Windows add so much to a room's appeal, letting in light, air and the view of the outdoors. Unfortunately, they also allow the outside world to see into a home unless they are screened or covered in some way. Traditionally, homeowners have used rolling window shades, Venetian blinds and mini blinds to block out light and maintain their privacy, but there are many other window privacy ideas that can give a room a unique, finished look.
Bow windows, bay windows and floor to ceiling windows are designed to bring gorgeous views indoors to be part of the room's appeal. Typical privacy options like shades and blinds defeat the purpose by covering up the view. One solution is to install a privacy film that allows those inside to look out, but prevents anyone outside from seeing in. Window privacy films have the additional advantage of being very inexpensive and easy to install for most homeowners. They're available in a several different options, including translucent, mirrored and black, which help control the amount of light in the room as well. Newer technologies have also created insulating window privacy films that will help reduce heating and cooling costs.
In Victorian times, the well-dressed home sported elaborate layers of curtains and draperies that served to protect privacy as well as to help insulate homes. The layer closest the window was the "glass curtain", a sheer panel that allowed light to enter while preventing outsiders from peeking into the room during the day. Today, sheer panels are widely available and are most often used in the same way, behind a set of full drapes. Those drapes aren't a necessity though. Designers maintain a light, breezy feel in a room by covering large windows with plain sheers, hanging them beneath a simple valance or wooden header. Sheer panels come in an enormous range of colours to fit into any colour scheme, and standard window lengths and widths to fit most any size window.
Mini blinds are so 1980s--but the newest looks in window decor update the look with built-in mini blinds. Available for new home construction or as replacement windows, these innovative windows feature two panels of glass with a set of mini blinds installed between them. The blinds come in many colours, and can be replaced easily to update a room's look if the colour scheme is updated. Controlled by a remote or by a control built into the window frame, built-in blinds are a trendy window privacy option that can eliminate the need for any other kind of window treatment.