Whatever look you want to achieve with window treatments, a blind is sure to enhance your room scheme. Tactile Roman blinds will add texture and warmth to a relaxed living room scheme, smart roller blinds bring a splash of colour to a kitchen and Venetians can shade the sun’s glare in an extension.
Most blind types are versatile enough to work in any room; used singly they are a neat, architectural solution to dressing a window, layered with curtains or a second blind they’ll bring an extra dimension to your decor.
Before you buy blinds
- When selecting blinds, think about practicality. If you need to block out the light in a child’s bedroom, opt for blinds with a blackout coating. For a north-facing chilly room, select a pleated blind with thermal properties. Sheer blinds maximise the light, slatted blinds adjust to block the sun.
- Decide whether the blind will be fitted within or outside the window recess; if it’s to go on the outside, allow at least 45mm overlap at the sides and bottom so that light won’t creep around the edges.
- Many blinds are available ready-made in set sizes and roller blinds can be trimmed to fit. Made to measure blinds are supplied according to your own measurements so use a metal tape and be precise; try Terry’s Fabrics for useful measuring guides.
- Alternatively you can relax and let a blind company measure up then fit the completed blinds for you.
- Blinds can be motorised and controlled remotely by a wall switch or via a smartphone or tablet using an app. They can also be hooked up to a whole house automated system with sensors opening and closing them according to daylight levels.
Buy the best roller blinds
Roller blinds are chic, simple and they come in a vast array of colours and patterns with shading options ranging from sheer right through to blackout.
Cost effective ready-made roller blinds can be trimmed to size but for a perfect fit go for a made to measure blind.
For flexibility, consider a double blind with a sheer fabric behind a blackout one or a ‘day and night’ shade with adjustable fabric slats. If your room faces a busy street, get the privacy you need with a bottom up blind, where the roller sits on the window ledge, or select a half and half blind, with translucent mesh above a solid fabric; try Eclectics.
There are water-resistant PVC blinds for a bathroom and thermal blinds for a chilly bedroom... the options are endless.
See more living room window treatment ideas in our design gallery.
Choose versatile Venetian blinds
Great for south-facing or overlooked rooms, Venetian blinds allow you to control both the amount of light and the level of privacy simply by tilting the slats.
Wooden Venetian blinds have a back-to-nature beauty that’s hard to beat. You’ll find natural, stained and painted finishes – wide slats up to 70mm will give a room contemporary appeal. Aluminium blinds come with super-slim slats for a minimalist look and have the advantage of shrugging off moisture so they’re a good choice for bathrooms and shower rooms. Or get the best of both worlds by selecting wood-effect blinds, such as Hillary’s Aluwood, which are made from aluminium but have a wood grain finish.
Opt for practical pleated blinds
These have a softer appearance than roller blinds, allowing light to filter through, unless you pick a blackout version.
Blinds with single pleats such as Plissé are supported by wires running across the blind. Those with double pleats such as Duette have a honeycomb design, trapping air between the two layers to keep out the cold.
Pleated blinds come in a wide choice of colours, patterns and textured finishes. Some versions sit neatly within the glass panes rather than covering the entire window frame; these are a good option for tilt and turn windows.
For ultimate flexibility, select pleated blinds that can can be lowered from the top and raised from the bottom so you can choose your level of privacy.
Find more clever bathroom window treatments in our design guide.
Pick pretty Roman blinds
Whether you’re after a relaxed, coastal look or a more formal effect, a Roman blind is up for the challenge. Cords at the back draw them up into large, soft pleats, bringing a sumptuous extra element of furnishing to a room. Add contrast borders to draw attention to the pleated edges.
These blinds are often lined, which improves the way the pleats fall; if you want to keep draughts out and the warmth in, opt for interlining as well.
Go for Scandi style roll-up blinds
Soft, pretty roll-up blinds are the way to bring a Scandi vibe to your home. These simple blinds are supported by cords which allow them to roll up loosely, but you’ll need to lend a helping hand if you want a neat, tight roll. The back of the blind is visible when rolled up, so choose a contrasting fabric to add an extra detail.
Pick a panel blind for a contemporary vibe
Is it a blind, is it a curtain? Panel blinds fall somewhere between the two, and they’re the ultimate in minimalist design, ideal for showing off fabric to advantage.
These elegant blinds look best on tall, broad windows, for example in a glazed extension.
Held taut at the top and bottom and running on a multi-track, panel blinds stack neatly behind one another when opened.
Invest in smart vertical blinds
However wide the window, a vertical blind can be made up to fit, and they can be designed to fit sloping windows, too.
Consisting of individual slats that clip on to a track, and joined at the bottom by chains, vertical blinds pivot open or closed, or can be drawn right back. They can be stacked to the left or right, or part in the centre.
Both smooth louvres and woven, textured finishes are available in myriad colours. Choose water-resistant vertical blinds for a wet room, or practical blackout versions for the bedroom.
Find more great kitchen window treatments in our design guide.
Choose sleek roof blinds
Roller, pleated and Venetian blinds come in specific versions to suit sloping skylight windows, and both roller and pleated blinds can work for flat roofs, too.
For loft bedrooms, blackout blinds can be doubled up with sheer blinds to vary the shading options.
Off the peg blinds come in sizes to match the window brand – just locate the window code, usually found somewhere on the inside of the frame, and you can order a blind and install it yourself. Although you’ll pay more for bespoke blinds, there are far more style and colour choices and you can arrange for them to be installed to avoid the hassle of fitting them yourself.
Find more loft and roof window blind ideas in our design gallery.
More blind options
Pinoleum blinds, most often seen in conservatories, are made from fine strips of wood, woven together. They’ll bring a soft, diffuse light to a room, and can shade glazed roofs, too. If you fancy an all-natural blind, B&Q’s bamboo roll up blinds are great for creating dappled shading.
Find more conservatory blind ideas in our design gallery.
More on window treatments
- Venetian, roller and Roman blinds – buy the best at the best prices
- How to choose the best curtains for your windows
- Practical and pretty treatments for dressing doors – from curtains to shutters