How to Decorate like a Minimalist

Even if you’re not completely on board with minimalism as a lifestyle, adopting parts of it into your home decorating philosophy can lead to a living space that’s sleek, efficient, and easy to clean. Sounds good, right? However, it can sometimes be difficult to strike a balance between having a home that’s minimalist and beautiful, and having a home that’s minimalist and bare.

If the idea of significantly reducing the amount of clutter and furniture in your home is appealing to you, trying to maintain your home’s beauty and visual appeal with far fewer things to work with can be a welcome challenge—especially if you’re fed up with constant dusting, straightening and organizing.

For tips on decorating your home like a minimalist, check out Blindster’s guide below:

Simplify your shelves, tables, and other display spaces

Shelves

Even if you don’t make any other changes to your home, this one simple step will go a long way towards reducing clutter and pushing your living space more towards the realm of minimalism. Shelves, tables, and other places where photos, artwork and knick-knacks are present, represent opportunities to create eye-catching visual displays. But, having too much on display just creates a cluttered mess with no lines for the eye to follow. Instead of stretching the limits of your display spaces, cut back and place only one or two cherished and bold items on each display area. In addition to creating a more interesting visual, you’ll also thank yourself profusely when it’s time to clean.

 

Choose a couple of complementary colors

Complementary colors

Via Daniella Whitte

If you settle on just a couple of bold colors and maintain that choice throughout a room or even your entire home, it’s much easier to project a minimalist feel. Some of the most popular color choices for minimalist decorators include neutral tones with metallic accents. For a strikingly minimalist home, it’s hard to beat the clean lines and aesthetic created by white walls, light floors and furniture, with neutral appliances and other accents.

 

Embrace white space and emptiness

White Space

For many homeowners, the urge to fill blank spaces on their walls or their floors can be overwhelming. After all, if there’s room, something needs to go there, right? But as graphic designers will be quick to point out, white space—or negative space—can be a highly effective way of drawing the eye’s attention to the strongest parts of a design. Leaving breathing room on your walls and your floor not only reduces clutter and makes your home seem bigger, but it also goes a long way toward contributing to a minimalist design feel.

 

Embrace large furniture and artwork

Minimalist Art

Via Etsy

If there’s one thing that’s common across many minimalist living spaces, it’s the preference for one or two large pieces of furniture over several smaller pieces. That means a large sectional couch instead of a small sofa, love seat, and chair combination, all vying for the same space. A bold piece of artwork that dominates a wall, or even an entire room, can be much more impactful than a wall full of pieces. Although going “big” may seem like the opposite of minimalist philosophy, it actually consolidates your available space and reduces the feeling of clutter than can occur when too many small items are placed in one area.

 

Keep exposed surfaces clear of non-essential items

Clear Surfaces

Minimalism depends on clean lines and sleek surfaces, and that’s a difficult aesthetic to create when your home is full of small items that could be stored out of sight. Magazines, books, remotes, tablets, kitchen appliances, and clothing can all accumulate quickly and dash your hopes of creating a minimalist home. Finding a place for everything you own is vital for maintaining the sleek lines necessary to have a truly minimalist home—and if you don’t have storage for those things, consider donating them or giving them to friends and family.

 

Choose low-profile window coverings

Murtaza Akhtar

Despite the “less is better” philosophy of minimalism, it’s still important to have blinds or shades on your windows. Having sleek, low-profile, and built-in looking window treatments creates even more clean lines in your home and gives your windows a more uniform and matte appearance. At Blindster, we offer a wide variety of low-profile window coverings, including our Deluxe Fabric Roller Shades, our Premium Blackout Single Cellular Shades, and our Cordless Pleated Shades. Take advantage of our cordless lift option and inside mount installation process to further enhance the minimalist design of these shades.

Top Gardening Tips and Trends for 2016

Having the space and the available land to grow your own garden is one of the greatest perks of being a homeowner. It’s hard to beat the sense of satisfaction that comes from preparing meals with fruits and vegetables that were grown in your own backyard. Like all aspects of homeownership, gardening is constantly changing, and new ideas for maximizing the beauty and yield of gardens are in no short supply thanks to social media and other lifestyle-sharing websites.

So whether gardening is your passion, your hobby, or just a way for you to be more eco-friendly, there’s always room to make your garden more effective, efficient, and enticing. To transform your garden this spring and truly harness its potential for your family, check out Blindster’s list of the top gardening trends of 2016:

Go natural and go “wild”

Garden Wild

Via Judy’s Cottage Garden

 

One of the top trends in gardening in 2016 is to take a more hands-off approach when it comes to flowers, grasses, shrubs, and other decorative plants. Creating a perfectly manicured garden where not even a single blade of grass is out of place can be difficult work—especially if you’re short on time or energy after a long week at work. Instead of fussing with a never-ending quest to keep Mother Nature under control, many gardeners prefer to allow nature to take its course—within reason, obviously. Densely packed and free-growing plants can create a beautiful assortments of colors, shapes, and textures, even without the constant trimming, pulling, and fertilizing that many gardens require.

