Anyone can wax poetic about the romance of a claw-foot tub, but rarely does anyone have anything that nice to say about a shower curtain. Memories of thin plastic sheets in communal dorms, locker rooms, and shared apartments have given shower curtains a bad rep over the years. To most, a shower curtain is a necessity—and never a delight.
We urge you to shrug off your preconceived notions and think of them as a chance to add texture and balance to your bathroom. Shower curtains are the centerpiece of small bathrooms, and they offer ample opportunity to instantly upgrade any bathroom.
Sure, you can't soak in it nor will you pay attention to it mid-shampoo. But, every time you or a guest walks in, it will be there waiting to make an impression. Invest a little time and thought and browse these 16 stylish shower curtain ideas to get you started.
Tie Everything Together
Echo the color of your tile with a simple shower curtain that has just a border of detail. If you already have great color in your bathroom, this shower curtain will look more personal while still letting your other design choices take center stage. The vertical border also doesn't compete with the curved tiles.
Make a Subtle Statement
The tight lines of detail on this shower curtain evoke formal parchment and leather-bound first editions. Adding a bit of darkness to the white curtain helps the room flow and guides the eye to travel from tile to curtain to tile.
Complement Your Best Features
A pink bathroom will never go out of style. Because it rests just above the tub and is a couple shades darker, the design on this shower curtain acts as a frame for the tile and the gorgeous copper spouts. Keeping it in the color family keeps it cohesive.
Don't Forget About Texture
A textured white shower curtain feels at home in a bathroom that's already busy (in the best way) with wallpaper, colored tiles, and built-in shelving. It adds just enough visual interest, and the cloth warms up the bright-white tile.
Don't feel like washing your cloth shower curtain every other week? Double up and put a white synthetic liner behind it. It will protect it from moisture, and a clear liner will quickly look dirty with buildup.
Bring the Drama
This curtain has us questioning if it's a ball gown or a shower curtain. It doesn't matter—we're amending our goals of owning a vintage claw-foot tub to owning a vintage claw-foot tub with a dramatic, floor-sweeping curtain like this one.
Go Halfsies (Or Less)
Don't want to fully commit to color? Opt for a dip-dye curtain. Bonus points if you take care to line it up to your valve.
Think of the Fabric
Remember what we said about that thin plastic sheet? This textured white shower curtain is the solution. It's clean and simple, and the slight texture keeps it from looking shiny or stark next to all of the white tile.
A shower curtain with a large pattern or scene can be whimsical but still tasteful, especially if you choose natural designs in neutral color palettes, like these sparse trees or a palm toile in gray.
Opt for the Unexpected
At first glance, this shower curtain looks more like couch upholstery than it does anything else, but the thick weave and pattern as well as the rich color beautifully contrast the room and geometric lines of the tile.
A shower curtain is often the largest feature in a bathroom. Choosing a hefty curtain can ground the space.
Keep it Clean Yet Sophisticated
A waffle weave shower curtain reminds one of a plush, luxurious hotel robe, and it can add a bit of coziness to a small, windowless bathroom. Plus, it looks great with gold hooks.
Contrast Vintage with Modern Cool
Nothing can compete with a copper claw-foot tub. It's an unmovable, unstoppable force of design and luxury, and the rest of the bathroom just has to fall in step.
Heather gray curtains keep this vintage bathroom grounded in the present, and their shortened length makes so that they don't distract from the pièce de résistance.
Commit to Color
Matching your towels with the same fabric and color of shower curtain is a pro-level move. The weight and warmth contrast the cool blue tiles, helping to make them pop even more. The brownish rust color also unites the wood with the rest of the room.
Don't Fear Sheer
The sheerness of this curtain prevents it from blocking the window, and it casts a soft, filtered light in this classic black and white bathroom. The horizontal pattern keeps it from being too sheer though, or otherwise, you'd be distracted by the outline of shower knobs and such.
If you're painting your bathroom a bold color, you might want to avoid choosing a solid shower curtain. It can divide up the space and make it look blocky, which you especially want to avoid when you're blessed with such high ceilings. like this bathroom by Dazey Den.
The mod print here feels both fresh and classic. Just take the time to get as close of a color match as possible.
Pay Attention to Proportions
This curtain's white top and bottom help make the ceiling feel taller than it actually is, as they perfectly line up with the tub-shower combo and almost blend in. The proportions and the ultra-thin stripes keep it from being too loud next to the art and tiled floor, too.
You don't have to choose a plain shower curtain if your bathroom has dramatic tile. Pair a large-format pattern with a smaller, more delicate pattern, and you can have the best of both worlds.