Pimp My Desk – Home Office Edition

With so many of us stuck working from home right now, it’s a great time to think about your home office setup and how it can be improved, enhanced and just generally decked out with the awesomeness you (and it) deserve.

1. Sit/Stand Desks are All the Rage

Laptop on a pine desk in a bright office

Regardless of where your home office is – spare bedroom, living room or actual office – your comfort and health are top priorities. Desks with adjustable heights are an ideal way of improving your ergonomics and making sure you feel less strain at the end of a long workday.

2. Reward Yourself with a Decent Chair

Dark office with blue lighting and large clock on the monitor.

We’ve all been there – sitting at home in our worn-out garage sale desk chair. We’re not saying to go out and buy a fancy, ultra-plush chair that costs $1000.00, but a new one might be just the ticket to help you get through each day without lower back pain or numb legs.

If you can find it, my personal favorite is the Amia chair by Steelcase. It’s perfect for shorter people since it can go lower than average dest chairs and the seat can shift backward to allow for correct posture.

3. Multiple Monitors for Ultimate Multitasking

Dual monitors showing calendar and mountain background.

Working from home doesn’t have to mean sacrificing that extra monitor (or two) you had at the office! Monitors aren’t overly expensive and you can even use a TV instead if you find a good deal on a small one! If you’re lucky, your boss might even let you take a company monitor home to help your productivity stay on track.

4. Hologram Keyboard, Anyone?

Red and black light-up keyboard.

Ok, so the picture above might not be an actual laser keyboard, but it gets the point across! If you’re sick of the sound of those clacking keys, give one of these laser varieties a whirl! They’re sure to make you feel like you’re living in the year 3000 rather than a rather strange version of 2020.

5. Blast Those Speakers!

Small portable bluetooth speaker on a white desk.

You’re not in the office anymore, so turn the volume to max and blast your favorite tunes to help you get through the day. Portable bluetooth speakers are a great way to add a touch of fun to your home office and most can be plugged directly into your laptop if whatever you’re listening too happens to come from there.

6. Enjoy a Personal Concert

White wireless earbuds with an orange background.

If you’re worried about how your neighbors will react to music pouring out of your windows, maybe wireless earbuds are a safer alternative. If earbuds aren’t your style, stick to a pair of over the ear headphones – they’ve got a longer battery life, too.

7. A Place for Everything

Wireless headphones hanging from a headphone stand on a desk.

If you’re like me and prefer over the ear headphones to earbuds, you know how annoying it is to have them lying all over your workspace when you aren’t using them. Headphone stands help declutter your desk and some even come with a charging port to plug in your various devices!

8. Control Your Climate

Small portable desk fan next to a laptop.

Office too hot? Grab a fan! Too cold? How about a space heater? You’re the only one in your home office, so you get complete control over room temperature. No more fighting with employees for that extra one or two degrees in the right direction.

9. Touchscreens for Everyone!

Person using a touchscreen tablet in front of a laptop.

Okay, we can all agree that we’d be nowhere without our laptops, phones and other devices. But why is it that most laptops still don’t have touchscreens? Enter the AirBar. It turns ordinary laptops into touchscreen masterpieces with just a USB plug to connect them. Bye-bye tablets, hello laptops of wonder!

Do you have a great home office upgrade we didn’t mention? Let us know!

My New Assistant has Four Legs!

Happy National Puppy Day!!! While the circumstances around working from home right now aren’t great, we’re really loving the extra time we get to spend with our furry companions. To help get in the spirit of this wonderful, obviously longstanding holiday, we’ve collected some adorable puppy pics from fellow SelectBlinds.com employees in their new “working from home” habitats. Enjoy!

Make Your Home Craftastic This Month!

March is National Craft Month! So, all you fellow DIYers out there, we’re pretty sure you’re just as excited as we are to find a few more fun projects. Especially if those projects just happen to enhance your existing décor, like the ones we found!

Wine Bottle Lamps

Wine bottles can easily be turned into stylish lamps.

Got a few empty wine bottles left over from your last game night? Give them a good wash, remove any stray labels and turn them into cool lamps by filling them with battery-powered LED string lights! Talk about setting the mood ;).

Picture Frame Clock

Arranging 12 picture frames in a circle (or would that be a dodecagon?) might seem a bit difficult, but it really isn’t. Start with marking your center, then place the 3, 6, 9 and 12 frames. After that, it’s as simple as slipping a few more frames in between. Fill the frames with your favorite pics and add actual working clock hands to the center to finish your personalized giant clock!

Floating Bookshelf

Show off your love of books with an invisible book shelf!

This one’s a bit easier than the clock. Two metal L brackets are attached to the wall and inserted between the back cover of the book and the pages. For best results, we recommend gluing the back cover to the brackets so that it can’t move, just make sure it’s level before you add the glue. Then stack some of your favorite books on top and you’ve got a magical, floating bookshelf!

Cabinet Breakfast Tray

Ok, so a spare cabinet door isn’t something most people are going to have lying around, but you can get one pretty cheap at your local hardware store. While you’re there, make sure you grab a couple of handles – in your favorite finish, of course. Screw the handles onto the front of the door at each of the shorter ends and voila – homemade, custom breakfast tray!

Patterned Dresser

Wall papered and painted dressers are a great way to show off your style.

Adding wallpaper to the drawers of an old dresser can really breathe new life into an old piece of furniture and your whole design aesthetic. Use the same pattern for each drawer, or mix it up with different patterns and even various colors of paint to create an entirely unique piece to showcase in your home.

Woodsy Votive Candles

This one’s ridiculously cheap and easy. Just head to your local dollar store and pick up some of those plain, clear glass votive holders. If you don’t already have votives, a hot glue gun and ready access to random sticks, you’ll want to track those down too. Cut the sticks to various lengths that are half an inch to two inches longer than the votive holders are tall. Glue the sticks vertically around the outside of the votive holders and you’re done!

Window Frame Artwork

Old window frames are a great canvas for paintings!

Whether it’s a solid wood window or one with glass panes, there are many ways to turn an old window into a feature to be proud of. Paint the inside panels of an all-wood window like the picture above, or place pictures behind glass panels almost like a picture frame. Friends and neighbors won’t be able to stop talking about your DIY expertise!

Chalk Board Wall

Painting a whole wall with chalkboard paint is great for playrooms and kids’ bedrooms, but not so much for kitchens or entryways. Instead, try nailing a spare or refurbished frame to a wall and painting the wall inside with chalkboard paint. It’s a great way to organize grocery lists, chores and even cute greetings to visitors!

“Anything Goes” Flowers

Floral arrangement made of sample fabric and other blinds materials.

There’s no reason that floral arrangements can only be made of flowers, or even that they have to include flowers at all. What you see here is actually an arrangement made out of some of our free samples that customers can order when trying to decide which blinds or shades they should get.

Do you have a fun and easy DIY craft that looks great no matter your decor? We’d love to hear about it!

Ikigai Meets Interior Design

People always told me that the secret to being happy in life is to do something you both love and can get paid for. Turns out, the Japanese concept of ikigai (pronounced “eye-ka-guy”) means that – and more! When applied properly, your home and work life converge, allowing you to find stress-free happiness in all parts of your life – including interior design.

Ikigai is the latest trend in interior design.

So, What is Ikigai?

To get a better idea of how ikigai works when it comes to interior design, we first need to take a look at Ikigai in general.

Iki, meaning life, and gai, meaning value, combine to form your reason for being or reason for getting up in the morning. And you can achieve this state by finding the perfect intersection of the following:

  • What you really love
  • What the world needs
  • What you can get paid for
  • What you’re good at

A joining of just two or three of the above parameters and you’ll be left underwhelmed or unfulfilled, so it’s essential that you find the perfect balance of all four.

How Does Ikigai Apply to Interior Design?

The general principles of ikigai actually work quite well when it comes to interior design. And with a little adaptation, they work even better. Take a look for yourself!

