The best blackout blinds for summer: Styles, inspiration, and buying guide

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As much as we all enjoy the warming, soothing qualities of natural light, sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. In some circumstances, you may need to minimise it, or even block it completely. For instance, perhaps you want to take a nap but the room is too bright. Or maybe you want to recreate the atmosphere of the cinema when watching a movie during the day. You may even need to block light in the nursery for the baby to enjoy their sleep any time of the day. The problem is compounded during summer when the days are longer, and you may be going to bed with the sun still up or waking long after dawn. To prevent being woken up early by the direct rays of the sun, blackout blinds are the ideal solution.

In this post, we are going to explore the various styles of blinds that offer blackout features. We will look at how well they suit individual needs and help you to choose the perfect blackout blinds for you.

The best blackout blinds

Blackout blinds come with a thicker fabric that blocks out almost all light. This helps to ensure a perfectly dark room, enabling you to sleep deeply and wake refreshed. Alternatively, you can attach a blackout liner at the back of the fabric of your blinds.

However, contrary to popular belief, it is not a must for blackout blinds to be black! It is not the colour that blocks the light but the fabric, which is specially treated to maximise the light it blocks. As a result, blackout fabric will reduce the light coming in your window to almost nothing. This means that blackout fabric can be combined with your choice of prints and hues. There’s no need to compromise between style and function when it comes to blackout blinds.

When it comes to the specific types of blinds you can choose from, you have many options. However, not all blinds will offer blackout features. For instance, Venetian blinds are not suitable, as they always allow some light to seep through the slats. Nevertheless, there are styles to suit every preference. Blinds that offer blackout fabrics include roller, Roman, and vertical blinds. Let’s look a bit more closely at each of these.

Blackout roller blinds

For many, summer is one of the most enjoyable times of the year, something to look forward to all through winter and spring. It’s a time of extra-long days and plenty of sunshine, perfect for enjoying the outdoors. But there are some downsides to all the sunlight. You may need to have a little darkness once in a while, not least when it comes to sleeping. Those long summer evenings and early mornings can have a major impact on your sleep patterns, especially if you don’t have adequate window coverings for your bedroom.

When it comes to blocking out as much light as possible, roller blinds are among the top blackout blinds available. To make roller blinds, manufacturers use specially treated fabric. This is the reason that they maintain their stiffness, bringing out the neat look that we all love.

Roller blinds are a favourite for many, in part due to the simplicity of their design and operation. They comprise a tube held in the mounting bracket at the top, together with the operating mechanism. The blinds’ fabric rolls around the tube when you open them by pulling on the cord or beaded string. A piece of single-layered blackout fabric is made of thick, tightly woven material and does not allow light to pass through. With blackout roller blinds, you can select the prints and colours that match or compliment your interior décor in addition to the blackout feature, making for a win-win situation.

Blackout roller blinds can be used in the bedroom to create the perfect atmosphere for sleep. They can also be used in living rooms, media rooms, and inside the nursery to help babies to sleep at any time. Or why not use them in the office to reduce the glare of direct sunlight?

Day and night blinds

A similar option to roller blinds that you may want to consider is day and night blinds, also known as duo roller blinds. With their double roller feature, they essentially give you the option of two blinds on one window. Each of the two roller blinds is placed one in front of the other, and each has its own control mechanism. One roller blind has blackout fabric, and the other has a sheer fabric that filters the light and allows you to see outside. You can have either blind closed on its own or lower both at the same time, giving you room to play with contrast.

Blackout Roman blinds   

Roman blinds bring finesse and a touch of class to any room, with the pleats neatly folded when retracted. Roman blinds are not just a window covering but also a design opportunity. When you add the blackout liner to the fabric of the roman blinds, then functionality meets style. They are perfect for your bedroom and living room. You can even match them with decorative curtains. Roman blind fabrics come in plenty of shades and colours that will easily match and complement your décor theme. They bring a cosy look, so they can be an ideal choice if your living space is on the smaller side. They also look great on smaller windows.

You can use Roman blinds in virtually any room. To the bedroom, they add to the ambience with their soft, airy feel, while in the living room you can choose from a wide array of fabric designs to match your furnishings and make the room look good. They don’t occupy a lot of space and neatly fold up, which can be great for adding sophistication to an office space.

Blackout vertical blinds

Vertical blinds comprise vertical slats and are better at blocking light than their horizontal counterparts. The slats overlap one another to eliminate the gaps between slats that prevent Venetian blinds, for example, from having a blackout function. To better block light, heavy PVC material is used to make the slats. The PVC material is easy to clean and is especially suited for children’s bedrooms. The slats can be angled to give you privacy while allowing some light or fully retracted for a near-complete blockage of light. Vertical blinds are perfect for large windows such as conservatory and bay windows. You can also use them in the office to reduce glare or in presentation rooms to block the light.

Inspiration for finding the best blackout blinds

Blinds are versatile and can blend into any décor style, be it contemporary, traditional, or modern. There are even blinds that can suit an eclectic mix of various styles. There are plenty of patterns, textures, finishes, and colours to choose from in order to match or complement your existing style. From warm and cool colours to monochrome or contrasting colours, you can find a blackout blind to fit your home interior décor.

Whether you are a minimalist or are willing to splurge and go all out, bespoke made-to-measure blinds will complement your style. You can make your blinds the central feature in your décor, or you can let them blend with the rest of the room. There are always blackout blinds to suit your design needs.    

Things to consider before you buy

Once you’ve decided on the type and style of blackout blinds you want, there are a few other things you need to think about. Before buying your blackout blinds, it’s important to consider things like installation and maintenance.

When mounting blinds, you have the option to mount them inside our outside your window aperture. However, most experts will recommend an outside mount for blackout blinds. The reason for this is that an inside mount might allow in a slither of light at the sides. This is the last thing you want with blackout blinds!

Made-to-measure blinds are the best option when it comes to blackout blinds. It is important you get a perfect fit in order to block out as much light as possible. While you can always take measurements yourself, it may not be the best idea. Even the slightest inaccuracy can lead to light getting around the edges of your blinds. It is always better to consult an experienced professional. They will be able to take measurements on your behalf and ensure your blinds fit exactly.

When choosing fabrics for your blinds, be wary of light filtering and room darkening fabrics. These are not the same as blackout fabric. While blackout fabric blocks almost all natural light, room darkening fabrics will allow a small amount of light through.

Another thing you should consider is the safety of children and pets. Loose and hanging cords can be hazardous. At Excell Blinds, all our blinds come child-safe as standard.

Summary

Blackout blinds are a great way to achieve total darkness in a room, day or night. They also help to ensure a healthy, deep sleep. So, if a streetlamp is shining through your window or the summer dawn wakes you up early, consider investing in blackout blinds. They come in a wide range of materials to blend into your existing décor. Blackout fabric is not necessarily dark in colour, but comes in attractive hues and patterns. They can even save you on heating bills through the added insulation.