2016 TRENDS – have you tried them?

– This year, we watched as Budget Blinds predicted and described the upcoming trends and styles for 2016 (and we have LOVED them btw!) Looking back, we want to know… have you seen these styles this year? And if so, have you dared to be bold and try them in your life? What about in your home?


Here are the trends predicted by Budget Blinds:

Pale pink becomes a power color and takes center stage as one of two hues chosen by Pantone as Color of the Year. Large-scale blooms and botanicals bring nature inside. Gray reigns as a classic complement to lighter, chalkier hues. Metals, woods, glass, and ceramics bring textural interest and keep pastel rooms from becoming too cutesy.
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Bold patterns and shapes executed in a brighter palette are anything but staid. The look is eclectic, with artisanal patterns and geometric shapes clashing—in a good way. Black and white temper the riot of colors and help anchor the space.

Inspired by travel and adventure, the trend is a modern take on global patterns, fabrics, and crafts. It’s all in the mix. Embroidery, caning, animal
hides, even macramé, give a handcrafted, organic feel to accessories. Soft pastels contrast with deep blues and grays. Ethnic accents complete the look.

Black continues to be a strong color preference for walls, windows, and metal accents. Vintage details add a timeless quality. Rustic woods contrast with classic shapes in furnishings. Leather, copper, wire, and natural elements give texture and shine throughout a room.
Texture and shine take center stage, with jewel-like accents amping up the glamour. Now more than ever, vintage shapes executed in modern materials look new and fresh. Velvets, linens, and leathers provide the all-important contrast of matte and gloss for a sophisticated overall look.”
Let’s elevate the style of YOUR home with trying some of these ultra modern trends! They can all be implemented so easily – and quickly too! Let’s get in touch and talk style with your FREE in-home design consultation! We should get started before the seasons start, it is effortless and I promise its fun! 🙂
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Have the “Cool” House on the Block with Motorized Window Treatments

Give your house the WOW factor with motorized window treatments – not only will YOU benefit from the stylish and convenient treatments, but your neighbors and house guests will be impressed too! Trust us, these treatments pour in the compliments – “so modern!”

                somfy5  somfy_motorization  blinds_motorization

Adding motorization to your window coverings is cool and super convenient with a touch of a button and/or remote! Budget Blinds offers motorization powered by Somfy which allows you to control your window treatments for lighting and privacy (and let’s be honest, style is a huge plus too!)

Having motorized window treatments can make your life easier by covering hard-to-reach windows or helping someone with limited mobility effortlessly control their window coverings! Best of all, motorization has SO many wonderful benefits that will improve how you live in your house. Another plus – no matter your window covering preference–blinds, shutters, shades or drapes–we (Budget Blinds) can make it motorized!


When thinking about motorized window coverings, it’s awesome to be able to open or close them by remote control, BUT there are other aspects of life when motorization can really come to the rescue. It can help in ways that are not commonly thought of – like covering windows to protecting your child (cordless!)

Hard-to-reach windows: Every home has at least one or more windows that are impossible to reach, making life super inconvenient, right?  Covering these windows seemed impossible until motorized window treatments came along. Instead of climbing over a bath tub or kitchen sink (or on top of a counter top!) you can close and open your own privacy without hurting yourself.

Also motorized treatments are ideal for other hard-to-reach windows like:



  • Security – Somfy provides your security by allowing you to set timers making it appear as someone is home even when you are not.
  • Privacy – Motorized treatments add more privacy to your home when you just don’t have enough time to close your blinds.
  • Convenience – Easy opening and closing with a touch of a button.
  • Energy Saving – You can program your window treatments on timers during peak hours to help reduce your energy bill.
  • UV Protection – Motorization allows you to protect your furnishing by programming your window coverings to close when the sun is brightly shining down.


Motorized window treatments are as great as they seem – honestly, why wait!?  Let Budget Blinds make your home the cool house on the block with custom blinds, shutters, shades and drapers with one-touch operation. Call 651-351-7620 today or email me directly at pbrown@budgetblinds.com

How to DIY clean your BLINDS (and without damage!)

DID YOU KNOW –  blinds that accumulate dust for months are actually harder to clean – and the dust can cause major damage! YIKES! It is crucial to clean your blinds on a regular basis to prevent health risks (like allergies) or having to frequently purchase new window treatments when they get too dirty.

We always wants you to have beautiful clean blinds! So they keep reading for some great tips (and tricks) to properly clean your blinds in your home, and on your own!


