Floor-to-ceiling windows: They’re a good thing in theory, but finding window coverings to fit them can be a huge “pane” in the “glass”! Especially when you only have one floor-to-ceiling window and it’s paired awkwardly with a square swing-out window. Of course, another downside to huge windows is excessive heat and glare in the summer months. Because of this tricky configuration and the fact that my apartment faces a brick wall, I’d been putting off window treatments for several years now, but the blazing summer temps and afternoon glare in my living room were starting to take a toll. That’s why when window treatment specialists Decorview contacted us with the opportunity to give their custom window shades a try, I happily – albeit a bit skeptically at first – took them up on their offer. Read on to see what the process was like and check out the final result!
I’m a “less is more” person, so I wasn’t too mad at my DIY dollar store tension rod and lonely sheer set-up. But even though it wasn’t a complete eyesore, this interim solution did very little to solve my main issues, which were bad glare (making it almost impossible to work on my computer at certain times of the day) and lack of insulation against the scorching sun during the summer. Privacy was less of an issue since my window basically looks onto a wall, but trying to pull a thin, translucent sheet of fabric closed whenever I did want some diffuse light was admittedly pretty pathetic.
Decorview has an experienced team of window treatment specialists and designers who make choosing the right window treatments as easy as possible by coming to your home and giving you a full consultation. To get my project started, they sent over Olesea, a window treatment designer, to get a better idea of what my main issues were and what I was looking for in a window treatment. Olesea was friendly, knowledgeable about windows, and was able to understand my style just from looking around the living room. The books and books of different colors, styles and textures to choose from can be intimidating, but Olesea helped me narrow down the search for the perfect shades with just a few questions. Check out our consultation below:
After Olesea helped me choose my color (a textured grey to match my boyfriend’s armchair), type of window treatment and style (I opted for Duette honeycomb shades because of their super-insulating properties), Decorview installer Tibor Farkas came by to take precise measurements of the windows so that the shades could be made to order. Tibor explained that the narrow window pocket made the installation of the shades a bit tricky, but was able to come up with a custom solution involving a bracket that could be pre-fabricated in advance. I was impressed by Tibor’s experience and his ability to come up with a fix so quickly on the fly.
Why honeycomb shades?
Honeycomb or cellular shades are widely known as the best type of window treatment for homeowners concerned about window insulation and energy efficiency. Hunter Douglas invented this type of shade in 1985 as a response to the energy crisis of the 1970s, and it has remained popular under the Duette moniker ever since. Honeycomb shades insulate and save money because of their double pleats, which trap pockets of air inside to block heat from moving in or out. This thick “air gap” between the window pane and the inside surface of the window treatment is what allows them to stop heat loss and gain. To illustrate the dramatic difference these shades can make, the R-value (measure of thermal resistance) of a window can increase from 3.5 (a standard window) to nearly 7 simply by adding a honeycomb shade. Of course, like all other shades they also block solar radiation.
Tibor called me to set up an installation appointment when the shades were ready, and it could not have come at a better time since the weather was starting to heat up. Punctual as usual (9 minutes early, actually), he quickly carried in everything necessary for the install including the pre-fabricated bracket and got right to work. The whole process took about 2 hours (it usually takes about an hour for a similar job but we kept asking him to repeat certain steps so that we could record and photograph them), and here is a short clip of the steps below. Notice the battery pack which will last approximately 2 years, meaning that your shades will work even when the power goes out.
And here’s the final result!
I was really pleased with the elegant look of the new shades (especially the convenient dual transparencies), and became a believer when I stood in front of them and literally felt the difference they make temperature-wise. It was warm that day and normally the area in front of the window would be burning, but with the shades down, it was almost a bit chilly. I’m already planning what to do with the savings from my summer electricity bill! As for my boyfriend, he couldn’t stop playing with the remote control, and being able to operate the shades from his iPhone was even more icing on the cake.
A big thank you to Decorview for making our first custom window treatment experience a true pleasure!
At Décorview, we know all about Hunter Douglas products. Our certified designers bring the showroom into your home in a fun and engaging design session. Request a free in-home consultation today.