Tips & Advice for Measuring and Installing Window Treatments

Friday, July 25, 2014

Room Darkening Shades

January 30, 2012 by  
Filed under Room Darkening Treatments

Room Darkening Shades

There are many reasons one might require room darkening shades that really do the job. Perhaps you work nights and sleep during the day.  Baby nurseries are another good reason to install room darkening shades. The latest reason people want room darkening shades is for their media room. 

This article will explain what some of your choices are and how well they work. 

Which Block Out The Most Light

The shade that works the best would be cellular shades that are made specifically for room darkening. Sometimes they are called double cell black out shades.  One set of the cells closest to the window are treated with a light filtering material to keep the light out, the other cell is the color of shade you prefer. These are also known as honeycomb shades.

Outside mount would be better as can overlap the window more and thus reduce of light seeping in along  the sides.  If you really are set on having inside mount,  you can simply hang small drapery side panels to coordinate with your shade. This would keep that small beam of light out that might peek in the sides. 

No window is perfectly squared so you always will have a small tolerance in the width of the shade to accommodate the unevenness. This would be the darkest your room can get in daylight. Another good choice would be woven wood shades that are lined.  They can be fashioned from rattan, grass cloth, straw, or bamboo, to provide dimension and texture to your room. Not only would they be room darkening, they provide good insulation from the cold, as well as keep the heat out of your room in the summer. 

If you prefer the look of wood, you can also purchase wood blinds that do an excellent job at keep the light at bay.  If you are going to be considering wood blinds, look at the routeless wood blinds.  This means that there are no holes for the strings that hold the blinds together.  No holes mean no light coming in.  They do a really good job at keeping your room dark. They close very tightly.

Which Let In The Most Light

Inside mount roller shades are not a good idea for room darkening.  I once had a sales associate tell me they were, that they even have special room darkening roller shades.  I agree the actual material is very good at blocking out the light but the fact is, the brackets on a roller shade do not allow for a close tolerance.  The factory makes allowances when you tell them your measurements to accommodate for this.  You will end up with at least a 1/2 inch gap along the sides. I am pretty sure the only reason the sales associate told me that was they were on sale and he would get a bigger commission for selling them.  Don’t be fooled, inside mount roller shades are not good for room darkening. 

Tip To Prevent Mold

Also keep this tip in mind.  Any window treatment you have installed, whether it is room darkening, shutters, cell shades, roman shades, etc. always open your window treatment every day to allow air to circulate.  In the winter especially, when it is cold outside and warm inside, condensation forms.  Condensation forms mold when air is not allowed to circulate.  We all know what mold can do to wood and your health for that matter. 

I hope this helped you to be more informed when in the market for a room darkening shade.  An informed choice is a good choice because you will know what to expect.

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