The Blinds Review.

The definitive guide to all things blinds & shades.

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Bring a Touch of Warmth With Wood Blinds

Ask any good home decorator or interior designer and they'll tell you the best inspiration comes directly from Mother Nature.  There's simply no beating the beauty we can find in the natural world and, as a result, some of the most stunning homes are decorated with a feel for nature.  This principle is demonstrated perfectly with hardwood floors which have been used for generations not only for their durability but also their versatility.  Their rich colors and innate warmth can be used to make a room feel both relaxed and inviting or professional and studious depending on the tones of the wood and the surrounding environment.  Options with wooden blinds can achieve this same effect either in conjunction with or without a wooden flooring plan.

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Wooden blinds are now available in a number of different options.  Traditional hardwood blinds are often painted or stained to match the color scheme of a room but can also be used in their more natural state.  This allows the natural beauty of their grain and pattern to decorate a room and bathe it in a warm glow.  As the blinds are set to allow filtered light through; that light bounces off the rich warm tones of the blinds before coming into the room making the light glow with those same warm tones and colors.  If the rest of the room is decorated in light and neutral tones, this will result in a light warmth, ideal for cozy living rooms, bright kitchens and inviting entertainment areas.  Blinds with a richer tone can be used in a darker or more warmly colored room to add to that warmth, keep light to a minimum and is ideal for the study, home office or even the board room.  These darker, richer colors result in a Mahogany feel, most commonly associated with old fashioned home libraries and a classic or traditional feel. 

Options in wooden blinds include natural wood as well as faux wood.  Faux wood is created to looks exactly like natural wood but at a lower overall cost and also built to stand up a bit better than natural wood.  Although wood is naturally quite hardy it is, of course, susceptible to the elements.  With blinds the main concern is with fading.  As the blinds are bombarded with sunlight every day, fading is an unfortunate but natural side effect for natural wood blinds.  Faux wood blinds can repel these effects much better and are an ideal alternative for rooms which get a lot of sunlight.

Wooden blinds and window treatment options can give any room a natural warmth and glow that can only be found in nature.  Even faux wooden options are able to replicate the look and feel of natural wood but are able to stand up better to fading and sun bleaching.  The end result for decorators is a beautiful look that brings a feel of Eco-friendly green decorating at a price which leaves a bit of green in their wallet as well. 

About the author:

Adelle Steele writes website content with a customer focus for various industries.  Her articles inform consumers about their best options for just about anything under the sun, including options to redecorate a room.  She focuses on customer friendly options, such as window treatments, that will not only improve the look of a room but are also able to be done on a budget and which can essentially pay for themselves over time. 

 

Easy Breezy Summertime Windows

When summertime finally arrives, most people look forward to opening the windows to let the sunshine and fresh air into their homes. Even if you are lucky enough to have summer-like weather all year round, a change of window treatments can bring a living space back to life and give the place a different feel. There are many choices today when it comes to dressing a window, but there are specific ways to welcome the warm rays of the sun along with gentle breezes while blocking out the heat of the day or compromising privacy.

Start With a Clean Canvas

Start with sparkling-clean windows. Here are some helpful window cleaning tips:

Clean windows on a cloudy day to avoid having them dry too quickly, leaving streaks. It’s easier to see spots and smudges, too.

Use a clean soft cloth for drying the windows or even black-and-white print newspaper. Both pick up dust and dirt without leaving cloudy streaks.

Use a high-quality window cleaner or make your own by combining one half teaspoon of liquid dish detergent and three tablespoons of vinegar with two cups of water.

Wipe in small circles to absorb all the liquid and to remove all dirt, pollen and grime.

Lighten Up

Use summertime fabrics, such as delicate lace or crisp linens. Sheer curtains can give you a bit of privacy while allowing the air to flow through your windows. Woven shades made of wood or bamboo can give the room an airy, beachcomber look and adds privacy and blocks out light.

Get Footloose and Fancy Free

Embellishments can take a plain curtain and give it some personality and pizzazz. Sew mother of pearl button or seashells to your curtains. You can put them in a pattern, or for a bohemian vibe, attach them randomly. It may take you some time, but the beautiful results are worth it.

Think Outside the Hardware Box

Use cup hooks, knobs or upholstery tacks to hand tie or tab top curtain panels along either side of your windows. They add a unique touch to the overall look of a room. Look for interesting ways to tie your curtains back, such as using jute or long strands of straw for a country summer feel. Cut and clean small tree branches to either embellish or to use in place of a curtain rod.

Mismatch for Whimsy

Although the steadfast rule has always been to hang curtains that match, consider changing it up a bit to create a whimsical, eclectic look for the summer months. Hang wooden blinds on one window – you may want to pick the sunniest, hottest window in the room, and then place curtain panels on the windows on the opposite walls. You could also put sheer or white curtains in between a pair of patterned panel drapes – a cool, classic summer look.

