Aside from curtain style, fabric choice will have the most impact on the overall look and budget of your curtain project. There are hundreds of fabrics and colors to choose from. See our individual fabric pages for detailed explanations of the various fabrics available.
In most cases, we recommend Inherently Fire Resistant (IFR) fabrics unless there is a good reason not to use them. IFR fabrics last longer, look better over time, are more durable, are more easily cleanable, and do not require retreating with caustic chemicals to maintain their flame resistance properties. Their dense weave also tends to block light more effectively.
Most synthetic IFR fabrics will cost a little more than an identical cotton version. But since synthetics tend to be more opaque, a lighter weight fabric can often be used. Typically, this entirely offsets the cost difference and has the added benefit of reducing curtain weight – which makes the curtains easier to handle and causes less wear on tracks and rigging.
There are still many reasons to select cotton fabrics, however. Choosing a stage curtain fabric can be very subjective. Some people simply like cotton better. Curtains used to dampen acoustical problems work better if they are cotton. Cotton fabrics sewn “nap up”, so the pile lays open, have been shown to do the most effective job, although they do not look as nice and may tend to collect excess dust.Click Here for our Interactive Fabric Selection Video including a helpful quiz, printable chart, and MORE!