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A Guide To Blinds For Your Home

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By themselves, windows are really just gaps in walls. If you add a window cover such as blinds, shades or shutters, and you have privacy, control over the amount of sunlight that is reflected in the space as well as a nicer room. When choosing window shades for a single window or the entire house it is important to think about window shape and size and the way you will use the space and the amount of light you’d like to let in and block out.

Blinds can be purchased at furniture stores for homes or home centers, paint and tile stores and through an interior designer. All allow you to see and feel the product they sell, and many of them offer samples and swatches (for a refundable fee) so you can test various options at home. If you’re concerned about precisely measuring your windows, decorators, and some retailers will do the task. If your blinds do not fit perfectly, they’ll get adjustments at no cost.

Blinds bought from an online catalog or over the phone (many homes magazines feature small advertisements that advertise “direct from the manufacturer” prices) implies that you’re accountable for the accuracy of measurements. should the blinds not fit properly, it’s your problem. Although you may save money this way however, the quality of the blinds will vary. Beware of unfamiliar brands, and ask if the blinds are first- or second-class. You may not have the same variety of blinds you would at a home center. Read return policies and guarantees carefully prior to purchasing. However, before shopping you should know what to buy.

Not Just For Windows

Blinds and shutters live beyond the window. They can be joined by tall shutters that are able to function as room dividers. Hanging from the ceiling, blinds can also separate spaces and conceal messy laundry or work spaces.

Honeycomb Shades

Made of spun polyester, honeycomb shades are extremely flexible, making them a good choice to fit windows of unique shapes. They are available as triple, double or single combs (see below for a picture). The combs provide this shade its distinctive look, but they also capture air, making the shades extremely sound and thermal insulation. For instance, Hunter Douglas’ triple-cell honeycomb boasts an R-value of 4.8–at the center of the shade. Honeycombs that weigh less can be installed vertically , or typically, horizontally. They also offer varying levels of light control. For windows that face west, it is possible to block out all light on hot days. However, if your bedroom is facing east, you may be more interested in keeping early-morning sunlight out of your eyes. For other windows, sheer or translucent shades may be more appropriate.

The sizes of pleats begin around 3/8 inch. and can go to as high as 2 inches. They are characterized by their sharp, elegant lines and clean lines, honeycomb shades are great in contemporary environments and windows without molding. Many people like the subtle style of honeycomb shades. They blend with the wall color and you can achieve striking effects by contrasting the shades’ color to the walls. If you’re looking for a soft treatment, choose fabric-look shades and match them with boldly patterned draperies or an draped valance.

Horizontal Blinds Horizontal

Although they can be difficult to clean, their adjustable louvers allow for great control of light. The more slats per feet, the less light will escape through the blind. And blinds with cord holes on the back of slats will close more tightly. This is an option to consider if desire them to be light-tight. As for cleaning, some newer products have a factory-applied antistatic-electricity treatment to keep dust from building up.

The vanes on blinds come in wood, metal, and vinyl, in numerous colours and finishes. Ladders– the nylon lift cords that run along both edges of the blind are able to be left unadorned or dressed up with tapes of decorative design that match with or contrast with the blind or interior color scheme.

Wood and faux-wood horizontal blinds that are more expensive than their metal and vinyl counterparts, are extremely popular in the present. They are equally at home in rustic, traditional paneled homes , as well as contemporary ones. Blinds made of wood designed for rooms with high humidity must be warp- and mildew-resistant.

Select the slat width that is proportional to the dimension of your window. A 1/2- or 1-in. slat will work well for small or average windows, whereas a 2-in. vane is best for bigger windows or a bolder look. Better blinds have a slim stack when opened; several manufacturers have models where they completely cover the louvers, which is ideal for modern interiors.

Window Shadings

A fairly new combination of horizontal blinds and honeycomb shades feature louvers that are opaque sandwiched between sheer fabric panels. This lets light through but keeps glare to minimal. Shades are especially useful when windows face south or east. Once the shade is reduced, the slats with no ladder can be tilted, opened to allow for light filtered and a partial views or closed to provide complete privacy with the cord. Using an inside mount, they can fit in windows with arch or angled tops.

