How will a curtain’s fabric affect your room?

Aesthetically, curtains can make a huge impact on a room. Their colour, design and finish can help tie in with a design theme or provide a point of difference in your home.

What you may not know is that the curtain fabric itself can have an effect on how much light and heat is allowed into a room.

Before you start redecorating your home this summer, find out which curtain weights are best for your space.

Thermal/blockout lined

If you're trying to reduce your power bill, want to keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer, or simply want to block out as much light as possible then thermal lined curtains are the best option for your home.

The right curtain can reduce heat loss by 60 per cent if your windows are single glazed, and 40-50 per cent if you've got double glazing. It will act as a buffer between your room and the window, preventing outside air from penetrating the room when closed.

The Resene Curtain Collection features a range of curtains in various weights, many of which can be lined with blockout backing to provide insulation to your room. A specialist at a Resene ColorShop can custom-make your dream drapes for you and provide you with plenty of expert advice.

In winter months, keep blockout curtains open during the day so your home can gain heat and soak up sunshine before closing them before it gets dark to effectively lock in this warmth.

If your home tends to get quite hot in summer, thermal curtains can work wonders. Keen them drawn across windows that face the sun and throw windows open to let in fresh air without the heat that direct sunlight can bring.

For the most effective insulation, curtains should be thermally backed and fit snugly against the window frame. Make sure the material extends past the window so there are no gaps for heat to escape through. Floor to ceiling options are best.

As for providing darker room conditions for sleeping, thicker materials such as velvet, wool-blends and blockout backed options are the best way to keep the light out. If you have light sleepers who need as much darkness as possible to nod off or you're looking for the perfect theatre-effect in your home cinema, look for heavy fabrics with a thermal lining.


Gauzy curtains made out of voile, organza, lace or chiffon are delicate, floaty and can give your room a whimsical summery effect. These fabrics tend to let in a lot more air and light than more solid curtains.

Choose a lightweight option such as Resene Harmony Voile, which comes in several natural tones that match perfectly with Resene paint colours. This 'linen look' voile has a sunfilter effect to protect furnishings from sun damage while still letting in light and breeze.

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