bamboo

bamboo

General

Designing with Bamboo

By Gina G

Now that you’re aware of the options available to you with bamboo shades, here are some tips for how to design with them in different areas of the home:

Bamboo shades are a great options for kitchen windows because of the usual presence of wood via cabinents, etc. When choosing the color of your bamboo shade, consider where the window is in the kitchen. If it is right over the sink, you may choose to a multicolored bamboo shade which may hide the appearance of small stains, etc. If you already have a lot of print, design, texture etc with your countertops, cabinents, and backsplash, consider a white or neutral shade perhaps with simpler solid colored match sticks instead of various grasses. Often times kitchen windows face an area wherein you don’t need privacy (a deck or back yard area). If this is your case, you have the opportunity to really let the natural bamboo shine and go without a liner on the back of the shade. Not only will this allow additional light in, it will give the shade a uniform look from both the interior and exterior of the home.

For areas that require some dressing up such as living rooms and dining rooms, bamboo shades can certainly fit the bill. Selecting a roman shade fold style and omitting curtains can bring your woven wood shade away from a more casual and relaxed design toward a more formal look. In this instance, you may want to also select the fabric liners to the sides of your shades to soften the look and contrast the hardness of the wood. If you’d like to ultilize curtains with your bamboo shade, soft panels or sheers may be the way to go. They can also contrast the wooden shades and add both softness and elegance. Because most bamboo shades have some sort of valance already, you may not want to add another curtain valance. You may opt for the more common flat panel stye with this set up in order not to make the window appear heavy.

Woven wood shades can also be utilized in smaller areas such as powder rooms, mud rooms and hallways. Since these spaces usually don’t have a lot of design elements, using a bamboo shade for the windows is simple way to add natural texture and beauty to them.

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General

Much Ado About Bamboo

By Gina G.

Bamboo shades are great options to add texture and a natural vibe to any room.  If you are considering a bamboo shade but unfamiliar with them, here’s a brief snapshot:

Bamboo or woven wood shades are typical comprised of natural woods, bamboo chutes, and grasses. Because of their wooden composition, they provide some insulation, although they are not the best insulation option. These materials are generally held together by color coordinated thin threads (to allow the bamboo to really shine). Most bamboo shades will be sheer due to their composition unless the chutes are layered partially atop each other which would then give privacy. And, they are also usually the same color on the front and back of the shade.

There are a plethora of styles and colors to choose from that range from white to black but the majority of bamboo shades are offered in solid wood colors (usually popular wood tones like oak, mahogany, etc) or multi colored (to coordinate with a variety of wood colors).  The features available for bamboo shades are plentiful too.  You can choose a more formal look by choosing a bamboo style that has folds and bubbles out like a roman shade.  Or, for a more relaxed look, you can choose a more modern flat style resembling a roller shade. Most often, because of the more relaxed nature of bamboo shades, they are presented with a flat panel stlye. 

Although the headrails, brackets, and depth required for bamboo shades are varied, most come with a matching valance that is usually pre-attached to the headrail. The valance covers any hardware and gives the shade a finished look. For the bottom of your bamboo shade, you can choose whether to have it fold up (like a roman shade) or just roll up (these will usually have visible cords at the front of the shade).

Liners are another, more functional, option for bamboo shades that don’t have overlapping sticks or tight weaves. Most woven wood shades are sheer products without a liner. If you’re placing the shade in a room where privacy is necessary, you will need to add a liner to it. Some bamboo shades are offered with a blackout liner option making them viable products for bedrooms.

Finally, some bamboo shades are offered with fabric edges on the sides of the shade. These have dual purpose when utilized: to add pops of color and print and to protect the edges of the shade from damage.

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General

Summertime Window Solutions

By Gina G.

