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Author Archives: KJ Penton

A Thorough Buyers Guide To Roller Blinds 2

A Thorough Buyers Guide To Roller Blinds

Although Roller Blinds have been present in our homes for 300 years, they have kept up with modern trends and continuously evolved with technological advancements – with their versatility and simple lines consistently made them a popular choice. 

High demand and the sheer volume of blinds being manufactured today has seen Roller Blinds become more cost effective than many other window furnishings on the market. Their simple design allows them to be made in a huge array of fabrics and colours, and at a relatively low cost, meaning you don’t have to break the budget for quality stylish window furnishings. Even custom made Roller Blinds are becoming closely affordable to ready made because of outstanding competition in this sector.

Clever, sleek and easy to use, roller blinds can be made to any window size -small to large; and are especially suited to apartments or places with limited space as they won’t clutter the room. When rolled down they sit neatly against the window for a streamlined and clean appearance, while they can easily be rolled up so you can enjoy the full view outside. Alternatively, Roller Blinds are very effective in covering large windows in a variety of textile options and can be manufactured at a cost effective price. Add linking and motorisation and you also have the perfect blind solution for large spaces with multiple windows. 

The minimal gaps that come with Roller Blinds reduces drafts and minimises light penetration, keeping your house well insulated and private. This also makes them suitable for bedrooms where you can sleep in peace with reduced disturbance from external noise and sunlight, or in family rooms that require a reduction in glare on your TV. 

Take a look below for a buyers guide to interior and exterior roller blinds, fabrics and how to choose blinds colours.

Buyers Guide To Roller Blinds

Custom Roller Blinds and Ready Made Roller Blinds

Custom Roller Blinds - No Need For a Blind Size Chart

The wide array of fabrics available for Custom Made Roller Blinds is a prime reason why they are so popular. There is also no need for a blind size chart as the blind is made to measure. They can be customised for any decor and window size, adapting to suit any style of home. Not to mention they’re low maintenance and easy to clean! Ready Made Roller blinds are a cheaper alternative, yet more restrictive as you are provided with a specific set of sizes or a blind size chart that you must adhere to. They are often also manufactured overseas whereis some companies like Blinds on the Net manufacture all of their Custom Made Roller Blinds in Australia. Ready Made Roller Blinds are more often than not limited to a maximum width of approximately 2400mm due to the tubes being thinner and components not coping with going any larger. Custom Made Roller Blinds are generally a better quality product and will last longer.

No matter whether your Roller Blinds are customised or ready made, they are low fuss with simple aesthetics and super affordable – much like the desired modern minimalist Australian home. Our Custom Made Roller Blinds are by far our best selling blind because of these qualities. 

One of the best things about our Custom Made Roller Blinds (other than being affordable) is that they come in an extensive range of fabrics and materials. Roller blinds are versatile and customisable enough to suit any household and satisfy any aesthetic or practical need. Since Roller Blinds have a simple up and down motion, it’s important to select the right type of fabric for your lifestyle requirements.

Different Roller Blind Fabrics

The best type of fabric to choose depends on which room and what you’d like the main function of your blinds to be. For example,  is it privacy from a busy street? Or filling the space with natural light in the kitchen? Choosing the right fabric is important not just for the right look in your home but to make the most out of your window furnishings from a practicality point of view and enhance your entire interior space. 

Our fabrics here at Blinds on the Net are quality made, tried and tested for the Australian Climate – so you know you’re getting the best when it comes to good quality blinds at a reasonable price. We provide an outstanding collection of blind styles and fabrics for your home. Scroll down for a buyers guide to interior Roller Blind fabrics and how to choose blinds colour.

Double Roller Blinds | Dual Roller Blinds | Day/ Night Roller Blinds

Dual Roller Blinds

The newly invented Dual Roller Blind has increasingly become a prominent choice for their abilities to combine the advantages of both block out and translucent and/or sunscreen fabrics. They can adjust to the home during both day and night for maximum control of light and privacy. Rather than choosing between an all or nothing view, you can have the best of both worlds to shade and transform your space during all hours. Their superior adaptability is becoming vastly favoured.
Order your FREE samples to test our beautiful materials and choose which combination of fabrics are right  for you. To learn more about Dual Roller Blinds click here or free call one of our friendly customer service team on 1300 852 912.

