Blinds

Blinds

Blinds General Inspiration Products Tips and Advice

Plantation Shutters VS Blinds: Which Should You Choose?

Choosing a window treatment for your home involves weighing out many different factor. Two main factors include practical ones and also design preferences. Should you go with plantation shutters or blinds for your windows? While both window treatment options provide you with privacy and control over how much natural light you’re getting, there are notable differences between the two that you should take into consideration. Keep the following in mind when you’re deciding between plantation shutters or blinds for your home.

Plantation shutters can enhance the appearance of any room in your home while also providing you with improved energy efficiency and plenty of natural light. You’ll find that there are several styles and louver sizes to choose from, as well as different materials. How do you know which shutters to select for your home? Keep the following factors in mind, so you can narrow down your options and find the ideal shutters to suit your windows.

Your windows allow you to look at the world around you. They let the sunshine in so you can bask in the natural light the sun provides. For all the good they do, they also have a few drawbacks when it comes to your heating and cooling costs. Even though most windows today offer some degree of thermal protection, they can’t protect you from everything. Plantation shutters can take over where your windows leave off.

Plantation shutters are an investment in both the decor of your home as well as its security. Unlike curtains, plantation shutters serve several other purposes and can be easily adjusted to control both light and visibility. By choosing this type of shutter, you are actually adding an additional level of security to your home, all the while increasing your home’s curb appeal and resale value.

Buying a home means a lot of choices when it comes to decor and functionality. You want your home to look stylish, but you also want comfort and versatility. Your first few months in your new home will help you decide how to proceed when it comes to upgrading your windows and shutters.

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Faux wood blinds setup in this gorgeous bathroom. Blinds General Shades Tips and Advice

Restroom Window Coverings

People often have the question; What is the best window covering for restrooms? There are a lot of options and one is not limited to a certain kind when you are considering to cover your restroom window. Most of the time, people want to have privacy while still letting in the light.

Since you typically have moisture in this specific room in your house, we often tell everyone that you can use most of the blinds like the aluminum, vinyl, and faux wood, but not the real wood. Real wood naturally have cracks in the slats where moisture goes through and warps the material. It usually takes years but when it comes, all you can do is  replace the whole thing completely. The aluminum is an option but with the 1” slats you have to clean more slats compared to the vinyl and faux wood. The aluminum is also a thinner material than the vinyl and faux wood so it may bend and dent, you have to be careful when cleaning it. Blinds are a good option because you can control the amount of light coming in and the privacy by tilting the slats in an angle.

The other option, of course, are the shades. We typically recommend those materials that are waterproof or the lighter fabrics. Roller shades are the most common people use because you have the light filtering option, most materials are easy to clean, and it gives you the privacy. Another material that is gaining popularity are the Cascades, it is a shade but since it’s an alternate between solid bands and sheers, you can open and close it to your desired openness for light and privacy. There are also other shades that has the top down-bottom up option. You can open it up from the top to have lots of light coming in and keep the shades close at the bottom, some shades that offer this option is the pleated, roman, and cellular.

Curtains or drapes are usually not a practical option as those are heavier materials, it is not something you would want to touch with wet hands and layering of fabrics will look too heavy and excessive for a restroom window.

Either you prefer a blind or a shade, there are options that you can do for your washrooms to better suit your wants and needs but practicality is the key when it comes to this window in your home.

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Blinds Products Shades Tips and Advice

Do’s & Don’ts for Cordless

Nowadays, homeowners have more options than ever before when it comes to window treatments: wood blinds, faux wood blinds, aluminum blinds, shutters, honeycomb shades; the list goes on and on! It’s not just the style and materials that homeowners have to consider though. The right lift system can make all of the difference. Just as there are many different styles of window treatments, there are also many different styles of lift systems. Each is unique and provides users with vastly different functionality. The lift system everyone is talking about today is cordless lift.

Cordless lift eliminates – you guessed it – all cords and it allows you to raise and lower your shade with the smooth operation. Besides the added safety factor, this unique functionality also offers several other benefits as well. For starters, cordless window treatments are easy to operate. Simply lift up and down. Then, of course, aesthetic appeal. Cordless window coverings give your windows a more streamlined, modern look that is sure to compliment your home decor. No more cords to try and hide. No more cords for your dog or cat to play with and ultimately ruin your window treatments. No more cords to…well, just no more cords. Period. Sleek, easy to use, and safe, cordless is the future of window coverings.

