Category Archives: Window Coverings

Empowering New Home Buyers

buying blinds calgary cochrane home

When consumers are ready to make the leap into the real estate market and purchase their first home it is a very exciting, and costly, time. There are so many things to consider if you are building a new home such as lighting, paint, cabinetry…and window coverings that can include blinds, shades, drapery and shutters. The same applies to home buyers looking to buy an established home, for it may have window coverings that are not to their taste, style or perhaps lack any covering on the window. As a professional in the field of window coverings for over a decade I often find that window coverings are the last on the list for budgeted expenses and then the budget is minimal. Perhaps if it is a new build the home builder may have a design center where you can choose your window covering, however there are some questions that you can ask yourself before you dive into the decision making process or before the budget is spent on lighting and various upgrades.

Get Wired for Light

Hunter Douglas Powerview - Automatic blinds Calgary Cochrane

Firstly, if you have the opportunity to build and the home is just breaking ground, do you want to add power to the windows so you can operate them from a remote or Alexa or Google? In this case, it is best to work with a window covering specialist in the building stage who can help you with the proper wiring, location and blind options. Having electrical wired to the window will eliminate power cords to an outlet, changing batteries or having longer cords. It is ultimately the best solution for high two-story windows and if you want the most modern high-tech automated solutions throughout your home.

Get a Second Opinion

window covering blinds design center calgary and cochrane

Secondly, if there is a design center that is providing window coverings, it is to your advantage to find out allowance for the blinds and their specifications and have another quote done independently from the builder. Their pricing may be on par with industry standards, however there may be other product lines or other manufacturers offering promotions or better value that will provide some savings.

Long Term Savings

save money blinds calgary

Another question to ask yourself before you accept the builders blind package is do you want to add the cost of your window coverings to your mortgage? If you are in a financial position to purchase blinds or shades without adding to your mortgage this could lead to substantial savings over the amortization.

In addition, the design center may only offer one or two choices as a package with no wiggle room for room darkening considerations or no possibility of changing to a product that you always dreamed of having. Would you like to browse through product selections and consider other functions and style other than what the design center is providing? This is another advantage of getting a second quote from a third party window covering expert.

Check Before You Buy an Existing Home

existing blinds hunter douglas

Some new home buyers prefer to purchase in established neighbourhoods in which case the window coverings are generally included in the price of the home. When you are searching the market, consider these small items when you are walking through a home. It will probably not be a deal breaker if you do not like the blinds, however keep in mind that if you chose to switch the window coverings to suit your style or they simply need updating as they are old or broken it may be another investment that you were not considering when you are moving in. Are the existing window coverings something that you replace floor by floor or what are the costs to replacing them all?

From Wish List to Final Touch

honey comb shades hunter douglas cellular blinds
Honeycomb shades by Hunter Douglas

Today’s Window coverings offer so many options to consumers from cordless child safe blinds, room darkening top down bottom up cellulars to shades that you can operate remotely on your device. Are these items on your wish list and what will they add to your budget? It is worth your time to consider these questions to feel more empowered when making a new home purchase – window coverings are the final added touch to a room and can make your home reflective of your taste and style.

For experience and knowledge about the right custom window covering solutions for your Cochrane & Calgary home, contact Kirstin today!

Cheap Blinds Versus Custom Window Coverings

When it comes to purchasing window coverings, consumers have many vendors to choose from and the end result also varies with the different manufacturers and the value associated with the product.  Online internet distributors, big box stores and smaller home décor stores carry similar products with limited options, sizes and colors.  These products are very enticing to purchase as they are inexpensive and, after all, it is just a blind. In some cases, as we discuss below, a cheap blind or window covering may suit your needs in limited situations.

hunter douglas silhouette window shadings calgary cochrane

However, the benefits of having quality custom blinds in your home are plentiful, from enhancing your home’s interior design, to providing UV protection and privacy features, not to mention automatic, motorised functionality and safety features that protect your family and pets. Custom blinds take all of these factors into consideration and your window coverings specialist can create the perfect combination of fashion and function that is unique to your home and style.

To help you decide on which is the best investment for your current window covering needs, we have put together a list of the biggest differences and concerns that you need to consider between buying a cheap window covering or investing in a custom solution.