LInked Roller Blinds

Linked Roller Blinds

If you have windows whereby you are going to sit 2 or more blinds side by side, Linked Roller Blinds may be a great option for you. Depending on your needs, you can use various joining brackets to get the result you are looking for. Using a linked joining bracket will link the blinds together so that only one of the blinds needs a chain control with all blinds moving up and down together, whereas an independent joining bracket requires each blind to have a control and therefore are controlled and move independently.There are many combinations of linking, such as linking 2 blinds with adjoining bracket and a third with an independent bracket so that 2 blinds move together with one independently and so forth.  Linking your Roller Blinds can also save you money if you are motorising your blinds. If you are happy to have your blinds go up and down at the same time then link them together and just use the one motor. Linking your blinds can also reduce the gap between the fabric and create more coverage with your window furnishings.

Motorised Roller Blinds

Motorised Roller Blinds

Not just for the smart homes of the future – Motorised Roller Blinds are quickly becoming a part of our day-to-day lives as they provide exceptional convenience, can prolong the life of your blinds and are the best child safety alternative. Increasing in popularity over recent years, they are excellent for those with limited mobility or low strength, so they aren’t just for the tech savvy but all ages and all homes. Motorised Roller Blinds can be operated remotely which has many benefits from keeping your home cool while you’re at work to making it look like you’re still home while on family vacation. They are also great for big windows with large blinds for precision control or simply to add a dash of luxury at the touch of a button. 

Depending on the type of motor you install, Motorised Roller Blinds can even be controlled from your very own smart phone! At Blinds on the Net we also supply Somfy Connexoonand Automate Pulse home automation hubs that can work in conjunction with your motorised blinds and other parts of your home (such as lights) to offer a seamless home integration. These home hubs even allow for voice activation via google home of Alexa! How cool is it to wake up and say “OK Google, Open bedroom blinds! For more information head to our Motorised Roller Blinds page. 

Roller Blinds Home Automation Hub

External Roller Blinds | Wire Guide Roller Blind | Roller Blind Guide Rail

Exterior Roller Blind - Roller Blind Guide Rail

External Roller Blinds with a Guide Rail, often referred to as Side Channel awnings. Roller Blind Guide Rail awnings are a perfect way to insulate your home while being unassuming and not standing out against the features on your home’s exterior. Unlike exterior auto awnings, external roller blinds sit neatly within your window or onto the wall outside the recess.  When using  guide rails that sit in the recess of your window, the blind is held securely in place and wont blow around in the wind. This guide rail mechanism ensures there are  minimal gaps and prevents the majority of the  sunlight streaming through when a block out fabric is used and the blinds are closed. Using a blockout or Screen fabric externally will stop up to 80% of the heat before it even gets inside! By far the best way to shade your home! 

How To Choose Roller Blind Fabrics

Block Out Roller Blinds

Block out roller blind

Block Out blinds were first introduced during the 2nd World War.  They were used to stop light streaming out to the streets at night to prevent their neighbourhoods becoming a target of enemy bombers.

Over the years, the focus of block out blinds has shifted towards preventing heat and light and heat from coming inside the home rather than blocking internal light, while also insulating the homes in the cooler months. Combine the Block Out fabric with Roller Blinds minimal gaps and it is a brilliant choice for anyone looking for superior privacy and black out abilities. Most Block Out fabrics have a white backing to increase their effectiveness at reflecting the heat and light.

Block out Roller Blind fabric can assist with a sound night’s sleep due to the thicker fabric dampening external noise and blocking out street lights. Therefore, it is a popular choice for bedrooms.

In addition to this, block out Roller Blind fabric can act as a great insulator, preventing heat from escaping and keeping the draft in Winter from seeping into the room. During the Summer, the white backing material can also help reflect the harsh Australian sun back through the window. 

Block out Roller Blinds can come in an array of fabric colours, patterns and textures – they don’t’ have to be in a dark shade to block out the light!

Sunscreen Roller Blinds

Sunscreen Roller Blind

Screen fabrics harness hardy material loosely woven together, making them strong and durable but allow the sunlight to delicately filter into the home. 

Screen fabric is a loose weave fabric and allows a partial view.  It is made from hardy materials often used for outdoor products, such as PVC fiberglass or polyester making it easy to clean, and a very practical choice. 

This is a great shading fabric, often used in exterior Roller Blinds or backyard facing internal Roller Blinds so you can still see the kids playing outside whilst keeping the house shaded from harsh UV rays. It is also an option for front facades depending on the level of privacy you want. As you will always see from where it’s darkest to lightest, during evenings and night times there will be some visibility into the home while the lights are on inside. Choose lighter colours for the best heat reflection or choose darker colours to minimise glare and maximise your view.

Sunscreen Roller Blinds are perfect for rooms that are heavily exposed to the sun as the technologically advanced fabric provides 80 – 97% UV protection, assisting with preventing sun damage to your interiors and home furnishing. Constant sunlight streaming into your home can cause carpets, furniture, floorboards and soft furnishings to fade over time. 

Although sunscreen fabrics do not initially appear to be insulating, they do have some fantastic insulating properties during the hot Summer months here in Australia. However, they don’t just work hard during the Summer, they can also help retain the heat inside during the chilly Winter months. For the best results, use a sunscreen fabric combined with a block out fabric in a Dual Roller Blind.

Translucent Roller Blinds | Light Filtering Roller Blinds

Translucent Roller Blind

Translucent fabric has a “frosted” look, meaning it allows filtered light in but entirely blocks the view out. The fabric is tightly woven so you can maintain privacy in the home while still retaining a glow of natural light. It is less serviceable than hardy screen fabrics, but is an excellent way to maintain privacy during both daytime and night time – which no other fabric can offer (except in a Dual Roller Blind scenario). Lighter fabrics will let in more natural light, so may satisfy living spaces or rooms you want to keep as bright as possible. Whereas darker colours will absorb more light making them more suited to theatre rooms and/or bedrooms. 

Translucent blinds may be a less popular choice as there is a more limited range of fabrics, but they are outstanding for maintaining around the clock privacy without sacrificing natural light. As they can be harder to clean, this type of fabric should be kept in well ventilated areas (where mould and mildew is less of an issue). Consider this if you are thinking of putting them in the bathroom. Translucent blinds will protect you from onlookers or a not-so-perfect view while diffusing the light in your own home beautifully. We generally see translucent blinds in living and dining rooms where privacy from neighbours is required but you don’t want to use a blockout fabric that will cut out the natural light.

How to Choose Blinds Colours

It can be quite a daunting task working through how to choose blinds colours as there are many factors to consider. So, here are a few quick tips on choosing the best colours for your Roller Blinds.

Need More Light – Choose White!

White Roller Blind Fabric Samples

In an area that requires more light, like kitchens or living rooms, white can be a great choice as it lets more light enter the room. White or cream blinds also give your home a softer look. White blinds can also assist if you are looking to keep a more simple canvas and will be utilising splashes of colour in your home decor. White is also a great colour to choose if you are thinking about resale value. It is the least likely colour to turn off potential buyers. Just remember, there are many different shades of white and cream, so be sure to order your FREE fabric samples.

Align with your Decor

Feature Colour Roller Blind

It is important to consider the style and theme of your decor. A homestyle country themed decor may give rise to blinds in natural hues whereas a more contemporary home may allow for the use of vibrant colours. Alternatively, you may want to create a more moody feel with darker coloured blinds.

The Bold and The Beautiful

Pattern Roller Blinds

No, we are not talking about the famous daytime sitcom. If you do opt for a more modern and contemporary decor, you may find making a bold decision to go with a few different colours or a patterned blind to accent your windows or one single bold colour to compliment your home furnishings or feature home decor pieces. For example, black and white alternating roller blinds or a red blind that matches your red feature pieces.

Three is a Crowd

Choosing the fabric for your blind

The one thing you want to avoid with your Roller Blinds is having too many colours in one room. You may want to alternate colours of your blinds to create an interesting feature to your room but adding any more than 2 different coloured roller blinds may create a messy, cluttered feel and be polarising for future home buyers if you are considering selling your home in the future.

Colour & Design Trends for 2021 Paired with the Best Blinds for Autumn

Comfortable Colourways & Finest Blinds for Autumn

Colour & Design Trends for 2021 Paired with the Best Blinds for Autumn

With more time spent indoors due to the pandemic spreading throughout the world, people are feeling more and more restless with their home’s interior design. You just have to take a quick look at your Facebook or Insta newsfeed to see the streams of DIYers renovating at a massive rate. So, with Autumn fast approaching and the likelihood of the cool weather forcing us even further indoors and out of our backyards, we thought we would provide you with some Autumn inspired colour trends paired back with the best blinds for Autumn to help you on your renovation journey to make your home both beautiful and comfortable.

