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Light Control, Blackout, Room Darkening with Natural Window Shades

Light control, blackout, room darkening, are just a few of the many terms that are loosely used around the window fashions industry. Often these terms are understood to mean overall light reduction or elimination in a room when in fact these terms more often refer specifically to whether or not light will penetrate the fabric itself. There are many factors to be considered including fabric density (light penetrates or not), Fabric color (light can be reflected and amplified), window and shade construction, mounting, and placement (all affect shade fit and overall light-leak around the shade), window orientation (to the sun or other light sources), and or room colors and textures (reflection or absorption of light) to name a few.

Since 1999 we have found our customers to be the happiest when we take the time to properly articulate what a light-control solution can and in some cases cannot do. Often a full or complete solution will result in an approach that includes other elements beginning with the shade. This is another detail that is often overlooked by others in our fast paced society. Please take a look below and click on the links above for additional details and give our experts a call today to discus your interests in proper context

Chemical Free Roman Light Control Shade Light Control Roller Shade Honeycomb Light Control

Sanctuary Roman

RL-O Roller

Basic Honeycomb

Fabric Construction
The textile industry is one of the oldest industries in the world. With over 88,000 unregulated chemicals it is easy to see how a typical light control fabric can be one of the worst polluters of ones home environment. Manufacturers are even beginning to add masking ingredients or synthetic fragrances fooling the bodies defense of smell! Typically a light control fabric is multiple layers of textile glued layer upon layer until simply no more light comes through. Affordable light control without chemicals is a difficult goal to reach. Often when we lower the chemicals the resulting fabric is too thick for anything other than a roller shade making lining other shading systems cumbersome.

Shade mount and fit
A shades operating construction as well as how it is mounted in a window can have a substantial impact on the amount of light that can sneak around the edges of the shade. This is called "light leak". Window trim can also be stepped or otherwise configured. In fact, most light control options regardless of manufacturer or type will have a varying degree of high contrast light leak altering the effectiveness of the solution.

The Happyshades chemical free compostable solution
The Happyshade Roman collection represents the most sustainable shades in the world since 1999. We proudly weave two or three patterns as tightly as possible without chemicals on our own looms in an effort to block as much light as possible. This solution tends to fit a window better minimizing light leak. The remaining light-leak is a soft or diffused amount of light that will vary through the fabric itself. This produces about the same amount of ambient light in a room when compared to conventional window fashions. See pictures and testing below.

The SafeShades ultra low emission solution
The RL-O fabric in our SafeShades Roller line represents years of work remaining the exclusive lowest emitting conventional fabric of its kind. Annual research and collaboration confirms this. The glues typically utilized in conventional and cheaper fabrics have been reduced with heat and pressure taking advantage of the inherent qualities of the synthetic portions of the materials. This fabric continually tests over 600ppm lower than its nearest "Green Certified" competitor for properties including naturally occurring Formaldehyde (none added!). This fabric has an established track record for working with some who suffer from Chemical sensitivities following a short period of off gassing (Chlorines). We can recommend a variety of ways to find out whether this economical fabric is right for you and your family. Please call today and see the pictures and testing below.

Test, Experience, & Compare
At Earthshade we do more than the typical company gathering the latest in fashion components to assemble into shades. We collaborate, develop, research and we test! One such example was a test comparing light control options. We outfitted a room with inside mount Sanctuary HappyShade Romans, set up a photometric light meter in the center of the room and measured the ambient (overall) light level. We then replaced the Sanctuary shades with properly sized shades from a leading fabricator as well as our Safeshades Roller shades with the RL-O low emission fabric. The ambient light levels were nearly the same! The difference is in the experience. Most room darkening or light control options have that high contrast light leak mentioned before where the light leaks and reflects brightly around the edges and often the top and bottom. In the case of the Sanctuary, there is less leak around the edges with some diffusing softly through the fabric. The softness of the light from the Sanctuary, most agree is preferred over the harshness of typical light control solutions. After looking at the pictures here, give us a call, well send you samples for free to see for yourself!