There are a few big differences between the “cheap” store brands and the product that is provided by a window covering dealer, such as a local Hunter Douglas dealer, that specializes in JUST that – window coverings.  Of course, there is a value associated with that difference and it is up to the consumer to educate themselves and make the best decision based on their needs. Perhaps it is a rental home or a home that is quickly being flipped in which case a blind that is inexpensive fits the bill perfectly.  But if it is a home that will be loved and cared for, it is worth the time and investment to consider working with a window covering specialist.  Here are some key factors to consider:

Quality & Longevity

Buy quality blinds from Cochrane Hunter Douglas dealer, Blind Infusion.

Whether you are purchasing from an online vendor or “off the shelf” in a big box store, consider the working parts – is the headrail and operating systems within that headrail made of quality parts? Chances are likely that there are plastic pieces that will become brittle with time and break.  Will the fabric rot quickly in the sun, or if it is a wood or plastic will it sag and break within a year or two?  These inferior parts and pieces will become aggravating over time when you have to replace them within a year or two.

Safety & Motorization

hunter douglas safety for kids pets blinds

Have you considered the safety of the blind? Child and pet safety is top of mind and legislation is becoming very strict for the window covering industry.  Does the inexpensive blind have proper chain guides or cord cleats for the cords?  Are cordless options or motorized options available?  Do you know what to look for to keep you children and pets safe?  A Window Covering Specialist will be able to educate you and provide you with child safe options.

Standards & Sustainability

Quality blinds are more sustainable for your Calgary home.

Do you know where the blind originated? Is it coming from overseas where legislation for lead is not in place?  Can you be ensured that the blind does not contain lead or any other chemical that can be deemed very hazardous to your health?   A window covering that is purchased from a local dealer will be able to offer you shades or blinds that are nationally produced and abide by the governing standards within your country. Quality blinds built right provide a greener, more sustainable solution, as they can last years longer than their cheaper counterparts that will need to be replaced more frequently, thereby causing more waste in your local landfill. Even with blinds, it pays to “think local”.

Warranties & Service

hunter douglas warranty service calgary

What happens when the blind fails? If you purchase from a big box store or online, chances are highly likely that there is NOT a warranty for the product.  If a cord lock malfunctions or the slats bow your only option may be to purchase another blind.  If you purchase from an independent window covering specialist they should offer you warranty service. For example, Hunter Douglas Canada offers a lifetime warranty on their products. Read more about their warranty on their website.

Fitting Concerns

cochrane blinds installation
Window Covering Installation by a Professional Installer

A blind that is picked up “off the shelf” will not fit the window to the exact standards that a window
covering specialist will provide. This will lead to longer blinds that may have a stack at the sill, blinds that are too narrow and leave huge light gaps at the side, or even blinds that are not even possible to install as the window is too large or too small, such as a narrow sidelight.  This will lead to inconsistency and a room or home that will not flow with the window coverings.

These are just a few thoughts to consider when purchasing your window coverings.  If you purchase inexpensive blinds, that is what you will receive – be ready to possibly replace them in a year or two when they malfunction or fall apart.  Of course, they do have their place within the industry for those looking for a short term, “make do” solution.

However, a window covering specialist can save you money in the long run by avoiding the pitfalls of a cheap DIY solution. Your specialist may even provide you with a quote that is very competitive against a big box store, especially when you consider the advantages of professional consultation, installation and experience in providing the best product and service for the long term.  If you are wishing to purchase a blind with longevity consider good quality and save the earth by purchasing once instead of multiple times.

For experience and knowledge about the right custom window covering solutions for your Cochrane & Calgary home, contact Kirstin today!

Avoid These Top 5 Common Mistakes When Buying Window Coverings

Purchasing a home is not an inexpensive venture, however, often the window coverings can be overlooked and it is an unexpected investment after the budget has been spent.  Even though more and more consumers are putting blinds into their budget, there are still some common mistakes that people are making when they look to purchase their blinds, shades or drapery.

These types of mistakes can result in additional costs, time and effort that go even further beyond an expected budget. If you don’t already have the knowledge, or do the proper research before you start buying your window treatments, you are leaving yourself open for even more issues and additional expenses in the future.

Here are the top 5 mistakes that the average window coverings buyer makes and how to avoid them:

1. Buying Drapery Too Short

When consumers purchase their drapery off the shelf in an effort to save money, these panels are at a common length that are often too short for most homes.  Once the drapery is hung above the window the drapery loses it custom look if they are too short.

