Room-by-Room Checklist for Buying Window Treatments

When you’re ready to buy new window treatments, it’s important to make sure that your new blinds and shades are the right fit for your home and for your needs. In addition to looking beautiful and enhancing the appearance of the room, they also need to give you the right lighting and privacy—not to mention easy operation and the optional features you need. But all those aspects of window treatments may differ from room to room in your home, and that’s why it’s important to give each room consideration before you buy new blinds and shades.

The window coverings you purchase for your living room may be perfect for that specific location in your home, but they may not be right for your home office or bedroom. Taking the time to scout out each room, including what it’s primarily used for and even its orientation towards the sun, whether any trees are near the windows, and the room’s proximity to the street or sidewalk, are all factors to consider when you’re buying new window treatments.

Don’t fall victim to buyer’s remorse—check out Blindster’s room-by-room tips before you purchase your new window treatments:

Kitchen

Kitchen

Kitchens have rapidly become the focal point for many homes, and new homes are being built with these rooms as the central hub in their floor plans. In the past, kitchens were exclusively places to prepare and cook food, but now they’re designed as places to cook, eat, and entertain. And because of the popularity of open floor plans, kitchens may segue into living rooms and dining rooms without much separation. Finding the right window treatments for this area of your home can be a challenge, but these tips can help.

  • Let the light in with sheer shades.

    Kitchens are one room in your home where you may want as much natural sunlight as possible. But simply raising your window treatments or going without them altogether can leave you exposed to harsh glare and damaging UV rays. Instead of going sans blinds and shades, consider installing sheer shades. These window treatments can absorb the damaging parts of the sun’s rays while allowing beautiful filtered light into your kitchen. At night, it’s easy to enhance your privacy by simply closing the vanes that float between the soft fabric layers.

  • Get blinds and shades that are easily cleaned and maintained.

    Your kitchen can quickly get messy when you’re preparing and cooking food. And some of that mess can end up on your window treatments. Steam, smoke, and humidity—not to mention accidental spills and splashes—can quickly turn blinds and shades into dingy shadows of their former selves. If your windows are far from your stove and sink, you likely won’t need to heed this tip, but if they’re nearby, consider going with window treatments made from synthetic materials, such as faux wood blinds and aluminum blinds for easy cleanup and maintenance.

     

Dining Room

Dining Room

Whether you have a formal or casual dining room, your window treatment needs for this room are likely different than the needs you have for other rooms in your home. Dining rooms frequently demand a certain décor and level of elegance that other rooms don’t always need, and that can influence your buying decision when you’re looking for blinds and shades.

  • Go with Roman shades, wood blinds, or even shutters.

    If there’s one room in your home to splurge on, it’s your dining room. After all, this is the room where you’re most likely to entertain guests and extended family. For shades, it’s hard to beat the timeless appeal of Roman shades, and the huge variety of colors, textures, and patterns means you’ll have an easy time finding the right match for your place sets and color scheme. Wood blinds and shutters are also great options for traditional dining rooms, as the stains and textures immediately add to the room’s elegance.

  • Choose cordless options for a smooth, built-in look.

    To maximize your dining room’s elegant look, you may want to consider cordless versions of our Roman shades and wood blinds. Although it may not seem like a big difference, the lack of a cord not only makes these window treatments safer for children and pets, but it also adds to the “built-in” look, which only further enhances the appearance of your dining room.

Living Room

Living Room

If you’re like most people, you spend a lot of time in your living room. It’s the central hub for family gatherings and relaxation. You probably have a favorite chair or section of the couch for watching TV, reading, and listening to music. Because you likely spend many of your waking hours in your living room, it’s important to make sure your window treatments are perfect for your needs.

  • Get room darkening or blackout shades for TV watching and reading.

    It’s hard to enjoy television shows, sporting events, movies, and even your favorite book when there’s a harsh glare in your face. Room darkening and blackout blinds and shades help significantly reduce the amount of harsh sunlight that enters your living room, making it easier to see what’s onscreen and what’s on the page.

  • Consider privacy blinds if your living room is near the street or sidewalk.

    In many neighborhoods, the living room is the room closest to the street or sidewalk. That can leave you feeling uneasy, especially at night when the inside of your home is lit up, making it easy to see inside from the outdoors. Privacy window treatments, such as route-less blinds, can give you peace of mind.

Bedroom

Bedroom

You spend many waking hours in your living room, but a third of your life is spent in bed. Having the right window treatments installed in your bedroom is essential for getting a good night’s sleep. That’s especially true for bedrooms located near bright street lights or bedrooms of people who work overnight shifts and need to sleep during the day.

  • Choose blackout shades with top down/bottom up options.

    If light control and privacy are of the utmost importance in your bedroom, you can’t go wrong with blackout shades. However, you may want to protect your privacy while still allowing in natural sunlight during the day and evening. Top down/bottom up shades make it easy to fill your bedroom with sunlight while still preventing anyone from seeing inside your room.

  • Consider purchasing thick blinds and shades that block outside noises.

    If there’s anything less conducive to sleep than the blinding morning sun, it’s outside noises. Whether you live in the middle of a busy and loud downtown area or near a heavily trafficked road, constant noise from car horns, ambulances, and conversations can make it hard to sleep. Thick window treatments help add an extra layer of insulation and soundproofing between the outside and your ears, muffling loud noises and silencing others.

Top Home Furnishings to Buy Online

Furnishing a new home—or replacing your existing furniture—can be both an exhilarating and exhausting process. On the one hand, it breathes new life into your home and can make it feel brand new by radically changing the look of rooms. But on the other hand, furniture shopping can be time-consuming and stressful, especially if you’re dealing with pushy salespeople and worrying about delivery costs and installation fees.

