How to Measure Curtains

Measuring Curtains

We have put together this step by step guide “How to measure curtains” as a general guide for all our customers as it is the one thing we are often asked our advice on before buying your curtain fabric and curtain lining.

Please note this is not intended to take precedence over any professional advice you may have received.

STEP ONE – Choose the fabric!

This is the most important decision you will make as the width of the curtain fabric will affect the amount of material required. This should be quickly followed by a decision about tracks or poles as this too affects the quantity of fabric required.

So please visit our Warehouse to experience the fabric we have, the quality, the textures and the help from us.

STEP TWO – Fit the track or pole!

This should extend 15-20cm either side of the window and 12-15cm above the window recess. Measure the length of track or pole (for poles make sure you measure between the decorative ends).

If you decide on standard heading tape multiply the length by 1.5, or for pencil pleat tape multiply by 2. Add on 20cm overall for side hems.


For a pole length of 210cm, and a pencil pleat the calculation is:
210 x 2 = 420cm plus 20cm = 440cm.

STEP THREE – Get out the calculator!!

STEP FOUR – Work out the widths needed!

Divide the figure you arrived at from step two by the width of your chosen fabric, and then round this up to the next whole number. For example if the result is 3.1 round it down to 3 which means it will take 3 widths to cover your window, 1.5 widths in each curtain.

440cm / 140cm = 3.14, rounded down to 3.

STEP FIVE – work out the length or drop

Measure the drop required either from the top of the curtain track or from just below the curtain pole to a chosen depth ie; the floor or window sill. Note always measure in at least three positions as tracks/poles/floors and sills are often not level!!  Add on 25cm for turning at the top and for the hem. This will give you your length measurement.

Drop required is 1.2m (120cm)
Length = 120 + 25 = 145cm

STEP SIX – Work out the amount of fabric needed!


145cm x 3 widths = 435 cm or 4.35 meters.

STEP SEVEN – Take account of fabric pattern repeat

Please note if you choose a fabric with an obvious design, you will need to take into account the pattern repeat (shown on all our fabrics in product description), this will ensure the pattern matches when the curtains are closed. To calculate this amount take the cutting length (drop) and add on the length of the pattern repeat then multiply this figure by the number of widths required.

Pattern repeat 27cm
New drop with pattern: 145 + 27 = 172cm
172 x 3 widths = 516cm or 5.2 meters

Please note that curtain fabric is ordered in lengths of full meters.

Curtain lining is measured as above, usually with no pattern repeat.

If you have any further questions about how to measure curtains please do not hesitate to contact us preferably by e-mail. 

Please head on down to our fabric warehouse or call for further information

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