How to Know When You Are Ready to Buy a Home

Buying a home is one of life’s biggest milestones, and it’s also likely the biggest purchase you will ever make.

Many mortgages last anywhere from 15 to 25 years—which means your decision to sign on the dotted line will be something you’re reminded of every month for the foreseeable future. Although that can sound scary—especially if long-term commitment to a single neighborhood, city, or state is a daunting idea—it can also be one of the most exciting times in your life.

And when you truly love your home, working towards paying it off and finally owning it all on your own can be a rewarding experience that gives you enormous pride and peace of mind.

If you’re still renting an apartment or home but are considering taking the plunge of home ownership, but you still need that extra push, it may be time to take stock of where you’re at in your life and your priorities to help determine if you’re ready to make the commitment of buying your own home.

Check out Blindster’s list of the top reasons that indicate you’re ready to become a homeowner:

  • You have long-term plans to stay in your area.

Uprooting on a whim or chasing a career dream is easy when you’re renting an apartment or a house, but it can be a bit tricky when you’ve purchased a home. If your wanderlust is limited to vacations and you feel settled in your career or choice of geographic location, buying a home can be a great way to put down roots in your community and begin building a long-term life for yourself and your family.

 

  • You’ve saved up enough money to make a down payment.

In many cities, monthly mortgage payments are cheaper than paying rent each month for an apartment or house of equal size, but getting your monthly mortgage payments to that level may require a sizeable down payment. The more money you put towards the cost of your home in the beginning, the less interest you will pay and the less you’ll pay each month—which can free up more money for your savings and other expenses. It’s important to strike a good balance between making a down payment that will reduce your monthly mortgage payments while also leaving you with enough money left over to cover immediate and emergency expenses.

 

  • You’re prepared for the costs and upkeep of home ownership.

It’s easy to feel like you’re throwing money away when you live in an apartment or rental home, but signing a lease instead of a mortgage does give you one major perk: your landlord is on the hook to fix almost anything that breaks or needs repairs. But when you’re a homeowner, any and all problems can only be solved by one person: you. In addition to being responsible for shelling out the cash for home repairs, it’s also vital that you know how to perform basic home maintenance and repairs and that you are prepared for “hidden” expenses like property taxes, HOA fees, and lawn care.

 

  • You know what you want in a home.

If you think you’re ready to buy a home but you aren’t quite sure what type of home you want, keep looking and keep saving. While there’s no guarantee you will end up with your dream home even after an exhaustive search of your local housing market, the chances of finding a home that meets the majority of your wants and needs is much higher when you know exactly what you want from the outset. Before fully diving in to the idea of buying a home, brainstorm a list of all the amenities and styles you want in a home, and use that list to influence the homes you tour and seriously consider as you move forward with your plans.

 

  • You’ve done your research on the neighborhood you want to live in.

When you buy a home, you’re not just buying the four walls—you’re buying the neighborhood. That means the local grocery stores, shopping centers, school systems, parks, access to interstates, and, perhaps most importantly, your commute to work are all part of a package deal. It’s rare to find a home that checks all of those boxes, so take the time to determine which is most important to you before you begin the search process. Moving into a dream home can quickly turn into a nightmare if you’re dozens of miles away from civilization and your commute to work has you leaving every morning before the sun rises.

 

  • You have a plan for the next 5, 10, and 25 years.

Are you looking to buy a home where you will raise your children and eventually retire? Or are you looking for a starter home that can get your feet wet in the housing market and eventually turn into a rental property for your family as you move on to bigger and better things? Having a solid plan in mind for your new house, whether it’s a temporary move or a place you will call home for the rest of your life, is one of the most important parts of the home buying process. Choosing a starter home in an up and coming neighborhood can lead to significant rental income in the years to come, but you must do your homework to buy in the right area and at the right time.

 

  • You have enough savings to withstand a financial emergency.

Whether it’s due to an unexpected medical event, vehicle repair, or job loss, a sudden financial emergency can put a serious bind on your savings and your monthly income. Those unexpected costs can be easier to absorb if you’re renting an apartment or a house, as your monthly expenses are relatively static and don’t change much. But as a homeowner, the stakes are much higher due to the miscellaneous costs of owning a house, and missing a few mortgage payments due to unexpected expenses or loss of income can put you at risk of foreclosure and losing your home.