In recent years, buying furniture and major décor pieces online has become more of a viable option for many homeowners. Many retailers now allow customers a chance to view 3D models of their products, read dozens of customer reviews, get exact size dimensions, and even order color samples—all without leaving their homes. Best of all, the prices for online furniture are often cheaper than the furniture you’ll find in a showroom or retail store.

At Blindster, we’re obviously big proponents of buying furniture and all varieties of home furnishings online—and here are some of the top purchases you can and should make with just a click of your mouse:

Mattresses

Mattresses

Internet-based mattress retailers have taken the bedding world by storm over the past few years. Aggressive ad campaigns have pushed these mattress store alternatives to the forefront of many homeowners’ minds when they’re thinking about replacing a sagging or mushy spring mattress, and it’s hard to resist the appeal of skipping out on a trip to the local mattress store. While some people may be hesitant to purchase a mattress without ever sleeping on it, there are a huge number of reviews and comparison websites that can help you determine which mattress will be right for you. Best of all, many online mattress retailers offer 100 percent money-back guarantees if you don’t like your mattress at any point during a trial period of around 90 days.

Assembly-required furniture

Assembly-required furniture

Love it or hate it, adding furniture to your home is now likely to be a DIY afternoon project that requires an Allen wrench and a lot of patience. While no one likes spending a Saturday reading vague instructions and trying to decipher baffling diagrams, one perk of buying such furniture is that it comes in a box and is often lightweight and easily shipped. That makes it perfect for online shopping. Unlike a bulky sofa or loveseat that requires a special moving truck and a pair of strongmen to carry it into your home, boxed furniture is often delivered by standard delivery services. That means you’ll likely pay little to no extra costs for shipping, and you’ll also save some money without having to worry about fitting the box in your vehicle.

Blinds and shades

Blinds and shades

Buying new window treatments online is easier than ever. And at Blindster, we’re proud to help customers get the perfect blinds and shades for their homes without ever actually leaving their homes. In addition to detailed product descriptions of every item in our inventory, our website also offers high-resolution photos from multiple angles and lighting scenarios, as well as user reviews from people who previously purchased those window coverings. If you’re undecided on a color or texture, you can even order samples that will help you decide which look is right for your living room, bedroom, or any other room in your home. And because we’re online-based, we can offer great prices year-round, free shipping, and even a lifetime warranty on our products.

Pillows, sheets, and blankets

Pillows, sheets, and blankets

If you’re looking for the absolute best deal when it comes to completing the look of your new couch or bed—or if you’re looking to spruce up aging furniture—you can’t beat online sales and retailers for things like pillows, sheets, and blankets. One of the biggest perks of purchasing these items online is convenient access to reviews. While buying these items in store can give you the advantage of seeing them in person and perhaps even being able to feel the texture, you may be unaware that the sheets are prone to fading or tearing, or that the blanket is prone to pilling and fraying.

Accent pieces

Accent pieces

Finding the perfect accent pieces to complete a room’s look can be challenging and can have you driving around town all day in search of the perfect purchase. But buying these items online is a much simpler and more convenient process. Search engines make it easy to narrow down your choices based on size, price, and color, turning what would otherwise be an entire day of shopping into an hour-long online search. As with pillows, sheets, and blankets, you’ll have tons of reviews to guide you, and you’ll quickly know whether that mantle clock is as sturdy and well-built as it looks, or if that corner shelf is made of real wood or particle board.

Rugs

Rugs

Got hardwood or laminate floors, but you’re missing the comfort of carpet? Rugs are a great way to add a little padding under your feet without committing to the expense of wall-to-wall carpeting. Rugs are great additions to any home from both a comfort and an aesthetic point of view, and they’re also perfect online purchases. Many online retailers sell rugs at reduced prices, and there are also online-exclusive rug sellers that offer thousands of varieties. Like accent pieces, it can be difficult to find a rug that perfectly matches a room’s color scheme and furniture. But buying rugs online can help you filter rugs that are bad fits for your home in seconds.

 

Avoid These Mistakes When Cleaning Your Window Treatments

Like everything else in your home, your blinds and shades need to be cleaned on a regular and consistent basis to look and operate like they did when they were brand new. And while the window treatments sold by Blindster are built to last and designed with durability mind, they can be damaged if they aren’t treated with care and caution during the cleaning process.

Cleaning window treatments often is the best way to remove dirt, dust, pet hair, and other debris from the slats, fabric, and the headrail. It’s also a necessary step for homeowners who suffer from allergies, asthma, and other conditions that can be aggravated by these small particles.

To avoid accidentally damaging your window treatments while you’re cleaning them, make sure you avoid these missteps and mistakes:

 

Using harsh chemicals

Some homeowners resort to using harsh industrial-power cleaners to get deep stains out of their shades or to remove scratches and discolorations from their blinds. However, strong cleaners are rarely designed to be used on household products unless they’re in the hands of professional cleaners. When they’re used by someone who doesn’t have proper experience or training, they can deeply stain and discolor fabric, wood, aluminum, and vinyl, ruining the window treatment in the process. If your window treatments are heavily stained and need heavy-duty cleaning, leave the job to professional cleaning services.

Not reading the cleaning and care instructions

The manufacturers of blinds and shades almost always provide instructions for maintaining their products. That includes instructions for cleaning and removing dirt, dust, and mild stains. These instructions will include acceptable and unacceptable cleaning products that you can safely use on the fabric, slats, and headrail. Make sure you keep these instructions and read them before you attempt to clean, as some window treatments may require a more careful approach than others.

