Choosing and Fitting Blinds
There are a huge range of options for window treatments out there, of which the most cost effective is probably to a set of blinds. Blinds are becoming a very popular option because they allow you to fine tune how much light and heat you let into a room. They are available in a large range of materials, but the most common options are aluminium and wood. The natural colouring of wooden blinds gives them an element of sophistication that aluminium ones lack, whereas aluminium is typically more affordable.
There are a wide variety of factors to consider when choosing blinds. The first is what the purpose of the room is. For example the kitchen will probably benefit from a set of roller blinds which are easy to clean and don't take up much space. In contrast the sitting room will benefit from venetian blinds which will give it a touch of class and let you stop sunlight glaring of the T.V whilst still letting some in.
You should also consider small children and pets. A lot of blinds come with long pull cords or chains to control them. If there are toddlers or other small children then there is a risk that they could get caught up in these cords and even end up strangling themselves. For this reason it is vital if you do use blinds in a room where small children are likely to be unsupervised you use shortened cords, or always tie them up out of reach. Roller blinds or motorised blinds are both good options here, as blinds operated by a crank handle rather than a cord.
You should also consider how the blinds will fit with the current decor of the room. Can you find a set in a suitable colour? Would light or dark blinds work best? When making the choice take advantage of the free samples that many blinds dealers will be willing to send you. One of the advantages of wooden blinds is that their natural colouring means they suit a wide range of colours and textures, so if you want to redecorate at a later stage they are likely to suit the new theme just as well.
Before you buy your blinds you should make sure you measure the windows to ensure a good fit. You need to take two measurements for each window, width and drop. Width is (obviously) how wide the window is. The drop is how high the window is. The best practice is take three measurements for each. So for the width you would measure at the top and bottom of the window as well as the middle. For the drop, you would measure a both sides and the middle again. You then need to use the smallest width and drop elements when ordering your blinds. If your window is inside a recess then take half an inch or one and a half centimetres off the width measurement.
Some useful resources here to further strengthen your home improvement skills: