My window’s so bright, I’ve gotta buy shades…

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Dear Home-Ec 101,
I have a very large window that bears the brunt of the western sun in summer. Do you have any suggestions for easy, inexpensive window coverings that will block or reflect a lot of heat?
Trying to Keep My Cool In Montana

window coverings to block heat


WinkIvy says:

What, it gets hot in Montana? šŸ˜‰ I kid, I kid. We Southern gals totally like to tease our Nothern counterparts about it not getting very hot where y’all live whenever possible. The same way you guys like to tease us when we’re wearing parkas and it’s 55 degrees outside.

The North vs. South war notwithstanding, I agree that western exposures with great big windows are definitely a pain in the tuckus no matter where you live. The best window coverings to reflect heat are light in color. I once had some canvas curtains that were perfect at reflecting heat, plus they had the added bonus of beingĀ  heavy enough to also keep in the heat in the winter.

There are a lot of basic window shades that you can purchase for your windows for a small investment. Keep in mind that you usually get what you pay for and the sun beating on the shades every day is hard on them.

If you don’t like the look -or dust collecting factor- of shades you can add curtains. Have some fun with the curtains! Add color and customizations that make you happy and your room look awesome as they block the heat.

clean windows
Click the picture for more tips!

You can make curtains very simply. Here are a couple of tutorials my girl DIY Maven over at Curbly wrote on making curtains. This simple window shadeĀ could easily be lengthened to the length you need and this pocket window topperĀ  is a cute valance that could go over the top of whatever you might make. If that’s all too much sewing for you,Ā check out thisĀ drapery panels tutorial from Cleverly InspiredĀ that you just staple.

If you just *really* cannot bear the thought of sewing, try places like TJ Maxx, Ross, and other discount stores. Just remember to use light colors, or darker, lined curtains.

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  1. Hey, thanks! I cannot bear the thought of sewing, but I will check out Ross and TJ Maxx. You also gave me an idea — I could just buy a length of heavy fabric at the fabric store and rig it up.

    Oh, and YES, it gets hot in Montana. For about six weeks out of the year. We like to say we have two seasons — winter, and road construction.


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