How to Declutter Your Home for 2016

 

Who says you need to wait until spring to begin a thorough cleaning of your home?

2016 is here, and with it brings another chance to “start over” in your living space with a fresh slate. One of the best ways to do that is to get rid of any décor, furniture, knickknacks, and random items that simply don’t contribute to your home’s appeal or meet your family’s daily needs.

Decluttering your home not only improves its appearance, but it can also be therapeutic for your entire family. Walking into a room where every item has a purpose and a designated place can make your home feel more cohesive and peaceful, whereas homes with clutter can feel chaotic, unorganized, and even stressful.

Unlike routine cleaning, which has easily defined goals and doesn’t require much foresight, decluttering is more subjective and requires planning. If you go overboard, you may feel like you’ve stripped your home of its charm and character, but not removing enough unneeded items can leave your home still looking disorganized and in disarray.

To strike a great balance between personal home style and clean design, check out Blindster’s tips for decluttering:

Create spaces for mail, important documents, and loose papers.

Papers

Nothing creates clutter in your home quicker than newspapers, bills, magazines, documents, and loose sheets of paper. Even the most immaculately cleaned and organized homes can look like they’re in complete disarray when this type of clutter takes up space on countertops, tables, and desks. To tackle this problem in your home, create an area where you can easily separate and respond to mail and bills and designate a space to store important documents, notes, and other loose sheets of paper that you need to save.

Put away all but the essential gadgets in your kitchen.

Clean Kitchen

It seems like there is no end to the number of gadgets and gizmos that are vying for a space on your kitchen countertop. And while these devices—your blender, mixer, single service coffee machine, soda maker, etc.—can make your life easier, they can also quickly overwhelm your kitchen and make it look more like a department store kitchen aisle than an actual place to prepare and cook food. If your kitchen is feeling a bit cramped, take the time to put away any gadgets you don’t use at least once per week. Putting them away will free up vital counter space for food preparation and make your kitchen seem more open and far less cramped.

Reduce the number of pictures and pieces of artwork you display.

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There’s nothing wrong with wanting to display cherished family photos and favorite pieces of artwork in your home, but it’s easy to reach a tipping point. Each new piece can begin to detract from the others and create a disorganized display with nothing serving as a visual centerpiece. To keep things fresh for yourself and your guests—and to increase the emphasis on each individual portrait, photo, or painting—rotate your artworks and pictures on a regular basis with only a handful displayed at any given time. With only a few items on display, your home will look less cluttered and each picture or painting will be that much more impactful.

Don’t be afraid of empty or blank spaces.

empty space

When decorating your home, it’s easy to give in to the temptation to fill every available space on your floor or walls. But in many cases, empty spaces create a more powerful visual effect than even the most striking lamp, chair, or painting. White or blank space is essential for keeping the eye moving toward the most important elements of a design, and the same is true for your home. A blank wall or small section of a room that’s kept bare and free from furniture can immediately help de-clutter even the most cramped room.

Keep items in their designated storage spaces.

closet

At the end of a long day, the only thing you want to do is take off your coat and shoes and relax on the couch or in your favorite chair. And while a single coat and pair of shoes in your living room won’t turn your home into a cluttered mess, it can quickly add up. Returning items to their designated spaces takes more effort initially, but it’s an easy and highly efficient way of keeping your home decluttered 24/7.

Clean out your junk drawer and create more space.

Junk Drawer

It’s okay to have one area of your home that is absolutely full of clutter—and that’s the junk drawer. Junk drawers are the one place to store the random items that simply don’t have a place anywhere else—spare batteries, the manual for the new coffee maker, or the box of paper clips that you use once per year, just to name a few. But if your junk drawer is absolutely overflowing and impossible to sort through, take the time to clean it out before you add anything to it. It should be easy to work your way through its contents and pitch items you don’t need—after all, it is junk. Then, begin refilling it, but only with items you know will (or might) be needing in the near future.

Enlist the opinions of friends.

Friend

Clutter doesn’t look the same to everyone—especially when it comes to your own home. If you’ve worked at de-cluttering your home but still feel that it’s lacking the organized look that you’re striving to achieve, consider enlisting the help of friends or family. A fresh pair of eyes looking at the situation from a different perspective can go a long way in identifying problem areas and helping you discover areas of your home that appear too cramped, crowded, and cluttered.