Not spot-treating before applying a cleaning solution to visible areas

After you’ve read the instructions and determined what’s safe and what isn’t safe to use on your blinds and shades, you may feel ready to dive right into some deep-cleaning action. But before you do, it’s important to test them to see how they react to the cleaning solution that you use. That means applying a small amount in an inconspicuous area and waiting several minutes to several hours to see the result. If there are no ill effects, you can continue. But if the fabric, wood, aluminum, or vinyl looks faded or discolored, you’ll need to find a different method for cleaning.

Using too much water and soaking the window treatments

For most cleaning jobs, you’ll need little more than a damp sponge, rag, or cloth to apply a mild cleaning solution or to wipe away excess dirt, dust, and pollen. Using anything that’s completely soaked in water and then attempting to clean your window treatments can result in water stains on fabric shades and discolorations and even warping on wood blinds due to the wood soaking up the moisture. Make sure you fully wring out any sponges, cloths, and rags before you use them on your window treatments, and have a clean and dry cloth or paper towel ready to wipe away any excess moisture after you’re done.

Not treating/cleaning spills and stains immediately

If a liquid gets spilled on your shades, time is of the essence to prevent it from settling in the fibers of the fabric and becoming a deep-seated stain that requires expensive professional cleaning to remove. Be ready to jump into action right away by using a damp cloth to soak up as much of the liquid as possible and a light cleaning solution to draw out any liquid that soaked into the fabric. You can also use spot-cleaning treatments designed for clothing to further draw out liquid and prevent the stain from becoming permanent.

Faceoff: Blinds vs Shades vs Curtains vs Drapes

Uncovered windows can make rooms feel incomplete and lacking. Most homeowners opt to cover their windows to block out light and protect their privacy, but the way they go about it can be radically different from home to home. While one homeowner may prefer thick curtains, another may prefer lightweight bamboo blinds. All types of window coverings have their own pros and cons, and finding the best option for your home is a matter of personal preference.

Windows that are outfitted with some type of covering almost always look better than when they’re bare. Window coverings also provide benefits beyond just reducing glare and protecting your privacy, as some are great at insulating your home, prolonging the lifespan of your furniture, and even protecting your skin.

If you can’t decide between blinds, shades, curtains, and drapes for your home, check out our comparison guide below:

Blinds

Blinds are traditional window coverings and are extremely common in homes and businesses throughout the country. Blinds are built with a headrail, individual and adjustable slats, and a bottom rail. They can be closed to block light and protect and privacy, and opened to let light in and create a view of the outdoors.

  • Blinds are among the most inexpensive window coverings.If you’re on a budget and looking to outfit your home with new window coverings, blinds may be your best option. Our faux wood and aluminum mini blinds are priced to fit almost any budget without sacrificing any quality or beauty.
  • Blinds can be easily repaired.Because blinds are built using several individual slats, they can be easily repaired if they get damaged. Broken slats can be glued or even replaced altogether with ease. In addition, both faux wood and aluminum blinds are also easily cleaned and maintained, making them less likely to become stained or faded over time than other types of window treatments.

Shades

Shades aren’t as common in homes as blinds, but they’re still a very popular and effective option for blocking light and protecting privacy. In addition, shades are rapidly changing and becoming more and more versatile. For example, our sheer shades use highly advanced fabrics and combine the function of blinds and traditional shades.

  • Shades create a built-in and low-profile look.When lowered, certain types of shades—especially roller shades and cellular shades—create a matte and low-profile look on windows. Their simplistic and uniform design makes them ideal for homeowners who prefer to keep their interior design focus elsewhere. However, Roman shades and bamboo shades can easily be the centerpiece of a room for homeowners who want to draw eyes to their windows.
  • Shades are highly effective at blocking light and protecting privacy.While blinds are perfectly capable of reducing glare and helping your family feel safe and secure inside your home, shades can take those benefits to a new level. Shades can be paired with both blackout liners and privacy liners, which are designed to turn ordinary rooms into sanctuaries of peace and quiet. They’re also perfect for media rooms, home offices, and bedrooms, and home theaters.

Curtains

Curtains are generally made from lightweight fabrics and are designed to add a decorative flair to windows. Unlike inside-mounted blinds and shades, curtains are installed completely outside of windows and may cover only a small part of your windows or a large portion of them. Their design often makes them a stronger focal point of rooms than blinds and shades. Many curtains are relatively short and may fall only to the bottom of the window sill, while others may be floor-length.

  • Curtains help protect your blinds and shades.If you already have blinds or shades and add curtains to the mix, you may find that your existing window treatments will last longer and require less maintenance and cleaning—especially if you keep your curtains closed. In addition to keeping pets and their sharp claws and teeth at bay, curtains also act as dust magnets. While you’ll still need to dust them on a regular basis, curtains are easily removed—just slide them off the rod—and can be simply shaken off outside.
  • Curtains can complement and accent your blinds and shades.If you’re looking for curtains that purely decorative due to already having blinds or shades installed on your windows, you’ll be happy to know that curtains are an excellent way to further enhance the beauty of your window treatments. Curtains can create interesting contrasts to the colors, patterns, and textures in the wood, fabric, or synthetic materials used in your blinds and shades, and they can also add an extra infusion of color to your room.

Drapes

Many people think curtains and drapes are interchangeable. However, they are unique window covering types. Drapes are made almost exclusively with thick and heavy fabrics and typically are floor-length in size.