Alternately, they can also be too skimpy in width and they look like a sheet when they are pulled across the window for privacy.  There are ways to make these off-the-shelf panels look custom by contacting a window covering specialist and discussing options such as adding a contrasting band along the bottom for proper length or joining several widths for the proper fullness.

2. Purchasing on Looks Alone

We all want our homes to be beautiful and an extension of your style and taste and window coverings can definitely add the “bling” or “jewellery” to complete your look.  However, please keep their function and their style in mind.  If you have a houseful of pets that like to chew or look out the window, combined with young children, a gorgeous Hunter Douglas Silhouette® paired with Luminette® drapery may not be your best choice for your busy lifestyle.  You may want to consider shutters, wood or faux wood blinds that can be wiped clean with a soft cloth.

Luminette and Silhouette by Hunter Douglas in Calgary.
Hunter Douglas Silhouette® with Luminette® Drapery

3. Purchasing on Price Alone

It may seem enticing to head out to the big box store and pick up a few ready-made shades that can be cut down with a hack saw to fit your window.  This may be the best option for some, however if you can afford a bit more of an investment, your window coverings can last you many years.

You may even be surprised, depending on what you are comparing, that a window covering dealer can be extremely comparable in price.  Combine that with their knowledge, professional measurements and a warranty, it is worth the comparison.

4. Incorrect Measurements

It is crucial to order your window coverings with proper measurements.  Trying to shim a blind in width to fit your window, or have a foot of slats sitting on your window sill does not add to the blinds function or feel.  Sometimes a very small change in the measurement can make all the difference when it comes to a professional custom look.

Hunter Douglas hybrid interior shutters newstyle
Hunter Douglas NewStyle® Shutters

For example, Shutters are one particular product that requires very precise measurements as well as knowledge of frames and panel position. It is also beneficial to be aware how certain products fit in your window and that deductions are often made for them to function properly.  A window covering specialist that comes to your home should have this knowledge.

5. Not Being Aware of Safety Risks

Child & Pet Safety with Hunter Douglas Calgary custom blinds and shades.
Hunter Douglas Offers Child & Pet Safety Options

As a professional custom window coverings specialist, Child and Pet Safety is top of mind for me when I come into a client’s home.  Cords and slats pose a safety risk for innocent and playful toddlers and pets.  It is important to consider the safety hazards that are involved with all of the types of window coverings and what options there are to eliminate the risk.

Duette Cellular shades by Hunter Douglas
Duette® Cellular “Honeycomb” Shades

Perhaps you want to consider the cordless upgrade on Hunter Douglas Honeycombs® or the LiteRise® option in the Designer Roller Shades line.  Ask your in-home window covering consultant about these options for the various products available.

Cordless Blinds and Cordless Shades LiteRise
Cordless Shades Using LiteRise® Techology

These are a few of the more consistent gaffes that I come across in my daily outings to my clients’ homes. These considerations will help your consultations with a window coverings dealer or will provide you with some knowledge to help with your future purchase.

For experience and knowledge about the right custom window covering solutions for your Cochrane & Calgary home, contact Kirstin today!

Cozy Up! Window Covering Ideas to Warm Up Your Winter

Winter Window Coverings Calgary

Albertans know how harsh and cold a winter can be – we tend to hibernate, get out our woolly socks, favourite soft blanket and lower the window coverings.  We can help create a cozier feel to our interior with medium to darker colours as accents, soft throws over the sofa and swap out the glass for silver or brass-ware.  However, you can create an instant cozy feel with your window coverings.  Consider a few of these ideas that could cross over season to season.

Luxurious Style of Drapery

Goblet Pleated Drapery for your Calgary & Cochrane Home
Goblet Pleated Drapery

Luxurious drapery in fabrics that dictate your personal style add instant warmth to a room while also creating a fashion statement.  There are so many different options that allow you to reveal your style such as tassels, decorative trim, leading edge banding and different types of pleats.  By carefully choosing the fabric for your drapery you can instantly add a look, feel and function of stylish warmth and ambience to your room.  If you have a particularly cold, large window consider adding a thermal lining to your drapery for extra warmth.