New Window Treatment Trends for 2016

Like all home décor, the most popular styles and fashions of window treatments can change from year to year. Those changes show no sign of stopping in 2016, with several varieties of blinds and shades poised to become must-have items for style-conscious homeowners over the next 12 months.

At Blindster, we offer a wide variety of window coverings, including classic looks and cutting-edge styles and designs. If you’re looking to make a change in your home’s décor and are ready to take the plunge into the most popular and up-to-date blinds and shades on the market, we’ve got you covered.

The items listed below are some of the window coverings we offer that are trending in 2016 and can help revitalize your home’s appearance and overall style:

Shutters aren’t just for the outside of your home. Our indoor faux wood Plantation Shutters are one of our newest products and represent one of the most popular current trends in window coverings. Placing shutters indoors is making a big comeback in homes across the country due to their elegant appearance and timeless design.

 

Although these are considered a trendy item, their appearance is anything but, as they feature a truly classic look that effortlessly matches almost any home décor. Best of all, their faux wood materials make them durable and lightweight. Order yours in three different colors—Cotton, Pearl, and Vanilla.

Natural and eco-friendly materials are trending up in 2016, and it’s no different for window coverings. Our Cordless Bamboo Woven Wood Shades are not only manufactured using all-natural materials, they’re also free from cords, chains, or loops, making them both low-profile and safe for children and pets. The bamboo fabrics beautifully filter the light that enters your home while protecting your privacy.

 

These shades are also among our newest offerings and are available in six distinct natural colors and patterns, including Key West Cocoa, Waikiki Tortoise, and Maya Camel. Order yours to fit windows up to 72” wide and 72” high.

One of the biggest trends for 2016 is warming and lighting your home with the sun’s rays, and one of the best window coverings for doing that is our 3” Premium Light Filtering Sheer Shades. When opened, these shades let in copious amounts of filtered natural light that will instantly brighten any room in your home, but they also close to block out 99 percent of UV rays and protect your family’s privacy.

 

These shades are among the cutting-edge when it comes to their design, as the 3” horizontal light-filtering fabric vanes rest between double layers of knitted fabric sheers for the ultimate in versatility. Choose between 15 unique colors when ordering your shades, including Linen Pearl, Umber, Mocha, and Cocoa Bean.

Patterns and thick, intricate window coverings are poised to become hot ticket items in 2016, and our Premium Roman Shades Group D check both boxes. These Roman shades are manufactured using high-quality materials and can be ordered with two different fold style choices—plain or soft—and each can make a dramatic impact on the appearance of your windows. To create a fully matte and low-profile appearance, the lift cord for these shades is hidden behind them, but you can also order a top down/bottom up option.

 

As far as patterns go, these shades are among our most versatile. Choose from bold patterns like Rhapsody Brick, Charleston Blue, Findlay Shadow, and Essence Smoke to get the perfect match for your home’s furnishings, color scheme, and décor.

Aluminum mini blinds are among the most commonly installed window treatments in the country, and for good reason—they’re highly effective at blocking out sunlight and highly durable and resistant to fading, cracking, and warping. What makes these blinds trendy for 2016 are the color choices—especially Brushed Aluminum. Metallic colors and color schemes are making a big push to the forefront of home décor this year, and these blinds will fit perfectly in homes that feature that design.

 

Get yours cut to fit windows up to 122” wide and 108” high, and check out additional colors like White Gloss, Snow Cap, Char Brown, and Black Satin before placing your order.

A big focus for many homeowners in 2016 will be making their abodes as insulated and airtight as possible to cut down on energy bills during the summer and winter. Caulking windows and placing draft stoppers under doors helps, but an overlooked aspect of insulating homes is installing the right window treatments. Our Deluxe Light Filtering Double Cellular Shades are not only perfect for trapping warm air during the winter and keeping hot air out during the summer, but their double honeycomb design also makes them stylish and a perfect for modern furniture and décor.

 

In addition to being insulating and chic, these shades are also capable of blocking out 98 percent of the sun’s UV rays, protecting your family and your furniture from its harsh effects. If you like bold colors, you’re in luck with this shade, as there are 17 distinct colors to choose from, including Sienna Sand, Salsa, Slate Gray, and Alabaster.

