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SelectBlinds understands the importance of choosing the right window treatments for your home. Window shades and window blinds can enhance the look of any room. The following glossary of terms can help you more easily navigate our site to find the right window treatments for you.

Arch Window – Arched windows are a popular way for builders to make a dramatic design statement. Arched windows are commonly found over the front door, in kitchens, and even over the door to the master bedroom. Arched windows are also used in family rooms over standard windows. Arched windows are normally semi circular windows. There are two ways to cover your arched windows.

  • Wood blinds and cell shades can be custom fitted to the exact measurement of your arched window for an inside mount custom fit. Send us a cutout template of your arch window and we can make the wood blind or cell shade to that size.
  • Any window blind or window shade can be used to cover any arched window with an outside mount configuration. Simply measure at least 2” wider on each side of the widest points of the arch, and at least 2” higher than the center of the window, and the blind or shade will completely cover the arched window.

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arch window
Arch Window

Bathroom window treatments – You pay attention to the towels, the rugs, and the shower curtain. The bathroom window shade or bathroom window blind should complement the rest of your bathroom décor.

  • Window treatments for the bathroom should be made from a material that will withstand the humidity caused by the hot water run by the shower and bath. Faux wood is a great choice for a horizontal blind as they are less likely to warp than a wood blind, and the lower cost is an added bonus. Aluminum mini blinds are also a very good choice as they will not warp or fade either. Window shades can be used, and will provide you with the most choices.
  • Keeping your bathroom business private is also very important, and this can be accomplished with most any choice of window blind or shade. Honeycomb shades and Roman shades also give you the option of dropping the shade from the top, as well as being raised from the bottom. This feature, referred to as Top Down/Bottom Up, is a great way to allow light in, and prying eyes out.

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bathroom window treatments
Bathroom window treatments

Bottom Rail – The bottom rail is a part of horizontal blinds. Horizontal blinds area made with a cord running vertically through the slats, and are for the raising and lowering the blind, as well as the tilt function. The bottom rail is the thicker material that secures these cords, known as ladders, at the bottom of the horizontal blind. The bottom rail is made from wood, faux wood, or aluminum, depending on the material used for each product.

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bottom rail
Bottom Rail

Box Bracket – Horizontal blinds are mounted using a box bracket. The box bracket mounts to the inside of the window frame, or on the outside of the window, depending on how you mount your horizontal blinds. Once the box bracket is mounted, the window blind will slide into the bracket for easy mounting.

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Braided Ladder – This is the cord, usually made of polyester for a long life, that runs vertically through the slats of a horizontal window blind, to control the raising and lowering of the blind, as well as the tilt function of the window blind.

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braided ladder
Braided Ladder

Center Support Bracket – The center support bracket is used for horizontal blinds that are too wide to be comfortably supported by the 2 end brackets. Faux wood blinds are heavier than bass wood blinds, so can require center support brackets in a smaller blind. The size of the slat used in your horizontal window blind will also make a difference. The 2 1/2” window blinds are going to require the center support bracket in a smaller width than a 1” horizontal blind, or a 2” horizontal window blind. Aluminum Mini blinds requirements will also vary depending on whether you are installing ½” mini blinds, 1” mini blinds, or 2” mini blinds.

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Clearance – This is the depth available for inside mounting your window treatment. Horizontal window blinds typically require a greater clearance than a window shade. Door blinds normally have a very small clearance and often require you to use outside mounting of your door blind. 1” horizontal blinds are ideal for outside mounting of a horizontal door blind.

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Cloth Tape – Cloth tape is available on most of the horizontal blinds. Cloth tape is a great way to further customize your window blinds, and can be a great way to help decorate your window treatment. Cloth tapes are mounted over the ladders of the blinds giving the added benefit of covering the holes used for threading the ladders, blocking out any light that would filter through.

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cloth tape
Cloth Tape

Control Length – The length of the lift cord, and the tilt mechanism. The control length is typically half the overall length of your window blind or window shade. This applies to the tilt mechanism when it the mechanism is a pull cord. If your window blind uses a tilt wand, the length of the wand can be shorter than that of a pull cord.

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Cord Lock – The cord lock is the mechanism used to lock your horizontal blind to the desired height when raising and lowering your window blind.

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Continuous Cord – Continuous cord loop is used for raising and lowering your horizontal blind or shade. A standard lift cord works by pulling on it to raise your horizontal blind or window shade, and then locking the cord into place by moving the cord over to engage the cord lock. This extends the cord, and in the case of long shades and blinds, can result in having the cord lying on the floor. You can loop the excess cord around an included cord cleat to keep the window treatment cord from tangling or from just being in the way. Continuous cord is a looped cord that raises and lowers the blind or shade by pulling in one direction to raise the window blind or window shade, and lowers the blind or shade by pulling in the opposite direction. The advantages of having this feature are that the cord length never changes, and it is actually a safety feature as young children or pets will not likely become entangled in it.