  • Drapes are great at insulating and soundproofing rooms.While thin, sheer curtains will provide virtually nothing in the way of insulation and soundproofing, thick thermal drapes are great for reducing heat loss during the winter and keeping cold drafts at bay. Thick drapes also create a dampening effect for loud and bothersome noises, making them ideal for homeowners who live near train tracks, industrial facilities, or busy highways.
  • Drapes can give a room a formal appearance.Curtains are generally considered informal and casual window coverings, while drapes are more formal in both appearance and function. Drapes are perfect for dining rooms, living rooms, and other areas where guests are frequently entertained. However, drapes don’t have to be installed only in formal rooms. When paired with high-quality blinds or shades, they’re perfect for adding a touch of elegance to any room in your home.

Bonus: Shutters

The four window covering types listed above aren’t the only ones available for you to install in your home. At Blindster, we’re proud to offer an alternative that’s quickly becoming a highly sought after item: indoor shutters. Our Fauxwood Plantation Shutters have many of the same benefits as faux wood blinds, but they have a unique appearance that transforms the appearance of any room due to their rich and timeless look.

  • Fauxwood shutters can be manufactured in two weeks.When you order a window covering for your home, you want it right away. Fortunately, our fauxwood plantation shutters can be fully manufactured, assembled, and shipped to your home in about two weeks. That’s less than half the time it takes to receive real wood shutters.
  • Fauxwood shutters are hollow-bodied and lightweight.The thought of installing shutters inside your home may seem foreign, especially if your only experience with shutters is the outdoor variety. However, like all of our faux wood window coverings, our plantation shutters are very lightweight due to the synthetic materials used in the manufacturing process and their hollow-bodied structure. That means they’re easy for anyone to lift and install.

Avoid These Common Mistakes When Buying New Window Treatments

You’ve finally decided to take the plunge and buy new window coverings for your home. You’ve done your research, taken the time to weigh the pros and cons between blinds and shades, and envisioned each room with new window treatments. With all the hard work done, there’s nothing left to do but click the order button, right?

At Blindster, we know that buying blinds and shades isn’t something most people take lightly, especially given the fact that it requires careful measurements and is often a DIY installation project. But we also know that many homeowners are happier with their new window coverings over the long haul when they approach the buying process carefully and don’t leave out any important steps along the way.

If you’re thinking about purchasing new window treatments for your home, do your best to avoid these common mistakes:

Focusing exclusively on looks over function.

It’s no secret that your new window coverings will make a huge impact on the appearance of your home. In fact, new blinds and shades can dramatically change the look of a living room, bed room, or dining room—even with no other alterations or changes. But picking window treatments exclusively based on their appearance can sometimes lead to disappointment, especially when they’re purchased for a room that gets large amounts of sunlight, heat, and glare. It’s important to strike a balance between form and function when you buy new blinds and shades, as beautiful window treatments that don’t meet your individual needs may soon find themselves being returned or replaced.

Not ordering samples before placing your product order.

We know that many homeowners are reluctant to buy window treatments due to the difficulty of truly understanding what a blind or shade’s color, texture, and pattern look like when they’ve only been viewed on a computer screen or tablet. That’s why we offer samples of all our window treatments. Our samples are designed to make it easy for you to compare the colors of the window coverings you’re interested in with everything else in your home, including furniture, décor, and paint. Getting the perfect color can be a tricky and time-consuming process, but samples make it easy to get the right match.

Taking imprecise measurements of your windows.

Our window treatments are custom cut to fit windows exactly, whether they’re going to be installed inside the window frame or on top of the window. That’s why it’s vital that you give us the most precise measurements possible. When blinds and shades aren’t cut to properly fit windows, they can leave large gaps that let in harsh glare and sunlight. And for inside installations, they may not even fit inside the window frame. Make sure you have the tools necessary to properly measure your windows, including a tape measure and step ladder (if necessary), and consult our measuring instructions for all types of window coverings before you begin the measuring the process.

Not checking out all options and add-ons for your blinds or shades.

Our standard blinds and shades are designed to meet the needs of most homeowners, but we know that many people have specific features and options that they need to be satisfied with their purchase. Before you place your order, take the time to browse the many options we offer with our window treatments. Things like cordless operation, top down/bottom up operation, privacy/route-less slats, blackout liners, edge binding, and a huge variety of textures, colors, and patterns can make a big difference in your overall satisfaction with your new window treatments, so it’s important that you check out all the available options before you make your purchasing decision.

Choosing one-size-fits-all window coverings for every room in your home.

If you’re replacing all the window coverings in your home or outfitting a new home, you may be tempted to just bulk order a single style to save time. While this can be an effective option for some homeowners, it’s not always the best option, especially when different rooms in your home have different needs due to sun exposure, décor, color, and even purpose. For example, you may want to maximize natural sunlight in your kitchen and dining room, which makes our selection of Sheer Shades a great choice due to their soft sheer fabric and light-filtering vanes. But in your bedroom, living room, and home office, you may need greater privacy afforded by Roman shades, pleated shades, and wood blinds.

Not considering the differences between inside and outside installations.

Although most people install their window coverings inside of their window frames, outside mounts are great options for certain homes and on certain windows. If you’re used to inside mounted blinds and shades, don’t immediately order that style without first evaluating your windows and the room where your new window coverings will be installed. If you have small windows that you want to look larger, outside installation is the perfect solution. It’s also a great way to cover unattractive window frames, casings, and moldings. Inside installations, on the other hand, won’t cover your windows or make them look larger, but they offer a more built-in and low-profile look that many homeowners prefer.

