metal venetian blind

Venetian blinds 101

These are not your Grandmother’s venetian blinds. Not by a long shot. Those were so heavy a small child could (and sometimes did) swing on the cords. When the blinds were down and the closed, you could see through the disproportionately large guide holes. Every bit of dust in the house stuck to the slats, the cords frayed and heaven help you if one broke, which happened. So these blinds have a really bad reputation, and generally it is  well-deserved. But wait!! Don’t turn the page. Read on.

Dust doesn’t stick. Seriously

Metal venetian blinds now tend to have a built-in static barrier. Dust does not stick like it used to. Cleaning them involves either a swipe with the vacuum cleaner wide brush head or a dusting with a wool duster.

A note here about dusters: Most dusters move the dust off the surface, into the air where it whirls around and lands on the surface somewhere else. Dust sticks to wool dusters. Clean the wool duster by either twirling the duster handle between your hands, or, if the head is removable, by throwing it into the washing machine.

(Jysk sells attached-head wool dusters, Crate and Barrel sell removable-head dusters online.) 

And you can also spray the closed venetians with a static-repellant spray. These two things will help you stop hating the cleaning of venetians.

Aluminum venetian blinds are so much lighter than in previous years. They are easier to raise and lower, pulley systems are not required and the cords rarely break.  The slats are thinner and therefore stack up into a smaller space. For example, a 48-inch long blind of two-inch slats stacks up into just under five inches.

No more huge sight holes

A new way of threading the slats onto the guide cords eliminates the large guide holes, and, when the blinds are in the closed and down position, there are no visible grid holes. Better privacy and better light control.

A beautiful white venetian with a supplied wood-look valance rivals shutters for a clean, country or beach decor. And at a substantially smaller price tag. Choose your venetian color to match your trim color and never have to worry about the color scheme in the room changing.


In terms of price, venetians are still economical. If you want privacy at an affordable price, these are the blinds for you.

Next column: The Wonderful  World of Woods. Venetians and matching wood verticals? Who would have thought.

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