Let me set a scene for you. You’re going out somewhere special today (a wedding/date/get together…something or the other) and you have to dress to the nines. It then hits you that there is this perfect outfit you haven’t worn in a while and you’re extremely excited. So an hour to the event you’re getting ready and the unfortunate takes place…its too tight. The midnight snacking has caught up with you and you’ve gained a few kilos. You are hit with the reality that as wonderful as an outfit may be if it is ill fitting you will look ridiculous.

In this same case a pretty room with poorly hung curtains is like a beautiful, pulled-together lady wearing an ill fitting outfit. It cheapens everything else, stands out in a jarring way and just makes everyone feel uncomfortable.

Let’s combat this problem head on and really get into what some of you are doing wrong:

To illustrate this, I’ve created a room with two similar sized windows on the same wall. I shall show you how the rod placement and curtain size can affect them by placing the right sizes on the left window and ill fitting sizes on the right so you can see the difference it has on a window and in turn on a space.



There’s this rule I read somewhere that you should always install your rod 51 cm (20″) above your window. I tend to disagree because it depends on the positioning of your window in relation to the height of your walls. That 51 cm may be too high up or too low depending on how high up the wall your window is. What I always advocate is for one to go at least 1/2 to 2/3 the distance towards the top to help your ceilings look as high as possible. Always remember that when you lift the rod, it lifts the eye which makes your ceilings look higher and your space bigger as is evident in my illustration above.


Another common mistake is not having the rod wide enough, on both sides of the window, so that your curtains are forced to be hanging partially in your window. This blocks out light and makes the window look smaller (thus making your room feel smaller).

The height above your window can be similar to the space on either side of the window. Be sure to lift and widen where you put the rod so that the window frame feels as big as possible and allows for as much light in as possible. Remember that nothing makes a room come alive as well as natural light.

If you don’t have that much room to the sides of the window to be able to match the rod height placement then you should follow the 25 to 38 cm (10 – 15″) rule. This dictates that the distance on each side should not be less than 25 cm (10″) or more than 38 cm (15″).


Let me take you back to our original scenario of the outfit your picking out. Let’s say you opt to go for a lovely statement pair of trousers. Unfortunately they are too short and make you look like the only statement you’re trying to make is you share clothes with your younger and shorter sister/brother. In the same case short curtains are painful to look at because they cut the room height in a way that makes it look awkward.Case in point:

Okay so that means your curtain should be long, but how long is long? There are three long lengths that one can pick from depending on your preference; the slight float, the kiss and the puddle.

The slight float

Here the curtain has the illusion of going all the way to the floor just missing it by an inch. Lets be realistic Kenya is dusty, so this option is perfect if you want to avoid the bottom of the curtain from collecting dust.

The kiss

As the name suggests the curtain kisses the floor. This has more of an illusion of touching the floor than the slight float as it is lower. Being barely a few millimeters off the ground. You’d only know it wasn’t touching if you bent down to have a closer look. This is definitely the hardest to achieve as you’d have to be very accurate with your measurements.

The puddle

Here the curtain creates a fabric puddle on the floor. This is best for you romantics out there, or for those looking for a more feminine, old world, European feel. Oh yes and those living in the less dusty areas of this country. Because of its aristocratic feel it is advisable to use fabric with a luxurious look. Go with thick and grand fabric like washed linen or velvet, because the more it puddles the more you can see the beautiful texture of the fabric that you probably spent a sufficient amount of money on. Also be sure to go with this look when you have large windows so that it can be dramatic without overpowering the windows.

So what do you think? Have you been committing any of these crimes or should I be patting you on the back for respecting your curtains and their placement. If you need more tips on anything in your home don’t be shy, all you have to do is put up a comment below and I’ll be sure to dedicate a post on it. Don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE to ensure you don’t miss out on any tips and advice.

Till next time, don’t forget that the number one rule is to BE INSPIRED….BE YOU!


 The Interior Decorator


Jordan Awori – The Interior Decorator

 Jordan Awori The Interior Decorator