In 2014, Eclipse Shutters is continuing to raise money for SickKids Foundation.   

This year, our support will be channeled to SickKids Patient Amenities Fund, which provides much-needed assistance to families dealing with the financial burden of a child’s illness. Each year, this fund helps hundreds of families with a wide range of needs including transportation, meals, accommodation and medical supplies. So far this year, donations total over $20,000.00.

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This holiday season, SickKids is featuring a video every day that highlights some of the incredible stories that take place at the hospital. SickKids’ Better Tomorrows campaign, consists of 42 commercials depicting 42 real stories about real SickKids patients. Each 30-second spot will run on a different day until Dec. 21.  Take a moment to watch.

These spots give you just the slightest glimpse into the lives of these children and their families and makes you realize how important it is to support amazing research, learning and care at SickKids.

The videos can be seen at

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You may not know it, but there is a stark difference between shutters and blinds, though many homeowners think of the two as interchangeable.

Shutters vs. Blinds

Part of the reason for this confusion concerns how these window coverings came about. "Shutter blinds" refers to first-generation shutters that were once featured on the exterior of houses to prevent break-ins and the onslaught of Mother Nature.

When interior shutters were first manufactured, they were used primarily for functional purposes in contrast to the famous Venetian blinds that people sought for aesthetic appeal. It was not until the early 1900s that the style of interior shutters became fashionable, and thus needed to be distinguished from interior blinds.

Over the years, there has been a significant rise in window blind subsets, ranging from vertical ones to leather to metal and micro versions with the trend hinging on the style desired during the particular era.

On the other hand, shutters have seen little change in their overall structure and design (albeit modern materials and feature customization), but they continue to be one of the most highly sought-after window coverings on the market.

Homeowners everywhere love the simplistic elegance that California and Plantation shutters provide, not to mention the fact that they complement nearly every housing style. California and Plantation shutters serve as the perfect backdrop for any room in your house, and they look extremely attractive from both inside and out.

Which Window Covering Should I Buy?

Determining whether interior California /Plantation shutters or blinds are the best choice for your home will depend on a number of factors. If you prefer to select from metal, wood or faux-wood, window blinds offer a wide selection and may be more versatile.

Most shutters are made from either wood, faux wood, or vinyl but the decision is ultimately yours to make. Wooden shutters and faux wood shutters tend to require more maintenance and long term care than vinyl shutters, and that must also be taken into consideration. Vinyl California and Plantation shutters, such as Eclipse Shutters, are extremely durable and will stand the test of time with minimal care. They will never have to be refinished and will never crack, peel, warp or chip.

From a cost perspective, blinds are a more affordable option that will last for years if maintained properly. They do need to be cleaned regularly and care should be taken when working with the pull cord and wand. Shutters will cost more up front but they are far more durable and will last much longer. Eclipse Shutters have a warranty of 25 years!

Whichever window covering you choose, just know that when you say the outdated term "shutter blinds," you are actually talking about something that existed centuries ago!

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We have now entered unofficial home improvement season, so it is time to bust out your residential work gear! After a long winter, the warmer months give homeowners the opportunity to tackle a host of new projects inside and out.

If you are a fan of home improvement television shows, there are probably millions of ideas floating around in your mind at any given moment, but are any of them feasible? What does your budget say? The great part about owning a home is that you have more than enough time to upgrade, renovate and personalize.

The jaw-dropping transformations you see on HGTV are only possible because the hosts have a hefty amount of funds and large crews working around the clock. For now, you can get great results both in terms of aesthetics and ROI by sticking to a few simple home improvement jobs. Your goal may to be sell the property for a higher value or to mix things up, and these projects are guaranteed to exceed the expectations for both!

