21 Ways to Upgrade Your Curtains

layered curtains
studiomcgee via Instagram
  • 01 of 21

    Give Your Windows a Facelift

    Windows are an important element of any room. They create flow, guide your furniture arrangement and allow for the natural light and air you need to keep your space happy and healthy. But we often overlook how window dressing is so much more than, well, window dressing when it comes to tying a room together. If your curtains are dingy, ill-fitting or just plain boring, it's time to give them a makeover.

    Upgrading your curtains turns the natural light in your living space or bedroom into a focal point and adds a touch of character and interest. And the best part is that giving your curtains a touch of pizzazz doesn't have to be difficult. Like these DIY ruffled curtains from Masion de Pax, we've rounded up the best ideas to inspire you without spending a lot of dough or time. 

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  • 02 of 21

    Shibori Dye Old Curtains

    Shibori dyeing is an ancient Japanese technique that involves twisting or bunching fabric and using indigo dye to give it a rich, blue color. It's having a real moment right now, so it's the perfect opportunity to upgrade your plain white curtains. These easy DIY curtains from The White Buffalo Styling Co look great in a bedroom or home office, and lend a sense of airiness and flow to the space. Since indigo can be a messy dye to use at home, recreate the look with the fabric-safe dye of your choice. 

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  • 03 of 21

    Try a Rustic Curtain Rod

    If you're into the industrial chic look, this updated curtain rod is for you. Blogger Dimples and Tangles swapped a boring curtain rod for a galvanized pipe found at any hardware store. Match with neutral curtains to add a bit of edge to your space.

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  • 04 of 21

    Try an Herb Garden Instead

    Upgrade your curtains by getting rid of them altogether. We love the idea of ditching a kitchen curtain for a hanging herb garden like this one from The Bird and Her Song. Plus, who doesn't love a curtain you can eat? Pick herbs that are easy to grow inside and you'll never miss that café curtain again.  

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  • 05 of 21

    Easy Elegance

    This curtain rod upgrade is so easy, you'll wonder why you haven't already done it. Give the windows in your living space a stately, traditional feel by using a brass curtain rod instead of a metal or plastic one. If brass is out of reach, DIY this look with a bit of spray paint. 

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  • 06 of 21

    Add Pom Poms

    Upgrading your curtains doesn't mean you have to toss the ones you already have. These adorable pom pom curtains from Happy Modern are incredibly easy to DIY, even if you have no sewing experience. Be brave and mix bright neons pom poms with soft, neutral fabrics like linen or cotton to keep this look happy and flow-y. 

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  • 07 of 21

    Layered Curtains

    layered curtains
    studiomcgee via Instagram

    If your windows only have a single window treatment, layering two or more types is a great way to add dimension and allow more control over light and air. Start with blinds or shades (we love the neutral bamboo look seen here) and install drapes four to six inches above the window to create the illusion of a taller ceiling. 

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  • 08 of 21

    Upgrade Your Curtain Pull

    Curtain pulls are back in style, but they don't have to remind you of your grandmother's house. This stunning geode tieback from A Kailo Chic Life can transform dull white curtains without springing for a new set. Customize this look with a rock or agate that speaks to you (for a fancier look, try a crystal doorknob). A tieback is especially useful in a room with blackout curtains that can feel too dark during the day.

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  • 09 of 21

    An Easy Beaded Curtain

    Curtains aren't just for covering windows—they're also great for separating areas between rooms or segmenting a studio space. If you had a beaded curtain back in the day, you'll love this updated idea from Design Love Fest. She uses styrofoam balls and simple rope to emulate the hippie curtains of the '70s, but with a modern flair. If you're feeling really brave, ditch the door and use an opened beaded curtain to make your space feel larger.  

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  • 10 of 21

    DIY Curtain Rods

    For those of you who can't part with your curtains, this Restoration Hardware-inspired curtain rod is a great choice. Here, Maison de Pax uses stained wooden dowels and brackets easily found at a hardware store to give this living space a high-end feel for less than $20. 

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  • 11 of 21

    Potato Stamp Old Curtains

    Even if you haven't made a potato stamp since preschool, you can still do this DIY. Not Just a Housewife uses cheap IKEA curtains as the canvas for a whimsical triangle stamp pattern. Bubble wrap, cardboard and even other vegetables are also great stand-ins for a stamp


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  • 12 of 21

    Macramé Your Windows

    Your probably already know that macramé is back in the spotlight, and if you're looking for a way to incorporate this throwback look into your home, now is the time. This stunning woven piece from A Beautiful Mess looks difficult, but even a novice knotter can replicate the look. This also works to segment off a kids' toy area or alcove office, and can be used in place of a closet door. 

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  • 13 of 21

    Paint New Life Into Your Curtains

    stripped curtains
    chris_belcher4 via Instagram

    Not an artist? No worries. This trendy stripped curtain just takes some measuring and a little bit of fabric paint to transform your old curtains. We love this look because it's subtle enough for any space—try adding stripes to your master, a nautical-themed guest room or a home office. 

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  • 14 of 21

    Utilize Antlers

    Antlers are popping up in some of our favorite home tours, and for good reason. They lend a rustic, ski lodge-inspired feel to your home, and don't overpower your decor. Recreate these antler tiebacks with faux antlers found at any craft store and metal brackets from a hardware store. 

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  • 15 of 21

    Let Your Style Bloom

    These floral curtains from Design Love Fest just scream "be happy!" Easy to recreate in just an afternoon, this bold look adds energy to your space and makes you want to smile. Pick any color palette, grab faux flowers from a craft store and get gluing. 

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  • 16 of 21

    Try Easy-Sew Curtains

    Even if you've never sewn, curtains are an easy project you can pick up in a weekend. These bright yellow café curtains totally transform this little reading nook into the perfect sunny Sunday spot. 

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  • 17 of 21

    A Black-Out Twist

    If you're tired of your boring blackout curtains, these intricate cutout curtains from Colossal will warm your heart. Though this look is a bit harder for a novice to DIY, you can use a design hole punch to create your own striking patterns. 

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  • 18 of 21

    An Easy Dip Dye

    Another dyed option we love, these dipped curtains from Homepolish are even easier than Shibori. Once you start dip dyeing, you'll want to transform all the textiles in your home. 

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  • 19 of 21

    Pom Pom Tieback Curtains

    This is a great idea for renters or anyone who doesn't want to drill holes in their walls for a curtain tieback. Gather your curtains up with festive pom poms using this easy tutorial from  The Weaving Loom. Pick yarn colors that complement your curtains, and this look can be achieved for under $5. 

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  • 20 of 21

    Switch the Direction of Your Curtains

    white curtains
    Rose Foster / Pinterest

    Change your look up simply by pulling your curtains in opposite directions to give a room more texture and drama. This works best with sheer panels or solid linen curtains, as patterned pieces may look cluttered and overwhelming.

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  • 21 of 21

    Try Bold Patterns

    Go bold with this painted idea. Great for a nursery or a kids' room, these bold black polka dot curtains from Nalle's House will immediately grab attention (in a good way). If you're worried about consistency, large patterns like this are easier to maintain throughout the piece.