Summer is here with its longer days and brighter sunshine.  Although enjoyable, these seasonal weather changes can bring spikes in cooling costs.  If you have windows to cover this summer, here’s the top choices that will help against the rise in temperatures:

Cellular Shades – As their structure is designed to insulate windows, cellular shades are the primary choice for many seeking to keep the summer heat at bay.  Cellular, or honeycomb, shades come in a variety of colors and are offered with control options too (cordless, top down/bottom up, motorized).  And, depending on the levels of sun and heat the space experiences, you can opt for either a light filtering or black out cellular shade.  Light filtering would suffice for low to medium sun exposure or areas where natural light is beneficial.  Blackout cellular shades are great options where the sun and its effects are intolerable.

Blackout Curtains – Blackout curtains are great summer window treatments because they are functional but not permanent.  As they have a black out liner on them, blackout curtains will do wonders to keeping the heat from entering a space.  But also keep in mind that they will also darken the space significantly.  The best thing about blackout curtains, however, is that they are panels and therefore not fixed like a blind or shade.  When the space is hot and you want to keep it cool, draw the curtains.  Other times when insulation is not so important, keep the panels open.  And, blackout curtains are offered in such a wide variety of styles and prints, you don’t have to sacrifice décor to achieve your insulation needs.

Bamboo Shades – Bamboo shades combine both function and design for the summertime.  Functionally, bamboo shades are natural insulators since they are usually comprised of wood.  In addition, due to their sheerness in absence of a liner, most people opt to put a liner on their bamboo shades.  This liner, whether light filtering/privacy liner or a black out liner, will perform similar to that of the blackout curtains.  It should dramatically reduce the amount of sunlight (and its effects) to a space.  Design-wise, bamboo shades with their composition of woods, chutes and grasses are certainly trending as a great way to bring the natural environment into the home.

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General Inspiration Tips and Advice

Green Living

There is no escaping it; GOING GREEN is all the rage now-a-days – and for good reason too! Everyone wants to have a part in saving the planet, but you don’t think about the easy ways to incorporate that into your home decor as well. We have put together some great ideas from paints, to art work to window coverings that will help you create a “green home” through your decor.

Now, we have touched on window coverings a lot in past blogs but not so much the green aspect of them. There are TONS of options to have green window coverings throughout your home, even if you wanted something different for each room! First we have the natural choice (no pun intended) of Natural Woven Wood shades. These shades are made up of natural grasses, bamboo and fibers to create beautiful window coverings that both bring a bold statement to a room and are a perfect way to create a “green” living space. The best part about these is the options; you can have them plain so they are see through, have a light filtering liner put onto them for a little more privacy, or even a blackout liner for complete darkness incase you wanted to use them in a bedroom.

Another great option for window coverings are Cellular Shades. These shades are also known as “Honeycomb shades” due to the shade itself looking like a honeycomb when you view it from the side. These honeycombs, or “cells”, create air pockets which help to insulate; keeping cold air out and warm air in or vice versa depending on the season. You can typically find them in a variety of colors and a ton of neutral colors as well. Personally, i think they pair very nicely with paneled drapes on either side – in which you can also find “green” fabrics that are made from natural fibers and recycled materials as well!

Let’s move onto paint. “Paint isn’t “green”.” you say? On the contrary, perhaps you’re not looking for the right paint. They now make paints that are Eco-Friendly! These paints are typically made with low VOCs, low biocides and natural pigments. To get a truely “green” paint you need to get paint that has VOC levels between 0-100gm/l. The coolest thing is that they make milk paint and natural paints which use, you guessed it, milk protein, citrus, minerals and lime.

Finally we touch on the part of most rooms that really give the meaning of decor; the artwork. Every home has artwork, whether it’s an old vase your Grandmother passed down to you, your child’s macaroni artwork from school or a $10,000 painting over the mantel piece. Art is a loose term that is covered over many fields, therefore this makes it easy to incorporate “green” art into your home! Many retailers now sell recyclable products such as bins, frames and vases which make it easy for you to decorate your home. You can also check out Pinterest or other online DIY sites to see millions of ideas to create your own artwork from recycled items found in your very own home as well!

The sky is the limit with your green living, now go out there and save your plant one room at a time!

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General Inspiration Products Shades

Natural Roller Shades

Bamboo shades and/or Woven Wood shades have always gotten all the attention; touted as the best choices for eco-friendly homeowners looking for organic blinds. Everyone loves a beautiful bamboo shade, but we’ve noticed a measurable increase in people sampling and buying Natural Roller Shades. All signs now point to a prediction of these shades becoming a hot design item.

Natural Roller Shades have flown under the radar for quite some time now; really only being purchased by those in the know about window treatments. I’m here today to let you in on this gem of a product, and give you a first look at how these are a different and exciting addition to the genre.

First off, they’re light filtering; meaning they won’t completely prevent light from coming in, but they will block heat and give you a little privacy. Similar to Woven Wood shades, they’re available in numerous styles and natural materials, but don’t fold up like woven woods do; they roll up like roller shades, virtually disappearing when raised. I see these as the perfect compliment to sleek, modern decor. Natural touches like reeds, bamboo, grasses, sisal, and rattan are totally chic right now, and these shades are so cost effective, you’ll be able to easily replace them, should you ever want to (you won’t!)

I love the idea of using these in a sleek, city loft, bringing a touch of the outdoors inside. If you live in a bustling city, invoking nature in your space is a great way to calm down at the end of a hectic day. Lower your natural roller shades and decompress. Don’t we all need that every now and then?

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Interior Designers Products Shades Tips and Advice

Calling all Woven Wood Shades: The Secret to Incorporating Today’s Popular Trend Without Going Overboard

Distressed wood, organic materials, bamboo, barnyard chic, rustic elegance — the list goes on and on when describing the trend that is pushing towards earthy and natural elements in the world of window treatment.  But how does one achieve this look?  Is it time to bring our products outside and go to town distressing some of the fabric?  Or maybe let the material bask in the sun allowing it to get a natural fade in color?  What about considering another option…WOVEN WOOD.

Woven wood is not just for kitchens and beach-themed spaces anymore.  Now you can find selections which offer a wide array of colors and textures that can accommodate any room looking for that warmth and rustic vibe.  The most appealing part is that the materials inherently come with the natural imperfections that are in demand as seen throughout so many home decor magazines.  What may seem as a menacing twig, inconsistent coloring, or even a frayed knot, are actually specifically chosen to add to this products’ natural, organic beauty.

Along with giving that cozy flair to your room, there are some other handcrafted options to make these woven wood shades functional as well.  For example, there are two backings that can be added– a light filtering liner or a blackout liner.  Consider the light filtering liner when it comes to rooms that require both privacy and some natural light.  In contrast, choose a blackout liner for the most sensitive of sleepers in order to block out as much light as possible.  A third option is also to not put a liner at all! Perhaps you have a wonderful view of the coast– an unlined woven wood is just the ticket to retain that view without sacrificing the decor of your windows.

Have a huge window? You can also do a 2 or 3 on 1 shade.  This set up includes one continuous headrail with multiple shades hanging.  2 or 3 on 1s are perfect for double or triple windows because they maintain the divisions of the window, while still keeping a cohesive look. Plus, your arm will thank you later for disbursing the weight instead of lifting up one giant, heavy shade.

Woven wood are truly a versatile choice when decorating your home.  Many argue that these shades are the cousins of the beloved roman shades.  And why not, woven wood shades do in fact lay flat or bubble out like a classic roman, but they also add earth tones and that tropical feel to any room.

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Design Trends: Prediction 2016

Design Trends: Prediction 2016

While it’s far too early in the year to determine all of the design trends of the year so far, there are a lot of predictions circulating around the Internet. For starters, a more is less, simpler is better seems to be a common trend.  It seems the color palette for home decor is staying within the neutrals, and the theme of using metals as accent colors seems to be inevitable.

As far as wall colors, 2016 is looking pretty neutral.  Although there are greys predicted, they are more muted versions than last year.  The palette consists of off whites with both a beige and grey tint to them, and some cooler versions of both the grey’s and beige’s.  In terms of accent colors, trend seems to be moving a little further from the greys, and more to bold statement colors including vibrant blues, pinks, and greens – but again just as accent colors not as entire rooms.

