Step by Step Buyers Guide for Blinds

Our Step by Step Buyers Guide for Blinds, will guide you through all the things you need to know and look for when buying window coverings for your windows.

We hope it helps and enhances your experience buying window coverings.

 

1. DO THE RESEARCH 

Before contacting any blinds or window covering suppliers we would advise doing some research on what you like or what you think you like. Pinterest, Instagram and Google provide lots of options. 

If you know of a supplier like Delux Blinds (www.deluxblinds.com.au ) and they have a good informative website that would be a great place to start. As you research you can send an email with any questions you have on the products they are displaying if you are unsure how they operate.

Take note of the style / products that you think would best suit your home or office, and the fabric or material you would prefer.

You may have a vision of Plantation Shutters or big beautiful Drapes to go through out your house, but after researching and reading up on these, you may change to a simpler Roman Blind or Roller Blind.

You will need to look for colours, patterns or materials that would suit your property. You may want a mix, like Plantation shutters in the bathrooms, Drapes and Sheer curtains in the bedrooms, screen Roller Blinds on the windows looking out to the pool and blockout curtains for the theatre room. Your window covering supplier will have all these options on hand for you to see and touch and feel.

Things to consider would be;

  • Do you want the blinds to standout or blend into your interior?
  • Is it an investment property or office space?
  • What will suit your current house design and style?
  • Do you want traditional or contemporary finishes?
  • Do you want drapes, roller blinds or honeycomb blinds from ceiling to floor?
  • Do you have a sliding door or bi-fold doors you would like to cover? Maybe Veri Shades will suit.
  • Are you looking to control light, gain full privacy or increase insulation in your rooms?
  • Are you looking for some light with privacy?
  • Do you like cords or chains for operation or would you prefer motorised operation?

2. YOUR WINDOWS

As you’re researching for window coverings you must consider your window style.

This is important so the right product can be installed and fitted effectively to your windows so it functions as required.

If you’re building a new home, this will be easier as you can either match your blinds to your window or allow your window to match in with your blinds to ensure an installation can work with the product you select. If you are building, it would be best to make contact with a blinds supplier as earlier as possible, even at the design stage.

This way the windows can be built to suit the blinds or shutters you would like. We have worked with people up to 2 years out from needing blinds.

Some window coverings will work better than others on certain windows. For example, an old wooden window with no recess would not suit recess fitted blinds or Plantation Shutters if that was the look 

you were hoping for. On most occasions a face fitted blind will be the best solution.

However if you are building a new home with square set windows, recessed furnishings like Sun Screen roller blinds, timber Venetian blinds, honeycomb blinds and Plantation Shutters do look magnificent in that setting.

You may even want to have built in pelmets or bulk heads so your roller blinds, venetian blinds or even Drapes can be hidden away when not in use and your windows are clear. This needs to be discussed at the start of your build.

You will also want to consider if the architraves of your windows are a feature of your rooms. If they are and you want to have them exposed as much as possible, recess fitted will be best for these.

The most versatile window frame is one with a recess of 150mm or more, and with a timber or aluminium architrave/frame. This allows for many product options and more adaptable installation possibilities.

Things to consider for your windows; 

  • Do they have available recess for the product you want?
  • Do they have available framing/architrave for face fitting? (This is most important on square set windows. Very important to have a timber frame under the plaster at least 50mm around your window so screws can be fixed efficiently for face fitting blinds)
  • Are they or will they be aluminium or timber window frames?
  • Do they or will they have a built in pelmet? This will keep your window more visible if you want your windows as features and hide tracks.

As a side note, face fitting a blind is when the blind will cover from edge of architrave to edge of architrave, side to side and top to bottom.

Recess fitting a blind is when the blind is fitted within the recess or architrave of the window.

3. OPERATION

Now you have researched products, checked out your windows and design to see what can be possible for installation, you need to start thinking about how you would like them to operate.

We have completed jobs with some rooms with motorised roller blinds, while other rooms just have normal chain drives. We have used tensioned honeycomb blinds on skylights in one room operated with a hook and pole, whilst in the kitchen we had spring operated roller blinds with rings and hooks and operated by hand.

Motorisation can now be control from your phone or tablet. There also settings where you can set times that your blinds or curtains close and open. This is great on hot days, so your blinds can open and close as the sun moves around your home or office.

