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Understanding Acoustics: How Curtains Can Improve Your Space

Understanding Acoustics: How Curtains Can Improve Your Space

Welcome to Direct Fabrics, where we're dedicated to helping you in understanding acoustics and how our products can make a difference in your living or working space. In this blog post, we will simplify the concept of acoustics, explain the importance of sound absorption and insulation, introduce you to our range of acoustic curtains, and guide you on choosing the right curtain for your specific needs.

Understanding the Issues

When it comes to acoustics, many people face various challenges in their living and working environments. These issues can include:

  1. Noise entering your room or space.
  2. Noise escaping from your space.
  3. Poor acoustics during rehearsals or recordings.
  4. Difficulty sleeping due to external noise, such as traffic, planes, or trains.
  5. Echoey and large spaces that affect sound quality.

Who Are We, and How Can We Help?

Edward Simon, Director of Direct Fabrics, found himself drawn into the world of acoustics due to the high demand for products like stage curtains and Hotel Co. We have been supplying curtains to care homes, schools, medical centres across the UK, and even global clients. Our commitment lies in providing clear information and certified products, ensuring you get the best value for your investment.

Understanding Acoustics

Sound absorption is a crucial concept in acoustics. It refers to the ability of materials to absorb sound, reducing echo and reverberation in a space. Even seemingly simple items like curtains can contribute to sound absorption. Adding soft furnishings, such as rugs, carpets, and curtains, can dampen sound and improve the acoustics in a room.

Testing and Certification

Our products undergo rigorous testing, including the EN ISO 354 acoustic absorption test. This test quantifies the sound absorption properties of materials, rating them from A to E, with A being the highest rating. Our face fabric achieves an impressive absorption rate of 0.95, which is equivalent to an A rating.

Sound Transmission and Acoustic Insulation

Another important aspect of acoustics is sound transmission and understanding acoustics insulation. We test our products to evaluate how much sound they block and how effectively they insulate a space. For instance, our herringbone-lined curtain, combined with our blackout fleece, achieved an 11-decibel reduction in sound transmission.

Innovative Testing

We also conducted unique tests, such as mounting curtains over windows to measure their impact. This test resulted in a 4-decibel improvement in sound insulation, which, although not drastic, can make a noticeable difference in reducing noise from outside sources.

Frequently Asked Questions: Understanding Acoustics

We've compiled some common questions about our curtains:

  1. Will the curtains reduce road noise?
    • Yes, our curtains can reduce road noise, yes, the curtain has been tested with double glazing to reduce external sound. See our review on the product page for success stories.
  2. Does doubling the product improve performance?
    • Doubling the product does not necessarily double the performance. The sound reduction follows a logarithmic scale, so the improvements are less dramatic with additional layers.
  3. Can the curtains stop sound from office doors?
    • While they can help, doors require specific soundproofing measures such as seals or heavier doors for better results.
  4. Will the curtains stop sound from passing between rooms?
    • Our curtains add an extra layer of insulation, reducing sound transfer between rooms. However, results vary based on wall composition.
  5. Do blackout curtains work well for acoustics?
    • Yes, our blackout curtains can help with acoustics due to their absorption properties and thickness.

Choosing the Right Curtain

To select the right curtain, consider your specific needs:

  • One-layer curtains are ideal for reducing echo and reverberation.
  • Two-layer curtains strike a balance between cost and performance.
  • Three-layer curtains, with two layers of lining, offer maximum sound absorption and insulation.


Direct Fabrics offers a range of certified curtains designed to improve acoustics in various spaces. While curtains may not work miracles, they can make a noticeable difference in reducing noise and improving sound quality. Contact our team for free samples, quotes, and personalized recommendations. We're here to help you find the perfect acoustic curtain for your needs. Thank you for reading!