Window blinds create a clean, uncluttered look that’s in keeping with today’s focus on tasteful, minimalist home décor.
These versatile and highly variable window coverings are easy to install and are available in a wide range of styles, materials, textures and colours.
The type of material used in window blinds affects costs, ease of cleaning and maintenance needs. It also affects the blinds’ warp resistance, insulation, durability and effectiveness in blocking out light.
Consider the pros and cons of each type of blind material so that you can choose the best window blinds for your interiors.
Good quality aluminium blinds are neat, lightweight, durable and have excellent anti-corrosive qualities. They come in all sorts of attractive colours and finishes and are easy to install and maintain.
Aluminium blinds have a cool, clinical look that’s best suited to contemporary homes. They’re ideal for parts of the home with relatively high humidity, such as bathrooms and kitchens. They’re also effective at blocking out the sunlight and may help reflect light back into a room during the drab, dreary days of winter.
Aluminium blinds are comparatively cheap and easy to clean. However, the slats can bend quite easily and should be handled with care.
Genuine wood blinds
Genuine wood provides an elegant, organic touch in any home or office. As a natural material, wood is a great insulator. It’s strong, durable and versatile – it can be varnished or stained to match any room. Wooden blinds are also easy to clean. Simply flatten the slats in a uniform direction and give the entire surface a wipe with a damp cloth.
On the down side, wooden blinds tend to be expensive. They’re also susceptible to damage due to moisture and may warp and crack in hot, damp conditions. As a result, they’re best suited to bedrooms and living areas, rather than to bathrooms or kitchens.
Faux wood blinds
Faux wood offers the appearance of natural wood but at a fraction of the cost. It insulates better than real wood, is tough and durable, and is warp resistant. Faux wood blinds are also effective at blocking out UV rays and can handle extreme temperatures with no problem. Cleaning is easy, and faux wood is stain resistant and doesn’t fade.
Among the drawbacks are a limited colour selection, given that the material can’t be painted or stained. Faux wood is also comparatively heavy, which makes the blinds a bit more difficult to install.
Vinyl is a versatile plastic used in the manufacture of a wide range of products, from low-cost flooring to window blinds. It’s a long-lasting material that’s resistant to temperature extremes and UV rays, and requires little maintenance.
Vinyl window blinds are available in a range of colours, designs and finishes and are less expensive than most other types of blinds. They’re ideally suited to more contemporary interiors.
Fabric blinds usually feature one continuous piece of material, which is raised and lowered using a simple pulley system. Because of their design, they tend to be much heavier and more difficult to install than other types of window blinds.
Fabric blinds are affordable and available in a wide variety of materials, colours, textures and patterns. They’re arguably the most effective at blocking out light and insulating a room. However, they don’t have the flexibility of slats that can be angled to allow for the penetration of diffused sunlight or to welcome summer breezes.
Fabric blinds also aren’t particularly heat or water resistant, so they’re not suitable for areas with high humidity. They’re also not the best choice for kitchens because they may absorb odours associated with cooking.
Maintaining fabric blinds is no easy task because the blinds attract dust and dirt, and this accumulate in the folds of the material. Cleaning fabric blinds is best left to a professional cleaning service, and requires the removal and re-hanging of the blinds.