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Bathroom Curtains

Bathroom curtains aren't just for windows. They can cover a variety of sins or add comfort and a decorating touch. If you are looking for an inexpensive way to change the feel of your bathroom, consider bathroom curtains for uses other than just covering the window.

A bathroom can be cold, industrial-looking place or a vibrant, comforting and invigorating space. Bathroom curtains can help make this vital difference.

First, what can benefit from bathroom curtains? How about all those hard, shiny surfaces that make you feel like you're in an airport: the tub, shower walls and pipes? Maybe the ho-hum square tile walls should be curtained (unless, of course, they're $5 apiece not-ho-hum Italian marble tiles!). If it's a big bathroom, the space between his side and hers can be separated by a bathroom curtain. It's a good idea to hide the awkward stalk beneath a free-standing sink with a bathroom curtain, then use wire racks to hold toiletries. Open linen shelves and hamper closets look better with bathroom curtains. Even the toilet's ugly plumbing can be curtained! Of course, you want curtains over the windows.

Now, what colors should bathroom curtains be? Generally, dark down low and light up above work well. When applying makeup it's best to have plenty of light, and light pastel colors will reflect lamplight back on your face without distorting it as dark heavy colors might. Soothing, dark colors from the waist down give the bathroom a snug warmness and a safe place to cast your eyes when bright light hurts -- like the morning after the office Christmas party. Bathroom curtain colors may contrast or harmonize with sink, tub, and tile surfaces.

Next, consider the materials to be used in bathroom curtains. Natural fibers, such as cotton, will catch water and mildew if they are near the tub, toilet, sink, or shower. It's best to use synthetics such as nylon or polyester near sources of splashes. Window bathroom curtains should provide privacy without totally screening out sunlight. Bathroom curtains for linens shelves or closets may be synthetic, but natural muslin creates a softer feeling.

The patterns of bathroom curtains should contrast with nearby surfaces. Tubs and showers are typically vast expanses of dull, uniform color white, worst of all. A boldly patterned tub or shower curtain makes a room feel bigger and more vibrant, warmer on those cold winter mornings. On the other hand, linen shelves and closets set in tiled walls look better with uniformly colored bathroom curtains. A solid colored sink should get patterned bathroom curtains, while a tile or granite sink could use a solid colored bathroom curtain. The same goes for windows; patterns on solid colored walls and solids on patterned walls.

Bathroom curtains for the shower or tub area deserve special attention, because they dominate a bathroom. A double curtain is always recommended. The inner curtain, which tucks inside of the tub or shower stall, should be a light colored, water-resistant woven cloth. Avoid hard sheet plastics that get stiff in cold air and do not mold themselves to the contours of shower or tub; they tend to let water leak out. Likewise, inner curtains should have small suction cups every foot or so, allowing you to stick them snugly to shower or tub walls. The outer curtain should be woven material too, but water and mildew resistance are vital. Both inner and outer curtains should be long enough to reach within six inches of the floor and ceiling.

Most people don't spend a lot of time the bathroom, but it's some of the most critical time they spend at home. There's important business to be done, whether it's applying makeup, shaving, or the "business" sort of business. The right mix of bathroom curtains can create just the right mood for whatever you must "take care of" in the bathroom.

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