Although they’re elegant, shadings can be adapted to different styles, from informal to formal. Hang them by themselves for the look of a more refined, streamlined look. For more drama you can put them on top of curtains, similar to how you would with normal sheers.

Roller Shades

Before the advent of the mini-blind, roller shades were the most popular choice for easy, low-maintenance window shades. Although they’re offered in translucent fabric and films as in traditional opaque materials, they aren’t the most efficient choice for light control: The shades can be set upwards or downwards, and offers no diffusion or direction.

However, there has been some advancements. The spring-loaded roller from the past is now updated by incorporating a clutch mechanism as well as continuous pulley and cord which permits more precise positioning of the shade without snapbacks that snap back in a flimsy way. Options for installation now include a reverse-roll, where the shade material slides on top of the roller, obscuring the roller and giving it an elegant appearance. Shades with rollers provide rooms with an airy, retro feel, reminiscent of a weekend cottage. Prices vary based on the materials used for the shade.

Vertical Blinds

Most commonly used over sliding glass doors Vertical blinds can also be ideal for tall casement windows, fixed glass windows or bow windows, and also with an angular or arch-top window. As a long typecast commercial window covering, vertical blinds can bring a sense of drama to rooms with their strong lines. More than any other window treatment, they enhance the ceiling height of rooms, something to keep in mind when you have low ceilings in your home. They are available in fabric, vinyl or even in a match to wallpaper (by placing strips of material on its front) Vertical blinds permit excellent air circulation and are an excellent option for protecting against UV rays which could be a challenge in west- and south-facing windows. The decorative vanes can be fitted into plastic backs which shield them from sun damage and present an attractive and uniform look to the street.

Free-hanging, slats hanging free, set at the bottom of the slats to ensure they are in order, are another option. To hide their hardware, you can cover vertical blinds off by putting on headslats that match the vanes.


Shutters with their distinctive design, bring a lot of character into rooms. The size of the slats is an important role in the appearance. Vanes may measure up to 5 1/2 in. (these are referred to as “plantation shutters”) and down to 3/4 in. The stained or painted solid wood versions are the traditional options. Smooth white louvers, often made from vinyl, are more contemporary, particularly when they’re installed in an angled or arch-top window. The majority of shutters are flat with the ends cut at 90deg. For something more unique, choose the slats that have rounded edges as well as beaded blades and S-shaped. With louvers that can be adjusted and control rods that can be centered, offset or concealed away from view.

Hinged shutters can be seen on windows. However, for door treatment they’re typically hung from a track and then rolled or move out of the way. Framed shutters give a more polished look to an installation. If you’re looking for shutters with an outside of the norm finish or paint be aware that it’s a difficult painting project; Pinecrest offers this service to its customers at an additional cost. With the low sun levels of winter months shutters could block more light than you’d like; try installing them on the lowest portion of your window rather than the entire height. They require little maintenance, a simple dusting is all they require. Shutters can be priced in various ways in the form of square inches or square foot, or by the panels.

Measuring and Mounting

If you decide to measure the openings of blinds on your own, you’ll need to decide to mount them inside mount as well as outside. Inside mounts show off the window’s casing as well as its shape. It’s like the distinctive appearance of a bay window. Outside mounts can hide windows with different sizes in a way that unifies and balances their appearance. To ensure that the results are accurate utilize a tape measurement using a rigid metal rule.

Cord Safety

Aware of the dangers of strangulation accidental caused by the dangling cords of control blinds makers have dealt with security issues in different ways. Break-apart tassels such as Hunter Douglas’ Break-Thru (shown) split open under stress. Another improvement is the single cord control, in which the loop design is eliminated. Wand controls also take over the loops of cords. One of the best options is a remote-controlled blind that features an automatic stop feature like garage doors. If your blinds do not have any of these features, be sure to put in a high cleat to neatly keep loose cords out of the reach of young children.