Cordless lift systems are available for a wide variety of blinds and shades to bring both convenience and clean lines. The cordless mechanisms make your home décor look elegant and modern. Not many people want all these different cords hanging and looking busy on their windows. It makes it easier for cleaning the window treatments and when you’re ready to clean your windows there won’t be multiple cords to get tangled together and eventually not operable. I’ve found that kids also are able to work their shades or blinds easily with the cordless lifts. Otherwise, kids would just try to tug at their window treatments and then eventually snap the cord or something goes wrong where they break their window covering itself.

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Blinds Products Shades Tips and Advice Window Basics

Benefits & Considerations to Slider Alternatives

It seems like so many people just don’t like vertical blinds ANYWHERE! Ok, I get it for windows, but for sliding glass doors, they are the most economical and easiest to maintain window treatment for these large openings. If you really have to have something other than vertical blinds for your door, all is not lost. There are several options available for you.

While there are many options available, there are certain benefits and considerations to keep in mind.  The main benefit is that since they are primarily window treatments, you won’t have a problem matching the windows in your house to the door(s) if they are all in the same room or open concept area of the house. However, a consideration to make is that instead of verticals which open and close side to side along with the door, shades or blinds would open and close top to bottom; making in necessary to always open the treatments completely when needing to use the door. Let’s talk about some of the options you have:

Roller Shades, although not the most popular, are a great alternative. They’re a low profile material and when you do roll them up to gain access to the door, there is very little stacking. If you needed to do 2 roller shades side by side for the door (due to measurement restrictions) this is a possibility, however, it will cause you to  have a light gap between 2 shades which will in turn alter your privacy and lighting preferences.

Roman Shades or Woven Wood Shades are also an option for sliding glass doors if you wish to have a more formal or more “completed” look. These two shade options share a lot of the same characteristics and therefore share a lot of the same benefits and considerations as well. They will both give you the same warm and cozy feel of a curtain or drapery and come in many different textures and patterns. However, a consideration to make would be the large amount of stacking that will occur when you pull up the shade, which means you will likely need to mount it higher than the door itself so you have enough clearance to walk through. Of course, it they are French Doors, these are great options because you get the elegance factor and do not need to worry about the clearance issues.

Panel Tracks are a great alternative and a “best of both worlds” situation. These are large panels of Roller Shade fabrics OR Woven Wood material that slide back and forth on a track system. This way, you are getting the functionality of a vertical blind but more of the look of a fabric shade instead! Of course there are some considerations, as always; such as the stacking on one end (or both ends) of the track. These are wide panels so they will take up more room/space.

These are just a few options among a long list of many others, but the point is there ARE plenty of other options if you really don’t like vertical blinds; even if they do come with some considerations… but then again, doesn’t everything?

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Blinds General Products Shades Tips and Advice Window Basics

Basic Window Coverings for Renters

Landlords and property managers have a lot of responsibility when it comes to maintaining the appearance and safety of a property. While some features are required by law or agreed upon within leases, other amenities are strictly up to the landlord. One often overlooked decision to make about a rental is whether or not to install window treatments. Providing even basic window treatments will help attract renters.

If the home or apartment requires the landlord or property manager to provide window treatments, several factors should be taken into consideration. The window coverings should be cost effective and durable, as well as appealing to many prospective tenants.

Depending on the amount of windows needing treatments and the overall price of the rental property, cost is one of the biggest deciding factors in choosing what window coverings to buy for a property.

There are unlimited options available ranging from cost effective vinyl and metal mini blinds, faux wood blinds, or roller shades. You can also go for a more long term investment with wood blinds, Cellular shades or Roman shades for added character; or in some cases upscale properties will go with custom-made drapery.

 

Mini Blinds

Mini blinds are a standard choice for rental properties as they are offered in many slat sizes and colors at a low cost. Aluminum mini blinds offer a number of benefits: easy to install, making them ideal for a quick addition to a new property; easy to clean and replace; provide both privacy and light control as they can be easily adjusted. This is especially important for city living. They are also durable and reliable. Mini-blinds are available in 6 gage and 8 gage.

Faux Wood Blinds

Besides mini blinds, faux wood blinds are the next best low-cost solution for property owners. Faux wood blinds look like wood blinds but are more durable and less expensive. They louver easily, but because they are heavier than wood blinds, they are not recommended for large windows where the tenant may want the raise and lower the blind. Faux wood blinds are typically available in most popular and trendy painted and stain finishes. A great benefit of faux wood blinds include being easy to clean since they are made with moisture-proof PVC slats making them moisture resistant as well so you can use this blind in any room, including bathrooms!

