Energy Efficient Window Coverings

Energy Saving, Modern Window Blinds and Coverings

Heat Pumps, smart thermostats, awnings and patio covers all go a long way towards improving the energy efficiency of your home.  But did you know that the right window treatments are just as beneficial for reducing excess energy consumption?

Up to 25% of a home’s heat is lost through uncovered windows, and 40% of heat enters through the windows. With the right window coverings, you can easily retain cool or warm air, cut down on the use of heaters and air conditioning and reduce overall energy consumption. Investing in custom window treatments for your home will go a long way towards your comfort and long-term energy savings.

Whether you’re looking to beat the summer heat or keep your chilly office space warm in the winter, there are a wide array of custom, versatile window coverings suitable for every room in your home, from blackout shades in the baby’s room to sheer drapes in the dining room.

Though dramatically different in how they frame your windows and add style to your home, the variety of window coverings from Ruffell and Brown all greatly help with climate control while adding a touch of luxury that can only come with the world’s best-selling window fashions.

What are the Best Energy Efficient Window Treatments?

Our wide variety of blinds, draperies, shades and shutters are custom designed to suit any space in your home while reducing energy output and your home’s carbon footprint.

Cellular Honeycomb Shades

The innovative honeycomb design of these shades traps air for maximum energy efficiency. Available in single or double honeycomb design, choose from a wide selection of colours, patterns and fabrics ranging from sheer to blackout. Cellular shades blend into your home’s design beautifully while working hard to maintain a comfortable temperature.

Venetian Blinds

energy efficient blinds - metal venetian blinds

Metal/Aluminum Venetian Blinds

Metal venetian blinds continue to be a standby for homeowners looking to add light and temperature control to their homes. However, the newer products are nothing like the older, corded styles offered primarily in white and beige. Todays metal blinds are sophisticated and designed in an array of dimensions, slat sizes and colours. Cordless and offered in everything from matte to pearlescent shades, metal venetian blinds are timeless and durable.

Wood Venetian Blinds

Adding a warm look to any home while complementing wood furniture, wood venetian blinds insulate even better than aluminum blinds since they do not transmit heat at all. Made of the highest quality wood with slats that close tightly to block out heat and sunlight, these blinds are light, durable and can even be made with cloth tapes customized to match the room’s décor.

Faux Wood Venetian Blinds

Our faux wood blinds are low maintenance and can withstand exposure to bright sunlight and moisture, without fading or warping. Available in wood stain colours or a wide selection of painted finishes, faux wood blinds are ideal for bathrooms and other heavily lit windows, such as those in sunrooms.

Top-Down Bottom-Up Shades

Truly versatile, top-down bottom-up shades add a softer look to your windows while making it easy to filter or block sunlight from any angle. With a variety of woven and non-woven fabric options, colours, patterns and backings, pleated top-down bottom-up shades let you completely customize privacy and light exposure. For optimum energy efficiency and insulation, we recommend our metallized fabrics, or white sheers to block solar heat.

Skylift Skylight System

A major source of natural light in the home, skylights can sometimes let in too much heat. Combat this problem with custom Duette and Applause shades made for larger, hard-to-reach windows in your home and sunroom. Integrated with motorization, you can easily filter harsh sunlight in the summer and retain heat in the winter.


energy efficient window treatments - draperies Draperies help to insulate against heat and cold equally. When layered with blinds, shades or sheers, they can also create a customized solution for maximizing energy efficiency and privacy any time of year. Simply open your drapes to let warmth and sunlight in during the summer or close them to retain heat during the winter. Draperies add softness and style to any room and at Ruffell and Brown, we offer the widest range of drapery products in Western Canada.


A versatile insulator, shutters are a conversation piece and add an international flair to any space. Made to measure for any window or door, our shutters are custom made from top quality materials including wood, faux wood, composite and vinyl. They can even be customized in an exact shade of paint or stain to match flooring or any other aspect of your home’s décor.

Motorized Window Treatments

The majority of our window treatments can be motorized and integrated with any home automation system, putting you in total control of when and how your window coverings adjust. Whether by the time of day, the angle of the sun, or to bolster security by using a smartphone app while you’re away from home, automated blinds, draperies, shades and shutters make it that much easier to increase energy efficiency. Raise, lower and tilt blinds and shades at the touch of a button.

Beyond Window Coverings

To ensure your windows and window coverings are at peak efficiency, it’s important to check and regularly maintain the seals around windows to guard against leaks and drafts. Properly sealed window frames will prevent hot and cold air from entering and escaping. You’ll also want to check any heating and cooling or forced air ducts throughout the home and seal where needed to prevent warm/cold air loss.


No matter your energy-saving needs, our designers can help create the perfect custom window treatments for you. Our collection of top brands and thousands of fabrics, textures and colours will add polish and valuable energy savings to your home. For windows that are designed to do so much more than simply cover your windows, visit our showroom in Victoria, BC, or contact us for a free shop-at-home appointment.

Child Safety for Window Coverings

Child Safe Window Blinds, Shutters & Curtains

If you have young children living in or visiting your home, you know how curious they can be and how much work goes into making sure they’re completely safe. When a new baby arrives or starts to toddle around, you automatically set about baby proofing your home, anchoring furniture, locking cupboards, covering outlets and putting up baby gates in an effort to prevent any mishaps.

Did you know you also need to look to your windows when child proofing? Your windows and the blinds, curtains and shades that add a beautiful accent to your home, are a crucial and often overlooked area when it comes to child safety.

At the same time that you’re anchoring furniture to the walls and plugging in those little plastic outlet covers, your blinds, curtains and shades also need to be properly child-proofed or ideally upgraded to cordless options—particularly in children’s rooms and play areas. At Ruffell and Brown, we offer a wide variety of innovative and stylish window coverings designed with child safety at top of mind.

Why Child Proof Window Coverings?

The cords and chains used with older style window treatments pose a real threat to little ones who just cannot resist the temptation of trying to reach them. Children under the age of three are particularly at risk for injury and strangulation, since they might lose their balance while climbing furniture, looking out a window, or even just playing with a cord that’s puddled on the living room floor. Children can easily become entangled in these cords and disaster can happen in seconds.

In fact, there have been 39 reported strangulation deaths since 1989, according to Health Canada. Roughly one child will die each year from accidents related to unsafe or improperly installed window treatments.

Thankfully, these accidents are easily preventable with child proofing and updated window coverings, including cordless blinds, motorized shades and everything in between.

Health Canada recommends that corded window coverings are replaced with cordless for maximum safety and as of May 1, 2021, the Government of Canada will restrict the lengths of cords and sizes of loops allowed on all new window coverings sold in Canada. This greater emphasis on safety will make it easier than ever to extend child proofing to windows and doors.

child blind safety - hunter douglas honeycomb shades

Cordless Window Coverings are Safest

When it’s time to upgrade your window treatments, you can trust that Ruffell and Brown takes child safety seriously and offers many innovative cordless systems designed with safety, beauty and convenience in mind. Hunter Douglas is a wonderful example of a leading window covering designer that we carry that understands the importance of child safety features.

This wide range of fashionable and child proof blinds, curtains, shades and shutters is the perfect complement to the aesthetic of your home. The Hunter Douglas line of blinds, curtains, shades and shutters are also available in several ultra-convenient operating systems:

LiteRise touch system

With the LiteRise system, a touch of the handle will lower or raise the blinds or shades. The hidden control system keeps the blinds or shades balanced without the need of awkward cords or rods. The LiteRise system combines ease of use with a streamlined look and is an ideal solution for child proofing.

