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windows

Apart from being incredibly stylish, shutters are among the most practical ways to protect your windows and yourself. Say goodbye to tangled curtains and tedious processes of taking them off, washing them and then having to hang them up again. Not only are shutters easy to use, but they also protect your windows from stains and various cooking smells. Many people are reluctant to embark on the adventure of buying shutters due to ignorance on how easy the maintenance process actually is. This is where we come in to make your life easier and persuade you to make the right choice.

Dusting slats

In order to keep them tidy, you just need to dust the louvres or panels using a microfibre cloth or even a feather duster. Just manipulate the position of the slats to flat and you’ll be able to reach both sides well. It’s important to keep your shutters away from water, especially if they’re made of wood as this is not the best combination. You can also use tiny vacuum cleaners instead of cloths if it’s more your cup of tea.

Wiping more serious stains

The amount of dust or dirt on your shutters depends greatly on the room you put them in. They can catch more dust if they’re in a room with a fireplace or even become greasy if placed in a kitchen. Regardless of how careful you are, grease gathers on surfaces simply via air and there’s nothing you can do about it. Luckily, the cleaning process doesn’t get any more complicated than dusting. Simply use a damp, not wet, cloth and wipe the surfaces.

Opening and closing

It’s important to obey the instructions in order to keep your shutters functional. Never pull the panels open by using the rod for tilting. It can cause serious damage. Instead, tilt the louvres and use the stile to tug them open. There are some variations on the matter. For instance, archtop shutters can close only in the up position. If you try to close them otherwise, they will break. However, if you stick to the instructions, there should be no harm done.

Tightening and loosening louvres

Louvres can become loose over time and they may not be able to stay in the position you’d want them in. This surely isn’t the time to call for outside help. You just need an appropriate screwdriver to tighten shutter panels on both sides and your shutters will be as good as new. You can also loosen them in case they are too difficult to move.

Paint scratches

The probability of the paint getting scratched is very high, unfortunately, especially if there is a lot of human interaction in the close proximity of the shutters in the room. It simply happens sometimes, but it’s nothing to stress too much about. It is a custom to get some extra paint during the installation of the shutters, if this is not offered, you can and should always ask for extra paint in case scratches occur. After that, you just need a small foam brush and a bit of paint to mask it and it will be undetectable.

Basically, this is all you need to know about the maintenance. You must admit it’s super smooth. Of course, there’s always a chance of a malfunction that requires a bit more savvy and tools other than a screwdriver, but that’s when professional help comes in, just like with anything else in the house. So, go ahead and take that leap of buying shutters, you’ll get rid of tedious chores and be able to enrich your room design, as well.

When it comes to property there are a few things that people tend to notice right away.  The first obviously is location, but once they are inside, it’s all about the light, and the view. Some realtors will even time the viewing of a property for when the light looks best in the house. Realtors know that windows and what’s outside the windows can make a significant difference in how a buyer feels about the house.  If a house has great light, people tend to like it, if you can pair that with a great view, you can expect the price and the interest to go up. There are all sorts of windows out there, from small portholes to floor to ceiling varieties.  No matter what kind of windows a residence has, they play a huge role in the design and feel of your interior. Also depending on where you live for some rooms to be considered bedrooms they must contain a window.

Natural light is good for you

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You might not be a plant, but like plants, the sun helps you grow.  Natural light has been shown to have a whole host of benefits from improving mood and regulating sleep cycles, to more practical applications like being able to see without electric lighting.  Also some windows open, allowing you to let in some fresh air, and who doesn’t love that.

Bringing what’s outside your home in

When building a home or planning a reno, the placement of the windows, and to an even larger sense the rooms of the house will be thoughtfully considered in relation to the views available.  If you are lucky enough to have a view of the ocean or are high enough to see a panoramic cityscape chances are good that your windows and living space will be built around highlighting these features.  

Like handbags and shoes, windows should match the room

While not always the case, if you have the opportunity to choose your own windows, take your time and consider the room as well as the windows.  Think of a rustic cabin in the woods vs a converted warehouse apartment, both of these places feel different and look different, and most likely would be designed with different types of windows.  What’s most important is to try and choose a style that compliments the room as opposed to a style that clashes with it.

