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Q: Effectively blocking light out of an apartment bedroom ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Subject: Effectively blocking light out of an apartment bedroom
Category: Family and Home > Home
Asked by: jpbischke-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 28 Aug 2003 11:14 PDT
Expires: 27 Sep 2003 11:14 PDT
Question ID: 249786
I just moved into a new apartment and I'm looking for an effective way
to block light out of my bedroom.  Like many apartment bedrooms, it is
quite bright in the room even with the blinds closed and I don't sleep
as well when it's not dark.  Here are the details of what I'm looking

*There are two windows in the bedroom with vertical blinds.  The first
is 48"x35" and the other is 98"x53".  I've tried using a bedsheet but
that doesn't seem to block enough light and the dimensions don't work.

*Since I live in an apartment I'll need a solution that isn't a
permanent one.  I don't have a problem spending some money to put some
light-blocking blinds in but am not sure if I can do this since I
don't own the place.

*As inexpensive a solution as possible would be great given that I may
not be living here for more than a year.

One thing that I think might work would be to buy fabric, cut it to
the proper dimensions and hang it using adhesive hooks.  However, most
fabrics are translucent so they don't block enough light.

Anyway, if anyone could shed any light on this I would appreciate. 
And pardon the bad pun. :)
Subject: Re: Effectively blocking light out of an apartment bedroom
Answered By: journalist-ga on 28 Aug 2003 11:56 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Greetings Jpbischke:

The least expensive recommendation I have is for you to visit a local
Goodwill or thrift store and look for draperies that are rubber or
vinyl lined.  A couple of years ago, I found a pair for a patio
sliding door unit at a Tennessee Goodwill store for $6 and they
blocked the sunlight completely.  Also, check garage sales for custom
drapes (look for a rubber/vinyl-type backing and they will probably be
lined on the back with a lighter fabric to prevent the rubber/vinyl
from sticking to windows - they are commomly three layers: main
fabric/rubber or vinyl insert/back lining).

If you are unable to locate previously-owned custom drapes such as
this type, here are a few other suggestions.

DUVAL and LENOX BANJO CLOTH - I found these names referenced in a
catalog for theater products and claiming complete light blocking.
The company:
Theater Service and Supply Corporation
1792 Union Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21211
Phone 410-467-1225
Fax 410-467-1289

I then searched "banjo cloth" to see if the fabric was available
elsewhere because no prices were given at the above site.


$5.90 per linear foot

various prices

inquire for pricing

For custom or pre-made shades:



I hope these resources will enable you to make the best choice for
your needs.  Should you require any clarification of the links or
information I have provided, please request it and I will be happy to

Best regards,


"banjo cloth"
room darkening roller shades
light blocking fabric
light blocking roller shades

Clarification of Answer by journalist-ga on 28 Aug 2003 12:39 PDT

My colleague, PinkFreud, just sent me an email with another suggestion
for your needs.  Regardng her use of this product for photographic
darkroom use, she wrote:

The best product I found for lightproofing was an opaque black plastic
sold specifically for this purpose. It is available online from

This stuff clings to glass without adhesive, and it's possible to
nicely darken a room by cutting the plastic to the exact size of a
window (or the individual panes of a window) and pressing it into
place. It leaves no residue, so it's easily removed when you want.

Here is a heavier version that can be used as a liner for draperies:

As always, she is generous and supportive to all customers, even those
whose questions she does not answer!  :)  I thank her for this
information and I wanted you to presentr her suggestion for your

Best regards,

Clarification of Answer by journalist-ga on 28 Aug 2003 12:45 PDT
CORRECTION: (Murphy's Law: Speed-typing always results in typos.)

"I thank her for this information and I wanted you to presentr her
suggestion for your consideration"

should read 

"I thank her for this information and I wanted to present her
suggestion for your consideration."

jpbischke-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $1.00
Great answer!  I think the plastic cloth liner that you referenced in
the last link is exactly what I'm looking at.  I have e-mailed the
company with a couple of follow-up questions and will probably order
that soon.  Thanks!

Subject: Re: Effectively blocking light out of an apartment bedroom
From: snsh-ga on 28 Aug 2003 12:38 PDT
Consider removable window tint -- 5% limo tint is probably dark enough
to help you sleep.
Subject: Re: Effectively blocking light out of an apartment bedroom
From: maxduke-ga on 28 Aug 2003 16:02 PDT
What I used in college that worked very well was aluminum foil, and
its' very cheap.
Hope this helps.

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