As a nation, we've fallen in love with interior schemes that celebrate natural light and bring the outside in. But with the rise in popularity of glass extensions and light-filled garden rooms comes the issues of privacy and heat regulation.
Previously, privacy could be achieved with the use of voiles, shutters, large blinds or curtains, but none of these options respect the clean lines of a contemporary scheme. They are also often tricky to install alongside modern bi-fold or sliding glazed doors, especially when retro-fitted.
Phantom Screens offers a new privacy alternative in the form of fully retractable, automated fine mesh screens. The bespoke blinds can be made in widths of up to 12 metres, making them perfect for large glazed spaces such as garden rooms, orangeries and contemporary apartments. Depending on the density of the weave, Executive Power Blinds can provide privacy protection while still allowing you to enjoy the view from your home, or solar shading which blocks up to 95% of harmful UV rays to create a comfortable living environment. There is also an insect mesh option which prevents annoying flies, wasps and mosquitoes from entering the home.
From a design point of view, the blinds can be fully recessed and colour matched to tie in with a particular interior scheme, meaning that they virtually disappear from view when not in use.
"Basically, our product stops whatever you want to stop getting into your home," says Simon Young, Phantom Screens' General Manager. "Whether that's sunlight, heat, bugs or people looking in. We're all about making your space as comfortable as possible and stopping these annoyances in order to allow you to truly enjoy your home."
With the rise in popularly of large-scale glazing in residential projects comes the need for a solar control product to match. "Solar blinds once associated with office blocks are now increasingly needed in residential builds because of the heat implications of all that glass," says Simon, "particularly in a south-facing space. People don't necessarily think about the fact that with fantastic light comes increased heat and glare, and the risk of sun-bleaching to furnishings."
If consulted early on in the design process, Phantom Screens can create a screen in which the roller mechanism is completely recessed in the ceiling, creating minimal impact on the chosen interior scheme. Automation is also a key factor for many of Phantom Screens' clients. Sun and wind detectors can be installed to automatically adjust the position of the screens and many clients choose to integrate their blinds with other home automation systems.
"We recently had a client in Birmingham wanting a system in which, at the touch of a button, the lighting lowered, one of our screens came down within the window recess, and a TV rose up in front of the screen," says Simon. "And for many of our international clients such as those from North Africa or Japan, screens are a completely normal part of life for them, so when they move to London they want them fitted in their homes here, too."
PHANTOM SCREENS - THE FACTS
- Fine mesh blinds offering a bespoke solution for solar, privacy and insect annoyance.
- The ideal solution for large, glazed spaces with fully automated screens up to 12 metres in width.
- Made from waterproof PVC-coated fibre glass mesh that can be designed in a variety of weave densities and colours depending on customer requirements.
- The robust structure of the four-sided product is 'zipped' in at the sides, meaning that the blinds remain stable and secure when doors and windows are open, even in breezy weather.
- With automated blinds, the motor and workings can be fully recessed in the ceiling creating a discreet finish with no impact on interior design.
- Colour matching ensures the product blends seamlessly with existing interior schemes. The fully recessed and fully retractable options maintain clean design lines.
5 PROBLEMS PHANTOM SCREENS CAN SOLVE
- Lack of privacy. Phantom Screens' products offer a contemporary alternative to voiles or shutters, creating day time privacy while still allowing you to enjoy the view from your home.
- Overheating. Executive Power Blinds offer superlative solar shading, blocking up to 95% of harmful UV rays. They protect carpets and soft furnishings from the bleaching effects of the sun while creating a comfortable living environment and an even temperature. A must for south-facing contemporary glazed spaces.
- Annoying insects. A fine weave insect mesh screen keeps wasps and midges out while allowing fresh air in. Essential for riverside or woodland living in the UK and commonly used in properties in hotter climates around the world.
