Some people see things like drapes, sheers, blinds and valances as nothing more than decoration. Window coverings that no one pays any more heed to than to say, ‘that looks really pretty’. However, as people learn to have more care for their expensive homes and property, window coverings are found to play a bigger role in homes than once assumed. Roller shades themselves come with a variety of purposes and types.
Blinds that are called roller shades are good examples of the varied purposes of window coverings in general. They can be made of really dense material, or of something almost diaphanous or gauzy. They can be pretty and they can be practical. The function of these window shades depends completely on the room they are chosen for, as roller shades can serve many functions.
Roller shades roll up when not in use, hence the word ‘roller’ in the name. The tube that holds the shade when it is rolled is usually at the top of the window itself. Shades are not usually pleated, though they can be made of pleated material upon request. Nor do window shades of this type gather up like vertical or roman shades. When the beaded chain on the side of the blind is pulled, the roller shade rolls up and out of the way. It is important to keep this chain somewhat attached to the wall near the window, for safety reasons.
Shades come in all sorts of various materials. Some materials are thick, and others are surprisingly thin. Some companies also offer eco-friendly textiles that support a friendly ecology for the earth while still being inexpensive to purchase. Blinds are typically custom made to fit a window. However, many online stores have ready-made blinds waiting in stock to be sold. Be sure to get accurate measurements when choosing blinds.
Media rooms in today’s family home often require a great deal of privacy or darkness but only at certain periods, such as when people are watching movies or playing video games. Otherwise, it’s nice to have natural light in. Room darkening window shades are meant to block all light from a room. They also keep rooms the most private. That is why many hospitals and doctors choose these blackout or room darkening roller shades for their own use. These light-blocking shades can also help keep the slow setting sun out of young children’s windows when their bedtimes come sooner than the darkness. They’re ideal for any bedroom really, as they do not have to be black. Blackout blinds can be of any color and can come in fun textures like faux suede.
Some roller shades are called light controlling. These window shades are less dense than the darkening shades. The materials they are made from can be translucent and almost see through, or can be made of natural fibers and sheer weaves. Light controlling window shades are less about blocking light and more about offering a minimal barrier against what is beyond a window. Sometimes they are so transparent that one can see the distinct outlines of houses beyond the shade, as well as people moving around. And other times, they are like a light filter, where nothing is visible beyond the shade but a maximum amount of light is allowed through. Blinds can even be made at home out of rice paper, for example.
Roller shades can serve other purposes as well. As was mentioned, some shades can have pleats. The pleats trap air between bits of the shade and depending on the weather, help to cool or heat a room. Some sheer window shades are meant to only keep the glare off of things like televisions, while still letting a maximum amount of natural lighting in. Other shades are UV protectors, keeping furnishings inside the house from fading due to sunlight exposure. And ultimately, some shades are just for decoration, placed as compliments to curtains and drapes, and edged with scalloped trim or fringe.
Roller shades come in such a large variety of styles and multiple purposes. They demonstrate what window coverings are about and what is possible when it comes to choosing what to put over the windows of a house. From light control to full cocooning of a room for privacy reasons, window coverings require consideration of purpose when choosing them.