Thursday, November 27, 2008

Light Filtering Vertical Blinds

Q: Hi, I wanted to know if there were vertical blinds available that also had light filtering qualities. I need to block light, too, but also wanted ones that would diffuse bright light on occasion. Any suggestions?

A: Great question! It sounds like you're looking for sheer verticals shades. You may have heard of sheer horizontal shades that have a combination of opaque and light filtering fabrics that both block and diffuse light depending on how you tilt the slats. Sheer vertical shades use the same principal: Suspended opaque vanes help block the light but, when you tilt them open, light is diffused through sheer fabric.

Personally, I love the versatility of these blinds. You can block light to darken the room, tilt the vanes open to bring soft light in, or open them completely to give you even more light. The fabric and color options also give a nice soft look to your room, which is especially important if you're hoping to use them for a bedroom or den.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Trim Options Available on Roller Shades

Q: I'm looking into getting roller shades for my apartment but I'm not really into the modern/contemporary styles. What kinds of options do I have to go with a more traditional style?

A: Not only do roller shades come in classic fabrics, they're also available with different trim styles, too! Since it sounds like you're looking for softer lines and trims, you might want to check out the different shapes and pull tag styles that come with roller shades.

Believe it or not, you have tons of options. Tassels, ropes, and embroidery help incorporate roller shades into a more traditional room and can soften the straight lines of these shades. You can even go one step further and request a different shape for the bottom of your blind. There's conventional scalloped edges, slightly more modern waves, or even combinations of different designs. Pair a neat edge or trim with a decorative tassel or trinket pull and you have a completely different look. Honestly, with all the options available, the possibilities are almost endless!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Fabric Options Available on Roller Shades

Q: I wanted to know what fabric style options I have for roller shades. I like the minimalist style but don't like the traditional look of vinyl. What else is out there?

A: Roller shades have come a long way since their vinyl heritage and you can find them in all kinds of colors, patterns and textures. Hunter Douglas carries a lot of beautiful style and subtle prints that come in both light filtering and room darkening styles. These soft textures are great for bedrooms and living spaces and are perfect for picture windows and contemporary styles.

Roller shades really have a unique, low-profile design with a small footprint that maximizes window space. With all the different fabric options available, you're bound to find the perfect one!

Keep in mind, thought, that new vinyl shades aren't what they used to be. While vinyl roller shades are still durable and easy to clean, they're available in softer colors and textures that can accent any room. (And are perfect for high-traffic areas!)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Faux Wood with Real Wood Look

Q: I really want wood blinds, but I'm installing them in my bathroom and know that faux wood holds up better under humidity. What options do I have for getting faux wood blinds that look like real wood?

A: Faux wood blinds come in all kinds of stains and textures ranging from natural and maple shades to darker chestnut or mahogany. Faux wood blinds have come a long way in recent years and they look so much like real wood, it's hard to tell the difference! You can order ones that resemble pine for a more country look or darker, richer stains that match both modern or traditional styles.

The great thing about faux wood is, not only do they look and feel like real wood, a lot of time they come with the same features as real wood blinds. Routless (no little holes in the slats for strings to go through) and cloth tapes are two of the most popular additions to faux wood blinds. And they really warm up bathrooms and kitchens. What a great idea!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Wood Blinds with Color

Q: I love real wood blinds but, well, my room is a bit dark to begin with and I'm hesitant about the darker grains of wood. The room is small and I would really like to brighten it up a bit. Do they come in lighter or more colorful styles?

A: Yes they do! And you'll see that wood blinds (and faux wood blinds) come in all sorts of great colors and stains. You can choose lighter natural woods like maple or get one with a painted finish. Just because you have wood blinds, doesn't mean you need to keep the color of the wood!

You'd be amazed at the variety of colors you can get on wood blinds. There's everything from white to dark greens and blacks. This gives you a great opportunity to match anything in your room or, like you said, brighten things up a bit to make the room look bigger. There are a ton a gorgeous soft paint colors available. That way you get the real wood look with a lighter touch.

Of course, if you change you're mind, you can always order the darker stains or real cherry or oak. They're beautiful!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Blocking Light with Wood and Faux Wood Blinds – Routless

Q: I'm planning on putting wood blinds in my living room but don't like the rout holes that the strings go through. Since I don't like the look of cloth tape, I wondered if you had any other suggestions.

A: Of Course! Both wood and faux wood blinds come in routless styles that completely eliminate the little holes in each slat. They look exactly the same as regular wood blinds, just without those little holes. These are great because you won't even notice the difference until you tilt the slats shut and, voila! No little rout holes!

If you're wondering how they work, there's actually a little groove on the side of each slat where the cord sits to control lift and tilt. You'll still have the same traditional ladders as regular wood and faux wood blinds, you just won't have the holes anymore. It's a great way to combine the look you want with better light control.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Blocking Light with Wood and Faux Wood Blinds – Cloth Tapes

Q: I really want wood blinds for my home office but noticed that a lot of them have those little holes in the slats where light peeks through. Is there any way to block those little rays of light?

A: Yes! In fact, both wood and faux wood blinds come in styles with cloth tapes that block rout holes (those little holes on each slat where the string/ladders run through it). Cloth tapes run down the full length of your blind and they're available on almost every brand and style of both wood and faux wood. They're attached directly to the blind so you don't have to worry about those little light holes any more.

The best part about these tapes is that they can be customized! You can get wood blinds with cloth tapes ranging from 3/4” to 1 1/2” thick and faux wood comes with either 1” or 2” cloth tapes. Usually, you want a narrow tape if you're looking for a narrower slat, but it's really up to you. They come in lots of colors, too so you can match not only the wood or faux wood to your home, but the cloth, too!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Blocking Light with Wood and Faux Wood Blinds – Slat Shapes

Q: I want to put wood or faux wood blinds in my den but I've noticed that many styles still let a little light through between the slats. Are there any styles that minimize this problem?

A: Yes! You actually have a couple different options depending on what type of blind you want. Fortunately, faux wood blinds come with a unique slat option that has an “S” curve to the slats, making them fit snuggly against one another when they're tilted shut. The curve is so subtle, you hardly notice it, but it can really help block those bands of light when the slats are closed. I love this feature because it combines the look and feel real wood with greater light control and durability.

If you want real wood, however, take a look at the different slats from the manufacturers. While some have flat slats (that give you the appeal of shutters and traditional blinds), others have slightly curved or beveled slats that help reduce light when they're tilted shut. Real wood blinds are fantastic, but take a look at all your options before deciding on the perfect room-darkening blind for your home.