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Definition of Grommet Drapes & Back-Tab Drapes

By Karen Sweeny-Justice
There are many ways to hang curtains and drapes.

When choosing drapes and curtains, you are not limited to traditional pleated styles. Grommet and back-tab drapery styles are two different options worth considering when you are looking to update window treatments in your home or office.

Grommets Defined

Grommets are circular rings made of metal, plastic or hard rubber that are punched into fabric by machines. Commonly used in industrial applications, grommets vary in size depending on what is going to be inserted through them.

Grommet Drape Selection

Purchase a curtain rod smaller in diameter than the diameter of the grommet that matches either the color of the grommets or the decor of your room. Drapery grommets are typically placed within an inch of the top edge and the curtain rod is visible between the folds of fabric.

Grommet Benefits

Easy to open, grommet drapes give a room a clean, contemporary look. When closed, the fabric drapes itself into natural folds without formal pleats. Available in washable or dry-cleanable fabrics, grommet drapes slide on and off for easy cleaning.

Back-Tab Drapes

Back-tab drapes have pockets sewn onto the back through which a pole or rod is inserted. The tabs and the curtain rod are hidden behind fabric panels when viewed from the finished side.

Selection

Back-tab drapes are available ready to hang, but you can sew pocket tabs to the back of existing hook-hung drapes and convert them into back-tab drapes that slide onto round rods.

Back-Tab Benefits

The folds between the pockets of back-tab-hung drapes flow naturally into a faux-pleated look. The size of the tag’s opening determines the correct size of the curtain rod. Back-tab drapes fit traditional curtain rods, but look best on rounded pole rods. They are easily removed for cleaning.

About the Author

Karen Sweeny-Justice is a writer living in Surprise, Ariz. Her work has appeared in "Writer's Digest" magazine and "RubberStampMadness" magazine, as well as in newspapers around the United States. She also writes book reviews for "RT Book Reviews" magazine.