Shades

Depending on the amount of privacy required in a rental, shades can be a good option. There are a variety of different shades ranging from standard roller shades to more elaborate and customizable Roman shades. Standard roller shades can block light efficiently. However, when mounted on the inside of the window opening, roller shades have wider light gaps than any other blind or shade. At their most basic, roller shades are inexpensive. Solar shades are modern and filter light while offering a view outside, but they do not offer any privacy. Roman shades will add aesthetic value to rental properties and they are still quite cost effective. They are lovely additions to condominiums and single-family homes. Fabric shades, whether roller or Roman, are not as easily cleaned as mini blinds or faux wood blinds, and they can show wear more easily.

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Blinds General Tips and Advice

Aluminum VS Vinyl Blinds

Aluminum and vinyl are two materials used in the manufacture of blinds. Both materials come with advantages and disadvantages. Blinds, regardless of what material they are made of, serve the same basic function. They are used to shade windows and let an adjustable amount of light into a given room.

Advantages

Aluminum blinds are strong and do not break as easily as vinyl blinds. Vinyl blinds, however, flex easier and do not tend to dent or crease. Vinyl blinds are also easier to clean than aluminum. Aluminum blinds are easier to repair than vinyl blinds; usually when vinyl blinds break, they are simply discarded.

Disadvantages

While vinyl blinds produced in the United States contain no lead, vinyl blinds imported from other countries may contain traces of lead. Vinyl is a lighter and weaker material than aluminum, so blinds made of vinyl break more easily. One disadvantage of aluminum blinds is that it’s not as easy to manufacture them with special textures, such as wood grains, as it is with vinyl blinds.

Energy Efficiency

Aluminum blinds tend to be more energy-efficient than vinyl blinds; the metal blinds do a better job of reflecting rays from the sun, keeping rooms cooler during hot seasons. Vinyl blinds tend to absorb rays from the sun, resulting in a warmer room. Sunny rooms may benefit from the presence of aluminum blinds.

Cost Factors

The bigger the set of blinds, regardless of material, the more the set costs. Vinyl blinds traditionally cost less than aluminum blinds, and the difference in price between aluminum and vinyl increases along with the size of the blind. Texture can add to the price; for instance, vinyl blinds that have been manufactured to look like wooden blinds tend to cost more than blinds with no texture. However, both aluminum and vinyl blinds come in a range of prices, and a basic aluminum blind may well be less expensive than a highly designed vinyl blind.

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Blinds General Products Shades Tips and Advice Window Basics

The “Hybrid” Shade

So you’ve just finished redecorating your living room — the walls are freshly painted with the trendiest shade of grey, and all of the espresso furniture that you’ve hand selected bring the exact look and balance that you’ve envisioned since day one of brainstorming.  All of the pieces are coming together, and yet there is still something missing.  You look around and add some pops of color in the throw pillows, and even incorporated your own photos of nature and beautiful  sunsets, but you still find a void to fill.  You look around once again, and low and behold, you have no blinds or shades in your windows!  Sure the natural light is wonderful and irreplaceable, but there’s just something to be said about finished window treatments– it’s kind of like putting the cherry on top of an already tempting sundae.

So now, you ask yourself– do I put a blind or a shade? Do I consider a blind where I can tilt the slats and still be able to lift up and down? Or, do I just want a shade that just goes up and down?…Well why not do both?  Cue in the Serenity and Cascade!

Serenity and Cascade are somewhat of a hybrid that combine both the benefits of a blind and a sheer shade into one product.  Imagine a sophisticated roller shade (with a chain) where the fabric can be manipulated to either add in light for brightness, or block out light for privacy.  

So how do these “hybrids” actually work? Serenity shades have a double layer of sheer fabric and in between are lateral fabric slats that you can turn for light control.  On the other hand, Cascade shades are made up of horizontal, solid and clear panels that you can line up and alternate for either a see-through effect or a light blocking effect.  Also, these shades disappear into their own head rail for a clean look.  This allows you to maximize your window and let in a significant amount of light.  So at the end of the day, why not choose one of these hybrid shades and get the best of both worlds?!  They’ll surely finish off the look of your fresh, new space. 

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Bathroom Decor Blinds Inspiration Products Shades Tips and Advice

Just Motorize It!

In this day and age, everything is automated and computerized in some form. You can program your lights and locks with an app or press a button to open your garage and start your car; so why not motorize your blinds? Blinds To Go offers motorization in some of their most popular products: Harmony, Cellular, Pleated, Roller, Serenity, Cascade, AND Real Wood blinds!

