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Earth Day

Monday, April 21st, 2014

EarthDayTomorrow on April 22nd is Earth Day, globally celebrated in over 192 countries. On Earth Day we honor the earth and the concept of peace.

Earth Day is about acknowledgement of all the gifts and wonders nature has to offer. It is also to acknowledge how fragile it is and realize that protecting our earth is essential. We all know that in reality we aren’t exactly gentle to our planet earth.  As a matter of fact the pollution that mankind creates is just staggering.

Dirty drinking waters kill children daily says a Unicef study.  14 billion lbs. of garbage are dumped into our oceans every year. People that live in areas with high air pollution have a much higher chance to die of lung cancer. A staggering 40% of our lakes in America are too polluted to swim in them or fish. Americans make up less than 5% of the world population but produce 30% of the world’s pollution. This list could actually go on as to what we create in waste and pollution, so let’s see about our steps we can take right at home to help mother earth:

  • Since we are in the window covering industry, we will bring up this point first: Let’s insulate our windows!! Cellular Shades are a great insulator saving energy all year around and keeping heating and cooling down.
  • Let’s turn off our lights, too often we leave lights on when we have long left a room.
  • Are you recycling? Let’s separate our garbage as much as we can. Most communities have now recycle service, let’s participate.
  • What about using less water? Such a precious recourse, but we keep over-using. If everyone scaled back 10%, what a difference we could make. I have personally stopped watering my lawn in the summer time – and we are talking Texas heat!!
  • Are you using re-usable shopping bags? I know I am, it’s so easy to do.
  • Turn down the heat, especially the water heater. A few degrees can make quite a difference, but you still will be just as warm taking your shower.
  • Go Solar! It isn’t a sensible solution for older homes, but for new homes in the right regions it could make all the sense in the world.
  • Carpooling, so many times we could ride together. Why not? You might enjoy socializing as an added bonus.

Of course there could be so many more things one can do. At the end of the day we should all put on our thinking caps and realize where we could cut down on waste, energy or pollution. We can make all the difference if everyone just puts in an effort. Happy Earth Day!

Solutions for Small Spaces

Tuesday, April 15th, 2014

ShelvesSmall spaces can drive us crazy, they can feel cramped, feel small, and we don’t really know what to do with them. We are talking small bathrooms, utility rooms, closets or other small areas that are tight on space.

Here are some ideas and design tips on how maximize small areas:

  • Use Light Colors – Dark colors will make a room appear more compact, light colors and hues will help to open up a room.
  • Utilize Shelves – An excellent way to utilize small walls is shelves. Invest in attractive canisters to store away bathroom essentials.
  • Get the right Window Treatments – Find blinds or shades that work on small windows; stay away from vertical blinds, instead work with light-filtering cellular shades, light-filtering roman shades or blinds that have a small stack, so when the shade is raised, the eye is able to move beyond the wall and see outdoor space.
  • Add a mirror – An easy and great design trick to make a small space appear bigger is a full-body mirror. It helps to visually expand a space.
  • Choose small space furnishings – Decor and furnishings should be small, since items that are too big can quickly feel overwhelming. Neat pieces, compact frames, clean lines help in these areas.
  • Keep it clutter free - In small spaces any additional visual distraction of clutter and items will feel overwhelming. By keeping decorations and other items to a minimum you help keep the space organized to the eye.

Shades with Floral Design

Monday, April 7th, 2014

Here in Texas and many parts of the country everything is in bloom now. Trees, bushes and many garden flowers are popping up giving us beauty and many colors to gaze at. Want to have something in bloom all year around? How about window shades with flowers?

Many manufacturers are offering floral prints. They have come back in a big way! Good Housekeeping shades, Comfortex and Bali offer beautiful flower prints in just about any fabric product line including cellular shades, roller shades and roman shades. We just love how each shade becomes a decor item. See for yourself and decide if this could be something for your home:

The following Good Housekeeping Cellular shade isn’t overpowering but creates just that little something over a standard uni-colored shade.Floral-GH

Here is a floral print on a Comfortex Roller Shade that stands out quite a bit more. It’s clearly the focal point of the room.Floral-CTX

And here is a Bali Roller Shade with some soft floral swirls. This is very dreamy and a great added touch for a bedroom.Floral-BA

One more example of working with floral print, a Good Housekeeping roman shade with a contrasting floral design in black. The shade is the focus of this sitting area.Floral-GH2

Floral is back, it can be quite neutral or stand out and make a statement. It is playful in atmosphere and works in any room.

In Need Of Better Sleep?

Thursday, April 3rd, 2014

matnurseryAre you also one of many people that suffer from sleep deprivation? First you can’t fall asleep and then you wake up too often in the night? It has hit most of us at some point, too little sleep and suffering to get through the following day. Here are some tips could be helpful.

