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Choosing Between Wood and Vinyl Plantation Shutters

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Plantation shutters have a vast history and were used to protect windows long before glass panes. These window treatments have a basic design consisting of rows of louvers, housed between supporting rails and stiles. While durable wood materials were originally used in the manufacturing process, more affordable materials like vinyl are now an option for savvy homeowners. Learn more about each option and their benefits.

Classic Wood Plantation Shutters

Many homeowners prefer real wood plantation shutters due to their classic look and all-natural construction. Real timber brings warmth to a home and can be easily matched with a home's existing decor. Timber is also very versatile and can be shaped and sized to fit nearly any window opening. True hardwoods are considered the best design option as they provide unsurpassed energy efficiency, durability, and charm.

There are numerous material options for homeowners to choose from. Some of the most popular include solid basswood, maple, mahogany, cherry, knotty pine, alder, walnut, as well as more unique choices like teak and bubinga. Nearly any type of timber that furniture can be made of can also be used to manufacture these window treatments.

Homeowners have the opportunity to completely customize the way their window treatments look when wood is used. Raw timber can be stained a wide range of colors and tints to blend effortlessly with your home's decor. It can also be painted or left natural for an authentic look.

Modern Vinyl Plantation Shutters

Vinyl plantation shutters are constructed of various poly-resin materials designed with durability and resilience in mind. Due to the sleek, plastic-like material, vinyl is low-maintenance and easy to clean. Problems like cracking, fading, or the peeling of paint are generally not an issue when this modern material is used. High-quality materials are also less likely to deteriorate over time.

Most vinyl products are noticeably less expensive than real wood, making them more economically friendly. Because it is a more stable material, vinyl is also often a wiser investment. As the material is flame retardant and resistant to moisture, it can be used in nearly any room of a home, including bathrooms and kitchens. While most commonly used inside the home, these window treatments can also be installed outside.

There are several types of vinyl shutter styles to choose from. Hollow selections are idea for moist environments, such as on a window next to a shower stall. Other types of vinyl can be made to look exactly like real wood, giving you the best of both worlds. This material generally comes pre-colored or tinted directly from the manufacturer to ensure that the color does not fade over time.

Shopping for new window treatments for your home? Consider what materials would work best with your home and budget so that you can make an informed decision.

To learn more about their options for plantation shutters, Indianapolis residents should visit http://www.thewindowvalet.com/custom-window-treatments/shutters/.

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How to Purchase Plantation Shutters

How to Purchase Plantation Shutters



Whether you need to make that perfect statement in a new home, add a finishing touch to an already well decorated room, or gain control over rising energy costs, plantation shutters have become one of the most popular window coverings in today’s energy conscious home fashion market. Plantation shutters have become immensely stylish in almost every type of home setting, from regal estates to modest condominiums, adding grace and elegance out-shown only by their easy to clean functionality.

The origins of these classic window coverings actually date to the nineteenth century where they were used to protect plantation homes against the cold winters and sweltering summers of America’s southeast. Proving truly timeless in decor, plantation shutters have gained enormously in popularity over the last three decades.

Why shutters
The uninitiated will certainly be impressed when viewing plantation shutters in a home for the first time because they work magnificently on almost any size or shaped opening, including normally difficult to cover French and patio doors. Designers have long known that shutters can truly recreate rooms with an exceptional capacity to produce a wide range of appearances and moods. While they are open, plantation shutters create a spacious, light quality without encumbering even the most breath taking of views. Closed, they offer warmth, privacy and protection from summer heat.

One quality unique to plantation shutters over other types of window coverings is their ability to architecturally open and add brightness to a room by way of ambient light reflection, a feature which, alone, can truly change the entire feel of a room.



How to select
One difficulty for consumers entering the shutter market stems from understanding the significantly different levels of material, construction and price points available. Over the last decade, differing quality levels have come available from both domestic and overseas manufacturers, further driving the importance of consumer education and product knowledge. Understanding these differences can be a challenge because variation can be found in every part of shutter construction.

For example, in the realm of wood shutters, lower priced construction levels made of single wood types such as Bass, Alder or Poplar can work quite well in small or shaded windows, but a higher quality multi-specie wood construction is often needed in larger and more exposed openings. Synthetics, such as vinyl or poly-core, are sometimes perfect for smaller openings or damp environments, but often have sagging issues in larger openings with wider or multi-panel installation.