Custom Window Covering Side Panels
Custom Side Panels Help Insulate During Cold Winter Months

Some may want to consider custom side panels that stay stationary as the seasons come and go, however, to create warmth in the cold winter months, consider full functioning drapery that can be closed on a cold night.  Dress your windows with the stylish warmth of their own “blanket” with luxurious drapery.

Put on Extra Layers

Fabric valance with simple piping
Fabric Valance with Simple Piping

Another option to add warmth to your interior is to layer your window treatments.  Perhaps consider adding side panel drapery to your window that has a window shade such as a roller shade or wood blind.  Alternately, you could add a decorative valance or window topper such as an upholstered cornice or box-pleated valance that is flanked with sheers or side panels.

Upholstered cornice
Upholstered Cornice

You can combine style and function with several layers of fabric with a roman shade in the window that can be lowered for privacy and then add decorative side panels that accentuate the shade and your style.  When adding fabric to your windows, there are an infinite amount of possibilities!

Add Warmth with Classic or Contemporary Approaches

Duette Architella Batiste Textured 2016
Duette® Architella® by Hunter Douglas

Perhaps you are looking for a more simple, contemporary solution to add warmth.  There are window covering products that are specifically designed to create a barrier against the cold panes of glass.  The classic example is the Honeycomb shade.  The inner air pocket is the insulation against the heat and the cold protecting your interior from some of the cold blasts of winter.

If you are looking for the best insulation that a product has to offer, be sure to ask your window covering specialist about the Architella® series in the Hunter Douglas Duette® honeycombs.  The “pocket within a pocket” design is the leading edge of insulating value in the window covering industry.

Hunter Douglas Solera
Hunter Douglas Solera®

Another alternative is the Hunter Douglas Solera®, which gives you a dressier look from the Honeycomb with all the same insulating values.

Our winters can be harsh and long – make your interior feel warm and cozy with layers of fabrics and consider the insulating values in the window coverings you select if you want to keep some heat in!  Consider dressing your windows with their own winter coat or luxurious fabrics that emanate your personal style and flair.

For custom window covering solutions to warm up your Cochrane & Calgary home, contact Kirstin today!


Window Covering Ideas for Specialty Shaped Windows

Many homes are adorned with a variety of decorative windows to add interest to the home’s architecture both inside and out.  Odd shaped windows like angled windows, ovals, trapezoids, octagon shaped, arches of every configuration, including the circular window, make window coverings a challenge.  Many homeowners may consider leaving these windows free of window coverings. However, due to light control and UV concerns many consider covering these specialty windows.  There are a few options and, depending on if you need it to open and close your window coverings, your selections are even slightly more limited.

Vinyl or Wood Shutters

NewStyle hybrid circular shutters by hunter douglas
NewStyle® Hybrid Circular Shutters

The most common specialty shaped window covering with the ability to function is the vinyl or wood shutter.  Most angles, circles and arches can have an operating shutter custom built for them.  It may differ how the panels are hinged and there may be a few things to consider with the frames. However, when you are working with a window covering specialist the options should be set out clearly.  Shutters add architectural interest and value to your home therefore a shutter is an excellent option to consider.

View more Arched Window Treatments at

Duette® Honeycomb Shades

Hunter Douglas Duette for odd shaped windows
Hunter Douglas Duette®

Another alternative to the shutter that may provide the option to function is the honeycomb shade such as the Hunter Douglas Duette®.  This specific arched shaped honeycomb – the Duette Easyview Arch®,  can have the ability to lower and raise with its ingenious design that allows you to lower and raise the blind up and down by sliding a small tab on the bottom supporting rail (although there are limitations in size restrictions).  The honeycomb is also a popular option for many angled windows as it can be raised and lowered depending on the size of the angle.  Some specialty shaped windows can utilize the honeycomb shade however due to the shape or the specification required some shades may be in the stationary closed position.

 Hunter Douglas Silhouette®

Hunter Douglas Silhouette Angled Window Treatments Blinds
Hunter Douglas Silhouette®

Another option for a unique window shape is the Hunter Douglas Silhouette® – these are in a stationary position, however you can choose if you would like the Silhouette in the open or closed fabric vane position.  This can provide you with UV control as well as privacy depending on your final choices while transforming the room with diffused light.