- Dust and dirt. We love to 'bring the outside in' to our homes, but there are some things better left outside! With bi-fold or sliding doors fully opened up, a large, automated screen can then be lowered to keep dust, dirt and leaves firmly outside where they belong.
- Pet safety. So you want to leave the windows open on a warm day but you don't want the cat to escape? A bespoke Phantom Screens blind is the answer. Securely zipped in at the sides, the fine mesh allows fresh air in while keeping pets safely inside the property.
WHY CHOOSE PHANTOM SCREENS?
- The only company in the UK to offer large screens up to 12 metres in width.
- The only UK company to offer a wood grained finish. Phantom Screens can also colour match their product to any existing window frame or interior scheme to create a truly integrated, bespoke blind.
- All workings can be fully recessed and the blind itself is completely retractable creating a near invisible result when retracted. The retro fix option is low profile to ensure minimal visual impact to the existing interior scheme.
- The blinds can be integrated with home automation systems to include sun and wind detectors which will automatically adjust the screen position. No more coming home to a boiling hot garden room!
- Screens help control light to create a better AV Room experience.
- The screens can be fitted either inside or outside existing sliding doors or bi-fold doors, depending on the direction in which they open.
- Every screen is accompanied by exceptional customer service and a limited Lifetime Warranty.
Case Study 1
"WE CAN NOW ENJOY OUR BEAUTIFUL RIVERSIDE SETTING MOSQUITO-FREE"
When Mike Chidley decided to add a modern extension onto his canal-side home in Chester, he faced two problems - mosquitoes and people!
"Because we're right by the water we always have a lot of mosquitoes and midges around in the summer, and of course wasps and flies are an issue, too," says Mike. "And because the footpath into the city is immediately across the canal from us, we do find that people like to have a good look in as they walk by on a Saturday morning!"
Following an extensive internet search, Mike came across specialist blind supplier Phantom Screens and thus a solution to both his problems. He commissioned the supply and fitting of a 4.2 metre Executive Power Screen which was RAL colour matched to the grey of the existing door frames to ensure a seamless appearance. With a 90% block mesh, the screen achieves complete privacy for Mike and his wife Angela without affecting their beautiful views across the water.
"It's operated by remote control and we love showing it off when friends come round!" says Mike. "They don't even know it's there until we press the button so it always comes as a bit of a surprise. The screen stops people looking in and it also gives us a bit of solar protection which we need because we're south facing.
"Traditional blinds would have spoiled the look of the extension but what we have now is just perfect. It's such a great space for entertaining. We absolutely love it and sitting out there makes us feel like we're on holiday!"
Case Study 2
"THE MATCH WITH OUR EXISTING OAK DOORS IS INCREDIBLE"
Peter Vinyard was familiar with the concept of fly screens because he used to have a property in southern Spain in which door screens are commonplace. "You can't open the doors out there without being eaten alive by mosquitos so everyone has screens fitted," says Peter. When it came to his UK home - a 500-year old rural property near Newmarket with a stunning oak-framed extension - Peter wanted to find a similar solution to keep flies and moths out of his newly-built kitchen/dining area.
Peter thought that matching the screens to the beautiful oak window frames used in the new extension might prove problematic, but the results he's achieved with the help of Phantom Screens have surpassed all his expectations. "Put it this way, when my wife Carol came back the day the screens had been fitted, she said, 'Didn't they turn up then?' At first glance, she thought the work hadn't been done because the screens are virtually invisible!" says Peter.
Peter's colour-matched Legacy door screens keep unwanted bugs out while allowing an unobstructed view across his beautiful, lawned gardens. "I think screens are an essential part of having large patio doors," says Peter. "We like to have the patio doors open most of the summer and it's the only way to get fresh air in and keep bugs out. The colour match is absolutely incredible - you couldn't get any closer. And the service and back up we received from Phantom Screens was second to none."
Get in touch to see how screens can help you add value to your next design project, or why not visit our guide on What are Solar Screens?