This revamped ikigai diagram is specific to interior design.

As you can see, instead of contemplating what you’re good at, what you can get paid for and what the world needs, interior design ikigai encourages you to find your happy place among what your home needs, what you can afford and what works with your existing décor, not to mention what you really love.

Get the right combo of all four and you’ll be sure to enjoy a perfect balance of form, function, flexibility and flow.

How Will Ikigai Affect Interior Design?

With less of an emphasis on creating an escape from the rigors of day-to-day life, ikigai focuses more on melding work and home life into one. So, get ready for an influx of home office makeovers.

From the blue wall to the fun artwork and décor, this room perfectly exemplifies ikigai.

Ikigai is also a highly personalized way of living. It truly will differ for everyone because, let’s get real, circus décor would definitely not make someone who’s deathly afraid of clowns happy.

Anyway, since ikigai puts so much emphasis on the individual, we should also prepare for more out-of-the-box décor – anything to add a little of your own personality and heart to your space. Pops of color and fun pieces like the unique artwork shown above will become almost normal.

Another change we see on the horizon is for interior designers themselves. As interior designers internalize ikigai, their designs could reflect their own style in addition to that of their customers. It could also impact hiring as design firms search for prospects with tastes and styles to complement their own and improve overall teamwork.

What do you think of ikigai? Is it something you could see using in your day-to-day life? Let us know!

Looking for the Best Blackout Shades During Sleep Awareness Week? Wirecutter Found ‘Em for You!

Select Blinds Signature Cordless Blackout Shade from SelectBlinds.com

For most of you, Daylight Saving Time started last Sunday. Which means most of us — except those of us here in Arizona — lost an hour of sleep Sunday night when time ‘sprang forward.’ If you haven’t caught up on those shortened zzz’s yet, the National Sleep Foundation (NSF) and Select Blinds have some tips for you.

NSF 2020 Sleep In America Poll Infographic

Corresponding with the start of Daylight Saving Time each year, the NSF introduced Sleep Awareness Week to remind us how to make beneficial changes in our sleep routines to improve our sleep and overall health. Here are some things you can do:

That last point is where we can help. SelectBlinds.com offers a variety of blackout and room darkening blinds to keep sleeping areas quiet and practically light-free. In the dark about picking the best blackout shade? Wirecutter can shed some serious light on that question, too.

The curators and creators of “best of” lists for everyday items people shop for, Wirecutter journalists spent 25 hours on research, interviewed five industry experts and tested 12 models to find the best blackout blind for you. Their conclusion? (Drum roll, please.) Our very own Select Blinds Classic Cordless Blackout Shade!

Select Blinds Signature Cordless Blackout Shade from SelectBlinds.com

“We like cellular shades because they look good, effectively block light, and are easy to install. Our panel unanimously agreed that the Select Blinds Classic Cordless Blackout Shade is the one they’d most like in their homes,” writes Wirecutter’s Jack Smith. “The polyester shade looks and feels noticeably better in quality than other shades we considered. Among the shades we tested, it has one of the widest selections of sizes and colors, and it’s covered by a three-year warranty, the longest of any model we considered.

“If you’re interested in a version of our pick that offers additional insulation and durability, you might consider getting the Select Double Cell Blackout Shade. And if you’re looking for a shade that combines traditional and blackout shade functionality, consider the top-down bottom-up Premium Light Filtering/Blackout Cordless Shade.”

Read Wirecutter’s complete guide here. If you need any more help in choosing a room darkening or blackout shade, check out our own Buying Guides for bedroom, nursery and home theater window coverings.

“We like cellular shades because they look good, effectively block light, and are easy to install. Our panel unanimously agreed that the Select Blinds Classic Cordless Blackout Shade is the one they’d most like in their homes,” writes Wirecutter’s Jack Smith. “The polyester shade looks and feels noticeably better in quality than other shades we considered. Among the shades we tested, it has one of the widest selections of sizes and colors, and it’s covered by a three-year warranty, the longest of any model we considered.

