Whether purchasing custom drapes or buying off-the rack, deciding which drapery header best suits your room can be overwhelming as there are so many options. Before you pick the header, first you have to determine the function you want your drapery to serve. Custom drapes can be expensive so choosing a style and fabric that can stand the test of time is important.

To make the decision process easier, here are some examples of popular drapery headers that are great for interiors whether traditional, contemporary or modern. ­

The Right Drapery Header Reinforces Style

Pinch Pleats

Use pinch pleats for a classic look. Pinch pleats are considered the most popular style of pleats where the fabric is gathered into two or three folds and pinched to create one pleat. This style of pleat is more traditional and great for classic or formal rooms.

Top Tack Pleats

Pick top tack pleats for a relaxed elegant look. Similar to pinch pleats, in top tack, pleats are gathered together in twos or threes but in this case they are pinched at the top of the header. If you want fullness and volume, but a bit of a relaxed update, top tack pleats will achieve this. This style is a relaxed yet still has the elegance of pinch pleats.

Inverted or Box Pleats

Pick Inverted pleats for an up-scale contemporary or modern room. Inverted pleats are a modern interpretation of a pleated drapery, where the fabric is folded into pleats on the front creating fullness with a clean and simple flat panel header that brings an unfussy look better suited to more contemporary rooms.


Select grommets for a casual look. If you don’t want to opt for pleats, grommet drapes are a cost effective and simple style that leans towards contemporary settings. This style of curtain creates clean, simple lines and is easy to install. Less expensive because there isn’t usually the same fullness as traditional draperies, and less labour intensive to create them, these are great for a temporary solution like an apartment or rental condo where you don’t want to invest in a long-term solution.


Use ripple-fold for a sleek architectural look. Similar to Grommet draperies, ripple-fold are simple yet elegant and great for any style of décor. This style of curtain is stiffened with buckram to hold the ripples and attached to the curtain rod using ring clips. They can be installed on a rod, or for a more seamless effect, channel mount them to the ceiling.

So there is really something for everyone. The right drapery header will reinforce the style you love.

Here are some of our favourite retail drapery suppliers.

West Elm has some terrific side panels at great prices

Bloomingdales has lots of stylish choices

Pottery Barn a go-to for a wide range of drapery options, including room darkening, and great hardware styles

Pottery Barn Kids also has some terrific styles

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My standard disclaimer: Please note, some of these items may be offered through affiliate links which means I could get a small commission if you order. That will never influence what I find lovely and want to share with you. I always offer suggestions I would buy for my home or recommend to a client. Also, rest assured it won’t affect the price you would otherwise pay.