Motorizing blinds and shades in your home is a great way to make mundane tasks easy and efficient. You can say bye-bye to that rickety ladder because motorized blinds and shades are ideal for those high or hard to reach windows. They are also perfect for groups of windows in one room. Imagine opening the Solar Shades in your Sun Room… one at a time… sure it’s just the pull of a chain, but it is a pull of a chain for each window! Now, imagine pressing a button to raise all of the shades at once. Opening, closing, even raising the blinds to your favorite position, all with just one button. Blinds To Go can give customers this simple luxury.

The appeal of motorized blinds is quickly becoming widely realized across the world. It gives you cordless design, an easy to handle remote, a quiet but speedy motor, and is a great time saver. The optimal components totally wrapped up into one of Blinds To Go’s motorized blinds. Want another reason to update your home? Our installers come out and measure, program, and install all of our motorized products! Blinds To Go disposes all of this to create a one stop shop for your needs. Come in and see them for yourself, it’s only the press of a button.

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Blinds Products Shades Tips and Advice Window Basics

We Make It Easy!

Have you ever shopped for blinds or shades before? Well, if you haven’t, you’ve found a great place to start! At Blinds To Go, our Design Consultants live by our motto: “We Make It Easy!”

Your first decision would be deciding whether or not you would like blinds or shades better for your window. What’s the difference, you ask? Our real wood Laredo 2″ and aluminum Softlook 8 Designer are two examples of blinds. Simply put, they’re made out of horizontal slats in which you can tilt open and closed to adjust the light. Some of our shade styles include Harmony or Motif. Shades are generally a window covering made of fabric. This fabric can be light filtering, room darkening or blackout. To make this decision, we would ask you, “how do you want to control or block out the light?”

Secondly, a major factor that everyone must adhere to, is budget! Blinds To Go has the largest selection of blinds and shades under one roof, so we have something for everyone in every price range! From small vinyl mini blinds to lavish and decorative Harmony shades; we have something that will surely go hand in hand with your budget AND your home!

Your third decision would most likely be based on style and color. A safe option that many Blinds To Go customers choose is a classic white. Some customers do choose to go the bolder route and go with a bright color or bold pattern. We have white and color/prints alike available in every blind or shade option. As you can probably tell, you will have a lot to choose from, but that first initial question will narrow it down. To further help you decide, we’d ask which one you’re more comfortable with and which would help your home feel more like “home”.

After those primary choices are made, the rest of the pieces just fall into place. When you shop at Blinds To Go, our Design Consultants are here for you every step of the way to ‘Make It Easy’. Investing in window coverings can finish your home off with just the right touch. So let us ask you one last question… Do you know where you’ll be designing your window treatments?? Here’s a hint… WE MAKE IT EASY!

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Kitchen Faux Wood Blinds Blinds General Tips and Advice

Picking The Right Window Treatments In A Kitchen

Window treatments in your kitchen can provide a big statement – generally due to the fact that it is one of the few accent pieces that are added to the room. Unfortunately, hanging window treatments in your kitchen tends to be a little trickier than some other rooms in the house.

For starters, you have to take into consideration where the window is located – and that can lead to a range of different issues. A lot of times the window is located directly over the sink. This limits your options to a valance – if looking to do a curtain – since you don’t want curtains that are hanging into your sink. It also limits your options for mounting blinds, because a lot of times the window is also between cabinets, so you want to make sure you aren’t purchasing anything that will scrape your cabinets, or not have space to be mounted. Another consideration that people often forget about is, being your kitchen sink, it is more likely than not that your window treatment will end up getting dirty. This depends of course, on how set back or high the window is, but if you are considering a white fabric shade, keep in mind that one day you might be washing a pot from red sauce, that could leave quite a stain behind!

A lot of the same considerations come into play for windows in different areas of the kitchen. A window over the counter, a window right next to the kitchen table, or even set into a breakfast nook, same concerns. Perhaps the concern of getting dirty is even higher if you have kids that like to peek outside, and get their dirty hands on the fabric! Or, if you have a lot of people in your kitchen from time to time, and someone accidentally spills!

The good thing is, there are a few options that really address all of these situations. The number one, and most popular option is faux wood blinds. They are made to look exactly like real wooden blinds but are made from PVC. When they get dirty, you wash them off with a sponge, and they wipe completely clean. The blinds come in a variety of whites, grays, and wood tones so you can match to pretty much any kitchen. Another great option is a vinyl sun shade, which is designed to block out the glare and direct sunlight but preserve the view to the backyard. The great thing about these is they are even easier to clean and can be wiped down extremely easily. If you are really hoping for fabric, just keep your family and friends in mind, and raise up the shades whenever there may be a risk of them getting dirty!

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