How Far Off the Floor Should Curtains Be?

I love picking out curtains: choosing fabrics, decorative rods, finials, and tiebacks. What I don’t love is installing the hardware and hanging the curtains.

Unless you’re going to pay someone or have a partner who is an ardent DIYer, you will end up doing it yourself. Curtains can be hung to reach the floor in five different ways.

Hanging your curtains at the right height enhances any window treatment and elevates a room’s style. Find out the ideal gap between your curtains and the floor.

Sill Length

Curtains that reach only the window sill and not the floor are appropriate for kitchens, laundry rooms, and bathrooms. The look is very informal and relaxed.


Floating drapes hang about 3/8 to ½ inch above the floor. This is the ideal length for regular curtains and looks neat without that outgrown trousers effect.


The drapes end on the floor exactly. It requires meticulous measuring of the rod to floor height and skilled installation.


Designers love this because it’s informal, relaxed, and stylish. The hem of the drapes “break” as they hit the floor and extend a couple of inches in a “puddle”.


For an elegant, traditional look, hang your curtains so that they puddle a couple of inches on the floor. Ideal for romantic bedrooms, formal dining rooms, or French country-house aesthetics.

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