Skip to Main Content
blind designs logo
Home Articles Differences Between Blinds And Shades

Comparing The Differences Between Blinds & Shades

Cellular shades blue

Need to choose between blinds and shades but aren't sure what the differences are? There are so many styles available with some actually blurring the line between them that it can get confusing to know which type of window treatments you're looking at when shopping.

As a custom window treatment company in Chicago, we work one-on-one with customers to help them choose window treatments, so our design specialists are often asked what the differences are between blinds and shades.

There is definitely a difference between the two, so we put together a comparison for you below. If you need further help with comparing the differences between blinds & shades and are located in the Greater Chicago area, call us to set up a free design consultation!

Blinds Give You More Control Over Light & Privacy

The most obvious similarity between window blinds and shades is that they both cover the windows. The most obvious difference is that blinds have slats and shades don't.

This may seem like a silly point but it is important to consider which window or glass door you're covering when comparing the two while you shop.

For instance, you may want to install shades over large expanses of glass rather than blinds because they're easier to operate, just lower or raise them. If you choose blinds, you'll be adjusting the slats on several sets of blinds just to get the right amount of light or view through the windows.

Blinds work best wherever you want more control over the view, light, and privacy because the slats open and close in addition to the entire window treatment. Shades don't have slats so they can only be raised or lowered.

Both Blinds & Shades Attach At The Top Of The Window

When you're looking at different window treatments, you'll see that shutters are attached on hinges at the side of the window and both window blinds and shades are attached at the top. Shutters open from side to side and blinds and shades lift up to open and pull down to close.

Blinds Are Hard, Shades Are Soft

If you want a softer look for your windows, go with window shades over blinds. Blinds are made of hard wood or a polymer material and shades are made of fabric or woven materials. The hard or soft effect of your window treatments will make a difference in the design style you achieve.

Woven wood shades are often confused for blinds. Woven wood shades are made of woven grasses and reeds such as bamboo. The fine grasses and reeds can look like a woven fabric.

The Most Confusing Styles - Modern Banded Shades, Are They Blinds or Shades?

Banded shades are also often confused with being a window blind, simply because they combine the functionality and look of blinds with fabric shades.

Banded shades have two layers of see-through fabric with movable fabric vanes sandwiched between the layers that work just like window blind slats. They may work just like blinds but they're definitely a window shade!

If you're looking for a professional window blind company in the Chicago area, please call us today at 708-389-9965 or complete our online request form.