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Shutters vs Curtains: what is your preference?

curtains vs blinds
Shutters vs Curtains: what is your preference?

It’s a longstanding question, but which are the best solar shades for your home? When the weather in the UK gets warm and sunny it reminds us about different conditions that can affect our homes.

Barbeque food, electric fans, sun block and bikinis all experience a surge in sales when the sun comes out. So why not plan ahead for the next bout of hot weather to hit the UK, rather than frantically trying to deal find a solution at the last minute.

Keeping your property cool from the heat in summer can be a real problem. Inside temperatures can get quite uncomfortable so there are a number of ways to help reduce the heat indoors. This includes window treatments which can act as solar shades. Don’t just choose something to look nice with your furniture, combine style with solar shading.

Whatever shade solution you are looking at, have a think about additional benefits like reducing the fading effect of the sun’s rays. Ultraviolet radiation from the sun can damage furnishings and furniture, so consider how to keep things looking their best.

It’s important to get the light just the way you want it, with furnishings that reduce the intensity of the sun and help keep you cooler as well. To help you find an energy efficient window shade that suits your tastes, we are going to look at curtains and shutters, two of the most popular choices for homes.

So what are some of the pros and cons in the curtains vs shutters debate?

Bedroom Drapes with ShuttersSettling on the right summer window treatments is not just a case of picking a nice colour or pattern. There are other factors to take into consideration, such as insulation, flexibility, and effectiveness at blocking out the sun.

  • Helping to keep a home cooler in summer, and warmer in winter, plantation shutters act as an insulating layer when the panels and louvres are closed. In the warmer months, combined with open windows, the gaps between louvres allow air flow, also helping you to manage the temperature.
  • On the other hand, curtains can offer either less or more insulation, depending on which type of fabric used. Sheer or net fabrics are not effective shades against sunlight, whereas a thermal blackout can offer fantastic protection against its heat, although do make an interior feel much darker when closed.
  • Although a popular choice, curtains need to be either open or closed to keep the sun off your stuff, completely obscuring the view outside, and keeping your house much darker as a result.
  • One of the key benefits of choosing shutters is that they feature moveable louvres (slats) that can be tilted to an angle, without the need to fully close them. This makes them a more flexible form of shading, so you are able to control the brightness of the sun as well as adjusting your view of the outside.

Often thought to be the most effective solar window shade, blackout curtains can create a dark environment, although can also have light bleed around the edges of the material. Shutters also have experience this, through the small gaps in the louvres, which is why S:CRAFT offer the option of an integrated room darkening blind sitting in its own channel behind the shutter panel that blocks out virtually all light.

Do solar shades work all year round?

When considering the right shades for your space, it is important to pick one that keeps the glare of the sun from off of your TV or computer screen. Although days may not last as long during winter months, the dazzling effect still occurs when the sun’s rays come through windows.

Not just suitable for summer, furnishings such as plantation shutters are great the whole year round, adding a degree of thermal insulation, therefore reducing heat transfer through windows. Unlike curtains, they do not have to be either fully open or closed, providing more flexibility in terms of light control.

conservatories need shadingIn conservatories, which have more glass panels than elsewhere, choosing the right solar shade means that your home can stay warmer, as well as keeping sunlight out when needed.

Furniture in a conservatory is more prone to fading than any other room, so to keep your home looking its best, it is important to limit the amount of light by choosing the right shade to fit the space. S:CRAFT shutters are made-to-measure, perfectly suited to the look and feel of conservatory, letting you get the light levels just the way you want them.

In 2006, journalist Sarah Sands wondered whether it was “curtains” for shutters, and yet over 10 years later, they are still proving to be more popular than ever before. Suiting a range of interiors, in both contemporary and classic styles alike, there are a range of styles that can make all the difference in the sunnier weather.

If you would like to know more about the benefits of shutters for the summer, why not download our brochure, or contact your nearest S:CRAFT stockist to discuss the best choice of window treatments for your home or place of business.