  • Most of us have a TV in our bedroom, and if it isn’t the TV it’s the Laptop or tablet that keeps our minds going. To get our minds to rest, it can be helpful to watch TV in the living room and reserve our bedrooms for rest.
  • Light can have everything to do with good rest. To ensure that bedrooms are truly dark, window coverings with blackout properties will help to really darken your room. For this blackout cellular shades are the best. Absolutely no light can enter the room and an added bonus is insulation to keep your room cool, which brings me to the next point.
  • Temperature should be cool. During night time we tend to rest better when temperatures are a couple degrees cooler than during the day.
  • When waking up at night and going for a bathroom break, don’t turn on bright lights. A small little night light is sufficient and will help to keep from switching into a state of being completely awake.
  • Make certain that your bed is comfortable to you. Nobody is able to sleep well when the body has to adjust continuously to find a comfortable prostitution. A good, firm mattress or memory foam mattress could make all the difference.
  • Noise can also be a sleep robber. Also here, cellular shades can be helpful to keep road noise out, as the insulating properties also help with noise reduction.

Wishing you many nights of rest and good sleep J.

Fighting Afternoon Sun

Saturday, March 29th, 2014

ROLL-027-EcoGrBrnzLRHorClsNow that it’s spring the afternoon sun feels nice. But I know down here in Texas the temperatures are about to skyrocket and that means the afternoon sun can become brutal. What are good solutions to keep the heat and sun out to get some relief?

First you want to think what your main goal is. Do you need to keep the heat out? Or is it more pressing to keep the light and glare out? In case privacy is not an issue, solar shades could be a wonderful solution. Solar shades will cut the heat, reduce UV rays and help to protect furniture and decor from sun damage. With solar shade you the view can be preserved when the shade is lowered. That’s why solar shades are perfect for an area where privacy is not needed. And yet the glare will be cut down and the heat will be kept at bay.

What would be a good product if privacy is an issue? Cellular shades are fantastic for insulation and privacy control as well.  Designed like a honeycomb cell the heat is trapped inside the comb, keeping rooms cooler. Cellular shades are available in light filtering of room darkening fabrics. The darkening material is often lined on the inside with an aluminum lining, which makes for a top-of-the-line insulator. Light filtering materials allows lots of light in which is welcome in living areas. Even though light filters through the shade, privacy is insured while insulating the room. Blackout materials are typically used in bedrooms or media room they darken considerably when lowered.

One product that isn’t often considered when looking for insulation is wood blinds. Painted white or off white wood blinds actually insulate very well, while a wood blind with a stained finish wouldn’t be such a good choice for a window with afternoon sun. I would recommend a wood blind with routeless upgrade to eliminate light gaps.

Any of these products will greatly help with afternoon sun, which will make a big difference to increase comfort in your home and help with energy efficiency.

Preparing Your Home for the Summer Heat With Cellular Window Shades

Friday, March 22nd, 2013

Cellular shades are a great way to protect your home from summer heat.Summer is approaching quickly and while it might not quite feel like spring yet, it’s still important to prepare for the upcoming months of warm weather. Right now, you are probably welcoming the sun into your home but it won’t be long before you’re looking for ways to keep the sun from beating into your home while keeping your décor fashionable. Cell Shades use a honeycomb construction with no visible cords or seams.

Cellular shades offer superior insulating properties to keep winter cold and summer heat outside while keeping your home looking great due to the variety of color palettes available. These shades can help save on your electric bill by reducing the temperature and amount of time you feel the need to keep air conditioning on in order for your home to remain comfortable.

Rather than pump up the air conditioning and window fans, it’s cheaper and more environmentally-friendly to simply block out the sun with cellular window shades. Unlike the majority of cellular shades, all privacy levels and light filters are available in our cellular window shades line so you don’t have to completely blacken out a room for the blinds to be effective against the sun.

Unsure about ordering online? Ace of Shades’ blinds and shades are custom products, manufactured to the highest quality and industry standards and we ship all our window shades in just a few days, free of shipping and handling charges (unless oversized) right to your door. Opt for our cellular window shades just in time to beat the summer heat. Call (866) 553-6088 with your questions about our cellular shades and cellular blinds.

Reviewing 2011 Trends

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012

It went too fast! 2011 is over and a good year it has been. The window covering industry has experienced fun trends, and the good news is, some of them are here to stay. Who wants that trend, and based on that, purchased new window coverings, that are soon to be outdated? So what have we seen?

Our favorite trend: Energy efficient products. With government incentives in place and manufacturers cranking out products that will give serious insulation, we have had a tremendous amount of interest in this area. Cellular shades or honeycomb shades were here the main focus. The honeycomb design of the material traps air inside the cell and helps to lower electric bills, keep our houses cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter.

Another trend were our eco-friendly products. Here the Woven Wood shades stand out. They are made out of all natural products like bamboos, reeds, or woods. The rustic look creates warmth  and comfort and a much more inviting atmosphere next to the industrial type mini blind or Polyester shades. Going back to nature couldn’t be more beautiful!

