Adding or replacing existing shades, curtains, and other window treatments may be a costly investment for any business. Choosing the right treatments should start by analyzing the size and amount of window coverings needed, factoring in materials and requirements for the space. By taking the time to select durable, easy-to-clean and cost-effective options, businesses can save money and even increase productivity.
To determine the best window treatments for a business, size is a factor in determining what window treatment will work.
- Solar shades are available in very large widths. The fabric can be turned (railroaded) height for width to accommodate large window openings. The beauty of solar shades is the view through the shade while it blocks bright light.
- Draperies can be custom made to any size.
- Mini blinds can be made as wide as 142 in. and as tall as 126 in. so this product is suitable for many applications.
- Carefully consider the needs and style of the office to help determine which window treatments will work best.
Find What Fits Your Needs
Every business has unique requirements, from small shops or daycare centers to large, multi-floor office complexes or retail stores.
- Filtered natural light can aid productivity, according to a paper by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and bright glaring light can lead to unhappy employees. Businesses with large open windows should consider solar shades that let in natural light, but filter out the blinding light that can distract from work and become a nuisance.
- Blackout shades or draperies are a great addition to a nursery or daycare center, allowing for complete light blocking for babies or napping toddlers.
- Offices with a formal, classic decor might opt for wood blinds or custom draperies to lend an air of sophistication.
Know How to Save Money
Cost-effective decorating is a top priority for all businesses, and adding new window treatments can be expensive. However, by adding some new window coverings or replacing less functional ones, businesses can actually save money in the long run.
- UV shades are the perfect addition to large shops and stores because they filter out light harmful to merchandise but still allow in natural light.
- UV shades can also reduce cooling costs in warmer climates or summer months and help customers and employees see computer screens and register displays more clearly.
- Cellular and UV shades, as well as specially designed curtains, can also reduce noise for offices located in busy areas.
- Cellular shades help insulate windows, keeping in heat and prevent air leakage, which can reduce heating costs. Draperies with thermal liners conserve energy for environmentally conscious offices and businesses.
- Shades and curtains can also prevent light from damaging and fading office furniture and carpeting, which are both costly to repair or replace.
Achieving an Aesthetic
During the redesign of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, a design firm created a customized dual shade system that uses translucent white fabric to filter light during the day, while blackout fabric prevents light emanating from the museum from becoming a nuisance to the surrounding area. This is a perfect example of a window treatment solution that is tailored to the specific needs of the business.
Here are a few good rules of thumb to follow when selecting appropriate window treatments that will reflect the nature of a business.
- Form should follow function. This is a golden rule that’s particularly applicable when it comes to decorating a business space, and that includes window treatments.
- To identify an appropriate aesthetic, start by establishing the primary need of the space. For example, a museum will favor blinds that have a multifunctional ability to block out different levels of light in the interest of protecting works of art. Therefore, light filtering is the requirement; the aesthetic will be established by window treatments that match the structural design and architecture.
- Think about the long term. Some window treatments can become dated very quickly. Trendy blind systems or garish colors that are of-the-moment are not good investments. For example, in a professional administrative setting, sticking with simple, functional roller blinds might be a good option. In a design firm, on the other hand, modern window treatments will be appropriate.
Window treatments are like any other decorative element, only they serve a much more functional purpose. Always opt for a choice that’s safe and functional, addressing aesthetics needs only later.