Ideas for Easy Home Upgrades

  • Research and pick out paint swatches - color does so much to a space! It can make small rooms look larger than they are and make dark areas bright and inviting. You will be amazed at what a fresh coat of paint can do, so stop procrastinating and get to painting! Lighter color palettes and schemes are best for homes being listed on the market. The goal is to help prospective buyers see the space as their own, so aim to create a clean slate with neutral tones.
  • Give your windows a makeover - window coverings are a must-have for every home. Whether it is blinds, drapes, curtains or California or plantation shutters, changing your window coverings will make a huge difference in your home décor. Window treatments offer many functional benefits (e.g. privacy, light control, etc.) and serve as an aesthetic focal piece. Plantation shutters are the only window treatment that will instantly add value to your home!
  • Swap out that old hardware - When attempting to spruce up your home, it truly is the little things that count. Resist the urge to splurge on new kitchen appliances and purchase inexpensive cabinet hardware instead. Handles, hinges and doorknobs come in a variety of styles and are much more affordable.
In the mood for decorative window coverings? At Eclipse Shutters, we specialize in the manufacturing of custom plantation shutters. Feel free to call or visit us online to learn more!
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Life as we know it would not exist without the sun. Humans have devised many ways to counter the obstacles set in place by the natural world, but we can only go so long without sunlight. A daily dose of natural light is what keeps us happy and healthy. It affects everything from our mood and our circadian rhythms to our physical well-being. On top of that, using natural light helps reduce our energy use.

Your Home Deserves Sunlight

Too many homeowners have become accustomed to relying on artificial light at times when it is not needed. In reality, the only time you should ever turn the lights on in your home is after the sun sets, though we know this is a rarity in modern households.

There are numerous ways to bring more sunlight into your house, some which are actually fairly creative. One of the easiest ways to add more natural light is to install additional windows, particularly in the rooms that have the fewest number. Placement is more important than quantity, so take the time to assess which wall and window height is best. For upper-level corridors and certain ground floor rooms, a newly installed skylight can significantly increase the amount of natural daylight.

Paint color also has a big effect on room lightening as does the presence of mirrors and other reflective products. The darker the shade, the greater the light absorption, this is why it is highly recommended to paint small rooms with neutral color palettes. Strategically placed mirrors will bounce the light from one wall to the next, casting it into the darkest recesses of your home.

Another thing you will want to do is spend some time researching window coverings. California and Plantation shutters are an excellent choice for people who want to be able to control the amount of light that flows into a room. Fully opened louvers will allow maximum sunlight to stream into the space. Simply tilting the louvers controls the direction of light and creates a shading coefficient that will help protect floors and furniture from harmful UV rays. Tilt the louvers slightly to create privacy and still allow a large percentage of daylight into the space.

Your efforts need not stop inside. Trim nearby tree branches and shrubs that may be impeding incoming sunlight. Pruning greenery will reveal more of your house and to boost its curb appeal.

Check out the wide selection of interior shutters at Eclipse Shutters to get started!

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In 2013, Eclipse Shutters raised close to $25,000 for the SickKids foundation. Collectively, we have raised nearly $74,00.00 over the years. 

Plaque presentation sick Kids web low rez

In May of 2014, we were proud to  present a donation cheque in the amount of #24,699.00  to the Sick Kids Foundation. 
Back Row: Mary Chowan - Blinds Are Us, DJ Thomas Elipse Installation, Louise Brisbois Eclipse Marketing. Don Chowan - Blinds Are Us, Ivica Jukica - Fasada.  
Front Row: Rick McElroy GM Eclipse Shutters,  Chantelle Moore - Manager, Sponsorship & Cause Marketing SickKids Foundation, Mary Paiano - Eclipse Accounting.

Eclipse Shutters Canada was honoured to achieve the status of "Partner" of the SickKids Foundation.  In May, Eclipse Shutters representatives attended a gala in honour of donors who have made contributions to the SickKids Foundation. 

DJ Thomas and Rick McElroy point out the Eclipse Shutters Canada brick unveiled on the hospital "Partner Wall"
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Once you experience a bathroom with plantation shutters, it's likely that you will wonder why there are some bathrooms in the world that don't have them on their windows. You're not alone; it baffles us too. Here are a few of the reasons why plantation shutters are so perfect for bathrooms.