If part of your 2016 New Year’s Resolution is to spend more time outdoors, but you can’t tolerate the sun’s heat, glare, and UV rays, you need our Deluxe Exterior Solar Shades 10% Open. These coverings can be installed on porches, patios, and sunrooms and are capable of blocking 90 percent of the sun’s harmful rays, allowing you to relax and enjoy the outdoors without worrying about sunburns or skin damage.

 

Manufactured with Vertilux® Solar Screen 3000 fabrics, these shades will also preserve your view of your outdoor area and are designed to hold up during all harsh weather conditions, including storms, heavy rainfall, and hot summers/cold winters. Order yours today and choose between six colors, including White, Silver, Chocolate, and Charcoal.

How to Measure for Shutters

Traditional blinds and shades aren’t your only options when it comes to purchasing window treatments for your home. At Blindster, we’re proud to now offer indoor shutters. This unique window covering option is elegant and beautifully complements a wide variety of home décor, from classic stylings to contemporary designs. Like our blinds and shades, our indoor shutters can be mounted either to the inside of your window frame or the edge of your window opening depending on the size and shape of your windows and window frames.

We also offer three unique colors, including Cotton, Pearl, and Vanilla, and the shades can be purchased with either 2 ½” or 3 ½” louvers to match your tastes. And due to the faux wood materials used in the manufacturing process, our shutters are both highly durable and lightweight, making them easy to install, clean, and maintain.

Step-by-Step Measuring Guide

As with all of our window coverings, one of the most important steps to making sure you’re satisfied with your purchase is sending us precise measurements of your windows and window frames. If the measurements are off, your shutters may not fit your windows properly and may be difficult to install.

Getting precise measurements is a crucial step, but following the instructions below can help make the process easy.

Inside Mount Measuring Instructions

If you plan on installing your shutters inside your window frame and leaving the molding exposed, it’s important to make sure that your window frames are deep enough to support this installation method.

  • Minimum depth for inside mounts is 2 ½” from glass to the outer edge of the window frame.
  • Shutters with a 3 ½” louver require a minimum depth of 3”.
  • For best results, inside mounting is recommended for shades that will be installed on window frames with at least a 2 ½” minimum depth.

Once you’ve determined whether your window is suitable for an inside mount installation, you can begin the measuring process:

  • Step 1

Measure the width of the window from inside edge to inside edge in three separate places—top, middle, and bottom. Take each measurement down to the nearest 1/8” and record the smallest of these three measurements. That number will be used when you place your order with Blindster.

 

  • Step 2

Measure the height of the window frame from the window sill to the top of the window frame in three separate places—left, center, and right. Take each measurement down to the nearest 1/8” and record the smallest of these three measurements. That number will be used when you place your order with Blindster.

 

Important Note: Use the exact measurements you record rounded down to the nearest 1/8” when you place your order. The factory will cut your shutters to fit your windows perfectly during the manufacturing process, and any deductions taken before ordering could affect the proper fit of your new shutters.

 

Outside Mount Measuring Instructions

 

Like our blinds and shades, our shutters can also be mounted outside your window frames if the frames aren’t deep enough to support inside mounts.

 

  • Outside mounts are recommended for window frames that don’t have at least 2 ½” of depth required for proper installation of inside mounted shutters.
  • Because outside mount installations completely cover your windows, including your exposed window frames, it’s important to note that you will need to add inches to your final measurements.

 

After you’ve determined that outside mounts are your best option for installing your new shutters, you can begin the measuring process:

 

  • Step 1

Measure the full width of the window frame from edge to edge in three separate places—top, middle, and bottom. Take the largest measurement of these three and round it up to the nearest 1/8”. If you want to completely enclose and hide your window frames with your new shutters, add at least 4” to your largest width measurement.

 

  • Step 2

Measure the full height of your window from the window sill to the top of the window casing in three separate places—left, center, and right. Take the largest measurement of these three and round it up to the nearest 1/8”.

 

  • Step 3

To account for the presence of a window sill, add at least 2” to your largest height measurement rounded to the nearest 1/8”. If your windows don’t have window sills, add at least 4” to your largest height measurement rounded to the nearest 1/8”.

