Product Comparison List

Choosing a blind for your bedroom (or other light sensitive room) can be difficult given the choice now available. In the window coverings business, we use the term Blackout Blinds casually, but actually we are talking about 'dim-out' blinds. It's only possible to achieve a true blackout with a blind which has side channels, a head box, a bottom channel and a sealed edge on installation. Even then, one cannot guarantee that 100% light has been excluded (for photographic development for example).

For the majority of people, a small amount of light is not an issue. If you are truly bothered by small amounts of light, please talk so us so we can try and match your expectations.

We've put together this quick comparison list to help decide which style of blind is more suitable for you. The products listed below have been compared whilst taking into consideration specific fabric types which are designed for reducing light in rooms.  

For VELUX blinds, please click here

Roller Blinds
Effectiveness as Dimout: When used with an opaque (no light coming through) fabric, roller blinds are very effective at keeping light out. The reason is that because there is only one sheet of fabric, there's no light breaking through anywhere other than at the edges of the blind. 
A roller blind fitted to the outside of a recess, with an overlap of at least 50mm (2") each side is the best blind for sensitive rooms such as babies' bedrooms.
Our overall rating: 8/10 when used with opaque fabric (a 10/10 is achievable with blackout side channels... speak to us)

 

Vertical Blinds
Effectiveness as Dimout: Vertical blinds are good at creating a dimout effect. There is a growing range of opaque fabrics available, and these are mainly made of polyester (on the face) with a PVC coating (on the back). There will be light penetrating between each louvre, and at the edges of the blinds, and so this blind isn't as highly rated as the roller blind, but if you want this style of blind then it is possible to get a reasonable dim-out effect.
Our overall rating: 7/10 when used with an opaque fabric

 

Aluminium Venetians
Effectiveness as Dimout: Aluminium blinds have not traditionally been used for the purpose of dimout. There are usually many slats in a blind, and there are always gaps between the slats, since they cannot close and 'touch' each other. A 'Privacy Slat' can be ordered to eliminate the holes that are punched in the blind altogether, and this helps create a better dimout effect.
Our overall rating: 5/10 (standard blind)     6/10 (privacy blind)

 

Wooden Venetians
Effectiveness as Dimout: Whilst you may think that a wooden blind performs as well as a standard venetian, you'd be wrong. Wooden blind slats do not close as tightly as aluminium slat blinds, and so let much more light through. Most people find the effect acceptable though, especially as it's such a good looking blind! 
A slightly better dimout can be achieved if the blinds are ordered with woven ladder tapes, since the tapes cover the punched holes. Our deluxe wooden blind can be order with 'Privacy Slats' thus eliminating the punched hole altogether.
Our overall rating: 5/10

 

Woven Wood Blinds (aka Woodweave - not shown on this site but available in store)
Effectiveness as Dimout:

Woven wood blinds are only useful as a dimout blind if used with a wood weave fabric that has a blackout lining, or a really tight weave. 

Recently this style of blind has really lost favour with the fashion conscious, and so we do not feature it on our website. We do have samples in our showroom however.

Our overall rating: 6/10 for fabrics with an opaque lining

 

Pleated Blinds
Effectiveness as Dimout:

Pleated blinds have seen massive innovations in fabric technology recently. We now have cellular fabrics which are essentially dual layers of cloth fused together to create a honeycomb 'cell'. This fabric removes the need for a visible hole to be drilled through it which in itself reduces the light transmission significantly.

The great thing about pleated blinds is that there is only a very small gap at each end of the blind, thus eliminating more light, and when used in conjunction with our Perfect Fit frames (see below) you get a great dim-out effect!

Our overall rating: 8/10 with cellular blackout fabrics

 

Plantation Shutters
Effectiveness as Dimout:

Plantation shutters are extremely effective at reducing the light in a room. Most shutters are fitted within a framework, which is in turn fixing to a wall of frame, which creates a really good seal. You'll still get some degree of light transmission through the shutter, because there are some small gaps at the edge of each louvre, but compared to other window coverings shutters are great for blackout. 

We are able to make a cellular pleated blind to fit behind the shutter panels, and we are able to create an excellent light seal, so talk to us about this if light really is an issue for you.

Our overall rating: 9/10 (10/10 with a cellular pleated blind mounted behind the shutter)

 

Roman Blinds
Effectiveness as Dimout: When used with a blackout lining, roman blinds are make good dimout blinds. There's a good selection of fabrics, and almost any of them can be lined. These blinds are very popular fitted inside the recess, although a better dimout can be achieved if they are mounted outside the recess with an overlap of at least 50mm (2") each side.
Our overall rating: 8/10 with dimout lining

 

Perfect Fit Blinds
Effectiveness as Dimout: Perfect Fit Blind come in three flavours... roller, pleated and venetian. The venetian blind really isn't that effective at keeping light out. The roller and pleated style offer a good blackout however, since the edges of the fabric are covered by the aluminium rails into which the blinds are mounted. We favour the pleated style above the roller style, but really the difference in performance is negligible. 
Our overall rating: 9/10 when using a blackout fabric

 

Roller Blinds in Head Boxes with Side Channels
Effectiveness as Dimout:

This is the most effective product you can use for a blackout effect. It's a roller blind which is mounted within a headbox and fitted with side channels into which the blind fabric runs up and down. We can also add a bottom channel for added blackout effect. 

We are now manufacturing this product at our Long Lane premises, and will be adding more details to our web site over the coming weeks. If you have a need for this product right away, please get in touch. We have working models in our showroom.

Our overall rating: 10/10 when using a blackout fabric