What Are the 3 Types of Curtains?

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Getting ready to pick out new curtains for your windows? Besides figuring out what high-quality curtains look like, it also helps to learn what are the 3 types of curtains before heading out shopping.

I detail the three curtain types below.

What Are the 3 Types of Curtains?

The three main types of curtains are pinch pleat curtains, goblet pleat curtains, and grommet curtains. Pinch pleat curtains are typically made from thick fabric and look traditional. Goblet pleats resemble wine glasses and boast an elegant look. But these shouldn’t be used as curtains that are opened and closed a lot. Grommet curtains have easy-to-use open rings and provide a modern look.

Pinched (or tailored) pleat curtains are the most popular ones used in bedrooms and living rooms. On the other hand, Goblet pleat curtains are appropriate for large and formal rooms with high ceilings. Grommet curtains are casual looking and excellent for bedrooms where curtains are often opened and closed.

White curtain on window

What Type of Curtains Are Best?

There is no “ultimate” curtain-type that will complement every room. The best curtain type is the one that complements the room best. Goblet pleat curtains are best for formal spaces, while grommet and pinched pleat curtains can be used in informal settings.

It’s important to note the effect that the fabric has on the atmosphere of the room. You want to go for textured stripes or weathered linens if you want a relaxed look. On the other hand, fancy prints and embroidered curtains are right for layered and bold interiors.

Three Approaches to Making All Types of Curtains Look Good

Regardless of which type of curtain you pick, there are three different approaches to making the curtains complement your space:

#1 Match the Walls

Choosing curtains with a shade similar to your walls is the best way to go if you want your curtains to be as least visually intrusive as possible. This is the right approach if you love the color of your walls or have a lot of other visual elements in the room.

You could also use this approach if you’re fond of a monochromatic look. Done right, matching the walls can make the windows too elegant. However, if the space isn’t right for “matchy-matchy” curtains, it’s best to avoid this approach.

#2 Neutral-Colored Complements

Purchasing curtains with a print or color in a neutral palette is a good idea if you need the curtain to work with your curtain rods and various wall colors. Buying beige curtains is a popular choice because those curtains will look good in virtually any room.

That said, curtains having neutral colors can come off as bland.

#3 Strong Contrast

Using a bright color or pattern to contrast your walls is the boldest approach in curtain purchasing and makes a visual statement. This works best in smaller spaces and must be avoided in large rooms with multiple windows.


Pinch pleat curtains, goblet pleat curtains, and grommet curtains are made for use in specific spaces. Putting a pinch pleat in a formal dining room will look bland, and installing a goblet curtain in a bedroom will look excessive. It’s best to use curtains in spaces they’re meant for and purchase them in the right color to complement the room.

Brett E.

Brett E. is the Owner of BarterDesign.co.  Brett comes from a long line of craftsman and foreman, and has been involved with the construction and renovation world ever since he was a boy while working for his families construction and remodeling company.  After graduating with a a degree in Interior Design, Brett is the go to guy for any interior design or remodeling questions!