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What are wave curtains?

Find out more about this neat and stylish header option for your curtains.

Emily Booth one of the writers at Hillarys

by Emily Booth

In-home Advice Expert

Published: 14/06/2019

Updated: 22/06/2022

Made-to-measure curtains offer a bespoke finish, and the style of curtain header you choose makes a big difference to the way your curtains drape at the window and how well they fit in with the rest of your décor.

For a contemporary look, wave header curtains offer a neat and stylish finish.  Here we talk you through exactly what wave curtains are and how to style them in your home.

Flow Glacier curtains opened in a lounge window

What is a wave curtain?

The header refers to the top of the curtain, where the fabric is gathered in a particular way. There are several types of headers and each provides a different look. These include eyelet, pencil pleat, pinch pleat, double and triple pinch pleat.

You can also choose a wave header. This is where the fabric is gathered into softly rippling folds. It’s a less formal look than some of the other curtain header styles, perfect for creating a relaxed and informal feel within the home.

Zaha Sunrise Curtains fitted to a tall door window in a dining room with blue coloured walls

Where do wave curtains look best?

Wave curtains are fitted to a slim, discreet curtain track so they are suitable for all standard sized windows.  Because they have a relaxed fold, they help to create a contemporary look in any home. 

They work particularly well in large open-plan living rooms and kitchen-diners, although they look great anywhere!

Is a wave header good for small windows?

If you are particularly short on space or want to create an elegant look, your wave curtains can be fitted to the ceiling instead of the window frame, making your windows feel taller and grander than they really are.

The unstructured style of a wave header means that your curtains fold up really neatly when they’re fully open. So, if you have a limited amount of wall space either side of your window, wave curtains are an ideal choice.

Clarity white voile curtains against wide floor length windows leading to garden

Can wave curtains solve any window problems?

They certainly can.  As the curtain track is slim, wave curtains are ideal for really tall windows or where there is limited space above the window to fit a pole. 

They can also help if you need to reduce light, as you can choose a blackout option for a wave curtain just as you would any other. And if your problem is one of privacy versus light, then our Voile curtains can solve this, as they too can be fitted with a wave header. 

Tranquil Ash Roller blind compose shadow window dressing in a kitchen window

How can wave curtains make my window stand out?

As the curtains pull right back to the sides, they can expose the full glory of your window.  So if you value your view, your wave curtains will help to make the most of it by framing it beautifully.

This simple styling also shows off large pattern repeats to their best advantage, so if you’ve got your eye on a statement print or a design, then a wave header style is for you.


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