The colour trends for Autumn and 2021 are certainly reflecting the impact of COVID-19 with many comforting colourways derived from nature – warm browns and earthy tones in deep blues and rich greens  – providing a warm and serene sanctuary within your home. 

Alternatively, we are also witnessing a trend towards bright splashes of colour that will bring a smile to our faces. 

In terms of the best blinds for Autumn 2021, people will be looking towards more economic options such as day/night blinds and energy saving blinds. Combining the best window blinds options for Autumn with the comforting colourways of Autumn will bring new life and a sense of calm into your home in 2021.

Dulux Colour of the Year and Honeycomb Window Blinds Bringing Extra Warmth This Autumn

The colour specialists at Dulux have selected Brave Ground as their colour of the year. 

The team at Dulux states that Brave Ground is,

‘A bolstering shade that connects back to nature and the simple things. A warm, earthy tone, it creates a feeling of stability, growth and potential; and provides a firm foundation for change and creativity in your home.’

Dulux Colour of the Year and Honeycomb Window Blinds Bringing Extra Warmth This Autumn

A Brave Ground feature wall combined with Honeycomb Blinds in warm hues will create a beautiful foundation for any interior decorating, be it traditional or modern. Supplement this with the added benefits of Honeycomb blinds insulating properties and you have the perfect combination for your transition from Autumn through to Winter in 2021.

Window treatments are an essential way to achieve good thermal conditions especially in Australia’s climate where the temperature can vary 20 degrees Centigrade over a 24-hour period. Home owners are recommended to select the best blinds they can afford to obtain optimum thermal conditions. 

Honeycomb blinds fitted snugly within the window improves the insulation level by reducing the air leaks around the windows, making them one of the best window blinds for Autumn and Winter.

Honeycell Palma Translucent Honeycomb Blinds in Warm Hues

Honeycell Palma Translucent Honeycomb Blinds in Warm Hues

Honeycell Palma Block Out Honeycomb Blinds in Warm Hues

Honeycell Palma Block Out Honeycomb Blinds in Warm Hues

Pair Zebra Blinds with the Biggest Trend of 2021 – Earth Colours Taken From Nature

The biggest trend of 2021 is utilising a colour palette inspired by nature. As evidenced by Dulux’s colour of the year, comforting earthy hues will be popular this Autumn when choosing a colour for feature walls, tiles, statement furniture and home decor pieces. 

This Autumn, we will witness a trend towards rich blues and deep greens. Pair back this Autumn’s nature inspired colour palette with Zebra Blinds in complimentary earthy tones to make a bold statement in your home. Combine this with the ability these blinds have in providing privacy while still allowing you to make the most out of the daylight hours is why Zebra blinds are the perfect Autumn blinds.

Zebra blinds have the same ease as Roller Blinds, however, the cleverly designed Zebra Blinds use horizontal striped fabric with alternating translucent, block out or sheer stripes to create a day/ night blind in one product. Unlike the standard Roller Blinds, you do not need to raise the blind fully to let the light to flood into your room. Alternatively standard Roller Blinds can sometimes give you the sense that you are letting the cool Autumn air seep through.

Pair Zebra Blinds with the Biggest Trend of 2021 - Blue Earth Colours Taken From Nature
Pair Zebra Blinds with the Biggest Trend of 2021 - Green Earth Colours Taken From Nature

Pantone’s colour of the year and Dual Roller Blinds to Illuminate Your Home this Autumn

The Pantone Color Institute announced that PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray and PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating were the colour(s) of the year for 2021. Combine these with Dual Roller blinds and your home will make the most of the daylight hours and bring light and joy to your abode this Autumn.

Pantone Colour of the year ultimate grey and illuminating yellow

2021 is only the second time two colours have been selected for colour of the year.

The Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute, commented on the selection of two colours for 2021, stating,

‘The selection of two independent colors highlight how different elements come together to express a message of strength and hopefulness that is both enduring and uplifting, conveying the idea that it’s not about one colour or one person, it’s about more than one. The union of an enduring Ultimate Gray with the vibrant yellow Illuminating expresses a message of positivity supported by fortitude.

