practical guide to window blinds

Your Practical Guide to Choosing the Best Blinds

In Domicile Blinds Tips by Connie Powell

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When it comes to choosing window blinds, there’s a host of designs available, so it can be a little overwhelming if you’re trying to find the best type for your needs. A good blind supplier can advise you, but this guide also offers some hints and tips to get you started. Whatever challenges your windows may pose, there are design tricks we can use to solve them, so read on for inspiration.

Choose your own fabric
If you want a bespoke roller blind and have found the fabric of your dreams, it’s worth opting for a laminating service. Many blind companies offer this technique, which involves stiffening the fabric.

The blinds can also be given a blackout lining, and styles are now available in wider widths, with or without borders. Cover the top of the roller with a coordinating pelmet to hide the brackets for a really professional finish.

Choose a Venetian blind for a bathroom
We often have frosted glass on our bathroom windows to stop the neighbours from looking in, but you could use a blind instead. Why not opt for normal glass and control the light and privacy with wooden Venetian blinds? They come in lots of shades, including grey and taupe, so it’s easy to get a sleek, elegant look.

The vertical tapes that hold the slats together also come in contrasting or matching colours. They need to be used with caution, however, as they may not line up with the vertical breaks in your window panels and can sometimes look very busy. Vertical strings are less noticeable and offer a more streamlined, uncluttered finish.

Work with objects under the window
If there’s an obstruction below a window, such as a radiator or bed, a Roman blind is a great solution, as it can be pulled back high on the wall. Use one with or without borders, but don’t forget that in a child’s room a breakaway chain and safety device are necessary.

Mount your blind on the wall space above the window opening – the added height will make the window seem bigger. It also means the blind fabric can be pleated up and above the window opening to allow maximum light into the space.

For laser-sharp pleats and a cool, designer feel, use a professional made-to-measure service and opt for motorised blinds for a one-touch operating experience. A sleek pelmet will complete the look.

Let in light, but retain privacy
Voile roller blinds are a great option if you want to bring lots of natural light into a room during the day but still have privacy. They’re available in neutral white, grey and ivory, but brighter shades are available if you want to add a splash of colour.

Layer voiles with Roman blinds or curtains, which you can close at night to make the room more private and cosy.

Combine options for varied windows
Rooms often have a variety of different-sized windows and patio doors, so you may need more than one type of blind. Many roller and vertical blinds come in the same fabrics, so it’s easy to combine styles and still have them match perfectly.

Alternatively, try a patterned fabric for a roller – when it lies flat, you can enjoy the full effect of the design – and plain fabric for the vertical. Wider windows look best with vertical blinds, but they need a bigger area in which to stack back, so make sure you can sacrifice the space.

With so many colours, textures and patterns available for roller blinds, it can be overwhelming. A good blind supplier can guide you, and help coordinate your blinds to enhance your space. Bring photos of the outside and inside of your house to your local store or, better still, get an on-site consultation, which is often free.

Go for classic shutters
Whether you refer to them as shutter, plantation or colonial blinds, these little beauties bring uncluttered elegance to a space.

Shutters can look amazing when installed correctly. Pay attention to the design of your window and align the doors of the shutters to the same shape as the window frames. Evenly divide the doors across large window panels.

Shutters are highly versatile, as they can be left closed with the slats tilted or completely opened out to let the light flood in, as seen here. They also help to soundproof a room and provide insulation.

Use shutters to enjoy varying degrees of privacy and light control, or simply to have the best-dressed windows in town.

Dress an unusual window
Vertical blinds are a good solution for awkwardly shaped windows, like the one shown here. They can be pulled back, but only to the highest point, while in the closed position they can be tilted to allow various degrees of privacy. There’s a wide range of colours and patterns to choose from, but for a clean, uncluttered look, it’s better to keep it plain and simple.

Hang a versatile silhouette blind
If you don’t want solid Venetian blinds, but still need the various levels of privacy and light they offer, blinds that incorporate a few layers of fabric could be the solution. These are known as silhouette, facette or night and day blinds, and consist of two layers of translucent fabric with an opaque fabric sandwiched between them. When rolled or tilted, the middle fabric covers the translucent section and provides privacy.

These blinds are easy to open and close and come in a range of widths. They are more expensive than roller or wooden blinds but are extremely versatile. They are made up of horizontal stripes, so make sure they fit with the design and shape of your windows.

Opt for a precise, insulated fit
Pleated blinds come in a range of designs, from a single layer of fabric to ones with four layers. There’s also the option to include a thermal layer, with the blinds offering varying degrees of insulation. Multi-layer blinds have a honeycomb system that traps air and act as an insulator, making them more energy-efficient.

Pleated blinds can be hung in many different positions to allow privacy or light in from the top, middle or bottom of the window. They’re a great solution for awkwardly shaped windows and there’s a wide range of pleat sizes, from 25mm to 64mm wide.

However, not everyone likes the look of pleated blinds, so make sure you’re happy with the design and that it will blend in or enhance your space.

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Have you just moved into your new property and want to replace those old blinds or curtains? Or perhaps you’ve changed the decor in your home and want to upgrade your window dressing?

We create and deliver custom, made-to-measure blinds in a range of different materials and colours. From Venetian Blinds to Vertical Blinds, the choice is yours.

Simply book an appointment with us or get a quote.