materials 101

Window Treatment Materials 101

materials 101

The materials used to create blinds and shades are the defining factor in what makes them effective at blocking light, filtering light, absorbing heat, insulating rooms, eliminating UV rays, and protecting your privacy.

Knowing the types of materials used in your current window treatments and knowing the materials you may want in the future can be helpful when you’re ordering new window treatments that must meet certain needs from both a form and function standpoint.

Not all everyone has the same needs when purchasing window treatments. That’s why it’s important to understand the differences between blinds and shades that look similar, but ultimately have different textures, weights, and purposes.



Wood is naturally lightweight and durable, and that means blinds created with this material are suitable for installation in just about any room in your home or business. The rich natural wood grain and texture are highlighted by the beautiful stains and colors.

Wood blinds are incredibly lightweight and easy to install on even the largest windows. Best of all, wood blinds are the perfect match for almost any type and color of your home’s decor.

Wood Shutters are also the ONLY window covering that actually add resale value to your home!

Faux Wood

Faux Wood

Faux wood is a material created by combining vinyl and vinyl compounds in a manner that looks and feels like real wood. It is also easier to clean due to being less likely to absorb moisture, which can occasionally result in the warping of real wood blinds.

Faux wood was originally conceived for use in blinds that are installed in steamy, humid, or moisture-filled rooms, such as bathrooms, kitchens, and garages. But their attractive looks and durability have made them popular choices for every room.



Fabric is used in the manufacture of a huge variety of shades, including Roman shades, cellular shades, sheer shades, roller shades, and pleated shades.

Despite the common material, these shades have different looks, functions, and purposes.

  • Roman shades are among the most elegant in appearance, while sheer shades and pleated shades are designed to filter light. Many different kinds of materials, from wood to fabric, can be used to create Roman shades, as well as natural materials such as bamboo.
  • Roller shades often used to block out or eliminate outside light. They are constructed with modern fabrics and offer simple functionality for ease of use.
  • Cellular or Honeycomb Shades The durable, washable, polyester fabric is available in a wide range of colors and textures in various cell sizes, and in various opacities, from sheer to total blackout.
  • Sheer Shades are made from translucent (sheer) fabric. They have two layers of sheer fabrics to protect your room from the sun’s damaging UV rays, combined with soft fabric vanes for the ultimate light control. During the day they allow you to see from the inside out while preventing people outside from seeing directly into the space.
  • Blackout liners have an ultra-tight weave that keeps out 99.9% of light. The fibers can also be woven between two layers of colored fabric, so that the black material is not visible from the street or the home’s interior, but still offers effective room darkening.
  • Solar and exterior shades are designed to significantly reduce the heat and intensity of the sun’s UV rays while preserving outdoor views. Solar screen fabric is available in a wide variety of colors, styles, and openness factors to meet almost any criteria.  These fabrics fall into three categories; dark fabrics, light fabrics, and high-performance reflective fabrics.

Drapery Fabric


Also referred to as soft treatments, drapery fabrics can be used to create an elegant, casual or a sophisticated look. They come in a variety of shapes, materials, sizes, colors and patterns.  They can vary according to cleaning-ability, ultraviolet light deterioration, oil and dust retention, noise absorption, fire resistance, and life span.



Aluminum blinds, commonly known as “mini-blinds,” consist of lightweight aluminum slats. Aluminum is a tough and durable material that’s used to manufacture no-nonsense blinds that are designed to hold up for many years under harsh conditions. In addition to being highly resistant to fading, cracking, and chipping, they are also lightweight, which makes them easy to install.



PVC is a no-nonsense material that’s lightweight and highly effective at blocking out light. PVC is often used in large vertical blinds that are designed to be installed on sliding glass doors and other oversized windows that aren’t easily covered by traditional window coverings. PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride, and it’s the world’s third-most widely produced synthetic plastic polymer.

And just like aluminum and faux wood blinds, PVC blinds can be cleaned without fears of fading or warping.

Woven Woods

woven wood

Woven Wood Shades (also known as Natural Shades) offer a design aesthetic that makes them completely unique and a breath of fresh air for many homeowners.

The combination of fine wood and natural bamboo used in woven wood shades gives any room the look and feel of nature at its elegant best. it’s also highly effective at performing all the functions you want and need from your shades. In addition to the materials being stunningly beautiful, they are exceptionally durable.

No matter what your needs are, our personalized service includes a complimentary consultation. This service allows you to see various window coverings in your own environment, enabling you to see how light, room colors, furnishings and the types of materials affect your options and choices.

Give us a call at 262-643-8484 and let us help you select the perfect window treatments for your home or business.