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We have discussed that spring is the time of year when we want to open up our house and let the light and the lovely outdoors in. We open drapes, shutters, windows and doors to let in the fresh colors and scents of the new blossoms.

But wait . . . . . too much light?

Not enough privacy?

What do you do with a sliding glass door?

How can we address the challenges of this huge functional “window”?

Indeed, the sliding glass door is a challenge. We appreciate its function and its light but sometimes need to tone down the sunlight for energy efficiency and we want privacy at times as well. Do you remember the blog months ago that discussed energy loss in your home through windows? – well, the sliding glass door is even a bigger problem.

And of course, we have some solutions that not only give a functional, energy efficient way to dress your sliding glass door, but are fashionable as well.

If you are a fabric lover and like the look of drapes, you can use them on a decorative rod mounted above the sliding glass door. Using grommets or rings will allow easy movement of the drapes across the rod so you can either have them open for full access to the door or close them for privacy. Last time we talked about traverse rods which would be a good idea for this application as well. Depending on the type of fabric you choose, whether the drapes are lined, or if you choose to also do a second rod with sheers, your own energy efficiency goal can be met.
Another option that involves fabric is roman shades. Two roman shades can be installed above the sliding glass door on a single header that will allow you to operate each independently for the light control and privacy you desire.

Shades installed in this fashion are also an option. Decorative valances can be an additional item that can tie all the design elements of the room together.

Natural woven shade vertical drapes are a great functional, as well as fashionable choice for your sliding glass door. They are available in lots of different woods, reeds, and grasses, have no cords, and can be as sheer or opaque as you prefer.

An even more modern look is the sliding panel. These sleek contemporary panels come in a wide variety of fabric or material to match your décor. They are both functional and fashionable.

Blinds for Sliding Glass Doors

And finally we have vertical solutions that have advanced and changed with the times, offering you a large variety of color and style combinations. Hunter Douglas has Luminette Privacy Sheers, Duette and Applause with Vertiglide, and Somner vertical blinds that are functional, fashionable and energy efficient for your sliding glass door. What more could you ask for?

After 15 years in the window coverings industry, I can tell you without a doubt that sliding doors pose the biggest dilemma for homeowners.  The love affair with vertical blinds has come and gone, but many people have no idea what else to do to cover a large area.  Sliding glass doors present big challenges with energy loss and light control.  They are usually in high traffic areas of the house – so very functional, energy efficient, and, at the same time, beautiful treatments are needed.  That is a lot to ask from a window treatment! Your only option is no longer blinds for sliding doors!

Fortunately, vendors have responded to the need.  Today there are several innovative solutions to this age old problem.  Determining  your needs for light control, privacy, energy savings, and fashion will help you to select the best treatment for you.

Here are three of my favorites.

  • THE most exciting trend in window fashions is the  Natural Woven Shade Vertical Drapery.  These are the ultimate blend of function and fashion. The shade operates with a simple push on the guide rail, so there are no cords to tangle or break.  With so many natural woods, reeds, or grasses to choose from, ranging from sheer to opaque, there is a style for everyone!
  • For a very sleek and contemporary look, Sliding Panels are one of the fastest growing new trends in window fashions.  Flat panels of fabric slide one in front of another as you open and close the shade using a wand.  Fabrics range from opaque shade cloth to natural woven wood materials, again offering much versatility.
  • Vertical Cellular Shades offer great function and superior energy efficiency.  Available in many colors and fabrics, this shade coordinates with the other cellular shades in your home, but slides easily along a track with a push of the hand, providing a truly cordless option.

If you want more information on the Hunter Douglas line of sliding glass door options or any of the other ideas here, contact Kim for your free in-home consultation – 513-398-5798 or email

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