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Design with style: consider vertical blinds

635826716154671584-HES-SUB-110915-Luminette-300x225Sliding doors and French doors provide an interesting entrance while allowing more light to enter a living space. Natural light, usually viewed as a positive, can become a problem when the sun is in your eyes during dinner or breakfast. It also can affect the screens on your TV or monitors. Many times the consumer doesn’t think about the damage that the sun may be doing on the furnishings or flooring as it shines into a room.

If you decide to put a traversing drapery on your sliding or French door, you may be blocking the view or natural light that you wanted. To open the drapery wide enough to take advantage of the full glass, the drapery will need to be approximately 1/3 wider than the glass it is covering. That amount of space is not always available, and you might not want that much fabric.

When I get a call to discuss this challenge, often I also hear, “I’m not interested in vertical blinds.” First, I explain that verticals do provide an answer with a small stacking width, and then I tell them there are many more vane options available. Clients might be expecting a PVC vane, but woven fabrics with sewn-in weights on the bottom can add texture with a softer appearance. Also available are wood vertical slats to add a warmer feeling.

For a more formal or upscale space, Hunter Douglas offers Luminette. This product combines the advantages of a vertical blind, but has a sheer fabric on either side of the slats. You are able to tilt the inner fabric slats to the degree of privacy desired while enjoying the elegance of sheers. When they’re completely opened, a minimal stacking space is used.

The most popular solution that my clients choose is the Horizon woven wood drape called Averte.  With dozens of woven wood fabrics available, most room styles can be coordinated.  A warm cherry- or walnut-colored slat that blends with the room’s cabinetry or trim leans towards a traditional style. A nice blend of multicolored grasses and reeds can be used in a room that has a more tropical theme, with rustic options available for a more casual space. The track that this product is mounted on can be hidden under a decorative valance of either the same woven wood or an endless variety of fabric options. The track is also offered in decorative wood poles in many colors, with lots of options for finial styles.

To operate the Averte, you simply slide the leading wood edge. No cords!

Both the Averte and Luminette can be motorized so that with the touch of a remote control or iPad you are able to control the light coming through your sliding or French doors.

To view the photos in colour, read the design blog “Dream It, Design It” at blogs.publicopiniononline.com/dreamit.