LiteRise is available on the following products:

  • Country Woods Wooden Blinds
  • Decor Mini Blinds
  • Brilliance Pleated Shades
  • Duette Honeycomb Shades


A more cost-effective alternative to LiteRise, the SimpleLift system provides the same sleek appearance with no clumsy wands or cords. Just raise and lower the blinds or shades by pushing the button on the bottom rail.

SimpleLift is available on the following products:

PowerView Motorization

PowerView Motorization is available with the majority of Hunter Douglas window coverings and at Ruffell and Brown, we are leading experts on motorizing everything from shades to skylight covers. Motorization is a great option for keeping your window coverings hands-free, especially for hard to reach spaces and taller windows.

Using the PowerView App on the device of your choice, you can program your window coverings on a set schedule. If you’re away from home, you can close your blinds at the touch of a button for added security. You can also use the stylish Pebble remote control to reposition your window treatments while staying comfortably seated.

PowerView Motorization is available on most of the products offered including roller shades, banded shades, vertical blinds, horizontal blinds, side panels and draperies and more.


The Vertiglide system for vertical window treatments eliminates cords, chains and wands and provides a sleek covering option for sliding glass doors or wherever a side-to-side window covering is needed.

Vertiglide is available on the following products:

Wand Control

Wand Control is another convenient way to adjust vertical blinds without any dangling cords or chains. This all-in-one cordless system allows you to open, close and adjust vertical window coverings quickly and easily.

Wand Control is available on the following products: child blind safety - hunter douglas heritage hardwood shutters

Custom Shutters

Cordless by design, shutters are ideal for homes with small children. They are incredibly versatile and can match any decor beautifully, whether you prefer a rustic look, sleek and modern look, or anything in between.


Especially for the very popular Duette Honeycomb line, the UltraGlide system uses a retractable cord or an ergonomic wand to adjust the shades. A constant cord length is maintained, providing exceptional child safety and ease of use.

UltraGlide is available on a wide variety of products, including most roller shades, banded shades, vertical blinds and horizontal blinds.

Combination Wand/Cord

This easy to use combination lets you lift, lower, and tilt the blinds and shades while the cord stays completely secure and out of the reach of small hands.

Combination Wand/Cord Control is available on Luminette Privacy Sheers

Child Proofing Existing Window Treatments

Older window treatments can be modified with the use of cord tensioners, anchors, or winding devices. While you decide on the ideal window coverings for your home, you can keep your little ones safe with these child proofing measures:


  • Move cords up high and out of reach, or remove corded window coverings from children’s bedrooms and play areas. Never let cords or chains hang on the window sill or floor
  • Avoid placing playpens, chairs, cribs, beds, or other furniture near windows
  • Untie any cords that have been knotted and attach them to the wall using tension devices
  • In a pinch, use a clothespin, twist tie, or a bag clip to keep the cord high and out of reach
  • Review the child safety brochure from Hunter Douglas

With so many options to choose from, visit our Victoria, BC showroom to see our full range of child safe and beautiful cordless window treatments at Ruffell and Brown. Phone 250-384-1230 to book an appointment for a free consultation with our window treatment experts.

5 Window Covering Trends for 2020

Window Covering Trends We’ll Be Watching Closely In 2020

When it comes to transforming your living space, a great place to start is your window coverings. To bring our customers the latest and greatest window treatments for their homes, our team at Ruffell & Brown in Victoria, BC, is constantly staying on top of new technology and trends in the window covering industry.

Here is a quick glance at the fabrics, colours, technology, and child safety features we’re on the lookout for in 2020. The following information is based on consumer trends, industry reports, technology advancements, new government regulations, and especially customer feedback and popular requests.

Alendel Empire Sheer Drape 1. Fabrics

Colourful fabrics are making a comeback for 2020, replacing the cool greys and plain beiges that have been common for the last 10 or 15 years. We are also seeing a rise in neutral drapes that have brightly coloured edges, which are a great way to get a pop of colour to your space without fully committing or having to choose an overly busy pattern.

