How to Pick Out Curtains for a White Wall in a Living Room

Any white living room walls can feel drab and lifeless, but many people, particularly apartment dwellers, have no choice but to live surrounded by them due to rental agreements or budgetary issues. However, solutions for adding colour to the walls exist that don't require paint buckets, hours of work and paint-splattered hair. Curtains can provide your walls with colour without the messiness of painting. Additionally, they have the ability to enhance the decorating styles you already have in your home.

Identify the decorating schemes of both your home and your living room, as they will help determine what colour and types of curtains will complement your current decorating styles. For example, a modern decor style may call for a vibrantly coloured curtain, such as deep red or blue, with little adornment. On the other hand, a room featuring more of a cottage style might include a sheer curtain of misty green or light yellow.

Measure the wall. While this may seem obvious, there's more to it than just getting out the measuring tape. You want to determine whether or not you want the curtains to hang from the ceiling to the floor or if you'd like a bit of space between the ceiling and the top of the curtain. Additionally, if you have walls that are oddly shaped, like an A-frame, decide how to cover them as well.

Select a curtain fabric that complements your furniture. Because you're not adding visual interest to your walls via paint, you must do it another way. Textured materials, like brocade or muslin, or patterned fabrics, like toile, paisley or plaid, can complement or contrast with your current decor.

Arrange your curtains into interesting styles. For example, hang a roll-down Asian shade and a cotton curtain from a bamboo rod to create a Zen look in your living room.


Decorative accessories bring additional elements to your decorating efforts. For example, if you've hung a full wall curtain, place a piece of sculpture or a series of vases of varying heights filled with dried flowers in the corner next to the curtain.


If you are restricted from painting the walls where you live, you might also have a restriction on hanging things on the wall because of the holes the nails will leave in the wall. Always check with your landlord before decorating to be safe.

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About the Author

Buffy Naillon has worked in the media industry since 1999, contributing to Germany's "Der Spiegel" magazine and various websites. She received a bachelor's degree in German from Boise State University. Naillon also attended New York University and participated in the foreign exchange program at Germany's Saarland University. She is completing her master's degree in educational technology at Boise State.