Most of us use a cloth to clean our blinds – am I right? Using a simple swipe we clean our blinds and sometimes only cleaning the side people see the most. Oh come on, we all do it! But cleaning our blinds SHOULD be much more than that! To keep your blinds looking good for the long haul it is important to:

  • Dust/vacuum your blinds at least once a month
  • Clean your blinds every time the seasons change
  • Do a deep clean twice-a-year, especially before the holidays!


Chocolate Colored Wood Blinds

Cleaning Wood Blinds:

Cleaning real wood blinds differs from other materials, so it is important to use these tips so you don’t ruin the real wood.

  • Use a soft cloth that is lightly sprayed with furniture polish or lemon oil and start dusting at the top, across each slat, all the way to the bottom
  • Use mild detergent in tepid water on a clean cotton cloth if your wood blinds are badly stained; make sure to rinse with clear water and dry with a cotton cloth immediately.
  • By all means, NEVER let moisture stay on wood blinds


Cleaning Vertical Blinds:

Budget Blinds White Vertical Blinds

Vertical blinds are a little tougher to clean because of their floor-to-ceiling size. Yet, cleaning them during your normal housekeeping routine will keep them looking fresh year round.

  • Dust or vacuum each side from top to bottom
  • Use soapy water on a soft cloth for dirty spots for a deeper clean and then rinse
  • For vinyl or aluminum blinds, place a towel underneath to eliminate spills and use soapy water and a sponge to wash both sides from the top to the bottom until they are fully clean
  • Rinse thoroughly and wipe dry with a soft cloth
  • For sheer fabric blinds, unsnap fabric from the vanes and wash gently with Woolite, hang to dry, then snap back onto the vanes


Dusting your blinds: 

  • Fully extend your blinds and close them as flat as possible. Starting from the top, clean across each slat, all the way to the bottom, using a soft dust cloth or feather duster. Then rotate the slats and repeat.
  • Instead of using a cloth, you can use a sock. Place a clean sock on your hand, open the slats and run your hand back and forth across each slat, from top to bottom.
  • Use specialty tools for cleaning the slats that allow you to clean several at the same time, on both sides.

Tools for dusting blinds


If your blinds are just too dirty– aluminum or vinyl ONLY: If you tried dusting and vacuuming and your blinds still need more work, try giving them a good bath! You will have to remove your blinds before you begin:

Window Cleaning Tools

  • Lay the blinds flat in your bathtub in enough water to just cover them, mix in two or three cups of white vinegar and a splash of dish soap
  • Let the blinds soak for 5-10 minutes, then clean them off with a sponge
  • For dirtier spots or crevices use a toothbrush to give a deeper clean
  • Rinse off the blinds in fresh water and lay flat to drip dry, or use a clean cloth to immediately wipe the blinds dry


Taking time out of your schedule to clean your blinds with these easy tips will keep your blinds nice and glistening clean, and the best part is YOU can do it yourself!

If you wish to have your blinds cleaned professionally we help with that service as well – just give us a call and we will come pick up your blinds, clean them and deliver them back to you!

On the other hand, if its too late to save your dirty blinds, we have got you covered! We boast a LARGE selection of top name-brand window coverings: blinds, shutters, shades and drapery to update your home. Call 651-351-7620 today to schedule your FREE, in-home design consultation! Email me directly too: pbrown@budgetblinds.com


Window Coverings for Your Vacation Rental that Won’t Break the Bank

Owning a vacation rental property can be tough. Competition can be fierce and upkeep adds more and more expenses. When you are renting out property, you want to make sure it is welcoming. If you leave it bare and dull you can’t expect people to get excited about renting it, and it becomes a wasted investment. Don’t worry; with Budget Blinds, we got you covered. We offer an assortment of window coverings that are stylish and trendy and won’t break your bank.

Faux Wood Blinds

Faux Wood Blinds

Faux wood blinds are a great choice for any rental property (or any property in general!) They give a classic look that never goes out of style. Faux wood blinds are very durable. Made from polymer materials with UVA inhibitors they are energy efficient by blocking out the UV rays, which helps prevent sun damage to your furnishings. Budget Blinds offers faux blinds in 2”- 2 ½” slat sizes and a variety of colors from whites to textured finishes. Also, faux wood blinds can be motorized for cordless operation, making them a child- safe product which is ideal when families are renting your home.

Budget Blinds Ready-made Panels

Panel Curtain Fabrics

Budget Blinds offers an alternative to blinds for your rentals window coverings: ready-made drapery panels. Our exclusive Inspired Drapes collection offers custom, ready-made drapery panels to dress up any window. The ready-made panels are great for a vacation rental because they are quick to order and install. They’re offered in three styles: flat, back tab or grommet, and come in three lengths. There are over 25 designer fabrics and colors to choose from. Ready-made panels are also great to layer with other window coverings, such as window blinds or shades, for a more elegant look. They add a designer look without the designer cost, making them a reasonable choice for any vacation home.