“If you’re interested in a version of our pick that offers additional insulation and durability, you might consider getting the Select Double Cell Blackout Shade. And if you’re looking for a shade that combines traditional and blackout shade functionality, consider the top-down bottom-up Premium Light Filtering/Blackout Cordless Shade.”

Read Wirecutter’s complete guide here. If you need any more help in choosing a room darkening or blackout shade, check out our own Buying Guides for bedroom, nursery and home theater window coverings.

Designer Sleep Shades
For the most complete blackout effect, try our Designer Sleep Shades. Featuring unique side tracks, they block out 99% of incoming light. Perfect for baby’s room, bedrooms and the family media room.

Still having trouble falling asleep? Reading in bed always helps me. See if you can identify with any of the findings of this year’s Sleep in America poll, the NSF’s annual review of current sleep topics.

Have any other tips for a good night’s sleep? Leave them in the comments below.

Sweet dreams.

Baby Yoda sleep meme

How to Avoid Buyer’s Remorse (Without Gaining 20 lbs from Eating Ice Cream)

Remorseful man with hands over face
Photo by Christian Erfurt on Unsplash

At some point we’ve all learned: wine and Amazon don’t mix.

Besides making you a prime target for porch pirates, buying something you don’t really need or getting something and realizing it’s not what you really wanted thanks to those late-night shopping sprees can leave you with a severe case of buyer’s remorse — and a few unwanted pounds.

Buyer’s remorse strikes almost all of us at one time or another. And we all handle it differently. In a fun little poll we took recently, finding solace from it in the form of food and drink (specifically wine and chocolate) was one way our followers shared. An equal number turned things around by buying more stuff, while a few others had a good soak in the tub and cried it out.

woman in bathtub with head down
Photo by Tophee Marquez from Pexels

Most people, though, simply choose to cancel or return their order. Which is easy to do with Select Blinds. In fact, we give you a 24-hour grace (or sobering up) period before sending your order on to our manufacturing plant. Just so you can make sure you’ve got everything right or that you aren’t having any second thoughts.

Another way we help you avoid buyer’s remorse? Our 90-day, 100% satisfaction guarantee.

If there’s a defect in a product’s material or workmanship, or if it isn’t made to the exact size and specifications you ordered, we promise to make it right at no cost to you for up to 90 days from the date of purchase.

And if you’re not happy with your custom covering for any other reason within the first 90 days — you don’t like the color, you need a different mount or lift style, changed your mind about a feature, etc. – we’ll remake that same product in the same size for the same great discount price you originally paid, plus an additional 10% off.

Even if you make a mistake on your order, we have you covered. With our F.I.T. Guarantee, if you have an “oops!” moment measuring your window and your custom covering doesn’t fit, simply call us and we’ll remake that exact same product for you (one remake per order) for free within 30 days of the date your order was delivered. (You just cover a small $10 shipping fee.)

Ordering lots of free samples is another way to make sure you’ll never be sorry for shopping with us. Try up to 15 at a time to find the perfect color and type of blinds you’ll love. Reviewing some of the hundreds of thousands of 5-star reviews and pictures we get from happy customers (check them out, right here on The Blinds Spot) will give you even more peace of mind. And if you need a little inspiration, follow us on FacebookInstagram and Twitter to see how some of your favorite social influencers use our custom blinds and shades in their most popular projects.

With our team of experienced window design experts always here to help, you’ll never have to worry about getting something you don’t want or need. Just call or click to talk with us and turn that frown upside down!

So don’t worry about that extra glass of wine. Now that you know you can shop responsibly and remorse-free here on SelectBlinds.com!

Designer contemporary faux wood blinds
Move faux-ward! Take an extra 5% off faux wood blinds like our 2″ Designer Contemporary Faux Woods through March!


As Seen on TV: You Don’t Have to Go to Hell and Back to Get Great Blinds!

Get a taste of our Lifestyle Light Filtering Roller Shades, featured in Episode 6 of Gordon Ramsay’s 24 HRS to Hell and Back!

