6 Classy Curtain Ideas for Your Patio Door

Patio Door Curtains
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Whether you use it to make a beeline to the pool or to the backyard barbecue grill, your patio door sees a lot of action. If you believe that this important point of entry that connects your indoor and outdoor living spaces lacks style, you’re not alone. Here are six patio door curtain ideas that’ll help you to make the most of this under-appreciated area of your home.

1. Elegant Linen Drapes to Obscure Light

When you want to take a room up a notch in style and elegance, install drapes. Drapes come in a variety of colors, textures, and styles, but their most distinguishing characteristic is material type. When you’re dressing a door that leads to a natural outdoor setting, you can’t go wrong with crisp linen. Linen is an organic material that pairs well with outdoor landscaping and furnishings​.


Typical linen draperies have a tight weave that obscures direct sunlight but doesn’t totally block it. This is a wonderful choice if you want stylish or even personalized curtains that do double duty to protect your interior furnishings from premature fading by the sun’s ultraviolet light. 


Linen drapes work well with standard sliding glass patio doors. Add a custom valance to bring more drama to the space. Folding patio doors also look well dressed when paired with linen drapes. Hang the drapes on a rod that extends past the folding doors. Push the drapes to the furthest ends of the rod, when you want to show off outdoor views.


The easy-care nature of linen is another benefit of this type of patio door curtain. Weekly vacuuming of your curtains with the proper vacuum cleaner attachment is advised to remove dust that regularly settles on them. However, you’ll want to clean the curtains every few years to get rid of dirt and any odors that the fabric traps from the air. While some curtain fabrics require expensive dry cleaning, you can clean unlined linen curtains by hand at home by soaking them in cool water with a gentle detergent. They’ll keep their looks if you dry them in the open air and not by machine.


Professionally dry clean linen drapes that have any of these four features.


- Fancy pleats
- Swags
- Beading
- Linings


2. Whimsical, Embroidered Sheers

Professional designers plan entire interior decor schemes around lighting. When your room depends on adequate natural light to look its best, then you’ll want to consider sheer patio door curtains. Sheer curtains let in more of the sun’s light than any other type of curtain, and they are a good choice when you want to diffuse harsh direct sunlight.


Besides softening the look of your space, sheer curtains add surprising style elements to a room. They come in a variety of textures and colors to match your existing furnishings. The most distinctive sheer patio door curtains have embroidered designs that give a room a more decorative look.


Patterned sheer curtains work well with most door types. However, you’ll find them most often paired with hinged patio doors and sliding glass patio doors. Hang sheers on curtain rods that suit your home’s design theme whether it be contemporary or traditional. While you’ve probably seen home decor magazines that feature gauzy sheer curtains that sweep the floor in a dramatic fashion, you’ll want to modify the look for your hinged or sliding glass patio door. Make sure to place sheer curtains at a height that allows them to fall an inch above the floor to ensure that they don’t get overly dirty or become a trip hazard to people passing through the patio door.


3. Cinched French Door Curtains

French doors add character to traditional home interiors and are one of the most popular patio door styles with many homeowners. These classic, expansive entry ways that feature distinctive window panes can leave you scratching your head about how to dress them with curtains.


Decided that maintaining your privacy trumps showing off the appealing design of your french patio doors? You’ll want to choose curtains that are both practical and stylish. Forget about boring, grommet-hung curtain panels. Consider french door curtains that you can gather in the middle to create a decorative, cinched look.


French door curtains have small one-inch pockets at the top and bottom of the curtain. Designers hang them on small curtain rods with brackets that sit out about a half of an inch from the door. After threading the rods through the pockets at the top and bottom of the curtains, attach the curtains to the door. Use curtain ties to gather the curtains in the middle for great style and a little more privacy.


One of the great advantages of using french door curtains is that they come in a variety of materials. Their simple design has also inspired some do-it-yourself home decorators to purchase fabric and make their own french door curtains for a custom look. Hardware manufacturers responded to consumer demand in this area by making curtain rods for french doors that have integrated, magnetic brackets. Many exterior french doors are made of metal, and the new curtain rods allow homeowners to hang french door curtains without drilling holes in their doors.


Thatch Umbrella on Beach

4. Patterned Curtain Panels for a Bold Statement

Some patio doors take up a good deal of wall space, and those expansive views of the outdoors are a bonus for bringing in natural light and scenery during the day. As evening approaches, you’ll want patio door curtains that deliver privacy and a big punch of style. Patterned curtain panels do both.


Patterned curtain panels come in many different materials that bring fresh textures to classic prints. They work well in both modern and traditional home decor environments. Designers often use curtain panels that feature patterns of clean lines or geometric shapes as statement pieces to cover expansive sliding glass patio doors and folding patio doors.


Caring for patterned curtain panels can be as easy or complex as your choice of fabric for them. Wash unlined cotton, linen, and silk curtain panels at home by hand. When in doubt about cleaning curtains, always follow the care tag.


These curtain panel materials are usually dry clean only.


- Tapestry
- Crushed velvet
- Suede
- Satin
- Brocade

5. The Layered Look for Thermal Insulation

Practical energy efficiency marries soft elegance when pleated sheers are layered with insulating liners. If you live in the northern hemisphere, a south-facing patio door delivers loads of natural sunlight into a space. This is a great benefit during the winter months, but it can make your home uncomfortably warm in the summer and drive up your electricity bills during those months. Also, you may love the look of sheer curtains that fall beneath a simple valance, but this look does little to retain indoor heat during winter.


Hanging liners behind a pair of sheer curtains allows you to block the heat of the sun when you need to. When light and heat are wanted, simply draw back the lined portion of your curtains and let the sheer curtain panels remain in place. Adding liners behind sheer curtain panels lets you add insulation to your patio door without hanging bulky drapes.


6. Billowy Curtains for a Patio Door and Window Pairing

It’s common to see hinged patio doors that are flanked with windows on each side. Unify the look with curtains that cover both your show-stopper patio doors and their side-kick windows. If you want to set a casually elegant ambiance for your living area, choose curtains that are made of medium-weight fabrics that have subtle sheen. Forego the grommet-style panels in this setting. Go for loosely pleated curtains that hang by decorative hooks. Pleat styles to consider include the Cartridge, Flat Panel, and Parisian Drapery Pleats.

To get an idea of how these types of curtains will look across your set of hinged patio doors and windows, check out this picture that was published by Houzz of a Victorian sunroom adorned with curtains.

Need Your Own Inspiration?

Need more inspiration when selecting colors, patterns, and textures for your patio door curtains? Make your interior decor blend seamlessly with the outdoor furnishings on your patio. Your patio umbrella is often the focal point of the space and choosing patio door window dressing that matches it is simply genius. 

People Also Ask...

What size should my curtain be for my patio doors?


Ideally, you want the size of your curtains to be 6 inches longer than each side of the patio door itself. This means that if you have a door that is 36 inches wide, your curtain should be approximately 48 inches wide.


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