Classic Mini Blinds

Mini Blinds

Mini blinds are another very cost efficient choice when placing them into your vacation rental. Mini blinds have modernized and upgraded their image and are not just your basic white mini blind anymore. They come in quality materials and a wide assortment of colors and textures to add a designer element to your rental. Mini blinds add value through durability and functionality including being user-friendly for your renters. Mini blinds are ideal for covering large windows and can be customized to fit any uniquely-shaped windows including skylights. They are energy effective by blocking sunlight and keeping your rental cool during the summer and saving money on your energy bill.

Vertical Blinds


Almost all vacation rentals have sliding doors which bring up two issues: light and privacy. Vertical blinds will control both of those issues and still allow a full view outside, making them a brilliant solution for sliding glass doors. They are very durable and can withstand heat for those humid locations. They come in a vast spectrum of colors and materials which are ideal for a modern look, and are easy to operate and easy to clean.

Roller Shades

Roller Shades

Roller shades are a classic yet sophisticated window covering to add to your vacation rental. Budget Blinds Inspired Shades collection features an exclusive assortment of custom roller shades in over 80 contemporary prints and colors making them a top choice for window fashions.  Roller shades are very user-friendly for renters and have great light control. They are available with cordless lift for a child-safe environment and come in four opacity levels to add different effects to each room. Roller shades are a great investment to put into your vacation rental that will last long and never go out of style.

Sliding Panels

Vertical Sliding Panels

Sliding panels are perfect for patio doors, large windows or even separating one room into two. They come in an assortment of colors and materials that give a very trendy vibe. Also, they come in natural materials like Bamboo and woven woods which create a great ambiance for beach rentals. They are very cost effective for large windows and enhance the environment with unique style. For more humid areas, sliding panels are great with a sunscreen track which allows for greater UV protection. The sunscreen track will help preserve your panels by keeping out moisture.

Budget Blinds offers endless design possibilities for window coverings to perfectly suit your vacation rental but that won’t break your bank. Call 651- 351 – 7620 today or go online to budgetblinds.com to find your Style Consultant and schedule your FREE, in-home consultation. Let your stylish window coverings place you above the competition and help to sell your vacation rental as the place to be!

Improving Veterans’ Lives with Fabulous, Functional Faux Wood Blinds

Okay, so I can’t lie – this blog post from Budget Blinds Corporate (love it!) I read the post and thought it was too good NOT to share! I am so proud to work for a company that gives back to the heroes of our country.

— Keep reading 🙂 

“Home” calls to mind many images and emotions.

  • Safety, love and comfort
  • Family and friends
  • Good times and good food

If, however, you are a severely injured military veteran, it may also mean inaccessibility, frustration, pain and threat of injury. That’s because standard homes are not built to accommodate people with special needs such as wheelchairs, prosthetics and limited mobility.

HFOT House

Since 2004, Homes for Our Troops (HFC) has been rectifying that situation for as many injured veterans as they can, as fast as they can, by building specially adapted homes for severely injured veterans Post 9/11, to enable them to rebuild their lives. To date, 211 homes have been built and 70 projects are currently underway nationwide.

Budget Blindsbecame a corporate sponsor of HFOT in 2014, committing to install faux wood blinds from our Signature Series® collection into all the homes built over the next three years. It’s been an exciting journey as, month after month, veterans and their families move into these new, mortgage-free HFOT homes. Blinds are donated by our manufacturing partner, Springs Window Fashions, and local independent Budget Blinds franchise owners do measuring and installs for the homes in their areas.  Read more about our relationship with HFOT by clicking here, and read on to meet the two newest home recipients.


Faux Wood Blinds are the right window blinds for all seasons!

Whenever and wherever the HFOT homes are built, white faux wood blinds from our Signature Series collection are ideal because of their versatility and high quality. Regardless the climate or season, our faux wood blinds create a comfortable and safe home environment for veterans and their families.

  • They provide energy efficiency by blocking sunlight to reduce solar heat
  • Made of durable polymer materials, they won’t crack, chip or peel and are easy to clean
  • Classic, white 2” slats are compatible with any home’s color scheme
  • They are moisture resistant, excellent for kitchens, bathrooms and laundry rooms
  • With UVA inhibitors built in, these blinds will not turn yellow over time

Faux Wood Blinds

Budget Blinds is available to help you with refreshing your own windows with our extensive line of window treatments including blinds, shutters, shades, drapes and more.  Increased energy efficiency will keep your summers cooler, eco-friendly products can help you go green, and cordless options, including motorization, provide child-safe environments. Call 651-351-7620 to schedule your free, in-home consultation! 

