Learn the anatomy and parts of window treatments by reviewing these terms commonly used in the window covering industry.

Glossary of Terms


Automatic Cord Lock: The geared mechanism used when raising and lowering horizontal window treatments.

Basswood: Hardwood grown in North America, China, and other parts of the world. Used in making real wood blinds


Bottom Rail: The bar across the bottom of horizontal blinds or window shades. Used to tie in the cords of horizontal blinds and also add weight to window shades.

Blackout Shade: A Window covering that eliminates virtually all light from enter a window.

Bracket: Mounting hardware to attach window treatments to window frames, walls, or doors.


Ceiling Mount: Window blinds or shades hung from the top of the window frame rather than the sides or on a wall.

Center Tilt: Small window blinds do not have room in the headrail for all the tilt and lift mechanisms. These blinds have a tilt only located in the middle of the headrail or blind.

Continuous Cord Loop: Clutch system with a cord or chain that is used to raise larger window blinds or shades.

Controls: Mechanism that raise and lower window blinds or window shades as well as tilt the slats or louvers on horizontal and vertical blinds.


Decorative Cloth Tapes: Vertical strips of colored fabric, typically about 1 inch thick, used in place of the tilt ladders to tilt horizontal blinds. Used a decorative accent on wood blinds, faux wood blinds, and more.

Duofold: Shades that can either be lowered or raised.


Flush Mount: When a window blind is completely inside the window frame. The window frame is deep enough so that the blind does not extend out past the edge of the wall.


Headrail: Located across the top of window blinds and typically made of metal or plastic. Contains the mechanism that control a blind or shade.

Hold Down Brackets: Used to secure the bottom of window blinds. Used on door blinds to keep them from swinging away from the door when it is open and closed.


Inside Mount: Window blinds or shades hung within the window frame.


Lift Cord: Used to raise and lower window blinds or window shades.

Light Filtering Shade: A window covering that provides privacy but still allows some light to penetrate through and enter the room.

Louvers or Louvres: The vanes or slats for vertical blinds. Vertical blinds louvers are typically made from pvc vinyl or fabric.


Outside Mount: Window blinds or shades hung

Opaque: Also know as blackout. A window shade that blocks all light.


Privacy: Window coverings that block enough light from entering the room so that they cannot be seen through.


Ramin Wood: A hardwood that is less expensive than basswood. Ramin wood is used to make value wood blinds.

Routeless: Slats on horizontal blinds have routed holes for the lift cords to pass through. Routless blinds do not have these holes but instead the lift cords are on the front and back of each blind slat.


Semi-Opaque: Window treatments that allow partial light to enter the room while still offering privacy.

Sheer: Window treatments that filter light but are still able to be seen through.

Split Controls: When the tilt and lift controls are located on opposite sides of the window blinds.

Stack: The material when window blinds are gathered or opened.

Slats: The individual narrow strips material or louvers that make up a horizontal blind. Most blind slats are made of real basswood, ramen wood, metal such as aluminum or pvc vinyl faux wood.


Tilt Cord/Wand: Mechanism used to twist or open the individual blind slats on horizontal blinds.

Top Down/Bottom Up: Shades that can either be lowered or raised.


Valance: Decorative moulding or material used to cover the headrail on window blinds or window shades.

Valance Returns: The side pieces of the valance on outside mount blinds that cover the headrail.


Blinds Chalet has more than 25 years of experience selling and installing window treatments. Attractive, high quality window blinds that fit any energy saving plan, decorating style, and budget. For information on what types of window blinds, blind accessories, and any other window covering needs, visit www.blindschalet.com.
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