Things are looking up

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Skylights are a great option to lighten up a room and retain some privacy.  Bathrooms and showers can be dark because depending on the layout usually only one or two walls will have an option for a window.  The size and shape of the windows then have to be considered to bring in the light while not exposing you to the world while you take a shower.  The skylight solves all of these problems, allowing you to bring in lots of light where you want it without having to worry about scaring the neighbours.

When crystal clear is too clear

An often forgotten option when choosing windows is that they do not have to be clear.  In most cases, you want a window that is translucent, but not necessarily transparent. Opaque windows are often associated with renovations where a neighbour’s privacy must be preserved so council insists that your new second story bedroom doesn’t look directly into their bedroom.  However opaque windows can let in some nice light while also hiding some less than desirable features. For instance, a window that may look out into a stark brick wall, sometimes not seeing is better than seeing.

Clerestory, an unusual window

Clerestory windows are becoming a popular choice in modern constructions.  Generally placed high up near the ceiling of the room or the roof, they add an airy openness to rooms while also preserving wall space that could then be used by artworks or flat screen TVs.  Another benefit to these windows is creating the illusion of the ceiling floating on top of the room. Also can be used to maintain privacy while letting in the light.

Be practical about your choices

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Great big floor to ceiling windows sound and look great, but depending on what the room is used for may not be very practical.  The den and TV room are popular places for what are usually the biggest windows of the home. However, when watching TV reflections and light can make viewing difficult.  You may have chosen beautiful windows that look great, but depending on the layout and use of the room it may mean that watching TV or working on a computer is difficult without the use of shutters and blinds.  Or if the room is a bedroom you want to choose windows that both let in the light, but can be blocked when you want the room to be dark.

Mix it up

Windows come in all sorts of shapes and sizes.  While the quintessential window is usually square or rectangular, they don’t have to be.  Let your style help choose the windows, what do you like, let your creativity run wild. Alternatively, take cues from the property, perhaps your room has a unique shape and a triangular window would fit in just perfect, or maybe a circular one would work better.  Windows can provide a lot of visual interest while still highlighting the available views.

Consider your options

Once you have your windows picked you may want to consider some of the additional options.  Double glazing uses two pieces of glass to create your window and can help regulate the temperature of your home and reduce your heating and cooling bills.  Other options are for glass that can cut down on both the amount of light that gets through the windows (tinted) and the kind of light (UV) that comes through the windows.  UV light can damage fabrics and flooring over time as well as artwork on the wall, a UV blocking window can curtail some of that damage.

Windows as art

We often think of our walls as the place for artwork. But consider a ‘window wall’ as another visual center piece. A picture of a painting is the same all year round, while an expansive view of the garden, will change with the seasons. You can watch the birds flutter about while having your morning cup of coffee, or watch the kids playing out back while preparing dinner.  Reimagine your space with a big window to outside, it adds lots of light and often makes the room feel bigger.

Are you planning to renovate your home?  You want new curtains but you are worried about the maintenance. If your answer is YES, then you are in the right place 🙂 The days of traditional curtains are gone, as homeowners often switch to window blinds. They have become the latest interior trend, as they are not only easy to maintain but accentuate the overall look of the house. In fact, your home will get that modern look you are looking for. Aside from protection from sun rays, frost and biting wind, these blinds also help protecting your privacy.

Advantages of installing window blinds

  • Easy to clean

The advantage you’ll probably like is that they are very easy to clean as compared with the traditional curtains. You can clean the blinds without any complications. All you need is a damp cloth.

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  • Durability

The durability of blinds come into focus especially if you keep pets. They can easily tear apart the curtains. With blinds, this is not such an easy task. Blinds made of wood, steel, aluminum and even PVC are very durable and they cannot be easily destroyed by your companion.

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  • Easy to use

With just one easy hand motion, you can open and close the blinds without any hassles. This is very handy if you have children, as they cannot be confused with the blinds’ simple mechanics. The most fascinating part about these blinds is that they do not retain any smell and are perfect for kitchens. If you want to incorporate blinds into your kitchen, go with plastic ones.. Thus, your kitchen will never smell like rotten fish or french fries.