Buy and plant local

Buy and Plant local

Many of the plants you see at your local nursery or flower shop may be from parts unknown. In fact, it’s not uncommon for many plants to require a heavy dose of chemical preparation and a plane ride that costs thousands of dollars in fuel before they arrive at a store where they can be purchased by local homeowners. Instead of relying on exotic plants that require a huge amount of resources and specialized care and attention to survive in your backyard, consider filling your garden with plants that are indigenous to your area instead. They’ll thrive in their ideal climate and help your garden be a more eco-friendly space that showcases the variety of the local flora.

Make it dog and pet friendly

Pet Friendly Garden

Pets are a huge part of our lives, but many homeowners cringe at the sight of their dogs and cats running wild through their gardens. The result is often dug up or damaged plants, dirt kicked up everywhere, and the early death of plants that were just beginning to bloom. In addition, many homeowners also worry about their pets’ health if they happen to eat something that was treated with pesticides or other dangerous chemicals. These concerns are a big reason why many gardens are going pet-friendly, and that means creative fencing, hardy plants that can withstand pet damage, and instituting a strict rule that keeps toxic chemicals and plants far away from the garden itself.

Concentrate on herbs

Herbs

Home gardens are often associated with traditional fruits and vegetables that are staples of the modern diet, like tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, squash, and zucchini, and for good reason—they’re delicious and easy to grow. But one overlooked perk of having a home garden is the ability to grow a wide variety of herbs that can take your home cooking to another level. Herbs are being incorporated into more and more popular dishes—especially at farm-to-table restaurants—and having your own supply in your garden can encourage you to experiment more in the kitchen and truly unleash the flavors that you’re capable of creating.

Turn your garden into a showcase for all things art

Succulent Art

 

Via Better Homes and Gardens

 

Homemade art pieces have exploded in popularity during the past half-decade due to project sharing websites. What better place to show off your artistic side and share it with the world than your own garden? Combining the beauty of nature with the beauty of art—whether it’s created, found, or salvaged—can create a stunning result and transform your garden into a true outdoor paradise. A garden is all about expressing yourself through your own living creations, and taking advantage of that creative atmosphere with collected or created artwork can be a highly satisfying experience.

Pay close attention to the soil

Pay attention to soil

The key to having a healthy and productive garden is having high-quality and highly fertile soil. But over the years, soil can lose its natural nutrients and ability to produce harvests for your family to enjoy. Paying extra attention to your soil and its quality—or lack thereof—can make gardening a breeze and your plants grow much more easily than they ever have in the past. There’s no magic bullet for creating the ultimate garden soil, so experiment with things like wood chips, leaves, compost, mulch, and other natural soil enhancers to find what works for your outdoor space. The sooner you begin prepping your soil, the better your results will be when trying to grow new things in the future.

Incorporate your gadgets into your gardening experience

Gardening App

 

Via Seasoned Homemaker

 

Gardening and smartphone apps may seem like the most unrelated phrases in the English language, but there’s actually a huge variety of helpful apps related to gardening. Whether you want to more easily identify plants and potential plant diseases, set and maintain a schedule for watering and fertilizing, plan out your garden months or even years in advance, and easily record your garden’s progress with pictures and notes, look no further than your smartphone or tablet’s app marketplace. In addition, there are countless online gardening communities where you can share your creation and seek help and advice from others.

Give a gnome a home

Gnome Home

The humble gnome has made a slow and steady climb back to the top of the list of garden adornments, and now they’re on pace to dethrone fairies, frogs, and other small animal figures from home gardens. With their colorful clothing, gnomes can provide a splash of color to your garden and even an “Easter egg hunt” activity for small children. Place them in hard to find spots—hiding behind mushrooms, peering out from flower pots—and continue adding to your collection over the years. Unfortunately, there’s no scientific evidence that gnomes scare away pests or unwanted insects, but it can’t hurt to try.

How to Order Custom Blinds and Shades from Blindster.com

At Blindster, we strive to make the research, selection, and ordering process for blinds and shades as simple as possible. Our website is set up to make it easy to find window treatments, add them to your cart, checkout, and have them ready to install in your home within a matter of days.

But getting the perfect blinds and shades for your home requires doing your homework, as window sizes may vary from room to room. It’s also important to have an idea of the types of optional features and components you want in your window treatments before you begin the comparison shopping process.