2017 Window Treatment New Year’s Resolutions

Many people use a new year as an opportunity to start a fitness program, take up a new hobby, or accomplish an important goal at work. But at Blindster, we like to think of a new year as the perfect time to solve any issues you have with window treatments in your home. Getting the right blinds and shades in each room can make a huge difference in your home’s overall appearance, and it can even improve your quality of sleep and your overall satisfaction with your home.

Best of all, buying and installing new window treatments is one of the most “bang for your buck” home upgrades—especially if you’re looking to make a big change in 2017 but you’re on a strict budget. We have blinds and shades that are doable on almost any budget, and they’re all built with high-quality materials that are designed to last for many years.

Take control of your home’s lighting, insulation, and privacy the right way by following these window treatment New Year’s resolutions:

 

Get window coverings for your bare windows.

Get window coverings for your bare windows.

Whether it’s the windows in your spare bedroom, basement, or even your living room, bare windows can significantly detract from the appearance of a room. In addition to conveying a “just moved in” look, they’re also privacy risks and can result in fluctuating temperatures and even faded furniture. If you have bare windows, your priority in 2017 should be covering them. If you’re on a strict budget, you can’t go wrong with our Cordless Aluminum Blinds or our 2” Super Value Faux Wood Blinds.

 

Take control of the lighting in your bedrooms, living room, and home office.

Bright sunlight or even bright street lights can make it difficult to sleep, relax, and work. And in many cases, certain types of window treatments aren’t sufficient to block out sunlight that keeps you up at night or artificial light that prevents you from getting your work done. If you’re unhappy with the window treatments in your bedrooms, living room, or home office, replace them with blinds or shades that will get the job done. For the ultimate in light blocking, check out our Premium Blackout Fabric Roller Shades Group A, which are made with 100 percent high-end polyester and are designed to absorb the sun’s bright and damaging UV rays before they can enter your home.

 

Order the window treatments you’ve always wanted.

Are you bored with your window treatments? Does a friend or family member have shades that you’re dying to install in your own home? If so, treat yourself in 2017 and take the plunge by ordering the window coverings you’ve always wanted. When it comes to luxury in terms of both materials and appearance, you’ll love our huge selection of Roman shades. Our Premium Roman Shades are available in four varieties—groups A, B, C, and D—with dozens of colors available in each group. These shades are highly customizable, with options like pleated and hobbled folds, cordless lifts, top down/bottom up operation, and blackout liners.

 

Clean your existing window treatments

Clean your existing window treatments.

Already got window treatments that you love, but perhaps they’re looking a bit dingy as of late? If so, it’s nothing that a little elbow grease and light cleaning can’t fix. For aluminum, faux wood, and wood blinds, use a fabric duster to collect dirt, dust, pollen, and other debris from the slats. Then, use a lightly dampened cloth or sponge to wipe away any extra dirt. For shades, a duster and a vacuum are great ways to reduce dust, while heavy stains may require more intensive cleaning solutions. Always attempt a test spot when using mild (never harsh) cleaning solutions to avoid staining or fading the fabric.

 

Make your outdoor area more comfortable with exterior shades

Make your outdoor area more comfortable with exterior shades.

Whether you’re lounging by the pool or enjoying fresh air on your patio, the sun’s heat and harsh glare can make difficult to relax for more than just a few minutes at a time without overheating or worrying about a sunburn. Exterior shades are the perfect way to reclaim your home’s outdoor area so that you can enjoy your view year-round and even on the hottest summer days when the sun’s rays are at their most intense. We have two options to choose from—a shade that blocks 95 percent of UV rays and a shade that blocks 90 percent of UV rays. Both maintain your view and are available in six colors, and they’re both the perfect solution for an outdoor area that otherwise puts your skin and eyes at risk of sun-related damage.

 

Childproof and pet-proof your home with cordless options and cord cleats

Childproof and pet-proof your home with cordless options and cord cleats.

At Blindster, we offer free cord cleats with the purchase of any window treatments that utilize cords for lifting and lowering. If you have cord-operated window treatments and don’t have cord cleats installed to keep them safely tucked away, get them as soon as possible—especially if you have pets or small children. These small plastic or metal devices can make a huge difference in your home’s overall safety. If you’re looking to purchase new blinds or shades, consider trying cordless options. As you might expect, these types of window coverings are naturally safe for kids and pets due to the lack of cloth, nylon, or metal cords and chains.

How to Make Your Home a Cozier Place

Your home is your sanctuary—your refuge from the stresses of everyday life. While simply having a place to call your own where you can kick back and relax after a long day is great for the mind, body, and soul, it can’t hurt to make sure that your home is as comfortable and inviting as possible.

Most people have either lived in or visited apartments and homes that had a decidedly cozy feel to them, but they may find it difficult to put their finger on what, exactly, created that feeling. Cozy living spaces can vary in size, layout, and décor, but they often share a few common aspects that contribute to a feeling of peacefulness and tranquility.

If you’re looking to transform a single room or your entire home into a cozier place, check out Blindster’s tips below:

  • Choose comfort.

When shopping for new furniture or bedding, it’s common for homeowners to fall in love with the appearance and aesthetics of one style but greatly prefer the comfort level of another. While it’s great to have a couch that perfectly complements your living room décor, you may find yourself feeling out of place or even avoiding the room altogether if it’s not comfortable. On the other hand, a couch, blanket, or comforter that may not be the most cutting edge, but is undeniably comfortable, will quickly grow on you and enhance your enjoyment of your living room or bedroom.

  • Choose warm colors when painting and decorating.

While cool colors are “in” for many home décor experts, it’s important to remember that colors can have a strong impact on mood and ambiance. If you’re looking for comfort and coziness, you can’t go wrong with bold colors and warm neutral accents. In addition to being energizing, variations of colors like red and orange can also make rooms feel warmer, which is a subtle but noticeable effect—particularly in drafty rooms or large rooms that are difficult to heat evenly during the fall and winter.

