What Is Opacity?

When considering drapery, or roman, roller, pleated, or cellular shades, you must also think about the opacity of the material you’re considering. The opacity, or transparency, of each of these styles of window treatments can range from completely open, gently filtering incoming sunlight and offering no privacy, to blackout, which creates complete privacy and dramatically darkens a room. Knowing what you want out of your window treatments, besides a stellar new look, will help you find the custom covering that makes for a perfect fit.

Opacity is not to be confused with openness, which is measured in a direct percentage of light filtering through. Instead, we offer fabrics with varying levels of opacity, which include sheer, semi-sheer, semi-opaque, and opaque/room darkening. Sheer allows for the most light and removes minor glare. Fabrics that are semi-sheer diffuse even more light, but still provide little privacy. If you’re looking for some privacy, but are still looking to let in some sunshine, then you’d likely benefit from a semi-opaque fabric. Finally, if you’re looking to create the most privacy and completely block out all light, we would recommend an opaque or room darkening material. Hopefully, this short breakdown on opacity will help you see the light, or block it out completely.