Sounds like a pretty good reason to choose two colours – especially when we are all looking for a bit of positivity and support during these tough times!

The serenity of the grey and the vibrance of the illuminating yellow, combined with Dual Roller Blinds are an incredible way to enhance your room.

Dual roller blinds are the best blinds to give you ultimate control when it comes to lighting, privacy and insulation. Dual Roller Blinds transform alongside your space during all hours of the day and night. With dual roller blinds, you get the best of both worlds – two materials of your choosing are constructed on conjoined brackets giving you the option of two different blinds. This means there are endless possibilities with our extensive range of fabrics to give you an edge in adjusting your space to your daily lifestyle.

Dual Roller Blinds are usually made with a blockout and a screen material for example. This allows you to enjoy the Autumn light while protecting your view during the day, and give your family privacy and insulation from the cool autumn nights.

Qube Block Out Roller Blinds in Grey Hues – can be used in your Dual Roller Blinds to perfectly compliment Pantones Colour of the Year

View Qube Roller Blinds here

Qube Block Out Roller Blinds in Grey Hue fabrics

Naza Screen Roller Blinds in Grey Hues – can be used in your Dual Roller Blinds to perfectly compliment Pantones Colour of the Year

View Naza Roller Blinds here.

Naza Screen Roller Blinds in Grey Hue Fabrics

For more great Autumn blinds, check out our huge range of Australian Custom made interior blinds here or contact us to speak with one of our experts on 1800 085 385.

Match your Blinds with your Walls - The Dulux Colour Forecast 2021 Perfect Matches

Match your Blinds with your Walls – The Dulux Colour Forecast 2021 Perfect Matches!

Dulux have introduced 3 new soothing colour palettes that will redefine your home’s interior in 2021. With the current climate, the lines are being blurred between work and home and updating your interior to bring new life and flexibility into your home is a must. Combine fresh newly painted walls with a stunning set of blinds and your home/office will look and feel brand new.

New Orora FR Fabric Collection

The Orora FR Collection will enhance any interior space with soft shading capabilities, woven texture and a colour range that perfectly compliments the Dulux 2021 Colour Forecast.

The Orora FR range is certified for low chemical emissions, gaining Greenguard accreditation using the latest in eco-aware technology. It is PVC free and flame retardant. 

The new Orora FR fabric is available in Roller Blinds, Venetian Blinds, Roman Blinds, Vertical Blinds and Panel Blinds.

Take a look below for some inspirational pairings from Blinds on the Net’s new Orora FR fabric collection and Dulux’s Colour forecast for 2021.

Dulux Retreat + Orora FR in Frost & Wild Rice

Combine the neutral grey tones of Diffused Grey with Whisper White and our new Orora FR in Frost to create a soft and contemporary look.

The Five Finger Peninsula with Whisper White can be a striking pair with the Orora Fr in Wild Rice.

Dulux Nourish + Orora FR in Osprey & Biscotti

Nourish your soul and draw on nature with a stunning combination of the Dulux Nourish range in Olive Blend and Tuft alongside the Orora FR in Osprey.

If you are looking for a colour palette that allows flexibility, you can’t go past Warm Neutral and White Exchange Half with Orora FR in Biscotti.

Dulux Reset + Orora FR in Steel & Pearl

If you are looking for something a little more adventurous, you could try the Reset colour palette in Treeless and Light Ceramic and combine it with the Orora FR in Steel

Dulux Snowy Mountains Half is a neutral white perfect to scheme with Light Ceramic and the Orora FR in Pearl

Need help with choosing the best blinds to suit your new wall colour, talk with an expert 1300 852 912.

How To Keep Your Kids Off The Screens And Occupied At Home During The Coronavirus

How To Keep Your Kids Occupied At Home and Off The Screens During The Coronavirus.

Like us, many of you are probably starting to seriously get nervous about how the Coronavirus will impact Australia, the world and your family. Many parents are calling for school closure and keeping their children at home, social distancing practices have been implemented and the government has implemented a ban on all indoor events greater than 100.  With this in mind, we are all probably going to spend a lot more time at home with the kids. With this in mind, we have been thinking of what we can do with our new found family time at home. So, what will we do while trapped in our homes with our kids? Maybe this could be an opportunity to start thinking about making some improvements to your home? Planning and renovating your home doesn’t have to break the bank. You can make small improvements by utilising your DIY skills (or gaining some via YouTube) and getting the whole family involved. It is also a really good opportunity to get the kids away from their screens and develop a sense of independence and creative thinking. 