Recently, several foreign manufacturers have begun exporting shutter products into the United States using different materials, including Basswood, MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard) and other composites. While all of these can work well in some applications, they can have serious issues making them simply not the best choice for many types of windows, despite a temping lower price point. There is also controversy centering on the use formaldehyde in MDF manufacturing capable of “off-gassing”, especially in warmer environments.

What to look for
Though the right quality shutter will last for decades, the most common mistake made by buyers is purchasing a lower quality material or construction than what is indicated by their window environment, and an error of this kind can be expensive. Even low-end shutters can look nice when new, however, most problems stem from using the wrong inherent construction with consequences not revealing for several months. Making a selection even more difficult, the average consumer must often rely on the not-so-impartial advice of retailers carrying only one or two lines of shutters.

Most experts agree that the best way to reduce the risk of purchasing the wrong product type is by shopping with a company carrying several types and levels. It may be wise to avoid companies carrying multiple types of window products in favor of direct distributors specializing exclusively in shutters. Direct distributors often provide significantly better value and are more likely to offer unbiased information than the “big box” stores. When it comes down to making a decision between using the right shutter construction quality versus, perhaps, that new wide screen T.V., think twice about stretching your dollar at the sacrifice of shutter quality. When budget is concern, it may be wiser to consider doing fewer windows and staying with the best shutter for the job.

It is also prudent to look for a comprehensive written warranty, and a transferability clause can be especially important if a future home sale is a possibility. Most quality manufactures will allow at least one warranty transfer, a plus to a home buyer. Remember that a warranty is only good as long as the company that issued it is there to stand behind it, so a call to your local Better Business Bureau is always a good idea.




How much to spend
Once a decision is made determining the best shutter quality for your home, the only remaining factor is cost, and prices can range substantially depending on the quality chosen. Plantation shutters typically will cost less than draperies, but two to three times more than ordinary blinds. Some companies price on a “per square foot” basis, which can work in the buyer’s favor for small windows. Others use a “price grid” method, more advantageous for those with larger openings.

Whichever method is used, the old adage of “you get what you pay for” is quite apropos in the world of plantation shutters. For those willing to do the necessary research, the reward is a window covering that will transform most homes into an energy efficient, elegant showplace. Picking out the right ones for you isn’t rocket science, but it pays to do your homework.

Blinds 4 Less
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Decorating With Window Blinds

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Expert Author Jillynn Stevens, Ph.D., MSW
Why choose to decorate with window blinds? They're fun, they look sophisticated and they give you control over how much light you want to let in. Before you go shopping for new window blinds, ask yourself a few questions to help narrow your focus.



How much light do I want to let in?

With traditional window shades, light is all-or-nothing. They're either up or they're down - there's no in between. With blinds, you can adjust the amount of light you want in your room. You can pull them all the way up for a crystal-clear unobstructed view, you can pull them down but leave the slats open for lots of light, you can close the slats for hardly any light, or choose one of a practically infinite number of variations in between based on your particular desire at that moment.

The adjustable nature of blinds is also an important consideration for privacy, especially if you live in a ground-floor apartment or a neighborhood in which houses are situated close together or near the street. Blinds allow you to see out without allowing everyone else to see in.

How do I want my blinds to enhance my living space?

Many different looks can be achieved depending on the style of blinds you choose: wood, faux wood, metal, vinyl or another material. A dark, heavy, hardwood blind can bring a warm, outdoorsy feel to a room. White or light-colored vinyl blinds suggest a breezier atmosphere, perfect for a beach house or a kitchen. Colored or patterned blinds offer your room a really distinctive look, and deciding on vertical versus horizontal can also have a major effect on a room's demeanor.

How much will they cost?

Even though blinds are often considered a sleek, cosmopolitan addition to a home, it doesn't mean they have to break the bank. Love the look of real wood but can't afford the steep price? Try faux wood - many people won't be able to even tell the difference. Sure, a remote to raise and lower the blinds would be nice, but if you're trying to cut corners, you can skip that feature. If you have neither children nor pets, you don't need the added cost of cordless, either. Some blinds can be purchased for as little as $25 each, while higher-end blinds can run more than $100 each. Installation fees can vary as well, depending on where you shop. If you're handy, install them yourself and save even more. Make sure you feel comfortable tackling the job, however; it won't save you money if you end up having to call in a professional to re-do the work.