  • Create a reading, breakfast, or relaxation nook.

There are two times when most people want to feel relaxed: right before work and right after work. Creating a peaceful place to get ready to face the day, as well as a place to unwind and relax after a full day at work, can go a long way towards making your home a cozier place. Window seats are ideal for creating nooks, but they aren’t necessary. A comfortable seating area anywhere in your home that’s designed specifically for times of relaxation is effective at helping you prepare for an important meeting or interview, and it can also be a great place to catch up on your summer reading and to shed the stresses of your day.

 

  • Decorate to impress yourself, not others.

What good are decorations if they don’t appeal to you on a personal level? It’s easy to fall into a trap of decorating your home solely based on the items you see in magazines, blogs, and in-store arrangements, but doing so can rob your home of its character and its charm—not to mention make it feel uncomfortable. When decorating, always choose items that make you happy, whether they’re sentimental, quirky, or just plain fun to have on display.

  • Buy rugs to create comfortable spaces on hardwood, tile, and concrete floors.

Many newer homes and apartments are trending away from carpet in order to create spaces that are easier to clean, less allergenic, and less prone to damage from leaks and spills. However, the tradeoff for the removal of carpet are floors that can be uncomfortable, cold, and less child-friendly. The good news is that a few well-placed rugs are a great replacement for wall-to-wall carpeting that can easily be cleaned and even replaced if necessary. Plush rugs in bedrooms and living rooms create a more comfortable environment, while also reducing the sounds of footsteps—which can be a welcome relief for homeowners with upstairs bedrooms.

  • Control your home’s natural lighting with the right window treatments.

Lighting plays a big part in the coziness and comfort of a home. Being woken up at sunrise due to ineffective shades or blinds isn’t a great way to start your day—especially if it’s the weekend and you’re trying to sleep in. But at the same time, relying solely on artificial lighting due to thick blackout shades and curtains can also put a damper on your mood and your home’s comfort level. Having the right kind of shades not only improves the appearance of your windows, but it also gives you more control over the amount of sunlight that enters your home depending on your mood, your required privacy level, and the time of day.

 

  • Get your fireplace in working order.

If your home is equipped with a fireplace, you already have one of the most effective tools for creating a cozy room and living space. Fireplaces can require some work and some initial expense to clean and prepare, especially if they haven’t been used in a long time, but there’s no substitute for spending cold nights in the fall, winter, and early spring watching movies or reading books by the fire. Fireplaces are a delight for the senses—the smell of wood, the sound of embers crackling and sparking, the sight of the flames dancing, and the feeling of warm air that fills the room.

 

  • Fill your home with flowers and plants.

One of the best parts about relaxing outdoors is taking in the sights and smells of flowers and plants. Bringing them indoors is a great way to make your home a more comfortable, inviting, and cozy place. Plants are not only great decorative items that add color and life to rooms, but they also help freshen the air and even help concentration and focus. You don’t have to go overboard to get the positive effects of indoor plants—a handful of well-placed and well-maintained plants can quickly liven up your home. If you have pets, make sure that any plants you bring into your home are non-toxic and safe for cats, dogs, and other small animals.

P.S. All photos used in this blog were sent in by actual Blindster.com customers.

Home Trends and Patterns in 2016

It’s hard to believe, but 2016 is already halfway over. But just because the year has reached its halfway point doesn’t mean it’s too late to hop onboard with some of 2016’s top home trends and patterns.

In fact, there’s never been a better time to update your home’s appearance and décor than right now. Completely reinventing your home’s style doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg, either. With the plethora of DIY websites and blogs, there are more inexpensive options than ever for creating any home style you want on almost any budget.

To reinvent your home by following some of 2016’s top interior design trends and patterns, check out Blindster’s tips below:

  • Mix and match kitchen cabinets

Mix and Match Kitchen Cabinets

Photo via Pinterest

 

For years, the prevailing philosophy for kitchen design and décor was to make sure everything matched. However, that philosophy is quickly changing, as new homes with two toned cabinets are becoming more and more common. The contrast created by natural woodgrain cabinets at the top of your kitchen and painted cabinets and drawers at the bottom, for example, can create interest and sufficiently modernize a kitchen without a full renovation. This styling idea can also give you the chance to use bright colors in your kitchen without over doing it.

 

  • Technicolor décor and paint

Technicolor Decor and Paint

Photo via Pinterest

The word technicolor isn’t just a dated reference to color television shows and movies. When it comes to home décor and design, technicolor also describes a rainbow-like pattern of primary and secondary colors—in other words, a color wheel used for decorative purposes. Shelves, curtains, pillows, and blankets with technicolor patterns and color schemes can dramatically brighten and liven a room, and the throwback to the décor philosophies of the 1960s also creates a retro and even nostalgic vibe in your home.

 

  • Modern floral prints and patterns

Modern Floral Prints and Patterns

Photo via Pinterest

 

Floral design saw a strong resurgence in the late 80s and early 90s, but changing tastes and design philosophies meant that couches, chairs, furniture and bedding with this print were mostly relegated to guest bedrooms and thrift stores by the mid-2000s. However, floral print is making a big comeback in 2016.

 

Whether it’s due to boredom caused by minimalist patterns and neutral colors, or nostalgia and a longing for the past, floral patterns are popping up everywhere in 2016. One key difference between floral prints and patterns of yesterday and today is that modern floral designs are typically larger than life. Instead of a pillow containing dozens of depictions of life-size flowers, it instead only showcases a handful of oversized illustrations.

