How Do You Choose Between Curtains and Blinds?

How Do You Choose Between Curtains and Blinds?

Living room window with curtains and blinds

As a company that sells window blinds, it would be easy to advise you to buy blinds and tell you that they are much better than curtains. But instead, we will detail the advantages and disadvantages of each so that you can decide which is best for you and your home.

What is the difference between a curtain and a blind?

In very simple terms, a blind hangs close to the window glass and is usually fitted within the window frame. Curtains are usually hung from a curtain pole or track above the window frame and when closed, cover the window and window frame.

Great reasons for choosing curtains for your home

Living room with full length curtains

Apart from personal taste, these are the best reasons for choosing a set of curtains for your home.

  1. Aesthetics
  2. A curtain made from a luxurious material will become a feature of your room. People will often invest in good-quality curtains for their living room as they will enhance the décor and make a design statement. Even a curtain made from a cheaper material will make the room look less bare and help enhance the window area.

  3. Price
  4. The price range for a set of curtains is huge! It can range from hundreds of pounds for a made-to-measure set in a luxury material with blackout lining to as little as around £20 for a set of small standard-sized curtains. If you don’t have a huge budget this is where curtains can benefit over blinds. If you don’t have huge windows, you can buy a nice set of curtains for a reasonable price. Depending on your budget you may have to buy curtains that are not lined and are made from a thinner material but they will still work and enhance the decor in your room.

  5. Heat
  6. A set of ceiling-to-floor curtains that are lined and made from a good-quality thick material will help insulate your room on a cold winter’s evening.

  7. Choice
  8. There is no limit to the colours, patterns, or choice of fabrics for curtains. They range from light, sheer voile to patterned, heavy velvet fabrics.

  9. Light
  10. If you have the space around your window, a curtain can be drawn back during the day so that your window is fully exposed and will let as much sunlight as possible into your home. And if you have a good view you will be able to benefit from seeing the view at the full size of your window. In bedrooms, when you close the curtain you will benefit from a fully darkened room if you have great quality curtains.

As you can see, there are many good reasons why curtains have remained popular for thousands of years. It is believed that the Egyptians used curtains as far back as 3100 BC and there has been evidence found that the Romans used curtains in Pompeii.

However, there are disadvantages too!

Disadvantages of using curtains in your home

Before buying curtains, we think you should consider the following points. Just one of these issues could be the reason you need to fit blinds instead.

  1. Price
  2. We have already mentioned Price as an advantage but the price can also be a disadvantage. If you want high-quality made-to-measure curtains they will cost hundreds of pounds. This is especially the case if you have large Victorian or Edwardian windows.

  3. Damage
  4. Curtains are not really suitable for bathrooms and kitchens. It is possible to use them in these rooms but they are susceptible to water damage and dampness. A bathroom needs a window covering that can handle dampness and water splashes. In a kitchen you have to be careful the curtains can’t catch fire from a hob or become water damaged from the sink.

  5. Light
  6. Curtains are generally open and let the light in or closed and provide complete privacy and darkness. This is fine until you are working and only want to block out a little bit of direct sunlight. Who wants to have to close the curtains just to work at a laptop or PC on a bright, sunny day? Or to sit in the dark to watch the TV?

  7. Warmth
  8. If you have a radiator under your window and then buy full-length curtains, the radiator will be behind the closed curtain on a winter’s evening when you need the heat from the radiator the most.

In summary, curtains are a fantastic choice for a home. They are usually available at a price that suits all budgets and in a choice of fabric that will suit your décor and taste. The main disadvantages are that they aren’t suitable for all rooms and don’t allow you to block just some sun glare in the way that blinds can.

Fantastic reasons for choosing blinds for your home

aluminium venetian blinds haddington, musselburgh, north Berwick
Blinds are becoming increasingly more popular every year and there are good reasons for that popularity.

  1. Many types of blinds
  2. The range of types of blinds has grown in recent years. If your idea of a window blind is a white Venetian blind or a cheap-looking vertical blind, then please have a look at all the types of blinds available on our website. Venetian blinds are now available in hundreds of colours and the slats can be made from PVC, aluminium, wood, or faux wood. Roman blinds can be made from luxurious fabrics and there are new types of blinds such as Vision blinds and Perfect Fit blinds. At Forth Blinds, we can fully explain each type of blind and help you choose the right type for your home.

  3. Technological Improvements
  4. If you dislike the dangly cords on blinds, then you will be pleased to hear that you can now buy cordless blinds. Cordless blinds look more expensive and are more aesthetically pleasing. You can also buy motorised blinds that you can control by remote control or even by voice using Amazon Echo or Google Home.

  5. Sunlight
  6. Blinds have a huge advantage over curtains when it comes to controlling sunlight and sun glare in your home. Roller blinds and Roman blinds can be pulled down just enough to prevent harsh sun glare in your room but to still let the light in. With Venetian and vertical blinds you can tilt the slats to an angle that only allows gentle daylight in. Vision blinds, otherwise known as ‘day and night’ blinds provide privacy during the day but allow daylight in.

  7. Price
  8. As with curtains, the price range is huge depending on the fabrics chosen, the size of your windows, and whether you need made-to-measure blinds. The great news is that a set of top-of-the-range made-to-measure blinds will be cheaper than made-to-measure curtains.

  9. Aesthetics
  10. The wide range of blinds available means you will be able to choose a blind that suits your style and décor. If you like a modern, minimal interior, then blinds are perfect for you. They are neat and tidy and can sit flush inside your window frame.

There are many more advantages of blinds such as they are suitable for all rooms, they are easy to clean, and can add warmth to your room but it is much more difficult thinking of disadvantages.

A few reasons why blinds may not be as good as curtains

This was difficult, as we truely believe there are no disadvantages to fitting blinds but we managed to think of a couple areas where a high-quality set of curtains may have benefits over window blinds.

  1. Blackout
  2. Excellent blackout blinds are now available to buy especially Perfect Fit blinds for uPVC windows and Velux blinds. These types of blinds are fitted tightly to the window frame to prevent light from getting in. Other types of blinds will not give your room a complete blackout in the way that high-quality curtains can. This is usually due to the small gaps between the blind and the window frame.

  3. Thermal
  4. Fitting a blind to a window will keep heat in your room and help with energy bills, however, a thick pair of heavy curtains will do a better job at insulating your room.

Blinds v Curtains Summary

Living room window with curtains and blinds

For many people, the best option is going to be fitting both blinds and curtains. This means you get all the benefits eg a fantastic looking window, with light shading during the day and great thermal benefits in the evening.

Ultimately, it is down to personal choice whether you choose curtains, blinds or both but we hope our lists of advantages and disadvantages will help you decide which will be better for you home. At Forth Blinds, we have the experience and expertise to advise and help you choose the best type of blinds for your home. Please do get in touch if you would like more information or would like us to visit your home in Edinburgh or the Lothians to measure your windows and provide you with a free quote.

Philip O'Brien
Philip O'Brien
Philip O'Brien is a partner in Forth Blinds with decades of experience in blinds. There is no shape, size or style of window he hasn't tackled over the years! Forth Blinds supply to schools, hospitals, offices, shops, care homes, government departments, student accommodation, historic buildings, houses, flats and conservatories.