Curtains used to be the window treatment of choice for most American homes. When slats made of lightweight aluminum were developed in the 1940s, along with the invention of a pulley system in 1966, blinds began to gain popularity. By 1981, due to their moderate pricing and easy installation, mini blinds became the window covering chosen by more than 70% of American households.

Different Window Treatments

When people talk about blinds, they are usually referring to both shades and blinds.

  • Blinds – Blinds come in many different materials and sizes, but they all have individual slats that can be adjusted to go up or down using a cord. The tilt of the slats can also be changed, which will let you control how much light comes into the room.
  • Shades – Shades are also available in different materials and sizes, but instead of being made of slats, they come in one solid piece of material. They can’t be adjusted side to side like blinds, only up and down.

There are many different types of blinds and shades available. Some of the most popular options are listed below.


  • Venetian Blinds – Considered to be the original style of blinds, they are also one of the most popular. The horizontal slats are bound by a string or cloth strip. They can be raised and lowered by pulling a cord.
  • Mini Blinds – These blinds are like Venetian blinds, except the slats are only around an inch thick.
  • Micro Blinds – Micro blinds are mini “mini blinds”, having slats of about a half-inch in thickness.
  • Vertical Blinds – As the name suggests, these blinds have slats that attach at the top so that they lie vertically. They can either open from the middle or from the side.
  • Panel Blinds – Typically used for large windows or patio doors, these blinds have large vertical slats that open and close along a track.


  • Pleated Shades – This solid piece of material is pleated to look like an accordion, which can then be lowered or raised.
  • Cellular Shades – These are pleated shades made with 2 layers of material that create a middle pocket of air, which can help with insulation.
  • Roller Shades – Roller shades roll up at the top as they are raised.
  • Outdoor Shades – These outdoor options are made of heavy material that is weather resistant. They are typically installed on decks or patios to reduce the impact of the sun’s rays.

Types of Materials

There is a wide range of materials that can be used to construct blinds and shades.

  • Wood – Natural wood blinds can introduce a warm and natural ambiance to a room. They can be purchased in many different colors of stains and wood types.
  • Faux Wood – These blinds have a look similar to natural wood but at a much lower price. They are also more durable than wood.
  • Metal – Metal blinds are recommended for areas that are prone to moisture, such as bathrooms. They come in a variety of colors and sizes.
  • Natural Fabrics – Cotton and jute are common choices in natural fabrics. They are durable but can fade over time.
  • Plastic – Plastic blinds are the most reasonably priced blinds and they come in many sizes and colors.
  • Paper – Pleated shades are most commonly made of durable paper and they are available in several colors.

Get Your Product Fast

If you need your blinds in a hurry, Next Day Blinds will take your order one day and have it shipped the very next day. A Next Day Blinds company will let you know if your specifications are available immediately.

Whether you are looking for blinds or shades, and no matter your taste or budget, there are many options available to you.