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Automated shades controlled with Alexa voice command

Automated shades controlled with Alexa voice command
If you thought like me that motorized shades controlled by an App will be the trend for the next 5 or ten years, we both were wrong. Motorization is a small part of the equation; now you can talk to your blinds through Alexa TM and many other home automation systems. Amazon will allow you to Voice Command your smart blinds with Alexa Smart Home. https://www.amazon.com/alexa-smart-home/b?node=13575751011

How it works: it’s not magic, therefore here is the easiest way to explain it without going too much in technical details. First you need a window treatment such as a roller shades that has the technology built from Hunter Douglas PowerView TM https://www.hunterdouglas.com/operating-systems/powerview-motorization or it can be from Lutron or Somfy. Second you need a bridge to connect to your internet modem and install an App from https://ifttt.com/connect/powerview/amazon_alexa to start programming your shades. Other helpfull link https://ifttt.com/powerview
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How to prepare for a window coverings presentation

Before a decorator shows up to your door with business card in hand and start asking you all the questions here is the “how to prepare for a window coverings presentation”. To save time and to narrow down to the desired treatment and start exploring the swatches with different designs and colors please consider the following questions:

Do you still need to look outside while controlling the light and privacy at the same time, then blinds with tilting vanes or slats are the solution. Mini blinds, horizontal blinds, vertical blinds and shutters can apply to any opening

Are you looking for a decorative material that can roll or fold, then shades are the best solution. Roller shades, honeycomb shades and woven wood shades will dress most windows

Are you looking for a soft look to cover wide openings, then drapery is the answer. Dual layers such as sheers and over drapery can solve privacy both day and night

Not satisfied with your hard treatment casing or you want to add a decorative touch to your drapery or bare window, a top treatment such as cornice box, roman shade valance, or swag and cascades will enhance the look of any window

You can’t find your style within the shades line then roman shades, balloon shades and Austrian shades can be made with any custom fabric you wish for

You can’t decided we are here to help, please contact us to experience the best in-house window coverings presentation! (858) 650-3035

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Honeycomb Shades versus other window coverings

(Courtesy Hunter Douglas picture gallery)

Cellular shades are popular treatment that comes in 3 type of materials; sheers, light filtering and room darkening.

Pros:

Top down bottom up option that permits you to maintain privacy while allows the light to come through

Multiple control options such as cordless, continuous cords, Ultraglide™ (Hunter Douglas Patent), automated battery or plug in,

Room darkening honeycombs have the highest R-value * to keep the heat from entering your home

Cons:

Once the shades are in the closed position there will be no tilt option

*The R-value is a measure of thermal resistance[1] for materials and assemblies of materials (such as insulation panels, floors, and walls) in the building and construction industry. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R-value_(insulation)

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How to match your window coverings with home decor trends

There are many home decor trends in this day and age. Nothing feels better than having a humble abode that best fits your personal style. It shows a piece of your personality, creativity, and unique style. Nowadays, there are multiple styles that influence the look of each home. According to Froy, the most popular interior home styles are: mid-century modern, industrial, nautical, Scandinavian, bohemian, farm house, and shabby chic.

Window Treatments have a large role when it comes to the impact of the tone of a home. By simply remodeling your current window coverings, you change the whole feel and style of your trendy dwelling.

Mid-Century Modern

Key aspects of a mid-century modern home include: large open floor plans, neutral colors only, and simplicity.

  • Roller Shades: Roller shades are a perfect window treatment to fit into your style. Century Blinds’ Roller Shade Elevations™ collection has a various options to create the ideal ambiance for a simplistic, styled home. My favorite samples are: light grey, flocke loutre (a room-darkening material), and charcoal charcoal.

To see more samples by Century, click here.

  • Honeycomb Shades: A popular window treatment, the honeycomb shades are a versatile product that will fit into a mid-century modern style. Hunter Douglas provides a variety of options for honeycombs. My favorite is the Duette Architella. With this line of honeycombs, you are able to add to any window or door between 12-174″ wide and 6 – 144″ height. The style of mid-century modern goes hand and hand with large windows, so honeycombs are a perfect fit.

A common trendy place to shop for mid-century modern decor is West Elm. For great modern home decor styles, go to http://homeguides.sfgate.com/.

Industrial

Key concepts to master in an industrial styled home are: the use of black and white tones; open ceilings; and common mediums are steel and brick.

  • Roller Shades: Roller shades are a simple window treatment that comes in different materials to fit each person’s style. Industrial styled homes tend to have large open windows. Therefore, roller shades would work great for this type of home decor trend. Roller shades can hide completely by rolling into a cassette. As a result, a window can be 100% viewable (if needed). In addition, roller shades are a clean simple look that works great when styling an industrial home.

A great place to purchase industrial styled products would be World Market and some home decor at your local Target.

Nautical

A common style in home decor in San Diego is nautical due to surrounding beach towns such as: Pacific Beach, La Jolla, Solana Beach, Del Mar, and Coronado. Unique features of a nautical styled home include: striped décor; natural mediums (such as drift wood, dried starfish, and rope); and ocean-themed furniture (such as sailboats, sea creatures, shells, mermaids, etc.).