There are many options for each product on the market, it really just depends on your budget and the functionality and style you’re after.

Things to consider;

  • Are they pelmet fitted roller blinds? Motors work really well with these as they are hidden when up and no chains visible.
  • Will they be heavy Drapes in a theatre room on a big window?
  • Motors would assist in easy operation or if not opened very often hand operated would be a cost effective option.
  • If motors are to be used on any product, is there existing power near the window or will electrician need to do wiring?
  • With roller blinds; will they be back rolled or front rolled?
  • Will your curtains be mounted on the architrave or just above, from the ceiling or in a pelmet?
  • Will window coverings be recess fitted or face fitted?
  • Do you want your Timber Plantation Shutters to be barn door opening with 89mm blades?
  • Are your Windows Square set or finished with architrave? This can determine what products are best for your windows.

4. MEET WITH SUPPLIERS

Your now most likely at a point where you have research all you can, figured out what you like and how you would like it to operate; now it’s time to have a professional visit you onsite.

At this meeting you will want to advise your chosen window covering suppliers to bring the appropriate samples. 

When setting up the meeting give them an idea of what you want and like, even send a link with photos you have found online or their website. 

This way they are prepared and the meeting will be quick and efficient. They may confirm a few things prior to the meeting regarding the products and if they will suit your windows etc. to be efficient when on site.

During the meeting ensure they are confident with the product you have selected and that it will be suitably installed and fit your window type. 

Ensure they have taken the correct measurements, even write them down yourself.

Ensure things that could hinder the window covering have been taken into account. I.e. are any cupboards in the way, or benches when blinds come down, will it cover light switches etc.

By the end of the meeting you should have seen enough samples to select your product, fabric or material for them to provide a detailed quote based on your discussion and choices.

Things to consider;

  • Their confidence and knowledge in the product you would like.
  • Their advice on alternative product solutions, fabrics and colours.
  • Their confidence in being able to install correctly.
  • If you are building, can the supplier/installer work directly with your builder to ensure a smooth completion of installation?
  • Their overall professionalism.
  • What other trades may be required to have your product installed. I.e. chippy to install built in pelmets, electricians to wire up for motors.

5. FABRIC & PRODUCT

During your meeting with the supplier you should have the ability to view samples of the products you have discussed having on your windows. If you’re going for Drapes, Roman Blinds or Bonded Roller Blinds, you could also drop into a fabric supplier’s showroom, like Warwick’s to view samples.

They will have a bigger range and plenty of advice. Most window covering suppliers should be able to get whatever fabric you select from their manufactures.

During this time the supplier should explain how your choice will sit and fix to the window and the benefits and features for each option. 

Having photos of things you like can also assist.

Window coverings like Plantation Shutters, Timber or aluminium Venetians are very straight forward and is only a matter of selecting final colours.

Things to consider;

  • Your windows.
  • The surrounding colours of your room; walls, architraves, window framing, carpet, couches. You don’t have to match them all but do consider what would work.
  • Are you looking for a feature or a covering to blend?
  • Do you have a big room or small room?
  • Is there a lot of sun coming in is shading during the day is needed?
  • Do you have bi-fold doors?
  • Do you want to save on energy bills with the best insulation products?
  • What room will the product be going in. i.e. is it a bathroom, laundry or kitchen? Mildew resistant fabric that is easy to clean would be advised here.

6. QUOTE

Moving on to the quote should now be very easy for your supplier.  You should now receive a very detailed quote based on the discussions and selections you have made. 

Now remember this is the time not to pick the cheapest. This is the time to be diligently, review each quote and that it reflects all that you discussed and have chosen. If it happens to be the cheapest, that is a plus, if its on the back of napkin, be wary.

Remember; when buying and installing window coverings for your home, office development or investment property, it is an investment in your future. If you choose good quality products and you take care of them they will last well over 20 years.

Things to consider;

  • Is it a detailed quote?
  • Does it feature everything you had discussed and selected and is it outlined clearly?
  • When comparing quotes, ensure the products and fabrics are the same. Fabric ranges cost different amounts and can change quote pricing.
  • A poor quote is one that is not detailed with product information, installation type and measurements. Pricing may be cheaper than others, but you may not get what you want and will have no reference to go back to at the end of the job.

We are here to help with any of your questions on products and installation, so please drop us a line @ infodeluxblinds.comau or give us a call on 0409 171 221.