Guaranteed Privacy

The thick louvers and sturdy build of plantation shutters means that once they're closed, you have complete privacy in your bath. Even if you are trying to bring in fresh air from outside, plantation shutters have a sturdy build that will not budge, meaning you will never be exposed in some of your most intimate moments.

Easy Ventilation

With plantation shutters, it's easy to ventilate the bathroom and maintain your privacy. Simply open the window and close the shutters. This ease of ventilation is also very useful on cleaning day when harsh chemicals can build up in the tiny bathroom space.

Moisture Resistant

Bathrooms have naturally high humidity levels, which means wood and cloth window coverings can be at risk of growing mold and rotting. Our custom indoor shutters are made of a moisture-resistant material that is made to look and feel exactly like wood — but without any potential to rot.

Fits with Any Decor

Atlanta plantation shutters have endured through the ages because of their incredible utility, but they have also endured because their classic, clean lines are able to fit in perfectly with any decor. Many people like to use their bathroom decorations to create an escape, and whether that escape is to the mountains or to a Tahitian spa, the timeless elegance of plantation shutters matches just perfectly.

Customized to Your Needs

Plantation shutters are also customized to your exact specifications, so you have more flexibility with how your bathroom windows are covered. Many of our customers prefer to only cover the lower half of their bathroom window set so that they can let in natural light while maintaining their privacy. Whatever you choose, we can custom make it at Eclipse Shutters.
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What could make your sunroom or a breezeway more elegant? California and Plantation shutters are a sophisticated yet functional choice. Do you have a balcony or patio off the master bedroom? California and Plantation shutters can add to the romantic, classic feeling of the room while still providing privacy.

Installing custom-made California and Plantation shutters in a doorway creates a very appealing aesthetic that works well with any design theme, helps to reduce energy costs and maintains your privacy.

You can  adjust the louvers to allow light in while maintaining privacy.  By tilting the shutters ever so slightly, your furnishings and carpeting are protected from harmful UV rays and sun damage.

An Eclipse Shutter retailer will measure your door opening to ensure a perfect fit. He/she will help you decide on the best style of shutter for the location, recommending a shutter that functions best in the space. The advantage of our custom-made shutters is that you you have a variety of components and colours to choose from.  Your Eclipse Shutters retailer has been trained to guide you through the available design choices. 

Our shutters are built using quality materials and the latest technologies available. State-of-the-art equipment is used to manufacture your shutters exactlly as you specified.  Eclipse Shutters will not chip, peel, warp, or fade. They are waterproof, washable, flame retardant and energy efficient. We are proud to provide a 25 Year Warranty with every shutter.

California and Plantation shutters are the perfect window covering solution for a doorway. Besides all the practical benefits that Eclipse California and Plantation shutters can provide, there is no denying that they are an attractive and eye-catching choice. Eclipse Shutters has developed an insert that is designed to allow the latch handles found on French doors and garden doors to operate normally eliminating the expense of purchasing and installing new hardware.  You will love the look and function of shutters custom-made to enhance your beautiful door.

California and Plantation shutters are an investment that will look great and perform flawlessly for years.  Because installed shutters become fixtures, this is a decorating choice that  will automatically increase the value of your home.

Visit our web-site: and click on “Where to Buy” to find an Eclipse Shutter professional near you.

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When windows are present in a bathroom, privacy becomes much more of an issue than in some other rooms of the house. While privacy is paramount, it is important to strike a balance between privacy and function. Keep in mind that natural light is a plus, especially for small bathrooms. Light makes the space appear larger and making it feel less restricted.

The need to control how much natural light is allowed into the space (as well as the degree of privacy) means some window treatments are automatically better suited for the job than others. Shades, shutters and blinds are usually the best choice for the bathroom.

Eclipse interior vinyl shutters are always custom-made to fit and look stunning. Since they are made-to- measure, you select the frames and style of shutter that will achieve that décor you want to create.

