Look at your window and decide if you want to mount the blinds on the inside of the window frame (jamb) or outside and/or above the window frame. Inside-mounted blinds look tidy and that's the way to go in most situations. Outside mounted blinds cover up part of the frame and the mounting bracket holes will show if the brackets are removed at a later date. One compelling reason to go with outside mount is if the window frame is too shallow to accommodate the mounting brackets. If your window trim has holes from someone else's window hardware, here's how to fill those holes quickly and easily.
Most mini blinds are made of vinyl or aluminum. Wood and faux wood blinds are available at a higher cost. Also, blinds come either with a cord (for lowering and raising the slats) or without a cord (slats are raised and lowered by moving the bottom rail up or down.) Corded shades are readily available and cordless may need to be special ordered. Cords are a hazard to young children, so choose the safer cordless option if kids will be around. If you have a grandparent or other seniors living with you, check out these 16 helpful tips for making your home safer for older people.
If you’ve chosen to inside-mount your blinds, measure the width of the window space. Select a blind with a width that will fit inside the space. Don't go too narrow or you'll have gaps that reduce privacy and let in too much light. For outside mount, measure the width you'd like to cover up and select a blind with that width. Most blinds come in standard widths to fit common window sizes. Some blinds can be custom-cut where you purchase them or, if you're not in a big hurry and you don't mind spending more, blinds can be custom-ordered to fit your dimensions.
Hold the bracket in place to mark the holes. An inch or so from the edge is usually a safe spot for an inside mount, as shown, but look at your blinds and make sure the bracket won't interfere with the internal mechanisms of the blind. If your blind came with a template for the bracket holes, use that to mark them.
Hold the bracket in place, line up the holes and install the screws. Repeat with the second bracket. If you don't have a drill/driver, the screws can be installed with a screwdriver, but it takes longer and it may be very difficult, if not impossible, to install them with a screwdriver if the window frame is made of hardwood or metal.
Pop the end caps onto the top rail of the blinds and then place the top rail into the brackets. The blinds shown here snap right onto the brackets. With some blinds, the top rail fits into the brackets and you snap down a little flap. Test the blinds to make sure they go up and down properly. All good? Step back and admire your work!
Our blinds also included these hold-down brackets. Once installed, you can keep the bottom rail hooked on the brackets so the blinds won't flap around when the window is open on a breezy day. Wind can also wreak havoc on your screen door. Repair a screen door easily with these simple steps.
What can you do if you need something to cover your windows right now or you live in a building where you're not allowed to drill holes in your walls or window frames? Temporary shades are the answer! They're very inexpensive, take only minutes to install (you simply cut them to fit, peel off the adhesive protector strip and stick them up!) and they don't look half bad! Plus, when you take them down there's no damage to the surface underneath.