To learn about the many ways to support Homes for Our Troops or to make a donation, go tohttps://www.hfotusa.org/How_to_Help.

Summer Styles: Aluminum Shutters

 WANT TO TAKE THE BURN OUT OF SUMMER OUTDOOR LIVING? Aluminum Shutters are what you need!

June 20 is the official start of summer – that’s like two months!! And here in Minnesota / Western Wisconsin, we know that summer can actually pop up any day! Summer has a magic all its own, and it means outdoor get-togethers with family and friends and the love/hate relationship we have with the sun (and sunburn).

Budget Blinds actually has an answer for maximizing your outdoor summer fun!! Aluminum shutters are the PERFECT solution for ensuring that your outdoor spaces are livable (all day, every day) and tame the extremes of summer so your family / friends aren’t driven indoors. Simmering heat, summer showers and blustery breezes are NO match for the beauty and functionality of our collection of indoor-outdoor aluminum shutters! 🙂

Don’t let this summer melt away when you can have COMFORTABLE and PROTECTED outdoor living spaces with CUSTOM aluminum shutters that create PRIVACY, lower energy costs and add CLEAN DESIGN to your home. Call 651-351-7620 today to schedule your FREE, in-home consultation or go online to www.budgetblinds.com to find the styles and get inspired!! Discover just how much fun you can have in—and out of–the sun, and IN STYLE!!

Stylish Starts HEre

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2016: new colors, new styles

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So its officially the New Year – WELCOME 2016 – which means the new colors, trends and styles of 2016 are the latest rage!

Last year, we introduced to you marsala, the color of the year and with that, we highlighted ways to showcase the trends in your home (btw did you check out our MOST READ BLOG last year?! It’s a must!)

This year, we celebrated with Pantone when (for the first time ever) they announced that there are TWO colors of the year for 2016… yup – see above. The “colors of the year” for 2016 are rose quartz and serenity…. in which Pantone describes as “representing warmth and tranquility as both (colors) create a sense of peace.”


Now, we know that trends come and go, but one thing is for sure: they define the styles of the season. I can definitely see both Rose Quartz and Serenity in living rooms as a inviting accent pillow and/or rug, or combined with sheer fabrics for a inviting soft window treatment.

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Both of the colors are warm and pair extremely well with neutrals. The colors play into a gold-bronzey base and blend very well together. Layered on top of each other the two colors can create a dynamic color palette that can bring style and ambiance to any part of your home!

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What do you think of the COLORS of the year?! Too trendy for the home or are you excited to try it? Let us know how you incorporate Rose Quartz and Sapphire (or both together) – and stay tuned to BlindLadyStilly blog for exciting tips to introduce both together!

TEXT BLINDS TO 22828 to subscribe to our exclusive enewsletter! 

throwback (IN STYLE)

happy anniversary to us!

Today marks  my ninth year as the owner and operator of Budget Blinds of Stillwater. And truly, I couldn’t be more grateful and happy as we go into the next year of business! Without being too redundant on last weeks post (can you tell I’m proud of my business? :)) I thought it would be interesting to take a look back on the last nine years – Throwback Thursday anyone?  I don’t want to bore you with too much detail, but scroll down and check out the timewarp of style.


Pretty cool, right? What style do you prefer – can you see a change in the years?  Throughout my professional years with Budget Blinds (nine and counting!) I have definitely seen a change interior style. In the year 2006 there was a heavy emphasis on mahogany, walnut and cherry textures, while in 2015 there is more a focus on stainless steel and the modernistic feel. Bold blues (in modesty) are coming into trends in homes, while in 2006 the trends in homes were pale, mocha and tan palettes!

I love style, and I really enjoy seeing interior decorating evolve over the years. I love sharing my passion of design with all of my clients, friends and supporters and I am honored to be successful with Budget Blinds of Stillwater.

Cheers to the next year of style and success!



Window Coverings Add Polish + SophisticatioN

Being in the window treatment  and interior decorator business I have the privilege of inspiring clients through style and design – and I absolutely love it! I truly believe that the right window treatments can totally transform and polish a room, and I love showing my clients how easy it is to choose the right style.

If you are at all familiar with the show Property Brothers (or any show on HGTV) you know that modernizing the home is critical to a quick sale; as it more often than not increases the overall property value.