Closed Roman Light Control Option Closed Light Control Rollershade option Closed room dimming Honeycomb

Sanctuary Roman

RL-O Roller

Basic Honeycomb




Earthshade Light Control Fabric options


Click on a thumbnail to see a larger image
Pattern attributes are defined below

Kindly see Pricing-Ordering-Contact for Pricing information


HappyShades Roman
SafeShades Roller

Sanctuary Light Control Sanctuary (Natural w/ white*)
Privacy: High
Shading: 95%
Insulating: r2.95
Light control: 75 - 90%
Material: Wood reeds

Red Sanctuary Light Control
Red Sanctuary (Red Cedar*)
Privacy: High
Shading: 95%
Insulating: r2.9
Light control: 80 - 90%
Material: Mineral wash over wood reeds

Morrocan Magic Moroccan Magic NEW! (Golden Brown*)
Privacy: High
Shading: 80%
Insulating: r2.60
Light control: 55 - 70%
Material: Jute & cellulosic fibers w/ water and mineral wash

RL-O Chocolate swatch

RL-0 Chocolate
High privacy 0% open
Light control:
85 - 90% +
70 % Cotton & Polyester
Extremely low emission. Insulating,
Heat reduction, Noise reduction,
Privacy, & Fade reduction


RL-O Silver RL-0 Silver
High privacy 0% open
Light control: 85 - 90%
70 % Cotton & Polyester
Extremely low emission. Insulating,
Heat reduction, Noise reduction,
Privacy, & Fade reduction

RL-0 Ice swatch RL-0 Ice
High privacy 0% open
Light control: 85 - 90% -
70 % Cotton & Polyester
Extremely low emission. Insulating,
Heat reduction, Noise reduction,
Privacy, & Fade reduction

RL-0 Straw swatch RL-0 Straw
High privacy 0% open
Light control: 85 - 90% -
70 % Cotton & Polyester
Extremely low emission. Insulating,
Heat reduction, Noise reduction,
Privacy, & Fade reduction

RL-0 Wheat swatch RL-0 Wheat
High privacy 0% open
Light control: 85 - 90%
70 % Cotton & Polyester
Extremely low emission. Insulating,
Heat reduction, Noise reduction,
Privacy, & Fade reduction

Privacy Rating:
Low: Highly decorative, preserved view, reduced glare by day. Diffused, minimal privacy at night. = 5-10% open solar
Med: Decorative compromised view. Screened diffused light. Reasonable privacy at night.
High: Functional, obscured view to virtual room darkening. Full privacy by night.

Shading Value:
Approximate percentage of the patterns ability to reduce heat gain. The higher the value, the more effective the pattern is.
Average conventional window treatment rating: 30-79%.

Insulating R Value:
Approximate value of the patterns ability to resist heat loss. The higher the value the more insulation the pattern provides. Average conventional treatment rating: R 2.0-3.0.

Light Control:
The approximate percentage of a patterns ability to reduce overall ambient light in an average sized room. Light control will vary depending on mounting attributes, window orientation, interior finishes, or the materials Inherent characteristics. Comparable industry average: 88%

Insulating R Value:
Most Safeshades fabrics have an R value very close to one another. The exception is the RL-O light control fabric which will have the best performance slowing summer heat gain as well as winter heat loss with an R-value in the range of 2.5. Even our most open fabric at 10% will perform in the range of an R 1.60 or higher depending on the mounting configuration.

Sound Absorbence/Control:
Some manufacturers report acoustical control as an additional asset to their shading products. While this may be measurable under the right circumstances with the right equipment, We have not seen a single person view such performance as considerable. We do agree textiles will have an effect on sound reflectance to one degree or another; we simply do not feel these are worthy selling points.

Note: Values are subjective to the individual and may vary according to the inherent qualities of the materials.


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NOTES:
- Due to the nature of the material: *color, grain, texture, privacy and light transparency may vary according to the inherent characteristics of the materials.

-Though we strive to control every last detail regarding our shade production, some patterns (including those that are GreenGuard or Oeko Tex certified) may not be suitable for our friends with chemical sensitivities. Please call for additional details.

-Some patterns may require additional operating options based on ordered dimensions, conditions, and or customer desires. An Earthshade Representative will assist with recommendations.

-Minor stretching and twisting is inherent to the materials and may require a varying amount of time to acclimate. Sun exposure may cause discoloration or fading

-Kindly see Pricing-Order-Contact for Additional terms, conditions, and warranty details

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