Why we're embracing the kitchen cabinet curtain trend

At a time when open shelving is everywhere, there's something comforting about drawing a curtain over our kitchen supplies

kitchen cabinet curtain in yellow check
(Image credit: Future)

The first time I saw kitchen cabinet curtains used was in the stunning home of Interior Design Masters season one winner, Cassie Nicholas. I loved how the patterned fabric softened the space, tying in perfectly with the old-world, cabinet de curiosités aesthetic of her home.

While the mention of cabinet curtains may be giving you intense flashbacks of old-fashioned, chintzy sink skirts at your Grandma's, but we're seeing it more and more right now. Incorporated into a modern kitchen, it's a glorious way to add something a little different.

Crisp white cotton, colored linens, bold florals or somewhere in between, a cabinet curtain is a renter-friendly kitchen design idea that makes an impact. Designer and upholsterer Micaela Sharpexplains why she thinks a cabinet curtain works so well. 

'Using curtains instead of cupboard doors is a great way to soften a usually very angular space and add textiles into the kitchen,' she says. 'It creates a look more aligned to cottagecore or a French aesthetic and takes the rigidity out of your cabinets. 

'I recommend using a thin stripe or gingham fabric,' adds Micaela.

If you think about it, your kitchen is full of hard wooden corners, tough materials and electric appliances. Bring in a cabinet curtain and it's instantly made more cosy. 

And it means you have somewhere to conceal that which you don't want to be seen, making it a great small kitchen idea. I tried the trend in my rented flat, and along with some fresh new cupboard handles, it's made my kitchen feel more homely.

My flat has a long hallway with the living room, bathroom and bedroom coming off it, with the kitchen at the far end. We keep the kitchen door open most of the time to let the light in, which means the washing machine is usually in full view as soon as you step in the door. 

yellow cabinet curtain

(Image credit: Future)

A reminder of the laundry we need to do isn't quite the 'welcome home' we want whenever we have managed to get out the house. So I made a curtain to cover it - it's far from perfect, but I really like it. 

I ordered some yellow and white checked fabric online, and a thin tension rod from Amazon that fits between the top of the washing machine and the kitchen counter. Then I just needed some hemming tape to wrap the material around the rod securely. You can also hem the bottom for a neater finish.

Millie joined Real Homes in early 2021 as a homes news writer. When she isn't writing about trends, makeovers and houseplant care, she spends her free time making tweaks to her rented flat in North London. Her next project is a very basic armchair reupholstering job to help create a cosy reading nook in her living room. She loves browsing antique centres, tending to her small front garden, and is never without some fresh flowers at home.