Who Wants to be an Architect or Designer When They Grow Up?

You may not think your kids would be the best designers in the world but with their out-of-the-box thinking and imagination, they could come up with some incredibly ingenious ideas that you would never have thought of in a million years. Use some active listening and give them a chance to express their recommendations. Grab some paper and pencils and ask them to design their dream beds, shelving unit or kitchen breakfast area. Follow the wild stream of their imagination and work through solutions together. They can bring the creativity and you can work through the practicalities – all the while encouraging their creative thinking, and educating them on the why’s and how to’s of what is realistically achievable. 

Building and Construction – Good Idea or Bad?

Your initial thought may be that there is no place for children when it comes to the physical side of home renovations. Yes, toddlers best stay away from this area but you should give your older children a chance to prove themselves – bathroom remodeling is not a nuclear war zone!

Involving your children and watching them being focused on work with their nose crinkled, sporting their serious concentration face, is a valuable lesson and unforgettable experience for you and them. Your kids will learn to take responsibility for their actions and to think for themselves. Taking part in renovating their own home will also help teach a worthwhile lesson in understanding the work it takes to make your home beautiful and therefore developing a respect that may not have previously been there. Who knows, you may even end up with less holes in walls and graffiti laden bed heads. 

It doesn’t matter what job you give them from painting the walls and scraping off wallpaper to simply simple clean up duties or helping to measure for new curtains and blinds. Every single task is a sign of your trust in them and a fantastic boost to their self-esteem.

Time to Reduce the Minimum Age of Employment

To make the whole project a little extra fun – get your kids to clock on and record their hours/minutes of work and develop a reward or payment system for encouragement (there’s a food Math’s lesson right there!). This will help keep them enthusiastic about the project and a valuable exercise in learning the value of work and money. If you are using money as a reward, you could also teach them about the value in supporting their local community. Would going online and purchasing from a local toy store and donating a portion of their earnings to a local charity be a good way to support their community? There are so many ways you can teach your children about compassion and love for the world around them.

So, have a think about how you can get your kids involved in some DIY during these trying times, have fun and don’t let cabin fever get you down. 

Thanks,

The Blinds and Curtains on the Net Team

Quality Curtains and Blinds – from our Australian Family to Yours!

Support local business and shop Blinds on the Net Today

Visual of UK Blinds Manufacturer Direct Blinds Website

UK Blinds Market & Trends: Q and A with David Roebuck from Direct Blinds

As part of our commitment to bring you the latest trends and innovations in curtains and blinds, our team travel the world exploring the latest trends and speaking to our friends playing in the international market. Recently, we sat down and chatted trends and the UK blinds market with with UK blinds expert David Roebuck. David is Managing Director of Direct Blinds.  Here’s what he had to say:

What is the most popular products sold in the UK blinds market at the moment?

Obviously as an online only retailer we can only relate to our particular marketplace and this is influenced mainly by domestic sales for use in the home. Roller blinds are our most popular product followed by Wooden blinds with Vertical Louvre and Roman blinds remaining popular. We have seen a decrease recently in the popularity of 25mm Metal Venetian blinds. Electric motorised Roller blinds are becoming popular due to the reduced costs of this control option.

Plain Dim Out and Blackout fabrics dominate the sales in Roller blinds whilst transparent Voiles are also very popular. In my opinion the aesthetic look and feel of blinds in the Uk market often comes before the practicality of light, solar and privacy control. UPVC Faux wood blinds are a growing trend due to cost and the option of a grained effect on the popular white finishes.

What are the current colour trends in the UK blinds market right now?

Grey is becoming the new cream in the UK. Shades of grey have been popular now for around a year and show no signs of slowing down. Having said that white is still by far the most popular if uninspiring, choice closely followed by tones of creams and beige.

Where do see the UK blinds market in 5 years?

Whilst the UK is a world leader in E-commerce I believe that we still have plenty of scope for further growth. A recent feature has seen many of the big high street names moving up the rankings, generally based on their Brand power rather than on their made to measure product offering. Whilst Google continues with its ‘big brand’ preference it will make the work of the specialist more difficult. The state of general economy will also be paramount and with Brexit creating so much uncertainty at present who can really guess where this will go in the next couple of years, never mind five.