Hunter Douglas window shadings Pirouette
Hunter Douglas Pirouette®

Hunter Douglas Pirouette® and Vignette® also offer solutions for your specialty shaped windows.  Both these products would be in a fully closed stationary position, but it would allow you to treat your oval, trapezoid or quarter circle shaped window the same as other windows in the room.

Hunter Douglas modern roman shades vignette
Hunter Douglas Vignette® for Arched Windows

Imagine your feature windows accentuated with customized drapery if these shade-style options do not suit your interior or esthetics.  Drapery can add softness and elegance to any room and depending on the windows specialty shape you can create more drama to these features by using decorative tiebacks for angled drapery rods or you can add volume and luxury to the arched shaped windows with drapery tied back at a high angle.

Hunter Douglas modern roman shades vignette
Hunter Douglas Vignette® for Angled Windows

Specialty shaped windows can transform the architecture of your home – with the addition of window coverings to accentuate the uniqueness of the window you can add even more drama to your home.  There are many factors to consider when making your final decision, however specialty shaped window coverings can add texture, architectural detail and a personal style statement.

View more Hunter Douglas Window Coverings for Specialty Shaped Windows

For custom window covering solutions for your Cochrane & Calgary home, contact Kirstin today!

Before You Buy Window Coverings, Read these Tips!

Whether you are a new home-buyer and needing to purchase blinds or you are replacing existing window coverings in your Calgary area home, there are certain thoughts to ponder and decide on that will help with the decision of what window coverings will best suit your needs.  Keep these items in mind when thinking about your window covering purchase as it is an investment that you will enjoy for many years to come if you purchase carefully.

Number & Types of Rooms

What room or rooms in the home do you require blinds for?  Perhaps it is a whole house or just a few specific rooms such as an office or bedroom; this will help determine what type of blind or shade you will consider.

For example, if it is an office perhaps you would like something more masculine like a wood or Polysatin shutter such as Hunter Douglas New Style® Hybrid Shutters to add architecture.

Hunter Douglas Newstyle Hybrid Shutters Calgary & Area
Hunter Douglas New Style® Hybrid Shutters

Or, maybe you have a beautiful mountain view across the street and a top down bottom up roman shade like Hunter Douglas Provenance® Woven Wood Roman Shades will be more suitable so you can have privacy sitting at your desk while allowing some light and view through the top.

Provenance Woven Wood Shades Calgary and Cochrane
Hunter Douglas Provenance® Woven Wood Shades

If it is a bedroom be sure to consider if you require room darkening and the best product would be a Honeycomb or Cellular shade like the Duette® or Applause® collection.


Type of Windows

Are your windows overly large and you would like to try and keep the blind as one unit within this span?

There are different products that work best for larger windows such as Roller Shades, Honeycombs and Silhouettes.  Consider materials for large windows that are lightweight and easy to use.  Is it a patio door or a garden/atrium door?  You may want to have something more vertical than horizontal, however many options can work horizontally as well.

If you prefer something that runs vertically consider Hunter Douglas Skyline Panels® for a contemporary touch, or Hunter Douglas Transverse Vignette® for something that will be as luxurious as drapery.  If you have speciality shapes such as angled windows or arches your choices will be more limited to product and whether or not it will open and close.

Skyline by Hunter Douglas
Skyline by Hunter Douglas®

Your Budget

This may be one of the most important factors to consider as window coverings vary in cost and can last a lifetime if you chose a product with longevity in style and function.  Many factors affect the pricing of your window coverings such as size, material, name-brand, etc.  If budget is a main concern consider a faux or real wood over a silhouette, or a roller shade can offer a lower price point from a roman shade.  Honeycomb products are an excellent mid-range choice with lots of variances in fabrics that change the pricing, plus they will offer great energy-efficiency saving you heating and cooling costs over its lifespan.

Safety Concerns

If you have children or pets in the home safety may be top of mind.  Child Safety laws are becoming more and more stringent and ever-important.  Window coverings can often have cordless options such as Hunter Douglas LiteRise® or perhaps you would prefer something that is motorized like Hunter Douglas PowerView® and you can lower and raise your shade with the touch of a button.

