When it comes to dressing your windows, there are two main options – curtains or blinds. Just which option is right for your home? Below are a few questions that can help you choose between curtains and blinds.
How much light/privacy control do you want?
Curtains typically provide an all-or-nothing approach to light and privacy control. You generally have to choose between no light (when the curtains are shut) or no privacy (when the curtains are open).
Of course, there are net curtains and voile curtains, which can let in light while maintaining privacy. These are often used in conjunction with regular curtains. Voile curtains are more popular nowadays.
Blinds allow a much more flexible level of light control and privacy control. This is particularly the case with venetian blinds, which are made of horizontal slats. You can keep the blinds down but the slats open, allowing light to come in while maintaining a good level of privacy, as the slats will distort the view in. You can even adjust the slats to a half-closed position, if you only want a low level of light coming in.
Venetian blinds may not always block out all light, even when the slats are closed. This is why many people prefer roman blinds in rooms such as the bedroom, helping to block out all light much like curtains. Roman blinds can be pulled down half-away to offer some privacy and partial light control, however they are not as flexible as venetian blinds.
What is the décor like in your home?
When it comes to the appearance of blinds and curtains, it’s largely a case of personal preference. That said, you may find that one type looks better when integrated into a certain décor theme.
Blinds are typically more minimal and work well surrounded by more modern décor. Wooden plantation-style shutters can work well in older properties, particularly when matched with furniture of the same wood tone. Most plastic venetian blinds are neutral in colour and so can be integrated into any colour theme. Roman roller blinds can come in different colours in patterns, which need to be matched to other colours and patterns in the room.
Curtains give off more of a sense of warmth and comfort and tend to work well with rooms full of soft fabrics such as living rooms with thick rugs and lots of cushions. Curtains look more natural in older properties than blinds, but can also work well in modern properties depending on the design. You can buy curtains in all kinds of colours and patterns and they can often play a big part in the colour scheme of a room (for creating pop of bright colours, match curtains with rugs, cushions and lamp shades).
Is window insulation important?
Curtains typically provide more insulation than blinds. This is particularly the case with thick winter curtains, which can stop cold drafts getting in and stop heat getting out. If certain rooms get very cold in winter and investing in double-glazing isn’t an option, curtains are likely to be a must-have accessory.
Venetian blinds don’t offer much insulation. Some roman blinds may offer more insulation than venetian blinds. plantation shutters can typically offer a lot of insulation as they are fixed to the frames, but are more expensive than winter curtains.
Is moisture-resistance important?
Curtains are typically not recommended in kitchens and bathrooms where there can be a lot of steam. The moisture can cause mould growth on curtains and certain materials may be damaged. You can buy water resistant curtains, but you may be limited by style.
Blinds are usually made of plastic and are waterproof. This makes them a good option in kitchens and bathrooms – or properties that generally experience a lot of humidity. Any mould that does grow on blinds can usually be wiped off. This is not the case with curtains, which often need to be put in a washing machine. Certain curtains may have to be washed carefully and may need to be professionally cleaned.
Can you choose both?
It is possible to have both curtains and blinds on a window. This gives you the advantages of both including full light and privacy control and optional added insulation. When choosing both window treatments, try to find styles that compliment one another. Certain patterns and colours may clash, so you need to be wary of this. This post offers some great examples of how to match curtains and blinds together.
We’re very proud to bring you this post in association with Bridge and The Shutter Studio. For more inspiration for your home, please pay a visit to our interiors page.