As far as furniture, natural woods definitely seem to be this years style thus far.  But in a change from the last few years, some lighter color woods are making a comeback.  Bamboo tones are also predicted to become more popular this year following the trend of going “green” being bamboo grows more quickly than most other woods.  Dark woods appear to be more accent furniture pieces this year as opposed to being the most predominant color of years past.

In terms of decorative elements, metals and textured pieces seem to be sticking around for another year.  This style allows you to bring in decoration without introducing new colors into your room, as most of them fall into a natural color scheme as well.

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Inspiration Products Shades Tips and Advice

Woven Woods are Green!

Are environmental concerns at the top of your agenda? Do you refuse to drink out of a plastic water bottle or cringe everytime you see litter on the sidewalk? If this is the case you may have a difficult time finding a window covering solution that doesn’t harm the environment. A roman shade made of bamboo or woven wood will likely be your most environemntally friendly option. Bamboo is one of the fastest renewable resources on our planet, it not only grows quickly but  in great abundance. This means that you can rest easy knowing that the bamboo harvested for your brand new shade should grow back in a matter of days or weeks. In addition, all headrails on our woven wood shades are made of natural materials, no plastic whatsoever!

Woven wood shades would make the perfect complement to an environmentally friendly household. They provide a natural look, and are available in a wide array of colours and styles. A flat bamboo shade will give you a simple look, while a classic panel will add to any traditional decor. If you’re looking to add natural wood colours to your home the real advantage with a bamboo shade is that they often contain a few different clour tones that will perfectly accent any room. For example our ‘Palau’ style in a ‘Carraway’ colour has brown tones with heavy green accents in the shade, this makes it versatile and easy to match as it will pick up on any colours you have in the room.

An added bonus to any woven wood shades is that the nature of a natural wood like bamboo is that it will provide some insulation for your home. Add in the fact that bamboo is sustainable means that this is easily the most environmentally friendly shade Blinds to Go carries.

 

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Blinds Inspiration Products Shades Tips and Advice

It’s All About Responsibility

By Tiffany P.

When shopping for natural material window treatments you want to be able to trust the company that is making these blinds or shades, is still giving back to nature in some sort of way. With Blinds To Go we take pride in doing just that, because it is important to replace what you take when dealing with materials such as bass wood, a kind of timber that we use for blinds, or bamboo, which we use for our shades.
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Blinds General Products Shades Tips and Advice

Going Green: Function!

Going Green: Function!
by Karen E.
Customers come into our showrooms all of the time looking for new options.  Lately, many people have come in looking for the most environmentally friendly new option. The two most popular are our woven wood shades (made from bamboo, a renewable resource) and cellular shades (which help to lower your heating and cooling bills).  Unfortunately, with both of these options, you have shades, which are either lowered completely, or raised completely, and give you no control over your privacy. Luckily, there is an alternative! Real wood blinds.
Our wooden blinds are made from bass wood, a natural material. The advantage, being a blind, is that you can tilt the blind open and closed, to control not only your privacy, but your light. They can be tilted in multiple directions to control how much light is coming in, and how much people can see in. They come in both a 1″ and 2″ slat, so there is a variety of options, and they also come in a wide variety of natural stains, and painted white finishes. They also come in an upgraded glossy finish which brings out the character of the wood. The advantage to the stained finishes is that you can see the natural grains and knots in the wood, which also allows you to better match to the furniture and flooring in your room.  (The alternative, faux wood blinds either have a printed or flat finish, and lose the natural feel).
To customize your wood blinds even more there are a few features you can add.  Intimacy, which is our room darkening feature, allows the slats to close tighter and flatter, letting less light through the slats.  Fabric tape is another option which is usually added for the decorative aspect, is a fabric strip running vertically on the blind, and comes in a wide array of colors and patterns.  The fabric tape really softens the look of the blind, and allows you to match or accent different colors you already have in your decor.
So if cellular shades and woven woods do not offer you enough flexibility, be sure to stop in and take a look at all of the natural wood options.
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