Another big hit were the Solar Shades, which combine sleek beauty, UV protection and heat reduction. Solar shades were huge this year. With more people asking to have a view out and enjoying an open design, this product helped to reduce damaging UV rays and cut heat. Functioning just like a Roller Shade, Solar materials are often made of PVC / Polyester blends, but are also offered in eco friendly materials. The look is very modern and fresh. A few years ago materials came only in standard industrial looking fabrics. This year new  textures and woven designs have been incorporated, giving Solar shades a new feel and appearance.

With trends and preferences always changing, we can’t wait to see what will come in 2012, but I am certain that energy efficient products, nature’s beauty and functionality are here to stay.

Summer is here

Friday, June 24th, 2011

What a great time! The days get longer, our kids start getting out of school and some vacations are planned. This is also the time where lots of folks have to think and maybe worry about their electricity bill.

Ace of Shades is located in Texas, so we know all about the heat. It is close to the end of June and we have had many days now around and over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. With gas prices as high as they are, so have our light bills seen increases. This is the time to do what we can to keep our air conditioned cool air inside and the heat out. So, what products do we recommend for insulation?

Best suited are cellular shades, also referred to as honeycomb shades. The enclosed honeycomb design creates a pocket, that traps air inside the cell. It acts as an insulating barrier, to keep hot air out and cool air inside. Depending on what cellular product is selected, insulation can be increased. A higher R-value is achieved with a blackout shade for example. Most blackout shades have a foil lining on the inside of the cell, kicking insulation up a notch. Also great for increased R-value is the double honeycomb shade. It pairs two cells in front of each other, creating a double layer of material to help insulate. Most manufacturers now a day’s make R-value charts readily available. So, whoever wants to see facts on what does what, just ask for it ;-)

Another product not to overlook is the solar shade. This product won’t work for everybody, since it is a “see through” shade. Depending on openness factor, a screened view through is its characteristic. So, for any window where privacy is needed, this will not be right for you.
But where a view is desired, solar shades are wonderful in UV protection. They cut glare and keep your rooms cool as well. With new looks and textures available that give it more of a fabric or woven look they are gaining in popularity fast!

Check out our online selection today or contact us, we’d be glad to guide you along the way.

Bali Cellular Shades – features and benefits

Friday, September 25th, 2009

Bali DiamondCell Cellular Shades feature an insulating cellular design that keeps homes cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. An extensive selection of colors makes it easy for everyone to find the energy-efficient shades right for ones style. DiamondCell Shades are available in three opacities for personalized privacy and light control with a range of great options including cordless lift and top down shades, giving great choices and functionality. Bali’s cellular shades are also available for patio doors with a vertical cell, sliding into an open position for any large application.

Here are some benefits of the Bali DiamondCell Shades:

  • Unlike other brands, the Bali Cell shades are known for the soft fabric, our customers appreciate the soft-to-the-touch and cloth like feel
  • 13 styles and 159 colors, which are inspired by the latest trends in home décor ensuring a fashion-forward product
  • 3 different cell sizes to meet your insulating and décor requirements
  • Unique honeycomb design provides the highest level of insulation (R-Value) of any type of window treatment available
  • The headrail is a color-coordinated aluminum headrail, providing you with a strong, rust-resistant system that offers quality operation
  • The standard cordlock offers smooth and dependable operation; cordless shades available for child and pet safety, with an improved redesigned handle for lasting durable operation; continuous loop operated shades offer a solution for operating larger, heavier shades by incorporating a powerful clutch that holds your shade securely in place.

Lastly, Bali shades have a great value. While being very well priced and giving you a bang for your buck, the product is backed by a Limited lifetime warranty, giving you assurance of quality craftsmanship and product support.

Hunter Douglas Duette – the Headrail(s)

Tuesday, July 28th, 2009

The best known honeycomb shade on the market is undoubtedly the Duette honeycomb shade by Hunter Douglas. Hunter Douglas is the innovator of the cellular shade products and has been a leader in the window covering industry for many years.

 

As this product has evolved over the years, becoming available with improved and more convenient lifting systems, prettier and more fashionable fabrics, Hunter Douglas again has made changes to better the Duette product line. What’s new? Changes to the headrail(s). In the past, a Duette with cordless lift (LiteRise) had a different headrail than a Duette with a continuous cord (EasyRise), as well as a Duette with retractable cord (UltraGlide). The differences used to be quite noticeable. Whereas the EasyRise had a rather square and white only headrail, the LiteRise had a slimmer, more rounded profile and the UltraGlide had yet another type of headrail. This has now been streamlined. EasyRise, UltraGlide, LiteRise now all have the same headrail for a uniform appearance.

 

We have had many customers in the past, that were contemplating putting a cordless LiteRise on their French doors, while changing to a different type of lifting system on their large windows right next to it. Or they would be looking to pair a continuous cord shade, which is great for that extra large window, with the cordless lift on the smaller windows in the same room. They usually would shy away from that choice, considering the different looks to the headrails. Not anymore J Now, you can easily switch from one application to another, without worrying about uniformity.

 

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