How to Hang Draping From the Ceiling Over the Bed

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Drapery on the ceiling turns any bed into a canopy.
Drapery on the ceiling turns any bed into a canopy. (Image: Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images)

You can turn any bed into a canopy bed by hanging a drapery from the ceiling. The technique works well to camouflage beds that lack headboards as well as ugly or damaged ceilings, and to jazz up ho-hum bedrooms. Use any fabric that catches your eye. You can hang the drapery across the ceiling to hide the ceiling and decorate without cutting off the bed from the room. Or you can hang the fabric down to enclose the bed and create a more private sanctuary.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Stud finder
  • Pencil
  • Electric drill
  • Phillips-head screwdriver (optional)
  • Curtain rods and O-rings (optional)
  • 4 ceiling hooks (optional)
  • Fabric hole punch

Draping Down

Measure the distance from your bedroom ceiling to the floor, and then measure your curtains. Make sure the curtains are long enough for you to get the drapery effect you want, such as a canopy bed, but not so long they drag on the floor.

Decide where to hang the draping for best effect. Some drapery, intended just for canopies, has fabric that attaches to a central piece with a hook. This is meant to go in the center of the bed and frame your bed as it drapes. If you're installing curtain fabric to mimic a four-poster canopy, each curtain needs its own curtain rod, meaning more holes. Use a stud finder to find studs in your ceiling, so you don't have to worry about fabric crashing on you while you sleep. Mark the right spot with a pencil for ease going forward.

Drill one hole for each fastener, using either an electric drill or a Phillips-head screwdriver, using the screws included with your canopy kit or curtain rod. If you're installing a curtain rod, have a friend hold the rod in position while you affix it to the ceiling with the screw.

Hang the canopy-style drapery from the hook to enjoy instant canopy. If you're hanging curtains, first slip the curtains onto O-rings. Next, attach the rings to the curtain rod by opening the ring, sliding them over and clipping them on.

Adjust the material when everything's hung properly to get a clean, even look.

Draping Across

Position the fabric against the ceiling, having a friend hold two ends while you hold the others. Let loose some material to create a drape effect, so the fabric billows out loosely instead of going taut. Once you have the desired effect, mark the ceiling corners with a pencil so you know where to hang.

Screw four ceiling hooks into the ceiling, one for each corner of the fabric. Use an electric screwdriver to start the hole, then screw the hooks in by hand. Tighten then fully before continuing.

Punch holes in the corner of your fabric with a fabric hole punch, which goes through the material cleanly.

Hang the fabric from the ceiling hooks. Since the hooks were measured after you positioned the fabric, you can re-create the same draped look just by sliding the fabric onto the hooks. Once you've got it in place, smooth any wrinkles with your hand.

Tips & Warnings

  • As an alternative to hooks, you can also staple-gun the drapery to the ceiling so it hangs across or down. This is a more permanent option, so renters should use hooks to avoid damaging the ceiling with staples.

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