Vignette Modern Roman Shades LiteRise for homes in Calgary Cochrane Alberta
Vignette Modern Roman Shades with LiteRise®


Window Covering Maintenance

Calgary and Cochrane area can be very dusty….  Wood blinds will need to be treated like your fine furniture – regular dusting will keep them looking new all year round.  Roller Shades and Honeycombs will be almost maintenance free and simply require a light vacuum with an upholstery brush a few times a year.  If it is an area where there is lots of humidity or splashes such as over a kitchen sink perhaps you would want to consider a Roller shade like Hunter Douglas Designer Screens, which can be easily spot cleaned, or a faux wood that can be wiped with a damp cloth.

Designer Screen Shades Cochrane and Calgary Alberta
Designer Screen Shades for your Cochrane and Calgary Home

Style Considerations

Pirouette by Hunter Douglas Calgary & Cochrane, Alberta
Pirouette® by Hunter Douglas

You will want to consider the interior style of your home so your window coverings can enhance the look and feel and be an extension of your own style.  If you are looking for something with a natural rustic flair consider a Provenance® Woven Wood, or if you have a contemporary interior a Roller Shade or Hunter Douglas Pirouette® will suit your needs quite well.

DIY or Custom Window Coverings?

Purchasing blinds can be an overwhelming task.  If you are up to the challenge and want to buy something off the shelf that may or may not have warranty and longevity, consider this a DIY project.  If you are unsure about anything, it is wise to work with a window covering specialist to help you determine what style and function you are requiring.  If you are working with a professional you should be guided through all the steps listed above and they will also ensure correct measurements are taken for a proper fit.  Different types of window coverings require different measurements and a professional in the window covering industry will be able to determine this.  In addition you will likely have a warranty for peace of mind.

It may seem like a straight forward task to purchase and install new window coverings, however once you get started you may realize there are so many things to consider and keep in mind when making the difficult decision.  If you are able to fine-tune some of the details above it may become an easier task that you may even find fun and enjoyable!

For custom window covering solutions for your Cochrane & Calgary home, contact Kirstin today!

What Type of Window Covering Can I Put on My Large, Wide Windows?

I am often asked the question: What type of window covering can I put on my large, wide windows? 

In Calgary, Cochrane and surrounding areas we are blessed with beautiful mountain views and a large amount of sunlight.  We maximize this light with larger than average windows.  Calgary window coverings need to have the ability to cover these large windows as well as capture the views and light and be easy to use.  There are several window blinds and shades that function more efficiently than others to accommodate the wide and long windows.

Silhouette blinds by Hunter Douglas, available in Cochrane, Alberta.

Hunter Douglas has two proprietary products that I love for the ability to be lightweight and easy to use as well as span the large glass area.  One is the Hunter Douglas Silhouette®, which provides a beautiful diffusion of light through two layers of sheers fused with a horizontal fabric slat to maximize the view.

Choose Silhouette Clearview by Hunter Douglas for your home's large windows.

Hunter Douglas has just introduced the Clearview Silhouette® which is a perfect solution for Calgary window coverings that allow our fabulous impressive mountainous views and cityscape to be unobscured.  The innovative black rear sheer provides a transparency that Calgary and area home owners will love.

Luminette by Hunter Douglas for your Calgary & Cochrane home.

Secondly, the Hunter Douglas Luminette® Privacy Sheers pairs extremely well with the Silhouette.  Its vertical sheers and drapery options make it the perfect solution for the wide expansive windows and patio doors that Calgary and area boasts.  The beautiful sheer with a fabric vertical vane allow homeowners to rotate the vanes to maximize the light while maintaining the view.  The sleek hardware system is exceptionally easy to use especially with the option of Powerview® which can accommodate extremely wide windows and sliding glass doors with the touch of a button.

Use Hunter Douglas PowerView for the convenience of controlling your blinds and window coverings.

Another of my favourite window treatments for the large Calgary windows are Roller Shades.  With their large widths available on many beautiful fabrics the roller shade has become one of the more popular choices to accentuate your interior.

The roller shade works especially well in modern contemporary homes and those with an industrial flair.  With the added option of a Sheerweave or Sunscreen roller fabric you can protect the harsh UV rays while maintaining some outward view.  The standard operating system, the continuous beaded chain, it is very easy to operate, however using Powerview® is a great alternative for ease of function as well as simplicity.

Skyline by Hunter Douglas, perfect for the large windows in your Calgary home.

