October truly is a wonderful month to get our home in order for the warm, festive holiday months. The sun starts streaming into our homes and our gardens are in full bloom. Soon the sun that was once a welcomed stream becomes an unwanted nightmare in the afternoons as your room starts to heat up, fading your carpets and furnishings. Get in early and invest in some good quality blockout curtains. These curtains are fabulous as you can draw them closed during the day to keep the sunlight out of the room and provide a barrier between the warmer outdoors keeping your inside cooler.
Blockout curtains have foam or acrylic coating applied to the reverse of the curtain fabric. This coating is applied in three layers. A white layer, a black layer and then another white layer. It is the black layer in the middle that prevents the light or sunshine from penetrating the fabric.
The key to getting the best results when using blockout curtains for their thermal properties is ensuring that you have adequate fullness in the curtains. This means don't skimp on the size. For the eyelet type curtains (the ones with the rings sewn into the top) make sure they are at least 2 times as wide as your window so when they are closed you have lots of folds. For Pencil Pleat Curtains (the ones with the cords in the back that you pull and gather them up) again make sure the total fabric width when they are not drawn up is again at least 2 times the window width. For Pinch Pleat (the type with the sewn in pleats) it is best if you can get triple pinch pleats, as these have more fabric in the curtain than the double pinch pleat. The more fabric you have in your blockout curtains the better.
Finally run your track or rod a good 30cm past the window on each side and hang the rod as high up above the window as possible.
Not so long ago, these types of curtains were an expensive addition to the home, and everyone dreaded replacing them. These days, with the modern coating machines, you can buy good quality, stylish curtains made from quality blockout fabrics at a very reasonable price. If you install them correctly, using as much fabric as possible, running them past the windows on each side and mounting them as high up as you can, you can potentially save a fortune on cooling bills during the hot summer months and protect your carpets and furnishings from fading.