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continuous cord
Continuous Cord

Cord Tilt – This is the mechanism used on certain horizontal blinds to tilt the slats in place of a tilt wand. Cord tilt consists of 2 cords. Each cord tilts the slats of your window blind in one direction or the other.

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cord tilt
Cord Tilt

Cutout – A cutout is used when there is an obstacle such as a doorknob or crank handle for opening the window. The cutout will allow your window blind to cover the window, yet provide an opening for the obstacle. This is particularly handy for door blinds.

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End Cap – End caps are used to cover the ends of the bottom rail of horizontal blinds. The end caps are color coordinated to match the color of the blinds. End caps area also used for covering the sides of the headrails of both window blinds and window shades.

Extension Brackets – Extension brackets are used in an outside mount situation when your window frame protrudes too far out from the wall for the standard mounting brackets to give your blind or window shade clearance. The extension bracket is an “L” bracket, and allows the extra depth fo your shade or blind can easily clear the frame.

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Head Rail – The head rail is at the top of the window blind or window shade, and is used for 2 main purposes.

  • Mounting -
    • Roman Shades are mounted directly to the window frame by screwing the headrail directly to the mounting surface.
    • Horizontal blinds are mounted by inserting the ends of the headrail into the box bracket, and then snapping the bracket shut
    • Cell shades, also known as honeycomb shades are mounted by snapping the headrail to a bracket designed for this purpose.
  • Operating the blind –
    • The ladders are attached at the top of the blind inside the headrail, and the lift mechanism is attached to operate the raising and lowering of your window blinds.

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head rail
Head Rail

Hold Down Brackets – Hold down brackets are most often used with a horizontal blind that you will likely not raise or lower, but will tilt the slats only. Door blinds are a good example of this. You want the blind to stay flush against the window when you open the door, and by screwing the hold down brackets into the frame of the door, and affixing the bottom rail of the door blind to the door, you accomplish this.

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Inside Mount – Inside mount refers to the way you mount your window blind or window shade.

  • A horizontal blind is inside mounted by installing the box brackets at the edges of the top inside of the window frame. Once the brackets are mounted, you simply insert the head rail of your blind into the bracket, and snap the bracket shut to complete your installation.
  • Cell shades are inside mounted by installing the clips to the inside of the window frame approximately 3” from the ends of the frame, and then snapping the head rail of the cellular shade to the clip.
  • Roller shades are inside mounted by installing the brackets to the top side edges of the inside of the window frame and inserting the mounting pins of the head rail of your roller shade into the holes in the brackets.
  • Roman shades are inside mounted by screwing the headrail directly into the inside of the window frame through the pre-drilled holes in the head rail of your roman shade.

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inside mount
Inside Mount

L-Brackets – These are the brackets used for outside mounting when it’s necessary to extend the headrail out from the wall to allow you window blind enough clearance to operate properly in cases where your window frame protrudes exceptionally far from the wall.

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Ladder Grommets – Ladder grommets are metal clips that are compressed on the ends of the ladders of horizontal blinds. They are used to level the blind and are then attached to the bottom rail of your blind to operate the raising and lowering of your window blind.

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Lift Cord – The lift cord is used to raise and lower your horizontal blind. The lift cord is located on the right side of the window blind in most express products. Standard wood blinds and faux wood blinds offer the option of having the lift cord located on either side of the blind.

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lift cord
Lift Cord

Loop Ladder – This is the braided ladder that is used in routless, or No-Holes privacy horizontal blinds. This applies to both faux wood blinds, and wood blinds. The front and back of each ladder have loops that the cord is laced through so you can raise and lower your window blind.

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loop ladder
Loop Ladder

Multiple blinds or shades on one headrail – Multiple blinds or shades can be mounted on a single headrail in situations where the window is too wide for the maximum width of the blind. This is also a great way to have a cleaner look with 2 or 3 windows that are very close together, and multiple headrails may cause a bit of a cluttered look. With the 2 on 1, or 3 on 1, each blind or window shade is as unique in its controls as if they were mounted on separate headrails. In the case of 2 blinds or shades on 1 headrail, each blind or shade will have its own lift cord, tilt cord, or tilt wand. In the case of 3 blinds or shades on 1 head rail, all 3 window blinds or window shades will have their own tilt and lift controls. This also has the added advantage of allowing you to stagger the height of each blind or shade.

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mutliple blinds on one headrail
Mutliple blinds on one headrail

No Holes Privacy – The standard route hole used in a horizontal blind allows tiny pinpoint of light to filter through your window blind. The hole is not really an issue, and will not bathe the room in light, but if you want as much sun blockage as possible, then choose the No Holes Privacy option for your window blind. Each slat has a notch cut into the edges for t he lift cords to attach to for the raising and lowering of your horizontal blind. An added advantage is that you can remove each slat for cleaning as desired.

