By: Karen

I need to cover my windows. Who knew that was such a complicated thing to tackle? When I went to the store, I figured, like my mom had always done, I would buy some roller shades, and eventually tackle curtains when life settled down. She had always bought plain white. Even though I had always known there were other options out there – it never really occurred to me that I could want them. Well, it turns out there are a ton of different options.

First of all – do I want blinds or shades. Blinds – you can tilt open and closed. You can control the light. They could be room darkening at night, and they could be light filtering during the day. You can control your privacy. You can tilt them up if you have neighbors close by and still want light in. You can leave them open if you want to see out, and close them if you want to shut out the whole world. The downside – you have to clean them – dust them fairly frequently, possibly wash them depending on how dirty they get, and they can get fairly heavy if you have big windows.

Shades – they’re either up or down. You can have them closed to have complete privacy. You can get light in while they are completely closed. You can get them in room darkening or blackout and not have to worry about light seeping in through the slats like you would a blind. You can choose a more decorative fabric or pattern. You can have a variety of different looks – pleated, roller, or roman. You don’t have to clean a lot of slats. The downside – you either have it up or down – you can’t spy on your neighbors or see who is at the front door, and the majority of more attractive ones are made out of fabric – so you can’t really clean them (even if you wanted to).

Since I went through a lot to figure this all out, I thought I would help out others in my position. I did a lot of shopping around, and online research, and in the end, you have to realize that it’s really dependent on the room, and the person. I chose to do different things in different rooms, and realized that by putting some more time into this process I don’t even need curtains!