How To Hang Scarf Curtains (Quickly & Easily!)

Ossiana Tepfenhart
by Ossiana Tepfenhart

Scarf curtains gained a strong following thanks to the way they add a plush, yet dramatic touch to almost any home. While they have a breezy side to things, they are still famous for being tricky when it comes to hanging them up in the first place. So, how do you hang scarf curtains, and why are these curtains known for being so hard to hang? We got the scoop…

Unlike regular curtains, you do not need a rod for curtain scarves, though you can use one if you want to. Curtain scarves are generally draped over two or three points above the window in question. The two basic points rest on either side of the window. If you want to add a third draping point, add an extra hook (or twist around the rod) in the center of the window.

Understanding how to work your scarf drapes is a huge part of being able to work with them, especially when you are new to window treatments. This article will help you hang those curtains like a pro.

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How To Hang Your Scarf Curtain: Two Methods

There are two different methods that you can use to hang scarf curtains. You can use a pole, or you can use a series of hooks. Either way, you will need to measure the scarf curtain for proper sizing. Let’s take a look at each method, plus the prep work.

Measure Your Curtain Length

In order to hang your scarf curtain properly, you will need to get the right scarf size. To get the right sizing, you will need to do the following:

  • Get the length of “drop” that you want to have the scarf hang off the window. Multiply this number by two.
  • Measure the width of the window. Multiply the width of the window you want to cover by two.
  • Add the two measurements together to get your ideal scarf size. This is one of the easiest ways to get the perfect curtain measurement.

Hang Your Scarf Using A Curtain Rod

If you are like most people, you already have a curtain rod hung up over your window. This is great since it makes hanging up scarf curtains a cinch. You can even hang them over blinds that stick out! Here’s how you can make this happen:

  • Start by pulling the scarf up behind one of the edges of the curtain rod.
  • Throw the scarf over the front of the curtain rod. 
  • Let the scarf droop down over the window’s center. If you want to add a more subtle twist, loop the curtain around the centerpoint of the window, making it droop down in two dips instead of one.
  • Then loop the curtain over the edge curtain rod once more, letting it hang down symmetrically on either side of the window. This should make it look like your rod is wearing a scarf. (Get it? Scarf curtain?) You may need to adjust the curtain’s position to make it symmetrical. But, you’re done from here.

Hang Your Curtain Scarf Using Command Hooks

Some people have the aggravating issue of renting from a landlord who won’t allow you to put up a curtain rod. If this happens, grab some Command hooks. Doing this is fairly easy, so don’t fret. Just follow the steps below.

  • Start by placing two large, heavy-duty hooks on either side of the window. Use heavy-duty hooks capable of holding at least seven pounds each.
  • Drape the scarf over one hook, then the other hook. Make sure that all the curtain material is able to be tucked inside the hooks when you hang it up. If you want to have a double-dip look, add a third hook at the center of your window that rests on an even keel with the first two hooks.
  • Adjust accordingly. You will need to pull the scarf through the two (or three) hooks until the scarf has a symmetrical look. Once it does, congrats! You’re done.

Can You Use Scarf Curtains On Their Own?

Scarf curtains (also known as scarf drapes) are traditionally used alongside regular curtains or blinds that open and shut. They are meant to be accent curtains that are part of a window treatment ensemble. For the most part, they are. However, there are some moments where you may be able to get away with scarves solo.

The most common way to use scarf curtains solo is to use them on buildings that are high up above the ground or to use them to frame a door. While many may see this as heavy-handed, the truth is that it can work with the right decoration. Like with all other things related to interior design, there is no right and wrong here. It’s all about how you make it.

Are Scarf Curtains Outdated?

In the past, scarf curtains is were typically heavy, dark fabrics that were draped over white sheer curtains. It was a look that was popular in the 30s, 40s, and 90s. It still remains a popular window treatment today, especially among people who are fans of a gothic aesthetic. However, that look also has a reputation for being outdated.

Truth be told, how “retro” this look appears to be all depends on how you use the curtains. Sheer, sweeping scarves are now deemed to be fairly modern. The same can be said of scarves in natural colors, especially if you pair them with the right grey walls. If you want to use them, make sure that you’re sure to add them in a modern setting.

Do Scarf Curtains Have To Kiss The Floor?

If you’ve ever seen a retro interior design catalog, you probably saw tons of scarf curtains that kissed or even pooled on the floor. Admittedly, it’s a good way to make your room look more impressive. In large, highly ornate rooms, this look still reigns supreme because it’s so impressively lush.

However, let’s be honest, most rooms can’t handle that level of luxury without looking a little wonky. A good way to balance out your home is to have your scarves hang halfway down the length of the window. It adds framing, but doesn’t exactly cause your home to feel overboard. Another way you can work your curtains is to have them float six inches above the floor.

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Related Questions

How can you prevent your curtains from slipping?

There are several ways that you can prevent your curtains from slipping off the rod or rails. Many designers choose to use pushpins to subtly keep them locked into place. If you want to make your curtains a little more locked in without pinning them to your wall, add small ties to them on the sides, and then add sconces that those ties can be tied to.Of course, this isn’t exactly a good remedy if you have a pet or a child who keeps pulling your curtains down. If this is the case, you may need to avoid using scarf curtains until they’re a little older or more well-trained.

Are valances out of style?

Valances can be out of style, but it all depends on how you work them. The large, bulky droopy ones that you often see in the homes of octogenarians absolutely are. They look dated and often shrink a room, despite their best efforts to avoid that mirage. However, if you want to use a petite, airy valance, things start to look a little different.When paired with a country kitchen look, a valance can be a great way to add a kitschy touch. On a similar note, homes that have a pointedly retro vibe always look a little better with a valance.

What’s the best material for a curtain scarf?

The best material for a curtain scarf is a material that works with your home’s ambiance. Neutral colors, sheer fabrics, and cool accent patterns all tend to work well here. However, it’s up to you to decide which particular material will work best. When thinking it over, try to imagine what it will look like when it’s hung up in your room.

Ossiana Tepfenhart
Ossiana Tepfenhart

Ossiana Tepfenhart is an expert writer, focusing on interior design and general home tips. Writing is her life, and it's what she does best. Her interests include art and real estate investments.

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