  • Gold décor and accent pieces

Gold Decor and Accent Pieces

Photo via Pinterest

 

Technicolor and floral prints aren’t the only blasts from the past that are becoming more popular in 2016. Gold décor is also gaining in popularity in everything from kitchen appliances to wall colors to bedding. Gold-colored mirrors, lamps, shelves, chandeliers and other small decorative items are also a great way to add color and vibrancy to any room in your home. Gold accents and furniture are also beautifully complemented by colors like white and navy.

 

  • Hanging light fixtures

Hanging Light Fixtures

Photo via Pinterest

 

This trend has been moving towards the forefront of home design and décor for a few years, but it’s hitting the mainstream in a big way in 2016. Hanging light fixtures are perfect for kitchens and bathrooms, where they create a dramatic lighting display and an interesting visual effect. They can be installed almost anywhere, but are most commonly seen above wet bars, kitchen islands, bath tubs, and vanities.

  • Unfinished and unstained wood

Mark Minchow

 

There’s a distinct beauty in bare wood that has received only essential treatments to prepare it for residential use. More and more homeowners are noticing the inherent beauty in all types of wood grain and buying or building furniture that is as stripped down and natural as possible. Unfinished wood headboards, beds, shelves, tables, and desks can serve as great accent pieces and even conversation starters in your home, and they’re often cheaper than their finished and stained counterparts.

  • Contrasting visuals and design choices

Contrasting Visuals and Design Choices

Photo via Pinterest

 

A great example for contrasting design choices is a kitchen with standard stainless steel appliances, neutral wall colors, granite countertops, and seating with brightly colored fabric and cloth patterns. One of the most popular home trend and pattern choices in 2016 involves subverting expectations and creating displays that may otherwise clash but in actuality are complementary and enhance a room’s appeal and beauty.

  • Traditional formal dining rooms

Traditional Formal Dining Rooms

Photo via Pinterest

 

Once a staple of homes and the primary gathering point for families, dining rooms fell into disuse and disinterest in recent decades. With families keeping up more and more demanding schedules, it wasn’t uncommon for dining rooms to transition into study spaces, homework areas, or even home offices. But dining rooms are reclaiming their former places in modern homes, and they’re doing it in style. Modern dining rooms are now prized for their upscale furniture and elegant décor as part of an effort to recreate the formal gathering and entertaining areas of the past. They also give families an excuse to put away cell phones and other distractions to focus on just being together.

 

  • Textured furniture

Textured Furniture

Photo via Pinterest

 

The comfort level of furniture isn’t dictated just by how soft or firm it is, but also by the quality of the texture in its fabric or upholstery. Texture is a highly overlooked part of home design and décor, but more and more homeowners are picking out couches, chairs, and loveseats that meet a wide variety of criteria, including beauty, comfort, and yes, even texture. Faux fur, overstuffed and even tufted cushions, and loose leather or suede all create drastically different seating experiences and visuals, and mixing, matching, and experimenting with all types of furniture is a great way to create your ideal living space.

  • Organic and natural shapes

Organic and Natural Shapes

Photo via Pinterest

 

Most homeowners are used to seeing furniture and décor crafted into perfect squares, circles, and rectangles, but an increasingly popular trend in 2016 is the use of organic shapes that occur in nature. That means irregularly shaped tables, slightly askew and asymmetrical bookcases, and chairs that appear to be part modern art and part functional furniture. Organic and natural-shaped furniture and décor is still a relatively new trend in homes, but adding a table or chair created in this design philosophy is a great way to create an eye-catching centerpiece for any room in your home.

Top Color Trends and Schemes for Spring 2016

One of the quickest and easiest ways to completely reinvent your home’s look and style is to change its color scheme. Whether your budget and time allow you to change only one or two rooms, or you’re planning a full overhaul of your entire home, the results can have a dramatic impact on the appeal and aesthetics of your living space.

One of the top color trends for 2016 involves pairing a few bold colors together in order to create a striking visual arrangement. At Blindster, we’re proud to offer a wide variety of color choices for our blinds and shades, and that means it’s easy to find the perfect complementary colors for the paints and colorful décor you choose for any room in your home.

To get your home’s colors ready for spring 2016 and beyond, check out our guide for creating the ultimate color combinations.

Burgundy, Pink, Gold, Cream Scheme

Photo Via Pinterest

 

  • The color scheme: Burgundy, pink, gold, and cream.

The combination of burgundy and pink creates a strong visual that immediately attracts the eye’s attention, but the intensity of the two colors is calmed and neutralized by the presence of more neutral and natural colors like gold and cream. This color scheme can be easily created in bedrooms and living rooms using paint, pillows, blankets, and window treatments.

 

The window treatments: Premium Roman Shades Group B – Lexi Cream, Premium Roman Shades Group D – Charleston Gold, Premium Roman Shades Group A – Wilmington Caliente

 

Our Roman Shades offer a wide variety of colors, making them ideal for capitalizing on trending color schemes and modernizing the look of any room in your home. In addition to being available in dozens of unique and striking colors, our Roman Shades also bring an elegant and beautiful look to any room where they’re installed. The combination of bold colors and attractive design makes these window treatments among our most popular, especially for homeowners who are looking to spruce up their home décor and style.

Red, Turquoise, Bright Green Scheme

Photo via Pinterest

 

  • The color scheme: Red, turquoise, and bright green.

Turquoise and bright green are common spring colors that can’t help but make you feel like you’re on a tropical vacation. Combining these colors with red accent pieces, such as window treatments, pillows, or artwork, can help create an interesting visual contrast. This color scheme is both bright and energetic, making it ideal for bedrooms, studies, kitchens, and other places where you may need a boost throughout the day.