Block Out Peering Eyes and Hot Rays

If your windows are on the street or sidewalk level, you can hang sheer or lacey curtains half way up a window or install window blinds that move from the top down. This modern look can also block out the harsh rays of the sun, so the room will feel cooler and your furniture fabrics won’t fade out.

Choose a Summer Palette

Use summertime colors that compliment your existing walls and floors. A beach palette, such as sand, ocean blue, coral, yellow and sea foam green all give you that summer feel. Yellow curtain panels on a window can brighten up a room and give it a lighter feel.

5 Tips for Updating Your Home Décor With Window Treatments

Have you been looking at the same window treatments for years, tired of them but not sure how to actually update the look without completely re-doing your entire house? You can get big results from small changes, when done right. Here are five tips to keep in mind when you are trying to redecorate your home, with low cost upgrades that will make everything look fresher and newer:

1.       Less is more when it comes to window treatments. For the most part, heavy, ornate window treatments are not currently in fashion, except for in some of the most formal living areas. The average person is leaning more toward simple, yet elegant window fashions. Instead of having long, heavy curtains, take advantage of natural lighting and use decorated valances, or upholstered valances that match or complement your current furnishings. Add a blind or shade for privacy, as needed, and enjoy tons of natural light, with simple, complementary window dressings that can be easily customized to accompany any room.

2.       Texture is a trending topic. Window coverings that are made of textured materials and natural materials are all the rage in today’s most chic homes. Consider rolling shades made of bamboo, or lovely Roman shades made from bamboo or other natural materials as you try to modernize the look of the rooms in your home. The natural fibers give a beauty and style that adds to any décor, but can still be rolled up to allow for natural daylight whenever desired.

3.       Colors do count. When selecting colors, it is important to select colors that are not only going to be complementary to the other colors in your home, but you want to make sure that you are choosing colors that are contemporary. You have probably been in homes that have obviously not been updated in decades, don’t be that homeowner and make sure that you choose colors that are in hues considered current and attractive, not dated.

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4.       Light can make a room appear larger. Smaller spaces really can benefit from the addition of natural light, so whenever possible, you want to use a shade that can be raised and lowered to let in plenty of light, rather than heavier draperies. If privacy is a concern, choose a shade that lowers from the top as well as the bottom, like some of the options available in today’s Roman shades.

5.       Consider the lines of the room and the objects that are already there. Most rooms are filled with straight lines and corners. Adding in some softness, perhaps with a rounded valance or a blousy shade can help to soften the lines, especially in a room such as the kitchen, with many corners on cupboards and many straight lines on the windows. Add some interest by adding some different shapes.

These tips are intended to help anyone make a room more updated and more pleasant. When you take into account the high visibility of window treatments, because most people are naturally drawn to look at the windows in a room, then you want to make sure that your window treatments are the most attractive and most beautiful that you can find.

Different Options When Choosing Wooden Blinds

Wooden blinds are a popular option for window treatments, for several reasons. They can add texture, color, warmth and style to any room, while allowing you to control the amount of light that you let into a room. You can raise the blinds completely, to let the maximum amount of light in, or simply tilt the blinds to your specific needs at the time to let partial light in. Decorating with wooden blinds gives you many options, in terms of types  of wood, color, width of the blinds, and overall style.

Here are a few things to consider when choosing to use wooden blinds as your window treatments:

1.       Measure carefully: Wooden blinds can be pricey, so you definitely do not want to make any mistakes when it comes to ordering according to specific measurements. Measure the width and height of the window from several different points, since, especially in older homes, windows may not always be perfectly square. You may need to adjust the measurement of the wooden blinds in order to accommodate for any slight defects in the frame “square-ness.”

2.       Understand the finish: Wooden blinds can come in a variety of finishes, from natural wood to stained, to painted. Deciding which style is right for your room is a personal decision, but you may want to see if your window treatment dealer has some different samples that you can look at in the natural light of the room you want to use it in, to help you decide which option might be the best window treatment for your décor.

3.       Know the options for slats: Wooden blinds can have different types of slats. Some are flat, and will obscure the most amounts of light, while other slats are rounded, allowing for a bit of light to show through. Each will give its own distinctive look, and make your room appear different, so think about which option would make the best window treatment for your room.

4.       Select the right slat size: Wooden blinds can have varying slat sizes. Smaller windows will usually require thinner slats, while larger windows can accommodate the larger slat sizes nicely. The different slat sizes will allow in different amounts of light and give differing visibility while looking out the window as well, so take these facts into careful consideration.

Any window treatment investment can be a big one, and if you are planning on spending a lot of money then you should make your decisions carefully, especially when it comes to the many options that are available for wooden blinds. Wooden blinds will last for decades to come, and won’t go out of style, yet you can change the look easily by adding other window treatment options when you get the urge for something different.