Fabric types

Dim-out vs. Blackout vs. Screen Fabric.  Features, Benefits & Prices.

It is not only necessary to choose the colour for blinds, but it is also important to make sure the fabric does the right job. 

There are literally thousands of different fabrics on the market to choose from, so we have decided to share our expertise on the matter.

All roller blind fabrics are split into three key categories;

Dimout fabric

Primary Function.  Privacy with basic glare control. 

Approx Price £42.44 (Based on R300 at 1.2m x 1.2m)

Artisan Clay 715

Dimout fabric is translucent, meaning “allowing light, but not detailed shapes, to pass through; semi-transparent”.  This means it is a perfect fabric for providing privacy to the users of the space and will also provide an element of shade from natural light.

Dimout fabric is generally available in a broad colour range and is popular in places such as schools, colleges and universities.

Black-out fabric

Primary Function.  Stopping natural light completely.

Approx Price £50.13 (Based on R300 at 1.2m x 1.2m)

Artisan BO 09 Navy

Black out fabric will completely block out incoming light and create a very dark atmosphere within the room. This effect is achieved by applying numerous passes of specialist coatings to the back of a base fabric.  By preventing all light from passing through this means blackout fabric is also very effective in glare control and reducing heat gain.  However, you would loose the benefit of natural light in a space.

Places such as bedrooms, theatre halls, IT areas or student accommodation tend to use black out fabric to maximise performance.

It is worth noting that even though the fabric is black-out the roller blind itself may allow a small element of light to pass down the sides and over the top.  This can be reduced by using a “cassetted roller blind” CLICK HERE to see more on this.

Blackout fabrics were typically available in a PVC finish but more recently softer textured blackout fabrics have become available such as the Artisan Blackout Range.

Screen Fabric

Primary Function.  Preventing Glare & Heat Gain.

Approx Price £48.36 (Based on R300 with Diffusor 3% at 1.2m x 1.2m)

1% Black/grey

Screen fabric is a more technical blind fabric made by weaving a range of plastic coated Fibreglass/Polyester fibres into a basket like mesh.  This results in an openness factor (perforation) which filters natural light as it comes into the room. Screen fabrics come generally in 1, 3 and 5% openness. 3% is the most popular, you can learn more about openness fabrics in our knowledge post coming soon. Check it out by clicking here.

The key feature of screen fabric is that it prevents glare but still allows natural light into the room, to a certain degree you can also see through the fabric from the inside looking out.  This means you do not lose the benefit of having a window in a room, even when the blinds are down.

For this reason Screen fabrics are most popular in office spaces, atrium/reception areas and horizontal roof light openings.

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