 

The window treatments: Premium Light Filtering Double Cellular Shades – Forest FAB146, Premium Light Filtering Fabric Roller Shades Group A – Carina Turquoise CA201, Micro Aluminum Blinds – Garnet Red

 

Creating this visual combination is easily achieved with our large selection of blinds and shades. For creating the beautiful spring-inspired color scheme of dark green and turquoise, look no further than our Premium Light Filtering Double Cellular Shades and our Premium Light Filtering Fabric Roller Shades Group A. To completely pull off the look, a bold red should be added somewhere in the room, and if you choose to add that color via your window treatments, our Garnet Red Micro Aluminum Blinds will get the job done without breaking the bank.

Royal Blue and Yellow Scheme

Photo via Pinterest

 

  • The color scheme: Royal blue and yellow

This color scheme is perfect when it comes to creating both a spring-inspired look and a nautical look, also making it work for year-round use in homes near the coast, lakes, or rivers. An easy way to create this look is to mix and match blue and yellow window treatments and bedding with the opposing color wall paint or wallpaper. Choose black or gray accent pieces and small decorative flourishes to create a rich and elegant atmosphere throughout your room or your entire home.

The window treatments: Deluxe Blackout Vinyl Roller Shades – Navy, Premium Light Filtering Double Cellular Shades – Buttercup, Premium Blackout Fabric Roller Shades Group A – Twilight Savannah

 

Whether your blue and yellow color scheme is strictly spring-inspired or influenced by your home’s proximity to water, the window treatments listed above are a great way to bring the relevant colors into your home and accentuate the décor and accent pieces needed to pull off this look. For a nautical-themed room, you can’t go wrong with a few maritime pieces of décor like artwork, decorative seashells, or anchor motifs. To make the look more spring-influenced, eschew the nautical décor and instead place plants and colorful DIY projects throughout the room.

Neutrals and Bold Scheme

Photo Via Pinterest

 

  • The color scheme: Neutral colors with a bold accent wall or bold accent pieces

 

Although a room or home that’s mostly decorated with neutral colors may sound boring, the results can be dramatic and striking when that scheme is paired with a few strategically placed splashes of bold color, such as accent walls, brightly colored furniture, and dramatic window coverings. Finding neutral color décor is easy, as there’s no shortage of accent pieces and bedding available in colors like cream, white, tan, beige, and gold.

 

The window treatments: 2” Premium Cordless Wood Blinds – Off White, 2” Premium Cordless Faux Wood Blinds – Antique White, Deluxe Bamboo Woven Wood Shades Group A – Mirabella Tan, Cordless Pleated Shades – Oxford Ivory, Premium Roman Shades Group A – Lucky Sateen Teal

 

The first four of the window treatments listed above represent beautiful neutral colors that can fit with virtually any color scheme and pair beautifully with bold accent pieces and walls, while the last choice represents a bold color option if you choose to save your splash of color for your window treatments. Whichever option you choose, know that this color scheme is highly versatile and subjective, and that means you’ll have tons of freedom to experiment with the best colors and patterns for your home and your décor. And because the most common colors for both blinds and shades are neutral colors like white, gray, tan, and cream, there is no shortage of options to choose from, whether you prefer Roman Shades, aluminum mini blinds, or anything in between.

5 Last Minute Fall Centerpieces

We know how it is. You’re out there living your busy life, when suddenly, the holidays are here with you completely unprepared. So you’re scrambling, trying to make things as perfect as they can be with a large dinner to prepare, screaming kids who don’t want to wear the nice outfit you picked, and family members who insist on bringing extra people (how nice of your cousin to invite her new boyfriend she met a week ago). It’s enough to make you crazy, or at the very least make you forget some of the important little things. But you can’t let them see you sweat! One of the easiest ways to make your family believe you have it all together is with a perfectly placed centerpiece.

Most of these centerpieces can easily be put together with things you already have around your home or backyard this time of year. They add a festive touch that your guests will appreciate and are sure to help bring together your dining room.

Rustic Lantern

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These lanterns are everywhere lately and can easily be picked up at your local craft store. We added a large candle inside that can be lit for a nice glow or left just a filler. Use small pumpkins left over from Halloween to add a little color and depth to your centerpiece.

Gourds

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Everything about these gourds says fall, from their color to their connotation. Placing a few in the center of your table is about as easy as it gets! You could also use fall veggies like pumpkins and acorn squash for a fresher feel.

Wheat Bouquet

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Bunches of wheat like this can be found at a craft store or your local florist. If you live in the country, you might be able to pick some up in your neighbor’s field! To make the wheat look more put together, you can tie a ribbon or some twine around the bottom and place it on top of a pretty cake stand (if you aren’t already using yours for pie).

Dried Flowers

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You might have to go out of your way to get some of the items for this centerpiece, but it would be worth it! You do these holiday gatherings every year, so why not have something to use year after year?  Just fill a vase you already have with dried flowers and foliage that will last you for years to come. We added little pumpkins around the base for a little more detail.

Backyard Pine Cones

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Pick up any cute container around your house and fill it with pinecones, fall leaves, and maybe some Spanish moss from your backyard. Make sure to clean the items you pick up as good as possible, so you don’t end up with a bunch of dust and dirt on your table (not appetizing!). This centerpiece looks so natural and you didn’t have to spend a dime!

Don’t worry, if all else fails and you don’t have time to put any of these together, you can always just use the turkey as your centerpiece. Happy holidays!