Minimum and Maximum Sizes

Although our shutters can be custom cut to fit a wide variety of window sizes, it’s important to know the following facts before you place your order:

  • Minimum panel width: 8”
  • Maximum panel width: 36”
  • Minimum panel height: 16”
  • Maximum panel height: 60” without divider rail, 90” with divider rail, 112” with 2 divider rails
  • Minimum depth for inside mounts: 2 ½” for 2 ½” louvers, 3” for 3 ½” louvers
Maximum Number of Shutter Panels by Width Range
Width Range Number of Panels
18” – 36” 1 panel
36 1/8” – 68” 2 panels
68 1/8” – 96” 4 panels
136 1/8” 6 panels

 

 

 

 

DIY Cup Cozy

This easy cup cozy is adorable and will keep your hand safe when drinking your morning coffee. Our sample shades fabrics work perfectly for small DIY sewing projects like this one. We found this cute striped pattern in a thick fabric that will hold up to close contact with heat and continued use, just like our shades! You could also use any durable pieces of scrap fabric that are big enough.

This is a perfect project to bring the kids in on. It takes less than an hour to complete and is a great way to teach kids basic sewing skills. They can use their cozy for a cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows. To get started, gather up all the materials you will need.

You will need:

  • Two 5-1/2” by 12” fabric pieces
  • One 5-1/2” by 12” piece of batting
  • Button
  • Hair Elastic (without metal)
  • Coordinating Thread
  • Pins
  • Scissors
  • Sewing Machine
  • Needle

Step 1

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Cut your fabric pieces and batting to fit around your cup or use a template like this one. Make sure all of the pieces are the same size.

Step 2

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Place the fabric you intend to have showing wrong side down on top of the batting, matching up all the edges.

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Squeeze two sides of the hair elastic together to make an 8, then, pin it in place to the center of one straight edge of the fabric at the middle of the 8.

Step 3

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Place the second piece of fabric, right side down, on top of the elastic and first fabric piece. Make sure all the edges match and then pin it all together. Leave some space at the edge for sewing.

Step 4

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Using the coordinating thread, sew along the edges of the rectangle with a 1/4” seam, leaving a 2” gap for turning.

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Make sure to backstitch over the elastic several times for security.

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Step 5

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Turn the cozy right side out using the gap and push out all the corners. Turn under the unsewn edges and topstitch around the entire cozy.

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Step 6

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Sew the button the opposite right side of the cozy. Check that both the elastic and button are securely fastened. Then your cozy is ready to be wrapped around your to-go cup!

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Inside Mounts vs Outside Mounts for Blinds and Shades

When purchasing new window treatments, there can be a lot of decisions to make. Do you prefer blinds or shades? Wood or vinyl? Roman shades or roller shades? Blackout or sheer?

Out of all those major choices, one decision that many homeowners forget to consider is whether they want to mount their new window treatments inside their window frames or outside their window frames. Although it may seem like a minor decision, the installation method you choose can have a major impact on the appearance of your windows and your level of satisfaction with your new window treatments.

At Blindster, we know that choosing between inside mounts vs outside mounts can be a difficult decision for many homeowners—especially if they are accustomed to seeing their window treatments installed in a certain manner in the past. But, it’s important to review all the pros and cons before making a final decision, as certain homes, rooms, and windows may favor inside mounts, while others may favor outside mounts.

Before you begin measuring your windows for an inside or outside mount, check out Blindster’s list of pros and cons for each installation method:

Inside Mounts

Inside mount refers to blinds and shades that are installed within the confines of a window frame. That means the headrail is attached flush with the top of the window frame and the window treatment is fully contained inside the four corners of the frame itself.

Pros:

  • Inside mounts provide a sleek, built-in appearance.

If you prefer for your window treatment to look as unobtrusive as possible, inside mount installation may be your best option. Blinds and shades that are installed this way have a low-profile appearance and often have less visual impact on the room and it’s décor due to being recessed into the window frame.

 

  • Inside mounts make it easy to get precise measurements.

One of the most important parts of buying new window treatments is getting your measurements correct. The measurement process for inside mount installations is easy—you simply measure across the width and height of your window frame to get the correct dimensions. Ordering inside mount blinds and shades can give you peace of mind knowing that your shades are likely to fit your windows perfectly.

 

  • Inside mounts maintain the functionality of deep window sills.

If your window frames have deep window sills, installing your blinds or shades inside your window frames can maintain the functionality of the sills, allowing you to use them as shelves or displays for books, plants, and other decorative items—even when the blinds are closed and fully extended.