What percentage of the UK market are buying window coverings online vs. traditional retail shops?

We are still looking at a single figure percentage of online sales – so massive potential to grow online!

Are you seeing motorisation becoming more popular with the DIY online market?

Yes, the falling cost of motorisation particularly battery powered for Roller blinds, is proving popular. The importance and greater consumer awareness of chain loop safety is also a factor as is the general move to automation and technology.

How and why did Direct Blinds start their online business?

Direct Blinds began selling and manufacturing blinds under the Swift Blinds name, from the founders family home back in 1969. All types of blinds were supplied into all markets using a traditional showroom and field sales force approach. Around 50% of blinds were measured and installed by the company with the remaining blinds being sent by carriers to various other retailers and blind users around the UK.

Soon after the millennium we became a supplier and distributor to a local new launch online blind retailer and both parties enjoyed a successful period of unprecedented growth. The relationship became difficult due to the pressure of price and margins for the two companies and we decided to go our own way.

Our experience gave us the insight and confidence to go all out and transform our business model into what it is today, a 100% online business with no other way to market. The journey took 5 years and saw some fundamental changes in personnel, customers and products alike. Google are now our largest ‘supplier’ and the old showroom is now our sampling department!

Going online has its own different issues and problems compared to our previous model and isn’t for everybody, looking back we were in a pretty unique position of having a wide diverse customer base that gave us the opportunity to move on without the risk of losing everything in one fell swoop. I think everyone in the business would now agree that it was the right move for us and at the right time.

5 Affordable Ways to Increase Your Home Security

5 Affordable Ways to Increase Your Home Security

There are many things you can do to increase your home’s security.  Some methods may be more expensive and involve high-tech methods but there are some affordable methods that work well at increasing security also.  Below, we have provided you with 5 affordable ways that you can increase the security around your home.  Utilizing these methods can deter thieves and provide you with more peace of mind as well.

1. Put Window Blinds in Your Windows – You may be wondering how beneficial window blinds can be since they can’t keep a thief out, but they are a very good method for deterring thieves because they take away the thief’s visibility. When you have good quality blinds on your windows no one will be able to see inside.  This becomes even more important around Christmas time when thieves are looking for gift filled homes to target.  Preventing them from being able to see inside by using blinds can be a good deterrent to encourage them to skip your home.  Make sure the blinds are good quality and don’t forget to keep them closed at night and whenever you are gone, even if it is during the day. These are the most common times for a thief to be checking things out so if they can’t tell what’s on the other side of the blinds, they could possibly decide it’s just too risky. Thieves want the quickest way in and out of a home and not knowing what they are crawling into can be too uncertain for most.

2. Security Signs in the Yard – It may sound like a gimmick but placing security signs in your yard where they can be seen easily can be a huge deterrent to thieves especially if it is a security sign that is known for being connected automatically to the police.  Some people use these signs even if they don’t have a home security system.  It is important to note that while the signs may deter thieves, there is no actual protection that these signs provide unless you have the actual security system.  You can use the signs along with the other suggestions we have listed for added security, but don’t rely on the signs alone.

3. Window Sensors with Alarms – There are window sensors that you can purchase at any home improvement store that will sound a piercing alarm if the window is opened or the glass is broken.  If the thief tries to get in a window and when it is opened, even a little, or the glass is broken, a piercing, LOUD alarm sounds, chances are they will run. The last thing a thief wants it to draw attention to themselves.  These window sensors and alarms should be placed on all windows, especially the first floor. Look for the window sensors/alarms that are super loud.  It may be a little unnerving if you forget and open the window one day, but something that is not loud at all isn’t going to deter anyone. You want something so loud that it can be heard easily outside and throughout the house so they will want to run.

4. Mind Your Mail and Newspapers – If you are going to be away for a few days it is very important that you make arrangements for your mail to be held as well as your newspaper. Thieves look for mail piled up on a number of papers in the driveway which indicate that the home owner is out of town.

5. Don’t Advertise on Social Media – It is never a good idea to post on social media that you are leaving, going on vacation or will otherwise be leaving your home unattended.  There are thieves that will look for people doing this so they can target your home while you are gone.  As hard as it may be, save the social media posts for when you are back home.