Buying Curtains – Gaijinhan

Buying Curtains

I haven’t bought any curtains since I came, partly because my previous apartment in Nagoya was fully furnished and my current apartment while as empty as my brain, has a shutter by the full length sliding doors so I don’t have a need for curtains. Although I’d really like to have them because shutters make me feel like a 引きこもり (hikikomori). I want to clarify, no, I’m not withdrawing from society. Neither am I shunning people.

So what can someone who doesn’t buy curtains tell you about them? It’s like asking your dad what it feels like to give birth, right? But in this case, I actually experienced giving birth yesterday. I mean buying curtains. A friend wanted to get curtains from 無印良品, better known as MUJI, and I accompanied her there. From the talk with the shop assistant, I learnt a lot of stuff about choosing curtains. There are 3 main points when buying curtains that fit your sliding doors.

1) Width
2) Height
3) Type

Duh? I know it sounds common-sensical enough but here comes the tips as to what length you should get.

Width
For the width, many people have the tendency to measure the length of the rods above the sliding doors because that’s where you hang your curtains right? Wrong! You should measure the actual width of your sliding doors. The formula is to multiply that by 1.05, and that’s the width of your ideal curtain. Always get something 5% wider.

Height
For the height, measuring the height of the actual sliding doors is a no-no. You should measure from the top of the sliding door to the ground and then subtract it by 2cm. That’s your ideal height. And if you intend to get another layer of thinner ones that let in the sunlight but disrupts view from the outside into your apartment, that should be another 2cm shorter. The staff at MUJI said the height can be adjusted around 5.5cm due to the way the curtains are hooked onto the rods so if you’re 1 or 2cm off your measurement, it shouldn’t be a big problem.

Type
What do I mean by type? There are 2 main types of rods for you to hang your curtains. One of which is attached to the wall and the other, to the ceiling. Make sure you know what kind yours is. You can also choose if you want one big piece of curtain that opens to one side or split it so that it opens left and right.

Functionality-wise, it is fairly easily understandable. Washability, amount of sunlight it blocks out, amount of noise it blocks out and what not. Having learnt this much, I still don’t think I’m going to get curtains mainly because I’m really out of cash. If you’d like to make me a Paypal donation, please make it a big one.

Thank you in advance.

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