 

Cons:

 

  • Inside mounts block some light and view when fully opened.

The headrail at the top of your window frame will always obscure a small amount of your view of the outdoors, and the effect can be exacerbated when the window treatments are fully opened due to the stacking of materials that occurs. Window treatments that use thick fabrics or materials may block out several inches of your window, even when the blinds or shades are fully raised.

 

  • Inside mounts require deep window frames.

Not all windows are capable of supporting inside mounts. Blinds and shades require a minimum depth for inside mounts, and some windows have shallow window frames that aren’t suitable for inside mounts. It’s vital that you have at least the minimum required space, plus a bit extra on either side of the headrail, to get proper function out of your new window treatments when they are installed inside your window frames.

 

Outside Mounts

 

Outside mounted window treatments are, as the name suggests, installed anywhere outside of the window frame. Whether they overlap the window frame by just a few centimeters or several inches, outside mounted blinds and shades create a distinct appearance in homes and can radically transform the appearance of windows.

 

Pros:

 

  • Outside mounts are extremely versatile and can be installed on almost any window.

Do your windows have shallow frames? Do they have an irregular shape that makes it difficult to inside mount traditional window coverings? Do your windows have protruding handles or cranks? If you answered yes to any of these questions, outside mounted window treatments may be ideal for your home. Because they don’t fit inside your window frames, outside mounted blinds and shades afford you with versatility that inside installations can’t match.

 

  • Outside mounts can cover unattractive window trim.

Window trim is often hit or miss. It either greatly enhances the beauty and appeal of your windows, or it’s something you would rather not look at every day. If your window trim falls in the latter category, outside mounted window coverings can cover it up completely. Best of all, if the unattractive trim or frame is at the top of your windows, you won’t have to see it even when your blinds or shades are fully opened due to being able to mount the shade well above the window itself.

 

  • Outside mounts can make your windows look much bigger.

Inside mounts fit your windows like a glove and always reveal their true size, but outside mounts can easily create the illusion of massive windows. If your home’s windows are on the smaller side but you love the look of big windows, outside mounted blinds and shades that are kept in a closed or semi-closed position can create the appearance of oversized windows.

 

Cons:

 

  • Outside mounts can be more difficult to measure and to get the right fit.

Inside mounts are easy to measure due to clearly defined boundaries of where your window treatments will go. But with outside mounts, there are no boundaries—just blank wall space. It’s important to know the exact size of the window treatments you want before ordering outside mounted blinds or shades in order to avoid ending up with coverings that are too small or too large.

 

  • Outside mounts can be more difficult to install depending on the mounting surface.

Installing inside mounts is a relatively straightforward and uniform process—especially when it comes to attaching the headrail to the top of the window frame. Installing outside mounts can range from easy to tricky depending on the surface where you will mount the headrail. Before deciding on using outside mounts for your window coverings, check to make sure that you won’t have any issues adhering the headrail.

Best Blinds and Shades for Doors

Whether your home has sliding glass doors or doors with large windows built-in, you undoubtedly know how the openness of such doors can be a double-edged sword. They’re perfect for letting in natural light and filling your home with a warm glow during the day, but they can also significantly reduce your privacy.

The good news is that the vast majority of the window coverings we sell at Blindster can be ordered to fit doors, regardless of their shape or size. Doors outfitted with window coverings can often be even more stunning than many windows due to their larger size and the huge amounts of filtered natural light they bring into your home.

To find the perfect blinds for the doors in your home, check out our recommendations below:

embossed pvc blinds

When most people think of window coverings for doors, they probably imagine blinds that look much like our Embossed PVC Vertical Blinds. These blinds are easy to operate and open/close due to a self-aligning wheeled carrier and self-lubricating acetal parts. Choose from more than 20 colors to perfectly fit your home’s décor and style, including Manhattan White, Charleston Sand, and Stanford Bluehaze, and pick between a chain or wand control. Don’t worry about your doors being too big, either—this blind can be custom cut to fit doors up to 129” wide and 129” long.