Many of the Rollershade fabrics can also be considered for a panel system such as Hunter Douglas Skyline® Gliding Panels.  The    11 ½” or 17” panels glide on a sleek hardware system to provide a dramatic look on your large windows or sliding glass doors.

Calgary window coverings can encompass so many different products – drapery, blinds, shades, shutters and the list continues.  The forward, creative innovation of products makes Calgary window covering options aesthetically pleasing to enhance your home.

For custom window covering solutions for your Cochrane & Calgary home, contact Kirstin today!

Watch the video:

How to Keep Your Blinds & Window Coverings Looking New

Dusty homes in Calgary, Alberta need special attention to keep blinds and window coverings clean.

Let’s face it – we live in a dusty province and this can be a challenge when trying to keep our blinds and shades looking fresh. Pollutants, dust and insects can settle on your blinds and this can trigger asthma, allergies or just plain untidiness.

Follow these tips to help your window coverings look like they were just installed, however please keep in mind to always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and maintenance.

Woods, Faux Wood or Aluminum Venetians

how to clean wood blinds, aluminum or faux wood blindsWe love our slatted blinds in this area, but these are the dustiest culprits of them all. Using a microfiber cloth, you can close the slats and wipe each slat down. You can reverse the tilt and then get the other side. For the aluminum blinds, you may find it easier to use a vacuum with an upholstery brush, especially if they have not been cleaned for a length of time.

Real Wood blinds are treated like furniture – a simple wipe with your dusting cloth when you dust your furniture will keep them beautiful for years to come.

Drapery and Curtains

How to clean drapes, drapery and curtains in Calgary. Always follow the manufacturers instructions for cleaning, for many designer fabrics cannot be washed as they will lose their finish. A light vacuum with the upholstery brush especially along the top of the pleats will help repel any dust. Alternately, after removing the hooks, you could put the curtains in the dryer on air tumble depending on the pleat and design of the drapery.

If it is custom drapery use extra caution and check with your designer. If you need to spot wash it, test an inconspicuous area first to ensure that the fabric won’t change color and try putting the cleaner on the cloth and dab the spot.

Rollers and Honeycombs

How to clean honey comb shades and roller blinds in Calgary, Alberta.These are the easiest to maintain and keep clean. Simply using them will repel any dust settling on them. A light vacuum a few times a year will keep these window coverings fresh.

The cellular shades can be spot cleaned using a stain-buster cloth or a light baby wipe. You could also consider having these professionally cleaned by a company that used ultrasonic cleaning methods. Please be sure to check the business’s methods of cleaning before approving their services.

Silhouettes and Pirouettes

How to clean silhouettes and pirouettes These delicate beauties will require extra caution when insects go into the pirouettes or the silhouettes vanes. A hair dryer on cool, compressed air or a vacuum on blow can take out closer insects. But, if your blind is extra wide and the pesky bug is in the center, try getting a smooth pole with sticky tape on it and ever so gently insert it in the vane while someone helps you hold the shade out and still.

Take extra caution not to snag the sheer as this will cause permanent damage. This is not the best scenario; however, it is an option to consider if you cannot get them professionally cleaned.

With regular cleaning and a quick wipe or light vacuum your blinds and shades can look new for years to come. Simply exercising them will repel some dust and pollutants off and also allows you to enjoy them!

The Best Blackout Blinds from Hunter Douglas for 2016

Spring and summer bring on the long summer nights that can be troublesome for those people who need the room dark to sleep.  Whether it be a newborn, young child or an adult needing darkness to sleep, there are window covering options to provide room darkening or room dimming effects.  It is important to note that room darkening blinds are not all created equal.  To this end, we will discuss some of the details to consider when choosing a room darkening window covering and this includes a recommended list of a few choice products from Hunter Douglas that provide ample light control and design options.

Honeycomb shades, such as these ones from Hunter Douglas Canada, provide a great solution as a large window covering.

The best room darkening blind is the honeycomb or cellular.  The mylar in the cellular construction makes the blind completely opaque; that is, no light penetrates through the fabric of the blind.  The cellular will provide the tightest fit in your window as well because the deductions are minimal and the fabric will go to the edge of the moving rails. Light has a way of creeping everywhere, so you will have a glow of light around the perimeter of your window.  The room darkening cellular will also give you the option of cordless and “top down bottom up” so they are a perfect option for excellent versatility in function and the variety of colors lends itself to any interior design.