While you don’t necessarily have to involve yourself in a full-blown renovation, there are some quick tips for modernizing your living space (and yes, proper window treatments are one of them!)


* critical elements of modern design:

1] COLOR – homes are dated just by the colors on the walls. UPDATE your color to refresh your overall living space, go for neutral yet bold. Ask me how!

2] FLOOR – updated floors are a big selling point. See what is new yet traditional and keep in mind that flooring can add an element of texture in the space!

3] KITCHEN BACKSPLASH – modern styling wakes up the whole kitchen (and is very D.I.Y. friendly too. Go for tile, texture or a simple pattern too, this one is easy.

4] BATHROOM – often a major overhaul, but worth it. UPDATE your main bathroom first, choose accents by contrasting colors of the floor and walls.

5]  WINDOW COVERINGS– the right window treatments polish up a room, take advantage of customizing your coverings and your living space will be complete.

For three seasons, HGTV’s  Buying & Selling has relied on Budget Blinds for high-quality blinds, drapes and decorative hardware from our trusted manufacturing partners . Budget Blinds has a  HUGE selection of trending styles and colors, all of which are customizable!!



Essential Silk Drapes

Budget Blinds Essential Silks drapery panels (pictured in Sterling Grey) paired with faux wood blinds.


Jonie, a single mom with two daughters (still living at home) welcomed back home daughter #1 with granddaughter #1. After five years of five in the house, the family maxed-out their living space and decided it was time to look for a larger home. Jonathan (Property Brothers) immediately got to work to “banishing boring” throughout the house, and he transformed the kitchen into a gourmet’s dream to captivate buyers. Drew (Property Brothers) found himself facing five tenacious females, each with definite ideas. He had to be top of his game to find their new, next home and, of course, everyone came out smiling!

  • The living room was transformed with mirrored and mixed metal textures for a sophisticated style, set off by Budget Blinds’ Essential Silks, floor-length drapery panels in sparkling Sterling Gray on contrasting Matte Black curtain rods. 2” faux wood blinds in the color of Ecru provide complete light and privacy control.
  • The dining room received matching window treatments. Keeping with the modern and metallic vibe, new table and chairs, geometric patterned rug and a colorful, over-sized art print were added to tie the dining space to the living room, creating an artfully dramatic great room.
  • The kitchen was lightened up with soft grays and white, new stainless steel appliances and a stylish, informal eating area. 2” faux wood blinds in Ecru on a 2-on-1 headrail allow for complete functionality at the patio door, whether open or closed; sage colored woven textures drapery panels frame the door and anchor the room.

*  See the complete renovation of Josie’s home by clicking here.


* let’s connect!

Every room could use a little polish and sophistication – let us help you! From your first phone call to precise measurement and installation, we pride ourselves on being able to provide the perfect window covering solution.  Ask us about Somfy® motorization, for the ultimate in comfort, efficiency and safety!

[ PBrown@BudgetBlinds.Com]   or   [651-351-7620] 



That’s right, stylish and style start here –  with YOU, with your home, with your spaces and with Budget Blinds. I don’t know about you, but I couldn’t be more happy with the nice weather and the sunshine! Spaces tend to feel bigger with sunshine (and light) – and right now, is the perfect time to let that light into your home!  My favorite product for this time of the year (and all year round) are SOLAR ROLLER shades . Seriously, they are absolutely perfect.

Solar Shades are some of the most versatile window coverings ever (for real). Their primary purpose is to serve as a shield against solar heat gain, which helps to keep your energy costs down. Aside from being energy-saving, solar shades also reduce glare from the sun.

  • Solar window shades create just the right ambience in any room. They gently filter and diffuse natural sunlight, block out harmful UV rays, and keep your rooms cooler.
  • They come in various styles and openness levels. Choose a higher openness factor and a darker fabric for a clearer your view.
  • Solar shades are available in an impressive collection of fabrics and colors that add balance and style to your rooms.
  • They are an effective solution for covering large windows, as most fabrics are available in wider widths.
  • Most styles coordinate with sliding panels.
  • You can customize your solar shades by adding wood cornices and valances to create a beautiful combination of warm colors and textures in your home.
  • Exterior solar shades can be installed to the outside of your windows, patios and porches to provide protection from the sun’s powerful heat and strong UV rays.
  • You can motorize your solar shades to provide privacy and safety.

Connect with me today and let’s talk solar shades! For the ultimate in light control, privacy, and protection from sun glare, be sure to ask about our dual shades (dual shades combine the benefits of two popular shading fabrics, solar and roller, into one easy to operate shade!)  I love Solar Shades and I know you will too! #Trending!