2 inch sheer shades

Our sheer shades are among our best sellers due to their versatility, and the 2” Premium Room Darkening Sheer Shades are no different. Windowed doors are unique in that homeowners frequently want the ultimate in privacy—especially when their doors face sidewalks or streets—while also having the luxury of maximizing the natural light they produce. These shades fit the bill by being manufactured using two layers of soft fabric sheers and block 97 percent of light and 99 percent of UV rays, while also being perfect for filtering sunlight during the day and filling your home with soft, diffuse light.

woven wood group d

Doors that lead in and out of outdoor areas, or just doors in homes that feature a natural décor theme, are the perfect places for bamboo shades. Blindster’s Premium Bamboo Woven Wood Shades Group D are the ultimate in luxury and quality when it comes to natural shades and they can be cut to fit most doors, with a maximum width of 93” and a maximum height of 108”. The hand-woven bamboo, grass, and jute fabrics can be selected in 20 unique colors and patterns, including Rangoon Umber, Bangkok Herb, and Jakarta Dawn.

 

privacy wood blinds

If you’re a fan of natural materials but prefer a more traditional and classic look for your doors, you can’t go wrong with our 2” Privacy Wood Blinds. Manufactured with the highest quality basswood, these window treatments will help insulate your home from the harsh outdoor elements and won’t fade or warp even after years of exposure to intense sunlight. These shades are also perfect for homeowners who want the ultimate in privacy, as a routeless option is included free of charge. That means your blinds won’t have any holes or openings when closed, giving your family peace of mind at all hours of the day and night.

 

2 inch aluminum

Looking for blinds that are all about function while designed to be as unobtrusive as possible from a design standpoint? Then look no further than our 2” Aluminum Blinds. These mini-blinds are exceptionally common in homes throughout the country due to their ability to block out natural light and protect privacy, match and blend with almost any décor, and a hardy manufacturing process and robust materials that makes them resistant to fading and warping. Large doors are no problem for these blinds, as they can be custom cut to fit spaces up to 122” wide and 108” high. You can also personalize your blinds with unique colors, including Brushed Aluminum, Char Brown, and Black Satin.

 

roman shades group b

If you accept nothing less than the best from a style and décor standpoint when purchasing window treatments, our Premium Roman Shades Group B may be right up your alley. Roman shades are known for their decorative and luxurious appearance, and they are the perfect fit for homes with a classic look and elegant furnishings. The folds and beautifully textured appearance of Roman shades make them the perfect fit for the length of most doors, and they look just as beautiful open as they do fully closed. In addition to their stunning looks, these shades are also highly effective at blocking out sunlight and protecting your privacy due to their thick fabrics.

 

premium solar shades

If privacy isn’t a major issue in your home and you are focused more on preserving as much natural light in your home as possible while also cutting down on the sun’s harmful UV rays, you’ll love our Premium Solar Shades 5% Open. These window treatments can be cut to fit exceptionally large doors up to 144” wide and 192” high and preserve nearly all visibility while eliminating 95 percent of UV rays from entering your home and fading your furniture and décor. Greenguard® certified and manufactured using high-quality Phifer Sheerweave® fabrics, these shades are built to last and will hold up in your home for years to come.

 

premium roller shades

Not satisfied with standard colors and textures in your home’s shades? Outfit your doors with our Premium Light Filtering Fabric Roller Shades – Group A and enjoy a huge variety of stunning colors and patterns, including Lumen White, Lumen Onyx, Swirls Mocha, and Lima Autumn. With maximum measurements of 108” wide and 120” high, these light-filtering shades will fit the majority of doors and can be outfitted with a standard cordless spring roller lift system or an optional continuous loop lift cord for easy operation.

2016 Home Décor Trends

Out with the old and in with the new—2015 is history and 2016 has arrived. Another year is in the books, and so too are many of the home décor trends from the past 365 days.

Whether you’re completely restyling your home’s furniture and overall appearance, or you’re just looking for a few ideas to make it look more contemporary, the New Year is the perfect opportunity to update multiple rooms in your home and infuse them with a breath of fresh air.

Jumping into 2016 doesn’t have to break the bank, with many of the styles for the upcoming year being decidedly on the inexpensive side of home décor. If you’re ready to embrace the New Year and a new look for your home, check out Blindster’s tips below:

  • Oversized furniture can replace multiple small pieces.