And just because you have blinds doesn't mean you have to give up fabric! Top your blinds with fun fabric patterns, or drape wide swatches on either side to soften those edges. Either will enhance your look while helping to keep dust to a minimum.

If you're tired of your old roller shades and curtains and want to bring an exciting new look to your home, consider decorating with window blinds.

Jillynn Stevens is a writer and researcher. She is the Director of Digital Content Marketing for Be Locally SEO where she enjoys helping clients expand and improve their businesses through articles, blogs, website content and more.

To discover the best window blinds for your home or office in nothern Utah, see Blind Spot.

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Blinds 4 Less
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5 Important Tips to Choose the Right Roller Blinds for Your Homes and Offices!

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Here are a few important tips to help you buy roller blinds:




1. Figure out your requirements

Depending on the type of home that you are living in, the area where it is located and ultimately the purpose that you expect it to serve, the type of window shades chosen will also differ. For example, if the location of your home is such that your rooms are receiving too much light, investing in thicker window shades to reduce the intensity might be your best bet.

2. Colour:

The market is flooded with several types of colours when it comes to choosing window shades. But, you have to choose what best matches the interior decoration of your house. Ideally, if your walls are light coloured opt for a darker shade and vice versa. You can also opt for textured patterns particularly if you want to highlight the window area.

3. Ease of operation

Roller blinds are a more urbane replacement to the traditional idea of curtains. Additionally, roller blinds are supposed to be easy to operate. Therefore, prior to making the purchase, don't forget to check their smoothness of operation.

4. Choose a good quality fabric

Several types of fabrics are used to make roller blinds. Use a little bit of research to understand which kind of fabric will suit your requirements in the best possible way. For example, the flame retardant fabric used in some types of roller blinds is extremely good if you want to increase the security of the premises. On the other hand, solar control fabrics are great for people wanting to control the amount of light entering the premises.

5. Should be easy to maintain

While choosing window shades, invest in an option that is easy to maintain as well as long lasting because you don't want to be spending thousands on getting your window shades cleaned regularly, do you?

To know more about roller blinds online, please check our site.

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Four Types of Blinds to Make Your Homes Look Even More Beautiful!

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When it comes to window treatments like roller blinds, making the right choice requires you to take into consideration several factors like the existing interiors of the place, the purpose that they are expected to serve, the amount of money that you can spend etc. However, even before you start considering these factors, you need to channelize your energies to understand the different types of blinds available in the market. After all, this is the basic information that will simplify your process of choosing.
Here is a brief preview of the different types of blinds available in the market:
Venetian blinds: One of the simplest and most common choices, these venetian blinds are the perfect option for people who want to add the much needed dose of elegance to the overall aesthetic appeal of the place without actually spending too much money. Comprising of horizontal slats fitted together, these blinds are usually made of plastic or wood. Installing them is easy and barely takes more than a few minutes. Additionally, these blinds are a low maintenance option.
Roman Blinds: Made of soft fabric, these blinds are perfect to add a soothing touch to the ambience. When you raise the blinds, they gather to form pleats and end up looking extremely beautiful. Also, these blinds are known to be extremely effective when it comes to filtering the light and also providing a certain degree of privacy to the members of the premises.
Roller blinds: Using a stiffened fabric, these blinds can easily be rolled up when you are not using them. Apart from being easy to operate as well as install, these blinds come with a long shelf life allowing them to withstand the routine wear and tear in a better way. Also, installing them comes across as an extremely economical option making it a preferred choice for people who are facing budgetary constraints. You can easily choose the fabric, colour and finish, that goes well with your premises.
Blackout blinds: This is also a variant of roller blinds that come with a special coating to prevent the light from penetrating to them. Ideal for places that experience bad summers, using these blinds helps in lowering the temperature of the premises to quite an extent. This in turn reduces the reliance on air conditioners and even helps you bring down the overall electricity bill. An added advantage of using these blinds is that they provide a high degree of privacy.
To know more about roller blinds online, please check our site.


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Blinds 4 Less
Quality Blinds, Shutters, & Shades
Proudly Serving Southern California since 1994
Free In-Home Shopping
(951) 924-9435