I’ve never really thought about the curtains and blinds in my home; they’ve always just… been there. They serve their purpose, and once in a while I clean them. And then the pandemic hit and the NYLON team moved to WFH, and around the same time, I moved as well to a resale property in its original condition. This gave me the opportunity to really plan out the spaces in my home that I’ll need for work — with the most important being a photography studio for my shoots. Lighting was my key consideration when planning all the rooms, plus since I get to start over, I want my fixtures to be neat and discreet. This brought me back to the necessity of curtains and blinds, and in my search, I got to know about Ziptrak® Interior.
Ziptrak® has been available in Singapore for years, and it’s the original Australian track-guided blind that can transform a space, making it more functional than what it was originally intended for. For example, the brand’s flagship outdoor blinds can change the function of a balcony; making it more than a traditional outdoor space by sheltering it from sun and rain, and offering privacy from neighbours. This means you can use that balcony space as an extended living area. And with property prices on the rise, smaller apartments will truly benefit from this added useful space. Imagine the possibilities!
The interior version is not as widely adopted yet, mainly because it was only launched last year; but upon discovering what Ziptrak® Interior blinds can do, I found solutions to problems I didn’t even know existed.
Above: For Ziptrak® interior blinds, There are tons of fabrics and shades to choose from — far more than the options for exterior blinds.
Above: more swatches for Ziptrak® interior blinds.
It starts with a visit and consultation by an expert from one of Ziptrak’s authorised retailers in Singapore, where measurements are taken and recommendations for fabrics are made based on living habits and the purpose of each room where the blind is going to be.
Above: I chose a black frame for everything, so it matches perfectly with the black and white aesthetic of the entire home. There are silver, white and powder-coated wood grain frames to choose from as well. If you want something even fancier, there are stone and leather finishes too.
Above: Choosing swatches against the windows.
Here’s how I partitioned the house using Ziptrak® Interior:
WORK / STUDIO
Above: Measuring the windows at my wfh space.
The work / studio space I have is east-facing, which means I get the morning sun glaring directly onto my computer screen. This problem is easily solved with curtains or pretty much any kind of blinds, but Ziptrak® Interior really takes it up a notch and blocks out the sun entirely from the room, so there’s no light leakage even from the sides because the blinds run along a sealed track.
This is also made possible because I chose a blackout fabric — this doesn’t let in any light at all. This is perfect for me as a photographer, so I can execute studio shoots with studio lights in the morning or afternoon, without worrying about sunlight leaking in to the room. I can imagine a black-out fabric would work well for gamers too, who need to block out light reflections from their monitors.
Above: INstalling the Ziptrak® interior blinds at my workspace.
Above: the single piece of fabric is sleek, while the black frame works with the black and white aesthetic of the home.
Above: i can control how much natural sunlight comes into the room. This is great for shoots any time of the day.
Every blind installed comes with its own remote control, which has buttons to bring the blinds up or down, and can be programmed to stop at specified heights. There’s also a manual option if you prefer not to have motorised blinds; this works better for shorter windows where the bottom bar can be easily reached and operated. There are no cords or chains for Ziptrak® Interior blinds (which is safer), and so for the manual version, the blinds are moved up or down with the bottom bar.
Above: The Ziptrak® interior remote control mounted on the wall next to the window.
Above: The Ziptrak® interior blinds in my wfh space. The black-out fabric keeps the sunlight out and the glare away from my computer monitors.
Black-out fabrics work ideally in the bedrooms as well, so even if the sun rises, you don’t have to. It’s a sound sleep especially for those who need it really dark to relax, and for anyone planning a nursery. You could argue that night curtains work the same — and yes, they do — but I’ve never been a fan of thick, heavy curtains that sweep the floor; they get extremely dusty and aren’t as sleek as a simple flat blind that goes all the way down and simply becomes part of your wall. It’s nice and neat.
Above: taking measurements for the frame.
Above: The blinds with black-out fabric in the bedroom up and down, offering complete light control.
We planned the kids’ room to have a bay window where they could sit and read comfortably; and for this window, we — again — chose a black-out fabric, but also provided a picture to be printed on it so when the blinds are closed, it looks like a painting. You can print any image (if the resolution is high enough) on the fabric; you just need to supply it to your preferred Ziptrak® Interior retailer and they’ll customise it accordingly.
Above: this is the bay window in the kids room, before installing blinds.
Above: bringing down the custom printed blinds in the kids’ room.
Above: the wardrobe with the interior blinds up and down. The black-out fabric provides complete privacy and light control.
In the wardrobe, I chose a textured fabric in a neutral shade to create a cosy nook for myself. And because these blinds can be brought up and are hidden in a roll within the frame, we could make the wardrobe wall a glass panel instead of a concrete slab; so, during the day, the blinds go up, and the space feels open, less boxed in, and really part of the house.
My favourite use of Ziptrak® Interior is where the bedroom and study room walls are. We planned all the rooms to be on the side of the staircase and made them all glass panels instead of solid walls; and then fitted each of the four “glass walls” with Ziptrak® Interior blinds. With the convenience of bringing the blinds up or down, the rooms can become private in an instant, or part of the stairwell letting natural light in.
Above: Using Ziptrak® interior at The glass wall next to my desk provides me with light control and privacy.
The option to block out or let in as little or as much natural light as needed is incredible. When all blinds are up, the house feels beautifully open and spacious; and at night when they are all down, they become private rooms again.
Above: using Ziptrak® interior blinds against one of the glass panel walls in my wfh area. when brought down like this, the room becomes private and i can better control the lighting in my studio space.
Above: THIS IS THE LUSH RANGE OF FABRICS THAT LETS IN SOME LIGHT, but still provides enough privacy to do work.
Above: the blinds seen from the staircase during the day.
Above: the blinds seen from the staircase at night.
The experts at Ziptrak® also shared other ideas on how to use their Interior blinds within the home, and one interesting way was as a divider or “door” for a wardrobe. So rather than an open concept wardrobe, these blinds can provide a neat separation between an open wardrobe and the room it’s in, keeping dust out, and creating a neater look for the room with any mess hidden behind it. If you choose a sheer fabric, you can also get a boutique hotel feel. Here’s an example provided by Ziptrak®:
I recommend if you’re renovating your home, get a Ziptrak® retailer to check out your space and suggest ways their interior blinds can create more beauty and functionality for the space. The wardrobe system idea was novel to me, but wasn’t suitable for the way I built my current wardrobe; but it is something to keep in mind for the future.
You can see more examples on how Ziptrak® Interior blinds can be used at their website, and then contact one of their retailers for a consultation and quote.