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no holes privacy
No Holes Privacy

Outside Mount – Outside Mount refers to mounting your window shade or window blind outside the window frame. All of SelectBlinds window shades and window blinds can be outside mounted.

  • Horizontal blinds are mounted by using the same box brackets that you would use for inside mounting you blinds. The difference is that with the outside mounting, the brackets are installed on either side of the frame, and the blind is then inserted into the bracket and snapped shut. The bracket can also be attached directly to the window frame.
  • Vertical Blinds are almost always outside mounted, and the methodology is very similar to that of the horizontal blinds. The vertical blinds are mounted by attaching the brackets to the wall outside of the frame, and then sliding the vertical blind into the brackets. Vertical blinds are great for sliding glass doors, making them somewhat bigger than standard window blinds, and often requiring at least 1 additional center support bracket.
  • Cellular shades can be outside mounted by mounting the clip to either the window frame or the wall outside of the frame. The shade is then snapped into the clip for easy mounting.
  • Roman Shades are outside mounted by drilling into the window frame, or the wall, to accommodate the pre-driller holes in the head rail of your Roman Shade.
  • Roller Shades are outside mounted with the same brackets as used for inside mount. The difference is that the brackets are installed outside the window frame. Roller shades can also be ordered with a reverse roll, meaning they will feed from the top, and roll out over the roller, giving more clearance for an outside mount configuration.

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outside mount
Outside Mount

Projection – Projection refers to the distance between the wall to the front of the bracket you are using for mounting your window blind or window shade. This distance is particularly important to understand for outside mounting to determine if your window blind or window shade will clear the window frame for smooth operation.

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Return – In an outside mount with a horizontal blind, there is a gap on the sides where you can see the ends of the headrail. At SelectBlinds, we include a return to cover that gap. The return attaches to the side of the valance, and matches the valance that comes with your window blind. When attached, your valance will then have 3 sides. The front and 2 sides. The result is that your window blind appears to have a cornice covering your headrail.

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return
Return

Return L Bracket – This bracket is used for mounting the returns to the face of the valance on our 2” horizontal blinds. .The L bracket is made of plastic for the 2” wood blinds, and of metal for the 2” faux wood blinds.

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Roman Fold – The roman fold refers to the specific fold used for roman shades and woven wood shades. The roman fold will fold from the bottom up in an accordion like manner.

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Route Hole – The route hole is drilled into the slats of our horizontal blinds so the lift cords can be attached. This is then used for the blind to be raised and lowered to the desired height.

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route hole
Route Hole

Routless – The routless feature is known as No Holes Privacy at SelectBlinds. The standard route hole used in a horizontal blind allows tiny pinpoint of light to filter through your window blind. The hole is not really an issue, and will not bathe the room in light, but if you want as much sun blockage as possible, then choose the No Holes Privacy option for your window blind. Each slat has a notch cut into the edges for t he lift cords to attach to for the raising and lowering of your horizontal blind. An added advantage is that you can remove each slat for cleaning as desired.

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routless
Routless

Stop Ball – The stop ball is a circular piece that joins all of the lift cords as they come out of t he headrail in a horizontal blind. This stop ball keeps the left cords form tangling, and works to keep the lift cords operating in unison as you raise or lower you horizontal window blind.

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Tassel – The tassel attaches to the ends of lift cords and tilt cords on your window blind or window shade. Tassels are made of wood on our wood blinds, and made of plastic or PVC on our faux wood blinds. Our cellular shades and roman shades use plastic and plastic on metal.

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tassel
Tassel

Valance – The valance is the decorative piece that covers the headrail of your window blind or window shade. All blinds and shades, with the exception of roller shades, come standard with a valance. In many cases, an upgraded valance can be ordered to give our blind a richer look, and enhance the beauty of your room. Roman shades have the valance as part of the roman shade, and are made of the same material as the shade. Vertical blinds use a valance that matches the material of the blind. Cellular shades use a valance that matches the color of the cell shade fabric.

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valance
Valance

Valance Clip – The valance has to be attached to the headrail in those cases where the valance is not attached at the factory. The valance clip can be hidden in many cases. Metal clips are used for our aluminum mini blinds, and 3” clips are used for our 2” horizontal blinds and 2 ½” horizontal blinds.

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Wand Tilter – The wand tilter is used to tilt the slats of your window blind open or closed. When you turn the tilter in one direction, the slats open, and when you turn it in the opposite direction, the slats of your window blind will close back up. The wand tilter can be placed on either the right side of your window blind, or the left side of your window blind, depending on the options available on the particular window blind that you are ordering.

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want tilter
Wand Tilter
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