A truly smooth and efficient ordering process begins long before you place any blinds or shades in your shopping cart. Check out our tips below to make selecting and purchasing the perfect custom window treatments for your home as easy as possible, from deciding how you want to mount your shades, all the way until you’re ready to submit your order:

  • Decide if you want inside or outside mounted window treatments.

inside mount

Inside Mount

outside mount

Outside Mount

 

The most important part of getting the right custom blinds and shades for your windows is providing us with the correct measurements, but that can’t be done until you’ve decided whether you want to mount your shades inside or outside of your window frames. Inside mounts are the most common and are preferable if your window frames have sufficient depth, but outside mounts are a great alternative if your window frames are shallow or if you want to cover up unattractive molding or woodwork surrounding your windows.

 

  • Measure your window frames for the type of mount you’re using.

measuring

When you add any of our blinds and shades to your cart, you’ll be asked to enter a variety of information before placing your order, including the height and width that you need. It’s vital that you provide us with the most accurate measurements possible in order for your window treatments to properly fit your window frames, block out sunlight, and be easily raised and lowered. Take multiple measurements of both the height and width of your windows in order to get the most precise numbers possible before you place your order.

 

  • Browse our selection of blinds and shades.

 

With precise measurements of your windows in hand, take the time to browse through our extensive selection of blinds and shades. Our individual product pages contain a huge amount of information about each item, including the available colors, components, and optional features, as well as pictures of the window treatments, minimum height and width requirements, and measuring/install instructions. If you have any additional questions about any of our blinds or shades, don’t hesitate to contact our customer service representatives to get more information.

 

  • Order samples of window treatments that pique your interest.


sample orders

 

Once you’ve narrowed down your selection of ideal window treatments, make sure to order samples before you place your final order. Pictures don’t always do our window treatments justice—especially since they can vary among monitors, tablets, and phones—and samples are the easiest way to determine whether a color, pattern, stain, or finish matches your furniture and your home’s overall décor and color scheme. You can select up to 10 free samples from products in any category, including wood blinds, cellular shades, roller shades, bamboo shades, and Roman shades.

 

  • Narrow down your choices and the features/options you want.

Ordering the right window treatments for your home based on pictures alone can be difficult, but with samples in hand, you should be able to quickly rule out the colors, patterns, and materials that aren’t the right for your home’s décor. Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, you can further refine your list by determining which optional features and components you want. Things like continuous cord loop options, cordless options, blackout liners, top down/bottom up installations, and energy efficient materials can all vary from window treatment to window treatment, and using that criteria can help you decide on the right blinds and shades for your home.

 

  • Add your preferred blinds or shades to your cart and select the size and options.

product page

 

Once you’ve settled on the perfect window treatments, add them to you cart by clicking “Customize and Buy.” The next page you see will be the customization page where you will be able to input the height and width you need, the color you want, and select from a variety of extra options, including the mount type, headrail type, lift type, fold style, and liner type.

customize and buy

If you have questions about any of these options, simply hover your mouse or click on the question mark icons next to each option category. You can also select the quantity of blinds you want to order and add notes for our customer service representatives.

 

  • Purchase a 10-Year Accident Protection Plan

Protection

Our blinds and shades are built to last, but accidents can happen when you least expect it—especially if you have small children or pets. Whether your new shades get stained or ripped, or your new blinds crack or break, our 10 Year Accident Protection Plan will give you peace of mind for the next decade. It covers virtually all damage that can occur to your window treatments and means that you get free replacements or repairs. But in order for the plan to take effect, it must be purchased at the same time your original order is placed. It’s an easy and inexpensive way to protect your investment—especially if you’re outfitting your entire home with new window treatments.

 

  • Complete the checkout process by creating an account or continuing as a guest.

account

Creating an account with Blindster makes it easy to purchase more window treatments down the road, as we’ll save your information and have it on hand as soon as you’re ready to buy your next blinds or shades. But if you don’t want to create an account, you can also check out as a guest. Simply enter your billing information, including your name, address, contact information, and credit card number. We’re GoDaddy.com and Authorize.net verified, which means we use the latest and toughest security standards to protect your information. Purchase from us with confidence and know that we keep our customer’s billing information and credit card numbers 100-percent private and secured at all times.

billing

Last Minute Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas

If you’re like us, Valentine’s Day always sneaks up quick after the rush of the holiday season. It is easy to lose track of time with the responsibilities of work and children. Don’t worry! There are plenty of ways to make your sweetheart feel special this V-Day, without them ever knowing you waited until the last minute! Check out these simple ideas that will make it seem like you have been planning for weeks.

Post Your Love

We don’t mean on Instagram. Take some time to write short love notes to your special someone and arrange them in a heart pattern for a lovely surprise when they go to brush their teeth in the morning. You can make this even more personal by adding inside jokes and memories that will have your significant other tearing up.

post it i love you

Via Life Lives Here

Mini Spa Day

Fill up a mason jar with all of their favorite pampering items like nail polish, face wash, lotion and bath bombs. You could make this idea even more romantic by offering a back rub or to run a bubble bath, so they can try out their present. This present works for both men and women, just switch out the items for things you know they’ll love.

