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What Are Back Tab Curtains?

Fern Fischer

Tab tops make hanging curtains on a regular or decorative rod easy. The tabs are finished, flat tubes of fabric sewn as a series of evenly spaced strips to the top edge of the curtain panel, with each strip creating a loop. Typically about 2 inches wide, the fabric strips match or harmonize with the curtain fabric.

Back tab curtains hang neatly from rings or directly from a rod.

Both strip ends are either stitched to the curtain top to make a loop, one end of the strip is folded to the front and secured with a decorative fastener, or both strip ends are sewn to the back of the curtain panel -- the method used to make back tab curtains. On back tab curtains, the fabric tabs are not visible from the front of the panel.

Hanging Back Tab Curtains

Slide the rod through the loops created by the stitched-down tabs on the back of each curtain panel; then simply hang the rod and adjust the curtain for the fullness you want. You can also use pinch-grip rings, placing the rings along the top edge of the curtains and sliding the rod through them. Attach each ring over a tab area for stronger support. This also allows the curtains to drape into gentle folds between the rings.

Decorating With Back Tab Curtains

When you slip the rod through the back tabs, the upper edge of the curtain covers the rod. A rod with decorative finials enhances the window treatment. Back tab curtains can also be part of an elegant window dressing when used under a valance or pelmet.