Think big in 2016. The days of stuffing rooms with multiple pieces of small furniture—a couch, love seat, and two small chairs, for example—are in the past, particularly for apartments or homes with small rooms. Instead of buying an entire room suite, consider purchasing one or two large pieces and buying small decorative items that complement them. For example, an oversized sectional couch with a large ottoman that doubles as a coffee table is a great way to both consolidate the space in your living room, while also cutting down on the total amount of furniture it contains. Oversized beds complete with large headboards and footboards for bedrooms and large desks for home offices are also perfect centerpieces for the rest of your home. By going big on one or two items, you can save room and money on other pieces of furniture that you may not need.

 

  • Bold colors in kitchens and bathrooms turn ordinary rooms into conversation starters.

sgstyle kitchen

SG Style Blog

Color was seemingly banished from kitchens and bathrooms some time during the 1990s—likely around the time that most homeowners updated from the ubiquitous yellow or gold-colored appliances and cabinets from the 1950s through the 1970s and switched to all-metallic or all-white color schemes. However, bold colors are making a comeback in those rooms, and the trend will be even more popular in 2016. Kitchens featuring cabinets painted bright, eye-catching colors combined with colorful appliances are quickly gaining ground on more traditional kitchens that feature muted color schemes and stainless steel appliances. The same is true for bathrooms, with bold color choices for shower curtains, bath mats, hand towels, and even sinks coming back into fashion.

 

  • Wallpaper is making a comeback.

Once a staple in almost every home, wallpaper became a four-letter word in the 1990s and early 2000s and most homeowners couldn’t pull it down from their walls fast enough. While traditional floral wallpaper that reminds you of grandma’s house probably won’t be making a comeback anytime soon, wallpaper with contemporary designs is becoming a suitable alternative to a fresh coat of paint. Some of the more in-demand styles of wallpaper in 2016 will be natural surfaces (think wood grain, stone, brick, and even marble), colorful geometric patterns, and designs featuring metallic accents.

 

  • Multiple textures can create interesting contrasts.

simple stylings

Simple Stylings Blog

Texture is an underappreciated aspect of home décor, but it can radically transform a room, especially when it is used strategically and to create a strong contrast. A solid wood dining table with fur-lined cushioned seats placed near an exposed brick wall is one example of how three distinct textures can play off each other in a small space and make it seem livelier and more visually interesting than an area featuring mostly similar textures. Don’t be afraid to experiment with thick rugs and even unusual construction materials like cement and concrete when creating a collage of textures and distinct surfaces throughout your home.

 

  • Versatile window treatments can make you appreciate your windows more than ever.

premium sheer shades

Blindster.com Sheer Shades

Maximizing the amount of natural light in homes isn’t a new trend, but many new window treatments allow you to get the best of both worlds in terms of light control and privacy with exceptional ease. Blindster’s 2” Premium Light Filtering Sheer Shades provide up to 99 percent protection from the sun’s UV rays when closed, but they can also open to allow beautiful diffused light into your home through two layers of soft, knitted fabric shears. Another popular option are window coverings that can be opened or closed from the top and bottom, such as our Premium Light Filtering Double Cellular Shades. Keep them open at the top and closed at the bottom to let in ample natural lighting while protecting your family’s privacy at all hours of the day and night.

 

  • The line between indoor and outdoor furniture is blurring.

sgstyle outdoor

SG Style Blog

There used to be a hard line drawn between furniture and decor that was for indoor use and furniture for outdoor use. But in recent years, the line has started to blur, and 2016 may be the year that erases it altogether. Wicker chairs, tables, and couches don’t have to exist solely within the confines of a deck or porch—instead, they can be used to complement your indoor furniture. Outdoor furniture is often far more versatile than indoor furniture because of its durability and the ease with which it can be painted or transformed. Simply replacing a cushion or slapping on a fresh coat of paint can dramatically can change the look of an outdoor furniture piece and make it fit your home’s indoor décor perfectly.

 

  • Eco-friendly is in, so buy local and reusable when possible.

primitive

Primitive and Proper

Interest in home décor and DIY projects is at an all-time high, and so are the number of craftsmen and artists who make and sell their own home décor and furniture. While buying local home goods can be more expensive at the outset, the quality of such items is often higher than the mass produced varieties you find in supermarkets and chain retail stores. Buying local also has the added benefit of reducing your home’s ecological footprint and helping you do your part in supporting your community. Buying new isn’t the only route to take for an eco-friendly home, as thrift stores, garage sales, and auctions can play host to a treasure trove of beautiful furniture and décor that will last for years and add to your home’s beauty.