Quick! Name that product:

“It slices! It dices! It makes mounds of julienne fries in just seconds.”

It’s the Ronco Veg-O-Matic! But wait! There’s more!

The iconic Veg-O-Matic manual food processor hawked in late-night TV commercials back in the ’70s by company founder Ron Popeil, spawned the birth of the modern-day infomercial format and a slew of “as seen on TV” gadgets no home should be without. (Who could forget his famous Pocket Fisherman?) The genre has become so popular, As Seen on TV, Inc. is now a leading marketer and online retailer, selling thousands of products you’ll recognize from TV commercials.

As seen on TV - The classic Veg-O-Matic
The classic Veg-O-Matic

While you won’t see our custom window shades and blinds on their website, you will see them on many popular TV shows this season. Foodie fanatics can feast their eyes on these SelectBlinds.com products during Season 3 of “Gordon Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back” now airing on the Fox network:

And for those with an eye for design and style, you may have seen our custom coverings in the very first season of Netflix’s “Queer Eye.” In episode 8, “Hose before Bros,” The Fab 5 gave a firehouse a hot new look featuring 2″ Select American Hardwood Blinds. (Spoiler alert: You’ll see even more products in upcoming episodes of the new sixth season, so stay tuned!)

Queer Eye: Hose before Bros
This firehouse design is on fire, thanks to the Fab 5!

We’ve worked with the boys on other projects, too. Just look at the AH-mazing transformation the parents’ home of Fab 5’s Bobby Berk underwent with some treasures from Target and our designer favorite woven woods on the windows. (You won’t believe the before and afters!) Mom and dad, can we move back in???

Bobby Berk designed living room
Antigua Natural was just that for the color Bobby chose for the Designer Reserve Woven Woods he used in the living, master and guest bedrooms. (Image credit: Bobby Berk @bobby and Marisa Vitale @marisavitalephoto)

What’s your favorite TV show and which of our Miz Marvelous window treatments would you like to see showcased? Let us know with a comment below! And shop commercial-free for all of these same great looks right here on SelectBlinds’ website!

The Case for Gray – Why You Need it in Your Home Decor

Gray is the little black dress for your home,” according to a fabulous article on Freshome.com, and we couldn’t agree more. We love this idea. The color gray is subtle, classic, and it dresses up your home perfectly. After all, you can’t go wrong with a little black dress, right? The same idea applies to your home decor. Here’s are just a few reasons why you should incorporate gray into every room in your home (and we’re going to show you a lot of awesome gray window coverings because, you know, they’re our favorite!).

1. It goes with everything.

Gray is the most neutral color.Select Light Filtering Roman Shades

Some believe that gray is the perfect neutral. It goes with every style and palette. Not sure what color to paint your walls or which color you should choose for your new window coverings? When in doubt, go gray.

2. It’s timeless.

Gray is timeless and classic.Cordless Blackout Shades

You won’t have to redo your decor every few months. Gray is timeless and effortless. A lot of details may change around the grays in your home, but those gray walls or other gray details will remain constant, strong, and true.

3. Gray is more than just gray.

Gray on gray makes a statement.Classic Fabric Roller Shades

When it comes to the color gray, one size does not fit all. Thankfully, it doesn’t have to. Gray is more than just gray. It can be dark charcoal gray or elephant gray or smokey gray.

4. It showcases the other colors in the room.

Gray makes other colors in the room pop.2″ Designer Contemporary Faux Wood Blinds

Gray is beautiful, and it has a way of providing a great background for your most important decor pieces. It complements your decor, but it won’t draw your attention away from where you want it.

How have you used the color gray in your home’s decor? Show us some pictures!

Well-Behaved Women Seldom Make History, So Let’s Misbehave this Month!

March is Women’s History Month and March 8, International Women’s Day. Let’s celebrate!

Black and white gallery image of women in history
Do you know these women? You can scroll through to find their names at the bottom while learning a little about the history of Women’s History Month along the way. Image credit: www.aacpl.net/women

They behaved badly and became innovators. Inventors. Engineers. Activists. Advocates. Soldiers. Scientists. Doctors. Politicians. Leaders of movements. Leaders of governments. Leaders of families.

