What are Patio Curtains?

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  • Written By: Sheri Cyprus
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 18 November 2019
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Patio curtains are drapery designed for or used on outdoor living spaces such as porches. They may cover the ceiling of an outside patio space or only the sides, depending on the style of porch. Many types of patio curtains add both style and privacy to outdoor areas used for dining or relaxing. The styles and types of patio curtain designs vary widely.

For example, some outdoor curtains are custom designed to fit unique pool, deck or tent areas and these are typically expensive. On the other hand, a simple, rectangular patio curtain panel with an upper open hem and a lower hemmed edge can usually be created by anyone with basic sewing skills. A patio curtain may be designed to slide open or closed along a top rack or rod. Some of these outdoor drapes have ties to allow them to remain open or stay closed even in the windiest weather. Small weights may be added to the hem of patio curtains to help keep them more stationary during gusts of wind.


Typically, patio curtains are made from heavyweight fabric that also may be water-resistant. Plain white curtains are a popular choice to add a feeling of crisp breeziness as well as showcase beautiful pool areas and decks. Colorful striped patterns are also commonly used for many patio curtain styles. Cotton is the classic material for patio curtains, but other fabrics are also used. Gauze or netting create semi-transparent patio coverings, while thicker materials block out more sunlight as well as add more privacy to outdoor porch areas.

Opaque canvas curtains for patios offer the most blockage and privacy. They also require heavy duty needles and thread for their stitching. Canvas may be used for awnings above exterior doors as wells as for retractable patio curtains that are almost wall-like in effect. Their thickness and retractable qualities allow for patio privacy when desired, but also maximum openness when the curtains are raised. Many patio curtain styles don't simply cover windows or partial walls, but rather create the feeling of an enclosed porch when the drapery isn't pulled open.

Patio canopy curtains create a fabric ceiling on a porch or other outdoor space. These may be draped simply across a metal frame or be elaborately swirled in rosette or other patterns. Side styles of patio curtains may be long enough to just reach the cement or wood decking, or they might be designed to puddle lavishly on the floor.


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Post 2

@ocelot60- That is a great idea! I have some patio curtains that I don't use very often because I have a difficult time keeping them closed. In the spring I'm going to try planting flowers the same color as the curtains and use the pots they are in to secure the curtains.

Post 1

Patio curtains are also great for shielding the sun from those who are enjoying the patio. I have some that I placed in font of several potted plants. I pull the curtains frequently when I am entertaining on the patio, and use the plants to keep them securely closed so the wind doesn't blow them open.

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