How to Choose the Right Window Shade Fabric

Front door and window, brick walls.

There are many types of window shade options, and choosing the correct fabric is essential in your home renovation project. You’ve already decided you need screens, but you have a specific reason. The devil is always in the detail, and your screen fabric is no exception.

 You want something that will complement your home decor, bear the elements, and be strong enough to resist pets, intruders, critters, and/or insects.

But perhaps you’re not a professional and find yourself incessantly browsing the internet. You’re searching for that blog of all blogs that explain to you the intricacies of the different fabrics available for window screens.

You can put your mouse to rest because you’ve found the right place.

In this blog, we’ve got you covered… so you can cover your windows correctly and beautifully.

Keep on reading!


What are Window Shades?

Window shades are window treatments installed to improve the quality of your home and living. Depending on the area you live, you may choose shades for:

  • Blocking sun glare and harmful UV rays
  • Encourage ventilation and oxygen recycling
  • Prevent pests and critters from entering 
  • Act as a layer of security to stop intruders from entering
  • Reduce heat gain
  • Increase the energy efficiency of your home

These are convenient reasons to choose window shades over traditional drapes. They are custom installed and have a tidy finish to them.

You’re in your home. Following tradition, you hang drapes over your windows. They’re constantly agitated by the wind, blowing dust particles throughout your home. Your cats like them, ripping your beautiful fabric. You close them to stop the sun’s glare and find yourself sitting in the dark on a hot summer’s afternoon.

Drapes are no longer the best option. Shades, however, fit in nicely with your decor. They open up your space and allow the sunlight to pour in without bugs pestering you or UV rays harming you, your family, and your pets.


Why Choose Window Shades?

As touched on above, there is a long list of reasons to choose window shades. Let’s get into more detail here:


Glare Protection

Whether you’re trying to watch TV, work from home with a screen, or are busy cleaning and cooking, the glare from the sun is annoying and potentially dangerous. Have you ever walked across your kitchen and became temporarily blinded due to the sun streaming in? What if you have a knife in your hand with your dog running under your feet?

Sun glare can also be frustrating when affecting screen visibility on TVs and laptops. That’s your work productivity decreased and relaxation time cut.

Some window shades will allow you to continue your day as usual without the sun’s glare. These shades won’t block your view, nor will they stop natural light from brightening up your home.


UV Blocking

Ever since discovering the hole in the Ozone Layer in the ’90s, we’re all clued to how harmful the sun’s UV rays are. You wear sun cream to protect your skin; you buy specialist clothes and sunglasses to prevent UV rays from touching you. Now you can protect your home, too.

More than 50% of UVA rays can pass through the glass of your windows! So while you’re sitting having lunch, while your kids are quietly playing in their room, or your pet is harmlessly basking in the sun heat, UV rays are damaging you and them. You can shut all your drapes and shutters and live like hermits in the dark, or choose a window treatment fabric designed to block UV rays. We prefer the latter.

You can choose fabrics that complement your home’s interior or exterior design thanks to modern design standards. They are easy to install and keep clean and have many secondary benefits, too. 


Maintain your view

The dealbreaker for choosing window screens is your ability to keep your view. Many brands now offer high-tech designs that stop the unwanted from entering while still offering you your beautiful view. 

Many traditional roller blinds and drapes cover your whole window. During the day this isn’t very attractive. With many people now working from home and homeschooling, you’re spending more daytime in your house.

Check out Phantom Screens if you’re curious about how it works – sun glare, UV rays, and insects are prevented from coming in with continued ventilation and your view intact. And they can be customized to complement your interior design, to boot.


Shade material deciding factors: 

Let’s jump into the nitty-gritty here and dissect each factor that will help you choose what’s best for you, your family, and your home.


Interior or exterior

There are different window treatments available for internal purposes and exterior purposes. Your reasons may vary depending on your needs, and your choice will affect fabric choice. For example, exterior shades are more effective at reducing heat gain but need to be heavy-duty to withstand the elements. 

Interior window shade options promote light-filtering, like roller shades.


Light Vs. Dark Colors

The color of the fabric is essential, depending on the position of your window. If you intend to reduce sun glare, choosing a darker screen will be the optimal option. Certain more expensive brands provide dark color screens that still allow you to keep your view.

However, if your screen is up to repel bugs and resist strong winds, you can choose lighter, neutral colors. Many people would still prefer a lighter color, not wanting the dark shades to be visible from the street.

Custom made

Openness Differences 

Different meshes are available to accommodate your needs. Reach out to your local Screenmobile technician for assistance, but know that you can have your screen:

  • Deter flying insects
  • Encourage ventilation
  • Resist flying debris
  • Block solar glare and harmful UV rays
  • Energy efficient (reduce heat gain)
  • Security reasons
  • Increase your view while all the above.


Blackout Vs. Open Fabrics 

Blackout fabrics are trendy for room darkening, like home cinemas and bedrooms. The material is thick and doesn’t let any light through, allowing you to enjoy movies during the day and sleep without being bothered by outdoor lights – neighboring exterior lights, street lamps, and passing vehicles.

Open fabrics allow you to enjoy your view, ventilate your home, and so on, as listed above.


Manual or Motorized

This is where we get technical. Motorized screens are becoming very popular now that homes are evolving with smart technology. You can control your heating, AC, and interior lighting; heck, you can even have robotics clean your home with a button on your smartphone – why not your window screens, too?

You’re in the home office working, and as the day goes on, the sun moves. When that glare hits your screen, you get frustrated. You’re in a highly productive state of mind and wish not to stop. A motorized screen allows you to control your window shade from your desk chair without getting up and manually lowering your blind.

Or you have your elderly mother-in-law in the spare room, and she wants to take a nap. She can easily control the blind from the comfort of her own home. 

Needless to say, motorized screens are a bit more expensive. There is nothing ‘wrong’ with manual screens – they work just as well. All they lack is the comfort a motorized screen offers.


We can choose together.

Just know that options exist, that it’s never a one-size-fits-all solution. You can even choose different window treatments for different sides of your home! It all boils down to your needs, usually based on your home location and positioning.

If you’re not 100% sure or desire a professional second opinion, then your local Screenmobile technician is capable of assisting you. 

Contact Screenmobile!

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