Motorized Window Shades for our Large Windows
Luckily we’re not the type of people who walk around the house naked. If so, we would be the most popular house on the block… because we went 10 months without ANY window treatments on our front windows! (And we have some big ol’ front windows!)
I could only find a shot of the front windows without blinds from before we stained the floors and moved in. But you can get an idea of the massive size of these windows. Essentially this is the entire front half of our condo, and these windows look directly down onto the street or across into the condos across the street.
Why wait so long?!
I waited so long to find window treatments, specifically because they’re SO EXPENSIVE and we had other purchases we needed to make first (like our pricey built-in entertainment center).
But after saving as much as possible, and after too many times watching TV with a big glare on the screen, we decided to order some window treatments. Because of the size of these windows, I knew I couldn’t DIY anything that would look very good. So I researched a few vendors and ended up going with Budget Blinds.
Motorized Window Shades
They sent out a consultant in early March. I chose very minimal light gray roller shades and he assessed exactly what needed to be ordered. I originally wanted to go with white blinds, but the white sample looked a little “yellow/dirty” when the sun would stream through the windows. The gray ended up beating out the white because it looked much crisper, yet was still light and bright.
Since our windows are so expansive, and they have the crazy “L” shape, I was concerned about being able to move the blinds up and down easily. Therefore, we decided to go with motorized window shades that would work with a remote control. Yes, they were more expensive but we figured that they will last much longer since we won’t be tugging on them to move them up and down.
But guys, I’m getting ahead of myself. Remember how I told you we ordered the blinds back in March?! Well, they just got installed at the end of June. Yep, it took 4 months to get the correct blinds installed and functioning in our home. Long story short…we didn’t have the best experience with the Budget Blinds. It took lots of back and forth to get the correct (& undamaged) blinds installed in our home.
But I will say that Budget Blinds is a franchised company….so the one in your city could be amazing to work with compared to the one we used here in Chicago. I just want to be real and let you guys know that we certainly didn’t have the best experience with the one here in town.
Loving our New Roller Shades
But enough about the negative, let’s focus on the bright side. Now that our blinds are finally in, I absolutely love them. They’re high-quality, look amazing, and really make the space look finished.
Not to mention, they’re incredibly functional, do a great job of diffusing the bright light, and give us some privacy (finally!).
We added a white fascia to the top of the windows, so it hides the shades when they’re all the way rolled up. When they are in the “up” position, you can barely tell they’re there…which I really like!I’m so happy we got these installed before the heat wave of summer hit, because we keep them down all day when we’re at work and it has kept our home much cooler. Great for our energy bill!
We also added the same roller shades to the small window off our kitchen/dining area since it was bare.
We ended up going with the regular ol’ pull chain to operate these (to save some money), and that one looks great and functions well.
As for the large windows, we are both pretty obsessed with the remote control feature. And I especially love how well the cords are hidden (I was so worried it would look messy, but you hardly notice the cords).The white cord is tacked cleanly in the corner of the molding……and each plug goes to an outlet hidden by our bar cart. We have the blinds all the way down when it’s hot out and at night-time. We usually have them all the way up when I’m taking photos or really want to bring some light into the room. And then we also have a “MY” setting, which we were able to customize.
We chose 1/3 of the way down, and when we hit the “MY” setting, the blinds automatically stop at that position. I’m happy that this large task is finally off of our new homeowner to-do list. It makes me love our family room that much more. And I still can’t believe we went SO LONG without having any blinds! Now I keep asking myself…what did we do before we had these blinds?! Crazy how that happens, isn’t it?
But I must say, I’m content with the current space and love our home more and more each day. Plus, now I can walk around naked whenever I want.
I’m Casey Finn, the voice behind The DIY Playbook. I’m married to Finn & mom to Rory and Ellis. Together we’re creating our dream home in Chicago, one DIY project at a time.