With a list of achievements and accomplishments from the ordinary to the extraordinary.

Talk about the mother of invention. Did you know you can thank women for being the brains behind almost everything from the plain brown paper bag to coffee filters to today’s disposable diapers? Not to mention rocket fuel and the foundation for GPS, WiFi and Bluetooth technologies? (Check out this list for more.)

That’s what Women’s History Month is all about: remembering and reminding us about the contributions of notable and ordinary women, in hopes that the day will soon come when it’s impossible to teach or learn history without them.

It’s remembering the historic heroines of the past, like Susan B. Anthony. Irena Sendler (the female counterpart to Oskar Schindler). Clara Barton. Harriet Tubman. Margaret Meade. Marie Curie. Ada Lovelace. Katherine Johnson. Miep Gies and Anne Frank. Rosa Parks. Dr. Virginia Apgar. Eleanor Roosevelt. Heddy Lamarr. Margaret Sanger.

And those still making history and a difference: Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Greta Thunberg. Malala Yousafzai. The first female captain in the New York Fire Department (now retired) Brenda Berkman. And Alice Lockridge, creator of Women4Women, an initiative to attract and train women in the male-dominated construction industry.

Image may contain: 2 people, eyeglasses, possible text that says 'MIEP GIES Hid Anne Frank and her family for two years in the Secret Annex during the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands A might ty GIRL IIL KKMEI "But even an ordinary secretary or a housewife or a teenager can, within their own small ways, turn on a small light in a dark room."'
Image credit: A Mighty Girl

A little history on Women’s History Month

Since the beginning of history, women have shaped it. But recognition of their innumerous contributions has taken a little more time.

Women’s History Month has its roots in the socialist and labor movements. The first Women’s Day took place on February 28, 1909, in New York City, as a national observance organized by the Socialist Party. It honored the one-year anniversary of the garment worker’s strikes in New York when thousands of women marched for economic rights.

Within two years, Women’s Day had grown into an international observance that spread through Europe on the heels of socialism. The first International Women’s Day (IWD) was observed in 1911 to raise awareness of bias against and equality for women worldwide. The United Nations officially began marking IWD in 1975.

According to the National Women’s History Project, because history books largely left out the story or contributions of women in America, the Education Task Force of the Sonoma County (California) Commission on the Status of Women initiated a “Women’s History Week” celebration in 1978. Timed around IWD, the celebration quickly spread to other organizations, communities and school districts, and lobbying efforts for a national Women’s History Week got under way.

Former President Jimmy Carter proclaimed the first national Women’s History Week for March 2-8, 1980, as did his successor, President Reagan, until Congress passed a proclamation establishing Women’s History Month in 1987.

And the rest, as they say, is history. (For a more complete history lesson, read this.)

All of us here at SelectBlinds.com invite you to get inspired and celebrate Women’s History Month. Keep up with past, present and future history makers on two of our favorite blogs and women-focused websites:

A Mighty Girl is dedicated to inspiring stories, books, toys and movies about women and girls to help parents raise smart, confident and courageous daughters (and to help boys learn about them, too)

Women You Should Know features profiles of courageous women from history and all walks of life who have made a difference in the past and those who are shaping our future

Tell us, too, how you’re making history in a comment below.

A little more history: Internationally, the color purple, which signifies justice and dignity, is the color for symbolizing women. The combination of purple, green and white to symbolize women’s equality originated from the Women’s Social and Political Union in the U.K. in 1908. 

And for the curious, here are the identities of the women at the top of the page who helped and are helping to rewrite history:

Top row: Representative Shirley Chisholm, Anne Frank, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, Katherine Johnson, Jane Goodall, Delores Huerta, Maya Lin, and Margaret Mead
Bottom row: Rigoberta Menchú, Rosa Parks, Sacagawea, Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Junko Tabei, Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman, and Malala Yousafzai.