You just moved into a new home with 9 foot ceilings, and you’re feeling excited to decorate your spacious, airy rooms. But when it comes time to pick out curtains, you find yourself wondering: what length curtains look best with extra tall ceilings?
It’s a great question, and the curtain length you choose can make a big difference in how your rooms look and feel. The right floor-skimming curtains can draw the eye upwards, making your ceilings appear even taller. But curtains that are too short can break up the vertical lines in a room, actually making high ceilings seem lower.
Follow this guide to discover the ideal curtain lengths for rooms with 9 foot ceilings. We’ll cover everything from standard sizing charts to style considerations, so you can nail the perfect drapes for your space. Time to take those high ceilings to new decorative heights!
How High Should You Hang Curtains on a 9 Foot Ceiling?
When it comes to 9 foot ceilings, most interior design experts recommend hanging your curtain rod about 12 inches below the actual ceiling. This general guideline leaves enough space between the ceiling and the top of the curtain to maintain that tall, sweeping feeling.
Hanging curtains too close to the ceiling can create a crowded, claustrophobic look. But leaving enough breathing room allows the curtains to gracefully drape near the floor, drawing attention to the vertical space.
Placing the rod 12 inches down also enables you to hang the curtains anywhere from slightly above the window frame to all the way up at ceiling height. The exact placement comes down to personal preference and the look you’re going for.
Hanging the curtains higher makes the ceiling seem even taller, since it extends the vertical line created by the drapes. Of course, you’ll need a longer curtain length to make this work. We’ll get into specific sizing in a moment.
Which Curtain Lengths Work Best for 9 Foot Ceilings?
When it comes to selecting the perfect curtain length for your tall ceilings, you’ll usually want to choose something between 96 and 108 inches long. Here’s a quick guide to finding the ideal size:
- 96 inch curtains: With the rod hung 12 inches from the ceiling, these curtains will fall from ceiling to floor. This is the standard size that works for most 9 foot ceiling rooms.
- 108 inch curtains: Allow for a slight puddling effect on the floor, creating a luxurious, formal look. Go for this length if you want that opulent feel.
- Longer is better: In general, longer curtains draw the eye upwards, expanding the feel of the room. Go for the longest length you can.
- Consider furnishings: If you have counters, furniture or other fixtures near the base of the window, adjust curtain length accordingly.
Matching your curtain length to the proportions of the room makes a huge difference. Floor-length curtains on 9 foot ceilings can make a space feel grand and cathedral-like.
Tailoring Curtain Size to Windows on High Ceilings
When choosing the perfect curtain length, you’ll also want to account for the size and placement of your windows. Here are some tips:
- Maximize floor-to-ceiling windows: Use long curtains that draw the eye from floor to ceiling to get the most impact.
- Complement smaller windows: Extending long curtains beyond a small window makes the window feel larger and taller.
- Mind the window frame: Make sure curtains are at least 4-6 inches above the window frame so they don’t crowd it.
- Highlight bay windows: The architectural shape of bay windows looks great framed with long, floor-length curtains.
Curtain Length Considerations for Different Rooms
The ideal curtain length can also vary from room to room depending on factors like use and furnishings. Here are some room-by-room guidelines:
Living Rooms: 96-108 inches works well for a formal living room look. In more casual living spaces, hanging curtains just above the window is fine.
Bedrooms: Shoot for 100-108 inch curtains to accommodate bed placements and bedding.
Bathrooms: For moisture and practicality reasons, mid-length curtains (60-72 inches) are best in bathrooms.
Kitchens: Use 60-96 inch curtains depending on your privacy needs and kitchen style.
Kids’ Rooms: Adjust lengths based on safety concerns around cords and also consider light control needs.
Get the Full Dramatic Effect with Puddle Curtains
If you really want to play up the opulence of your 9 foot ceilings, go for puddle curtains. These curtains are designed to pool elegantly on the floor, amplifying the luxurious feel.
For the full puddle effect, your curtains need to be equal to or even slightly longer than the height of the ceiling. So for 9 foot ceilings, puddle curtains would need to be 108-144 inches long.
The excess fabric puddling on the floor creates a formal, high-end aesthetic. Just be mindful of vacuum requirements and potential dirt or damage to fabric when using puddle curtains.
When to Embrace Shorter Curtain Styles
While floor-length is generally the move, there are times when shorter curtain styles can work well even on tall ceilings.
Cafe curtains that stop at the window sill make sense for kitchens and casual spaces. Tiered curtains add fullness without the need for excessive length.
In kids’ rooms or high-moisture areas like bathrooms, shorter functional curtains may be safer and more practical. Place the curtain rod at least halfway between the window and ceiling to keep the proportions balanced.
The key is to avoid awkward “in-between” lengths that stop 3-6 inches above the floor. This looks accidental, as if the curtains are simply too short.
Design Tips and Tricks for Decorating Tall Walls
To make the most of the vertical space created by 9 foot ceilings, keep these style tips in mind:
- Visually balance curtains and windows so one doesn’t overwhelm the other.
- Use light, bright colors which give the illusion of openness and height.
- Subtle vertical stripes or patterns on curtains draw the eyes upwards.
- Layer sheer behind fuller curtains to add an airy dimension.
- Clean lines, modern materials, and minimal clutter keep the look tall and open.
Hopefully this guide has helped illuminate the dos and don’ts of picking curtain lengths for rooms with 9 foot ceilings.
- Hang rods around 12 inches from ceiling and opt for floor-length curtains between 96-108 inches.
- Adjust for window size and room use.
- Maximize vertical space with high-hung, floor-skimming curtains.
- Avoid anything too short that breaks the tall room proportions.
With the right floor-length curtains tailored to your space, it’s amazing how curtains can enhance and accentuate the feeling of height created by your 9 foot ceilings. Happy hanging!