to create and keep a ripplefold appearance, but if you are a snap tape fan (who isn’t?) you have some conversions to do. Snap tape is sold by the yard, so if you are measuring in feet and inches, you will need to divide the width by 36 (number of inches in a yard) to get the number of yards you need to order. Additionally, to find the number of snap carriers you need, you will need to divide the width of the curtain (in inches) by 4.25. (The snaps on the snap tape are 4.25 inches apart.)


Need some help with the math? Email us your measurements at, and we will help you figure out what you need.



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