  • Drapery: Drapery works great with a nautical home decor. With drapery, you have the ability to customize with fabrics and hardware according you style. One of my favorite fabric manufacturers, Duralee Pavilion has a sample book called “Marine/ Lime” that works great with oceanic design. Pattern 15411-99pattern 15435-5, and pattern 15430-99 are just some of many fabrics that coordinate well.

Scandinavian

The Scandinavian home decor trend has minimal shapes with bold hidden patterns placed throughout the home. Common mediums for this home decor trend are: fur materials, wood mixed with fabrics, and a mixture of metals (such as copper and silver). Frequent colors include dark blues, whites, blacks, and various grey colors.

  • Soft Shades: Soft shades are considered a modern window treatment and are the newest window coverings on the market. A popular soft treatment is the Silhouette® by Hunter Douglas. If you’re looking for something more cost efficient, the Nantucket™ is another option; both the Nantucket™ and Silhouette® by Hunter Douglas are soft shades and look quite similar. The swatch Nouveau Quartette Powder Sugar in the Silhouette® Collection would complete the Scandinavian look because of its clean white color and texture.

A great place to shop for Scandinavian home decor is Ikea.

Bohemian

Key concepts to master the look are: use of natural materials, various different patterns, and plants placed throughout the home. Deep reds, greens, and blues are colors commonly used in this decor.

  • Drapery: Drapery has an array of fabrics with virtually any pattern to choose from. The free-flowing form of drapery is in tune with the Bohemian home decor trend. Fabricators like Greenhouse Fabrics and Fabricut have beautiful choices to complete your bohemian-styled home. Some fabrics that stood out to me are: Greenhouse Fabric’s B1039Fabricut’s Cabra, and Carole Fabric’s High Gloss in crimson.

Farm House

The farm house style is a rustic look that complements the countryside. Frequent mediums are: red brick, wood finishes, and wicker furniture. This interior design style has an old-fashioned feel with vintage taste.

  • Shutters: Not only are shutters a great asset for any home, but also fit in virtually any opening as well. Vital factors for your farmhouse decor is keeping furniture simple and affordable. Shutters come in three forms: vinyl (or PVC), composite wood, and wood. Not sure which type best suits you? Visit http://www.thenakeddecorator.com/ to learn more about the various mediums.

Shabby Chic

Shabby Chic is a vintage look with exaggerated edges. The main colors to distinguish this style are pastels with gold and metal finishes. The decor has a rustic/ tarnished look. Simple flower designs are a common pattern as well.

  • Roman Shades: Because roman shades are practical in any material, it coordinates well with pastels and simple patterns throughout the home. Some fabrics I thought arranged well are: Greenhouse Fabrics’ A8675 in mineral; and Trend’s Jaclyn Smith Home sample book, Blush/ Punch Prints and Wovens volume III. Similarly, Hunter Douglas designer roman shades are customizable shades that work to accommodate the style.

Virtually, all window treatments can be styled to any home decor. Everyone has their personal preferences and ideals when it comes to your home.

Writer: Zoe Vega

Some websites that I found helpful for coordinating your styled home:

freshhome.com

realtormag.relator.org

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Pros and Cons of Motorized Shades

(Hunter Douglas Silhouette® Shades with Powerview™ operating system)

Smart homes are the new and upcoming trend in the interior design business. TV shows like Mr. Robot illustrates the rise of technology today. Products like: The Nest, Petzi Treat Cam, Projectors, using tv’s as a smart hubs, and Amazon’s Dash buttons are automating our home life as we know it. The window treatment business has also made advancements with the latest technology trends. Providing state of the art motorized products by manufacturers like Hunter Douglas, comfy and Luton allows your window treatments to run with a simple push of a button. Can’t Decide if you want to update your home to a “smart” home? Well, coming from a company that has over 20 years of experience, we will go over the pros and cons of purchasing motorized window treatments for your humble abode.

PROS:

1. Having motorized window treatments are safe.

Automated window treatments are controlled wireless, therefore there is no choking hazard contained on the window treatment. This is a great feature for families with small children. Having a cordless control on the window treatment is also safe for pets. Small animals enjoy playing with the hanging strings, as a result: causing breakage or even worse, harm to the pet.

2. Adding electric window coverings give the cleanest design.

Due to seamless control system, having motorized shades gives a sleeker look. Cord are controlled by a motor which is tucked away in the window treatment’s handrail.

3. Great window covering control option for hard to reach windows.

Powered shades are a great match for skylights, large windows and even windows that extend for multiple stories in a home and/or office. Electric treatments are also great for people who have disabilities and cannot run window treatment controls.

CONS:

1. Motorized window treatments are a new concept.

Since automated window coverings were first introduced only a few years ago, like apple products, there are many updates. This can be troublesome if your window treatment motor needs a repair (which is almost never the case).

2. Batteries have a short life span on battery operated motor window treatments.

After years of experience, battery operated window treatments do not work well with certain types of AA batteries. Royal Window Coverings Inc. recommends AA batteries that are manufactured by Duracell. Many of the other AA battery brands seem to drain quickly when applied to these window treatment motors (which is an easy fix).

3. Motorized Shades can be costly.

Purchasing motorized shades can be pricey. Adding motorization to a window treatment can raise each the price of the shade up to $250 or more. Because of the constant advancements to technology, Motorized window treatments are due to keep decreasing in price.

Credit: Zoe Vega