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  • Protection from sun

Blinds offer complete protection from the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun. Once you have installed them your eyes will not be strained with bright sun rays. Now your afternoon naps (we all know you like having them) will be uninterrupted.

  • Aesthetic appeal

Without any doubt, window blinds add to the entire appearance of the house. Since they look neat, less messy and classy, they are perfect for modern homes. Additionally, you can get these blinds for your home in various colors and designs that can complement the interior style of each room. You can choose to buy different types of blinds for different areas. For instance, you can go for horizontal blinds for your study and vertical blinds for your living room.

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Maintenance 

  1. Regular dusting – Regular dusting helps keeping them look like new. Make sure you use a clean cloth for dusting though.
  2. Vacuuming them – Every couple of months, you can vacuum your blinds gently. Almost all vacuum cleaners come with brushes for curtains and blinds. Vertical strokes should get the job done.
  3. Spot cleaning – If your blinds got stained, use a soft, wet cloth to spot clean them. If need be, you can add some mild detergent soap to lukewarm water for cleaning purposes. However, stay clear of abrasive cleaning agents, as they can damage your blinds.
  4. Blinds cleaning products – If nothing works, your last bet is getting over-the-counter cleaning products especially made for blinds. However, when cleaning wooden blinds, stay clear of water. Instead, use lemon oil or a wood preserving cleaning agent for the job.
  5. You can also reduce static electricity in vinyl blinds by coating them with a thin film of a mild detergent.

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There you go, a short, albeit thorough, blinds review. If you have a trick up your sleeve for keeping the blinds new and clean, let us know in the comments.

Selecting new windows takes more than just going with the looks that match the house they are about to be built in. Aside from acting as source of daylight and architectural accent, windows also give shape to the room, provide ventilation and emergency escape route. These are the most popular window styles.

Broad Division

Generally speaking, windows can be fixed or operable. Fixed windows re used solely as architectural feature in places where there is need for natural light and view but ventilation is not a concern. They often come in unusual geometric shapes like round-tops or relatively new type of seamless bent-glass windows that provide unobstructed corner view. However, operable windows are what most people consider for their homes. They can be sided sideways, vertically or hinged outwards or inwards on both vertical and horizontal panes.

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Double Hung and Tilt-Turn Windows

This classic design has survived centuries and not without a reason. Apart from having excellent ventilation control, they have a very simple construction. Their upper outside sash can be lowered, while the lower inside sash can slide up. Some types even feature sashes that can be removed easily for cleaning. A sub-variant of this type with only one sliding sash is called single-hung. Tilt-turn windows are popular in Europe. They tilt inside at the top but also have a feature that allows them to swing at 180 degrees for easier cleaning, which doubles as convenient emergency exit.

Casement Windows

These side-mounted windows are made in single or paired configuration and are operated by a crank that rotates the sash inward or outward. They can be fully opened for easy cleaning and maintenance, while their excellent ventilation properties come from their breeze catching effect, in which they act like sails on a boat.

Awning and Hopper Windows

It is easiest to describe them as horizontal casements. While awning windows are top hinged, so that they offer partial ventilation, unobstructed views and respectable security. Hopper windows are their inverted image. They hinge at the bottom and due to their very good ventilation properties are often used as a complement for a door or another window.

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Horizontal Sliding Windows

They feature a single or multiple panels that are fixed and one or more panels that slide in horizontal tracks. The drawback of this design is that in the best case only half of the window can be opened at a time, providing only partial ventilation. However, an advantage of sliders is that no space is required for a sash to swing in or out, making them ideal for small spaces.

Bay Windows

This three-window set is easily recognized from the outside as it protrudes from the house wall, and forms an interior bay. In addition to great light gathering characteristics, bay window offers much wider view angle than any other type, save the seamless corner windows. A central window is flanked by two side ones that make 30 or 45 degree angle with the house wall.

In order to fulfil their different needs, windows come in many sizes, types and functions. When choosing windows for your home, consider architectural aspect, the window purpose and budget.