If you are going to replace your current window treatments, your best bet is to go with either blinds or shades for your windows. There are many options when it comes to these two types of window coverings and if you want to spruce them up, then you can add a valance, curtains, or drapes.
When it comes to window coverings, you cannot go wrong with blinds. You can choose how much light to let in with just a tilt in the slats and there are several different materials that blinds are made from. These include vinyl, aluminum, faux wood (or textured vinyl) and real wood.
Vinyl blinds are the least expensive type of blinds and while wood blinds are the most expensive choice, they are not recommended for kitchens or bathrooms since the moisture and temperatures can cause them to warp.
Regardless of the type of material you choose, you also have to decide whether you want vertical or horizontal slats. Vertical blinds are generally for sliding glass doors, picture windows, and windows that are short and wide. Horizontal blinds help to create the illusion of bigger windows and more space in apartments and small rooms.
Blinds are great because they can be easily wiped clean and usually only need to be dusted weekly. If need be, vinyl shades can be taken down and hand washed, while shades made out of fabrics will need to be professionally cleaned.
When it comes to blinds, another option is insulated blinds. While more expensive than regular blinds, they help to conserve energy while also filtering or blocking light. This may help to reduce your monthly utility bill.
If you have small children, you may want to enquire with your Hunter Douglas blinds salesperson about cordless blinds. The cords of some blinds have become asphyxiation hazards. If cordless is not an option, there are kits available to ensure your children do not get entwined.
There are six major types of blinds. Each type is stylish and versatile and allows you to create different looks and moods. They are warmer and softer than blinds, but are a bit more difficult to clean.
When it comes to shades, there are six types that you can choose from. They include woven wood or bamboo shades which are best for sunny areas because they filter out the sun and give the room a natural look. There are also tight weaves like twill and micro suede which are best for bedrooms because they are nontranslucent and offer optimal privacy.
Roman shades are the dressiest and are best for your living and dining rooms. They can be set to billow out like a balloon as they have soft, wide pleats that fold flat when you raise the cord. Honeycomb or cellular shades are the most energy efficient shades available. They have horizontal rows of air pockets that help to keep the warm air out in the summer and in during the winter.
Finally, there are a blackout shades which are best for bedrooms and family rooms because they keep out 100% of the light that tries to get in. However, they are more expensive than regular shades.