Sheer drapes are also back in style for rooms where blackout treatments aren’t required. We love sheer drapes because they are an easy, stylish way to add texture to your rooms without overwhelming the space. They are also versatile, coming in a variety of subtle patterns and working with flat panel, grommet, and rod pocket styles.

Hunter Douglas Design Studio Blue Drapes Office

2. Colour Trends

Replacing the cool greys that are on their way out are warmer neutrals and coastal inspired colour palettes. Picture white sandy beaches, sea greens, dried seaweed, and driftwood, and you get the idea. Amongst the coastal inspired hues, blue will be taking centre stage, specifically Pantone’s Colour of the Year 2020, Classic Blue –  a “timeless and enduring blue hue” chosen for its ability to instill “calm, confidence, and connection.”

Hunter Douglas Motorization with PowerView app on Tablet 3. Smart Blinds

The home automation trend is not about to slow down anytime soon, and this trend has certainly carried over into the window covering industry. Technology isn’t something that used to factor into window coverings all that much, but today’s smart homes have changed all that. Motorized window coverings with voice activation features have been steadily increasing in popularity year over year, leading us to believe that this trend is  here to stay.

Our customers love having the convenient ability to open and close their blinds, shades, or shutters from their smartphones, whether they are at home on the couch, waiting at the airport for a flight, or stuck at the office. Even better, many smart blinds come without cords, creating a cleaner look that is much safer for small children and pets. Motorized blinds also provide more energy efficiency and security measures for your home.

4. Eco-Friendly Products Hunter Douglas Provenance Woven Wood Natural Shades Kitchen

There has been a massive shift towards products that are environmentally friendly and bring a sense of our natural environment indoors. So, it’s no surprise to us that more and more of our customers are asking about green products for their home. We expect this trend to continue for 2020.

What do we mean by eco-friendly products? There are many to choose from, including sustainably farmed organic bamboo and cotton fabrics, or wooden or bamboo matchstick blinds and window coverings. Products that are made locally through a waste-free manufacturing processes are in high demand as well.

Overall, by choosing high quality window coverings that are made to last, you are already opting for a greener product because a high quality window covering doesn’t have to be replaced often – if ever. High quality window covers are also green products because they increase a home’s energy efficiency, as well as protect the furniture inside from deteriorating too quickly and requiring replacement. We anticipate seeing more and more manufacturers respond to the consumers’ appetite for more energy efficient homes and more eco-friendly products for their homes this year.

See our suggested window treatment products for increasing your home’s energy efficiency.

Hunter Douglas Sonnette Child Safe 5. Child Safety Features

Child-safe products continue to be a focus in the window treatment industry, with Health Canada having recently published new Corded Window Covering Regulations that come into effect May 2021. To prepare for the new regulations, parents and caregivers are “strongly encouraged to replace existing corded window coverings with cordless options that are now available on the market, starting with children’s rooms and places where children play,” says a Health Canada press release from April 2019.

Cordless window treatments will dominate in 2020 as homeowners have more and more options to choose from, including skyline gliding window panels, cellular honeycomb shades, vignette modern roman shades, and vinyl shutters.

In Summary

No matter what’s trending, when you’re choosing your new window treatments, it’s always important to consider how you want the window treatment to function and meet your needs and goals for each room. Think about things like your required level of privacy, light control, and insulation before narrowing down your colour or fabric choices.

At Ruffell & Brown, we believe that when it comes to transforming a space, there is no better place to start than the windows. A new set of custom window blinds or drapes in your dining room, bedroom, and bathroom can give the entire house a new aesthetic, as well as serve practical functions, such as protecting your privacy and keeping unwanted sunlight from entering.

If you are in the market for new custom draperies, be sure to schedule an at-home appointment today with Ruffell & Brown. We will help you design a product that fits into your existing décor, or is meant to transform your living space and make your guests say wow!

2020 Window Trends Infographic


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