How do I Choose the Best Curtain Holdbacks?

B. Miller

There are two different types of curtain holdbacks that may be used to tie curtains back away from the window and let in more light or a breeze during the summer; these include actual fabric curtain ties, which typically match the curtains for which they are used and must be tied and untied in order to hold the curtains, or curtain hooks, which are typically metal hooks mounted on the window frame. Fabric curtain ties may be a good choice if the curtains are not frequently untied, otherwise it can be annoying to constantly need to tie and untie them. Metal hooks are a more convenient option for daily use.

Fabric and rope holdbacks blend in with the curtain material.
Fabric and rope holdbacks blend in with the curtain material.

Fabric curtain holdbacks are often preferable because they occasionally come in the package when the curtains are purchased. In addition, they do not require any modification to the wall or window frame, which is especially important if you rent rather than own your home. They add aesthetic appeal to the curtains as well, and of course serve a functional purpose for holding the curtains back from the window. It may be difficult to replace them if they are damaged, however, since it might not be possible to get the same material, and may require replacing the entire curtain set.

Curtain holdbacks may be made of metal or fabric.
Curtain holdbacks may be made of metal or fabric.

Metal curtain holdbacks are some of the more common options chosen for use in the home. These typically look like decorative hooks; the flat backing is installed into the wall or window frame, and the curtain may simply be lifted and placed behind the hooks. Installing these curtain holdbacks is typically not difficult, but it will often require the use of a drill since placing screws in a wooden window frame can be difficult. This also has the potential to damage the window frame, and may not be allowed by a landlord in a rented home.

You may choose to purchase metal curtain holdbacks in stores or online, though there are often more options available online. Simple, modern designs with clean lines are common, as are floral designs. For children's rooms, sports themes, flowers, or butterflies are especially popular. They may be available in different colors to match as well, such as painted variations, brushed nickel, or a shinier silver appearance, just to name a few. They may also be available to match other types of decorative curtain hardware, such as the curtain rod and mounting brackets at the top of the window, and may be purchased in a set.

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Discussion Comments


@heavanet- If your curtains are long and have extra material at the ends, you can trim several pieces and turn them into curtain holdbacks. Just be sure that your measurements are accurate before you attempt this alteration, and that removing the material from your curtains won't ruin them.


@heavanet- Since you mention that your curtains are tan and floral, I assume that you have several colors to choose from to make matching curtain holdbacks. I think that the easiest way for you to do this is to pick a color that is in your curtains' pattern, and purchase some material to match it.

Next, cut your material into strands that are about one to two inches thick and about 12 to 15 inches long. Wrap them around your curtains and secure them with hooks on your window frame. Just like that, you will have new, inexpensive holdbacks that will look great with your curtains.


I have a set of curtains that I love, but they are older and I no longer have the matching curtain holdbacks. What is the best way to make new holdbacks that will look good with these tan and floral curtains?

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