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Color Fastness

Selecting Fabric or Material for your Curtains Considering Color Fastness

Color Fastness in Fabric for Curtain Selection Choices

Lets face it a completely colorfast fabricdoes not exist, some will change uniformly, so their color just pales and is only noticeable to you, others will darken or become streaky.

The process that the fabric is dyed will often contribute to the colorfastness. Vat dyeing for natural fibers has a better colorfastness result, as does solution dyeing for synthetic fibers. Printed and surface dyed fabric is the fade resistant method.

Most fabrics today can withstand being washed and are wash fast, but the problem of light fastness (or being damaged by UV light) is still prevalent and probably the most annoying.

A good way to reduce fading of curtains is to use blinds on the windows

A good way to reduce fading of curtains is to use blinds on the windows, this photograph shows how a combination of slimline venetian blinds cut out the light and this colorful goblet pleated window valance adds design and decorating flair to the window.

Mass produced fabrics tend to be less prone to fading than small exclusive batches of fabrics. Perhaps because the larger companies test their dyed product for colorfastness more regularly and have the ability and resources to make greater changes in production.

Choosing Colorful Fabrics for Curtains

Unfortunately it’s always the colors that catch our eye and beg us to use them for decorating our windows but they are the problem makers – hot pinks, deep greens and blues have the highest proportion of color loss and unfortunately are usually chosen emotionallly in our decision making. The only way to address this issue is by accessing how the color was achieved as discused above and by careful selection and placement, i.e. keeping them out of direct sunlight and heavy amounts of artificial light. Using under curtains or blinds as the primary source of light filter.

About the Author – Lee Brown

Lee Brown is the co founder of, she has worked in the Interior Design Industry for over 23 years, specializing in commercial, hospitality, high end architectural homes and retail design. Over the past 13 years Lee and Chris Brown have been collating their wealth of design knowledge to provide free interior decorating education to the world. Make sure you register for your free ecourse today. Free Curtain Design eCourse