Tips for selecting the best window shades

Window shades do more for your home than just offer a sense of privacy. They add a decorative touch, help block out light, keep your home at a comfortable temperature, and can assist in giving a room a casual, formal, or sophisticated appearance. There are many types of window shades on the market, which can make choosing the best one a bit confusing. We've provided information of the most common types of window shades to help in your decision making.

Window Shades vs. Curtains

Curtains and shades both fall under the category of "soft" window treatments. Both can be used individually or together as a unit. Some of the benefits of choosing window shades include:

- Great at providing privacy and home security.

- Easy to clean and care for.

- Available in a multitude of colors, textures, and patterns.

- Can help to block out light in the bedroom.

- Can be easily changed from up/down position.

Types of Window Shades

If you've never shopped for shades before, you will be amazed at the various types that are available. The days of using those horrible metal window shades are long gone! Now, there are shades that open and close with a remote control, shades that can be made to fit round, oblong, or oddly shaped windows to perfection, and much more. However, the most popular types of window shades continue to be:

Roller shades - These are the original window shades, although their performance has vastly improved over the years. They can be pulled down to cover the entire room, and when tugged, they raise up to the desired height. These shades are simple in appearance, and are attractive when paired with a valance or light window covering.

Roman shades - Roman shades are a wonderful choice for virtually any home. When raised, the shade folds up into a series of folds, for a smooth, clean appearance. These types of shades are available in many different fabrics, prints, and styles.

Pleated shades - These are some of the commonly sold shades, as they can be combined with any type of home décor, lightweight, and available in a variety of colors and fabrics. The pleats of the fabric fold together, in accordion fashion, so that they are compact.

Balloon shades - These types of window shades look best in traditional-style homes, or rooms with a Victorian design. The shades are designed with gathered fabric, and when raised, it resembles the look of a balloon.

Cellular shades - Cellular shades are often referred to as "Honeycomb" blinds, due to their unique honeycomb-like folds collapse when folded open. These types of shades are available in either light-filtering or light-blocking options, depending on your needs. They're also available in a variety of colors, textures, and styles.

Safety and Window Shades

Prevent strangulation - If you have children in the home, be sure to invest in cordless window shades. There have been far too many fatalities involving children accidentally strangling themselves with hanging cords.

Cordless option - If you cannot afford to purchase cordless shades, remove the cords yourself and use safety tassels to protect children.

Location - NEVER place a child's bed or crib near a window dressed with shades or blinds.


More from Jennifer Wagner:

Ideas for Decorating Short Windows

How to Measure Windows from Drapes

12 Weekend Home Improvement Projects


Source: Personal knowledge