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What Are the Options in Light-Control Shades?

Posted: Tuesday, January 27th, 2015 | Filed under: blackout shades, window shading, window treatments
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IMG_1878If you’ve ever been kept awake at night because of the light emanating from an outside streetlamp, visible through that space between a pull-down shade and your window frame, you’ll be interested to know that you can have custom window shades that allow in, or completely block, any light from outside.

You’ll surely want to be able to control the amount of light entering a room during daytime and nighttime hours, especially in bedrooms where you may want to take a rest or help ensure a restful naptime for children or babies during the day, and help yourself get a more restful sleep at night when you want no outside light visible. Diffused or blocked light can also help in the entertainment areas of your home, such as a den where TV viewing on a flat screen television is best without a glare from too much outside sunlight.

And if you live in an area where people can drive or walk past your home, such as city-dwelling homes, visibility into your home becomes a safety issue as well, requiring a smart solution for home privacy via your choice of window coverings.

As you begin to plan your home’s light allowance and privacy measures, it helps to understand the terminology so that you can explain to your custom window designers exactly what you’re looking for. Window covering choices for light filtration and privacy come in three different types:

Sheer: Sheer window coverings let in the most light, offering an airy feel that allows you a view outside, and also allows something of a view from the outside into your home. Sheers are a top choice for public areas of your home and upper floors where outsiders cannot gain a direct view into your bedroom.

Dim-out: The material of a dim-out shade lets in a measure of light, but its construction allows for a view outside (or from the outside in) to be reduced to just being able to make out vague shapes and colors, cutting down on the visibility of any detail either way.

Blackout: Blackout shades create a complete blocking of all light from the outside. 100% opaque, these window coverings provide a solution for that nighttime street lamp that has created sleep problems for you or your family. As you may know, not getting quality sleep can affect your health adversely, so it’s important to create a solution to sleep deficit problems via light-blocking window coverings that still look stylish. This type of shade is not a permanent light block akin to a board set against your window; it can be raised up and down like any other window shade, to allow light in during the day but completely block light at night.

Bear in mind that many of the top brands of window shades, like Lutron window shades, are created with special fabrics designed to block UV rays that could otherwise damage your hardwood floors and furniture over time, so they are also a protective investment for the finer elements of your home.

And again, automated shade raising and lowering systems let you personalize the amount of shade coverage you’d like, such as raising that dim-out shade away to allow for a full view outdoors. When you’re ready for some light dimming and more privacy, you just use the wireless shade adjustment technology your custom window covering company has installed for you.

As another safety note for your home, advise any housesitter or helpful friend or relative stopping in to water your plants on how to operate your blinds adjusting tools while you’re on vacation to show a daily change in their position, which can add to your home’s safety by making it appear to the outside world like someone is home.

Ask your window design company about Lutron’s Sivoia QS Wireless system, offering control of shades in one room, multiple rooms, or your entire home or building all at the touch of a button, saving you time and effort and allowing you more control over the light and privacy of your home.

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