How to buy blinds and shades

With such a vast array of blinds and shades out there, how can you know what is right for you?

That is the million dollar question.

The good news is that it does not have to be a brain-facturing process. In fact, it should be the opposite. Decorating or re-decorating your interiors can be a fun and exciting journey, if you know what to do. It is something that most people look forward to, because it simply elevates your living space and experience. When guests come over and compliment our home, it gives us a dopamine rush. Because as humans, we like to hear when we have done well.

When you enter a space that immediately evokes a feeling of awe, it is usually because everything just seems to fit. Somehow, everything just complements each other. This is not an achievement by fluke. There likely has been a great deal of thought and consideration gone into making it look that way. Down to every last detail.

So, to help you cross the bridge, we thought it might be helpful to get back to basics. Starting with learning about blinds and shades, their differences and what to consider. Be sure to let us know if there is something you would like to know, but have not covered.

What’s the Difference Between Blinds and Shades?

The easiest way to remember the difference or identify them is by their material. Blinds consist of materials like timber, metal and composite, while shades are made out of fabric. So think Venetian blinds and plantation shutters for blinds, and roller shades, Roman shades and panel glide blinds for the latter. You will find that they are rarely referred to as ‘shades’ however, and tend to also be called blinds. Therein lies the confusion, but now that you know, wonder no more.

Things to Consider When Buying Blinds and Shades

Though it is easy to pick them apart, when it comes to deciding which one you want, it is another story altogether. So to help you narrow it down, we have listed a few key points we think you need to take into account. These are related to functionality, which is just as important, if not more, than the looks.

  • Light and privacy: 

What type of room are you going for? If that is too broad a question, ask yourself if you want something with a light and airy feel, or the opposite. 

Blinds such as Venetians for instance, have tiltable slats. This lets them allow in sunlight as directed, blocking it out completely when fully closed up. Shades, being made from fabric, typically come in blockout or light filtering options. While this is great for controlling brightness levels, if you want full privacy they need to be pulled down.And if you want full light to flow in, then they need to be rolled completely up. 

  • Budget: Are you planning to outfit your entire house with window furnishings? Or do 

you have just the one window? If you have budget constraints, we recommend prioritising the windows that need immediate attention. You can then gradually work your way through the rest, when circumstances permit. The cost of window furnishings is typically dependent on size. So the larger the area, the more the price. Normally, custom-made options hike this up even higher, but we have made this more affordable with, for example, DIY blinds. So much so that you can expect up to 70% off retail prices. 

  • Child-safety:

No matter whether you choose blinds or shades, safety should be a primary concern. Cords  are often the biggest risk-factor, as they can cause accidental strangulation. If you have curious little ones at home, this is something to take into consideration. There are child-safety devices you can install as well, such as a cord-tensioning device. You can find these at most hardware stores. Keep the cord at least 160cm above the floor to ensure your child is safe from accidental injury.

  • Maintenance: 

First off, you do not need to bring in any professional cleaners to maintain your blinds and shades. However, when it comes to dust, they are like a moth to a flame. Blinds usually do fine with a wipe down every now and then, but shades are a bit different. Weaves and textures in fabrics means that dust can settle into crevices. The best solution for this is to use your vacuum’s brush head or a hand-held vacuum. This will let you really get into those crannies, and dislodge any dust. 

  • Your Taste and Room Style:

Are you going for something more traditional or modern? Formal or casual? Coastal chic or urban vibes?

When it comes to your creativity, there is no hard and fast rule. All you need to remember is that bold, bright patterns and colours make a statement and stand out. Neutral, muted colours are more grounding and tone down a room. So it does also depend on your furnishings. You do not need to have the room completely furnished before you make your choices. Having an idea of your vision should be enough. The key to this (as with everything), is balance.

Blinds and Shades Safety

It is of critical importance that your blinds/ shades are manufactured according to safety standards. If you must go for corded versions, ensure these cords are out of reach as mentioned above. Did you know all our products are manufactured in line with the latest ACCC safety regulations? They are each tested under rigorous standards to ensure that the final product is nothing short of excellent.

How to Measure Blinds and Shades

Grab a tape measure, pen and notebook, and meet us in our guides section on our website (wonderlux.com.au). We have meticulously listed our step-by-step instructions for measuring and installing your blinds. We have also included the same for curtains, with videos corresponding to each product as well. 

It is key that you get your measuring right. Without this, you cannot expect your blinds/ shades to fit the way you want them to. It would be a shame to spend money and effort only to find that you cannot really use them. So take your time and if you feel like our guides are not making much sense, let us know. We are happy to walk you through the process and clear any doubts you may have.

When it comes down to it, it really is entirely up to you and what you prefer. We have a fantastic range of timber venetian blinds you can browse through to get you started. Then take some time to explore roller blinds, double-roller blinds and Roman blinds for shades. You will be able to pinpoint the differences and features relative to each of them. They are also available in an extensive range of colours, textures and patterns, to suit all design tastes. 

If you would like specific advice to your circumstances, do not hesitate to contact us. We are here to help you make the best possible choice with the least amount of fuss. We are reachable via phone, e-mail, and through Live Chat on our website for real time advice.

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