Roller shades provide an elegant and functional solution to larger windows and patio doors, perfect for the Calgary home owner.

Another room darkening blind is the roller shade.  This is best as an outside mount as it has a light gap on each side due to the operating mechanism, preventing the fabric from going to the edge of your window trim.  The fabric can be opaque making it a good consideration for room darkening as an outside mount – meaning that it is mounted on the wall above the window trim.  If you prefer a cleaner look of an inside mount, which most do, you could look at mounting room darkening curtains on the side to block the light.

The silhouette A-Deux or the Silhouette Duolite is a fairly new room darkening window covering option combining the beauty of an elegant silhouette with a room darkening roller shade that can operate separately from the silhouette.  This provides very good light control, however there is still a large glow on the edge due to the light gap on the sides.  However, for those that can withstand a bit of light this is an excellent option providing versatility and elegance.

A photo of Hunter Douglas Solera model, an example of custom Roman Shades that help block out excessive sunlight.


Perhaps you would like to have a room darkening blind that provides more softness and this would lead you to the Vignette or perhaps a lined Roman Shade.  The fabric will act as drapery for your window and provide you with a dressier finish to your interior without compromising the room darkening qualities.

One can also add room darkening curtains to each window treatment to provide more light control and custom drapery options can be almost limitless with the many fabrics to choose from.  Changing the pleated style of the drapery will allow you to personalize this treatment to your interior.

If you are looking for blackout blinds and curtains in the Cochrane and Calgary area, call Blind Infusion today! Make the most of your night’s sleep by ensuring that you choose the right types of blinds for your home’s decor and provide the optimal amount of light control from room to room. For more information contact Kirstin at 403-801-6434 or by email through our contact us page.

Why Choose a Specialist for Custom Window Coverings?

Calgary and Cochrane home owners have a lot of choices when it comes to deciding on where to purchase window coverings for the new home, renovation or minor project.  It can be daunting and overwhelming where to even start to look, which online sources you can trust or what do-it-yourself store to conquer and try to get assistance.  It is a common misconception that custom window coverings are not within their do it yourself budget.  However, professional window coverings specialists can often meet any budget.  Beyond budget concerns, one should also consider other reasons to discuss your window covering needs with a professional who can help you from start to finish.

A window covering specialist it simply that – a specialist.  When you discuss your window coverings with someone you have chosen to invite into your home, make sure you trust their advice – are they asking you questions about your lifestyle and needs, are they considering your interior style and colour preferences, is child safety top of mind?  Do they have product knowledge that is top notch and are their samples current?

Installation of Custom Window Coverings in Calgary & Cochrane

Once you are comfortable with the specialist you have chosen to work with there are many other reasons to continue to do work with a custom window covering dealer.  A true specialist is going to make sure that you have the right product in your home.  Can you automate top down bottom up honeycombs, which products will provide the least amount of light gap at the sides for room darkening, which are more insulated and heat-efficient would you like options that provide view through to the outside such as a solar shade…so many options to consider with a variety of products that may or MAY NOT work in your window.  A specialist with an eye for detail will also look for mounting depth requirements, window obstructions such as window locks and whether an outside mount will serve your needs better.

A custom blinds specialist will provide a professional measurement as well.  Every product fits differently in your window and a knowledgeable dealer will be aware of the different deductions and how to ensure a proper fit.  Furthermore, the certified installers to install the product in your window will make sure that everything is fitting as it should and show you how to use the product.  For example, an automated window covering will require a quick lesson on programming and how to use the remote or wall switch.

An example of a custom drapes installation by Blind Infusion in a Calgary area home.

Custom window coverings will also have a warranty.  You have invested time and money into this decision, it is wise to look at the warranty options.  If you purchase from a do it yourself store how will you go about obtaining warranty service?  With a custom window covering dealer rest assured your product will have a one to five year warranty if it is not limited lifetime.  This will be discussed at the time of your consultation.  Knowing that your purchase will provide years of enjoyment provides peace of mind for years to come.

Choose a dedicated, local window coverings specialist in the Calgary & Cochrane area. Call Kirstin at Blind Infusion to discuss your custom blinds and window treatment needs!