Black Out Drapes & Curtains
Black-out draperies are heavy fabric panels whose purpose is to block light from entering a room. Typically, black out drapes are lined and mounted on a rod that allows them to be opened and closed as needed. By the way, the terms curtain and drape have become synonymous with people using them interchangeably.
Whether the drapes are in a bedroom, a home theater or any other room there are a few considerations when selecting the right ones. First of all, determine what your requirements are for darkening a room. Black out drapes come in different weights and sizes. If you need total darkness, you should select drapes that are thick and have a tight weave. Lined draperies will improve their light blocking abilities. Whenever possible hold up a sample of the fabric to the sunlight. No light should be visible if you require total darkness.
Light will leak around the draperies. To minimize this leakage of light, order draperies slightly larger than you would otherwise use. Going a little taller and wider than usual will give the material to block out more light. Also the larger size will allow you to select a rod that will wrap the drape around and against the wall.
Dark colors also absorb more light, while light colors reflect light. Some of the light that leaks around the edge of the draperies is reflected light. Using dark colors for your draperies, and for the lining as well, will reduce this reflected light. Light that does get into the room is reflected by light colored surfaces. Light color paint on ceilings and walls reflect light. Consider using darker colors to reduce the reflected light.
Other window coverings, such as blinds and shades can block a lot of light. But because of blinds rigid shape, a great deal of light still leaks around them. If you do choose blinds or shades, consider choosing wall mount instead of window mount models. The wall mount style covers the entire window and some of the wall, which reduces light leakage.
Another useful feature of black-out curtains is that they are also effective for reducing sound from outside and they are a good insulator too. Whether you are trying to keep a room warm in the winter or cool in the summer, heavy draperies are good at reducing drafts and slowing thermal transfer.