The blinds you choose have a large impact on the look and feel of your room, so it’s important to choose the right style for your home.
Knowing a little about what’s on offer can help you choose the blinds or shutters that fit your needs and help you to best enhance your room.
What’s available in Australia?
While new products come on to the market every now and again, there are five main choices when it comes to blinds:
- Light filtering
The top 6
1. Venetian blinds
Venetian blinds are made of horizontal slats, usually wood or plastic, and suspended by cords which allow every slat to be rotated together to give you precise control over the amount of light that enters the room and the amount of privacy that you have.
Venetian blinds are typically easy to install, low maintenance and come in a wide variety of designs and colours.
2. Roman blinds
Roman blinds or shades are made of soft fabric. When the blinds are down, they lie flat against the window, but when raised they gather into pleats.
Stylish and sophisticated, roman blinds offer good privacy and light blockage but are not suitable for wet rooms.
3. Plantation shutters
Plantation shutters are shutters used as an interior window covering and are characterised by a wide louvre (slat). While they have a high cost up-front to purchase and install they help save energy and are durable to boot.
4. Roller blinds
Roller blinds use a stiffened fabric that can be rolled up onto a tube when not being used and are durable, easy to operate and economical to purchase.
There’s a large choice of fabrics, colours and finishes to choose from.
5. Blackout blinds
Typically a type of roller blind, these blinds have a coating that prevents light from penetrating through them. They have all the advantages of roller blinds but with the added attraction of complete privacy.
6. Light filtering blinds
With blackout blinds and roller blinds, many people choose to have a double blind installed and add a light filtering blind which offers privacy.
A light filtering blind is made from a sort of mesh and operates the same way as a roller blind. It sits closet to the window under your roller blind and would remain down acting as a screen (letting in the light, but blocking out neighbours and passers by).
Light filtering blinds come in a choice of colours. The darker the blind, the more light is let in, which is often the opposite of what people think.
Which choice is the most cost efficient?
The cheapest blinds to buy and install tend to be vinyl or aluminium venetian blinds or vinyl roller blinds. However while these are inexpensive up-front they give you very little heat retention.
To reduce heat loss you want blinds that leave as little gaps for air to get through as possible so that air is trapped in the room. Typically shutters give the best insulation as they can be closed with less air gaps than blinds and the efficiency savings over time can offset their initial cost.
Blinds aren’t something you buy frequently, so think long term and buy quality, they may need to last you for years.
Which blinds work well for wet rooms such as bathrooms & kitchens?
Window coverings for wet rooms such as the bathroom and kitchen need to be waterproof and easily cleanable.
For the bathroom it also helps if they block out light to maintain your privacy! The key choice here is not the style of blind but the material of which it is made.
Wooden blinds and shutters will absorb moisture and quickly buckle. The best materials are typically made of synthetic materials or acrylic-coated fabrics and you can purchase these in popular style choices such as Venetian blinds and Roller blinds.
Most showrooms have a large range on display and many blind providers will come to your home and measure up for free, bringing samples of what’s on offer to you. Take your time and choose what you feel it right.
A good blind does more than just block out your neighbours. It blocks out heat in summer and keeps it in in winter.
Originally posted on realestate.com.au