Spa Mason Jar

Via Classy Clutter

 

Chocolate Covered Fruit

This gift is such a classic and it’s super easy to do, even if your not very cooking inclined. You can mix it up by adding other fruit besides strawberries, like pineapples, cherries or apple slices. Just make sure to dip the fruit in chocolate the night before to give it time to harden.

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Via Creative Savings

 

Movie Night

Dress up your Valentine’s Day night in with some themed snacks! Nothing goes better with a romantic comedy than some sweetly flavored popcorn. Sharing is caring!

valentines popcorn

Via Gimme Some Oven

 

 

Candy Bouquet

This bouquet will taste a lot better than anything you can order from a florist, but we can’t say it will last as long! This is a pretty and creative way to show you care without breaking the bank. ($500 for roses? No thanks!)

candy bouquet

Via What to Expect

 

Love Games

Who doesn’t love a good game of Jenga? It’s hard to beat a gift and activity all in one! This gift is great for long relationships and those that are just blossoming. You can add little messages onto the blocks or just add hearts to make the game Valentine’s Day themed.

Valentine's Jenga

Via Tried & True

 

For the Love of Coffee

Is your honeybee a caffeine addict? Show them you support their lifestyle by creating the perfect receptacle for their habit. I think even the craft challenged could handle this one!

Confetti-Painted-Heart-Mugs

Via Today’s Creative Life

 

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Best Blinds and Shades for Nooks

Before the word most commonly referred to specific brand of e-readers, a nook was known simply as a recessed or hidden away space in homes that was known for its comfort, seclusion, and security.

Whether your home’s nook is used by your family for eating breakfast, reading a good book, or just kicking back and relaxing after a long day, it’s important to make sure it is free from distractions, irritations, and annoyances—including temperature changes, outside noises, and unwanted light (or a lack thereof, depending on your preferences).

As with every room in your home, the lighting in your favorite nook can play a major role in how you feel when you enter that space. If the lighting is easily controlled at all times of day, you can easily feel energized and revitalized in the morning or relaxed and calm in the evening. The easiest way to accomplish that is by installing the right blinds or shades in your nook.

For a list of the perfect window treatments for the breakfast, reading, or relaxation nooks in your home, check out Blindster’s recommendations below:

light filtering sheer shades

If you like natural lighting in your nook, you can’t go wrong with our 2” Premium Light Filtering Sheer Shades. These shades block 99 percent of UV rays while also allowing ample amounts of beautiful diffused light into your home, which means you can enjoy the sunlight in your nook for hours without worrying about the effects of prolonged sun exposure on your skin. These shades are also highly effective at protecting your privacy when closed and they are available in 19 unique colors, making it easy to find a perfect match for your home’s color scheme and décor.

 

premium blackout double cellular shades

Does your nook face the bright sun in the morning or afternoon, making it hard to read or relax comfortably? Or does the area near your nook get too hot or too cold due to sunlight or drafts? Our Premium Blackout Double Cellular Shades are perfect for not only blocking out virtually all sunlight, glare, and UV rays from entering your home, but also for providing an extra layer of insulation between your window pane and your nook during both the summer and winter.

 

premium bamboo woven wood shades group b

If you’re a fan of natural and eco-friendly décor, you can’t go wrong by installing our Premium Bamboo Woven Wood Shades Group B on the windows in your nook. Because they are manufactured using a collection of natural bamboo slats, grasses, and reeds, these bamboo shades bring a touch of the outdoors into your home and can make any space feel more comfortable and inviting—especially when paired with optional components like privacy liners, blackout liners, and continuous cord loop controls.

 

2 inch privacy wood blinds

When it comes to traditional and classic window treatments, it’s tough to beat our 2” Privacy Wood Blinds. These window coverings effortlessly match the décor, style, and ambience of any nook—be it a breakfast nook, a reading nook, or a nook devoted exclusively to R&R. As the name implies, these wood blinds are big on privacy and will keep prying eyes and sunlight out of your home’s most comfortable spot during the day and night. And because they’re manufactured using high-quality wood, they can stand up to years of sunlight exposure without fading or warping.

 

deluxe cordless top down bottom up cellular

Wish you could enjoy ample amounts of sunlight while reading, relaxing, or eating breakfast without experiencing harsh glare in your eyes? Deluxe Cordless Top Down Bottom Up Cellular Shades are the solution. Keep these shades closed at the bottom during hours of peak sunlight to keep the sun out of your eyes, but pull them down from the top to fill the rest of the room with beautiful natural lighting while also preserving your view of the outdoors. In addition to being extremely versatile from a light control standpoint, these shades are also highly effective at insulating your home and absorbing outside sounds, making it easy to relax and enjoy your leisure time.