Our collection of linen curtains is large, varied and incredibly beautiful. We offer linen curtains in a variety of colours, finishes and washings. Some of our most frequently asked questions are: do you have blackout curtains? Do linen curtains fade? Which curtains have a vintage look to them? To answer all of your questions we advise you to get in touch with us and visit our warehouse, but we would like to tell you a little bit about fading.
Do linen curtains fade?
It is a question we hear often: Will my linen curtains fade? In short: yes. Let us explain.
The facts about fading
Linen is a natural fabric and will change in colour when it is exposed to natural light, just like any other natural material. This doesn’t mean your linen curtains will be ruined. Quite the opposite! The fading of linen curtains creates depth and character and will make the fabric feel truly alive. Coloured linen fabrics are dyed with pigments which all have a different reaction to sunlight. This is something you can consider before deciding on a type of linen.
Should I choose another material?
Our answer is no. Why not? Because all fabrics will eventually fade, even plastic and synthetic materials. The only difference is that synthetic materials will not fade quite like linen does. Synthetic materials will start to look old and unkempt and might even wear out with bare spots and tears. Plastic slats and blinds will fade and look cheap and some materials will even deform. The paint on your window frames will fade in the sun, the paint on your walls will fade over time and the colours in your paintings will be affected by the sun. Fading is unavoidable, so don’t let it influence your choice of fabric.
Most people are worried about sunlight affecting their curtains, but living in the Netherlands, this really isn’t much of a concern. A lot of our customers live in sunnier places – like Ibiza – and still opt for linen curtains and unlined curtains! You would think they would have problems with their curtains fading, but really, it just adds to the charm of the fabric.
There are more elements that influence the fading of your curtains. For example, people who smoke indoors will notice their walls and curtains will slowly turn yellow. Airing your room, a good ventilation system and getting your curtains dry-cleaned every five years is advised.
The thickness of your actual windows also influences the fading of your curtains. Do you have double glazing? Then your curtains will be less likely to fade. Some houses even have slightly stained glass, which will make you curtains fade even slower. Curtains in a room facing north will also fade more slowly.
Should you protect your curtains?
We don’t think so. Lining your curtains is recommended when you want to use them as blackout curtains, like in a bedroom or presentation space. But fading will only happen on the side of the curtain that is facing the window and not on the side that is facing your room. So fading really shouldn’t be a reason to get your curtains lined. Evert Groot’s linen curtains are naturally strong and colourfast and lining your curtains will also take away some of the charm of your linen curtains. But in the end, the choice is yours.
If you really want to, you can give your curtains a uv-protection treatment. We do not recommend this, as this treatment will affect the structure of the fibre and changes the look and feel of the linen. But it is definitely an option for people who are particularly worried about fading.
What should I take into account when it comes to fading?
It is important that you start with a high quality fabric. This means the best quality yarn, a well-woven fabric, durable pigments, and expert treatment of the fabrics. Starting out with a good quality fabric will make sure that the fabric will age nicely. At Evert Groot – Etoffe Unique you can be sure to find fabrics of the highest quality.
You can also pay attention to the lightfastness of each fabric. In other words: how quickly a fabric will discolour. This depends on the pigments that are used to dye the fabric. In our webshop you can find this information for every linen under: “light fastness”. Example:
Light fast > 5
Except Natural: light fast 3-4
This information shows you how light-sensitive a fabric is. Everything above 5 is very lightfast. Some colour pigments are slightly less strong and therefore have a rating of 3 or 4. These are often the colours in which you will not really notice any discolouration, such as with the Naturals.
There are several options that really ensure minimal discolouration:
- You can opt for linen curtains with a stonewash finish (4 types) or for a special stonewash. These fabrics have a robust and washed look because of their treatment and are therefore “pre-discoloured”. What you see is what you get!
- You can opt for a “laundered” linen, such as the Berlin. This linen has been given a special treatment: it is brushed and washed, which has made the tops fade slightly, while the pigments remain in the structure of the fabric. This makes the pigment extra visible and the tops will not discolour.
- The “washed” linens are also a solution: the soap-washed finish ensures colour fastness and minimal sagging. Frequent brushing of the fabric creates a rich satin finish.
Everything loses some colour over the years and this is no different with linen curtains – albeit minimal. In our opinion, fading only makes your curtains more beautiful. Choose a linen and a colour that appeals to you and let us take care of everything else. We can guarantee a wonderful result that you will enjoy for years to come.