One option may be to install the treatment on the lower sash only, leaving the upper part of the window exposed.

Irregular shaped windows are never a problem, since Eclipse Shutters can be manufacture shutters in several geometrical shapes ranging from arches to triangles so you never have to worry about compromising on privacy.

You will not find a better-looking product than Eclipse California and Plantation shutters on the market. They look amazing, are highly energy-efficient and are very easy to clean and maintain. Backed by a 25 year warranty, these shutters strike the perfect balance between form and function in your bathroom.

Go to and click on “Where to Buy” to find a retailer near you.

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We've often talked about how California and Plantation shutters are perfect with literally every design aesthetic, but there are still some doubters who don't believe us. We want to take this blog post to explore how California and Plantation shutters work within the realm of modern design, a design school that is typically very difficult to match to window coverings.

Focus on Clean Lines

One of the most important elements to modern design is the effect that clean, stark lines can have on a space. These lines are used to create drama, tension or unity within a room, and they are a crucial focal point. 

Fortunately, the clean, sharp lines of each louver of your California and Plantation interior shutters complement this design element perfectly. Whether you want to use bold contrasts or focus on parallel surfaces throughout the space, the clean lines of California and Plantation shutters will provide you with the modern look you seek.

A Blank Slate

The definition of what constitutes "modern design" can vary pretty drastically from one designer to another. However, that doesn't actually matter when you install indoor California and Plantation shutters. The simple neutral color and clean design of your shutters provides you or your designer with a totally blank slate that can easily fit with any decor decisions they may make.

No Unnecessary Details

The form of your California and Plantation shutters directly applies to their function. They have no unnecessary details or accessories to distract from the modern design elements you have used in your space. The straightforward construction includes just the shutters themselves, their louvers, the tilt mechanism to move them and attaching hinges. Eclipse Shutters can now be made with a Gear mechanism that is completely invisible, so they are even sleeker. — Any other components such as frames are choice to add or leave off.

We truly believe that the timeless design of California and Plantation shutters can work with any design style. We encourage you to share how your custom-made Eclipse Shutters work with your personal design aesthetic, especially if you love modern design.

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We all want to do what we can to save on our electric bill, but it's impossible to deny the urge to turn on the air conditioner when the summer heat starts to find its way into our homes. Fortunately, you can help to keep all of that wonderful cold air inside and keep the sweltering sun out by using the right window coverings: custom California and Plantation shutters.

Luxury Innovation

Eclipse Shutters are UV resistant which means that you don't have to worry about discoloration. The UltraSatin finish looks like a premium painted wooden shutter. The added advantage is that UltraSatin louvers are engineered to be energy efficient.  

Perfect Sun Blockers

While we all love the summer sun when we're outside, when it streams through our windows, it gets hot. It doesn’t take long to make the house feel like a green house and your air conditioning unit is forced to struggle to keep up with the rising temperatures. 
You can help to reduce your AC's load by keeping the sun's light from entering. Closed California and Plantation interior shutters help to block the light; their light color will reflect the incoming light back out the window.

Controlling hot sunlight is the key to creating a cooler environment and definitely impacts the amount of time that air conditioner is running.  

Easy to Ventilate

During more temperate summer nights, California and California and Plantation shutters make it easy to turn off the AC altogether. You can open up the windows and let the cooler night air come in to your home without losing privacy. Simply open the louvers of your shutters enough to allow for air flow, but not enough for someone to peek through, to let the soft breezes in for an AC-free cool.

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Our California and Plantation shutters are an elegant and stunning addition to any decor. They are designed to not only be aesthetically pleasing, but also to perform well. You may have wondered what goes into creating our California and Plantation shutters. But before we go any further, let's clarify the difference between custom and custom-made California and Plantation shutters. 

“Custom” is a broad term and may refer to shutters that are pre-made and then cut down to fit the specifications of the window installation. This process can sometimes result in shutters that do not fit properly. “Custom-made” means that the shutters were built to your specifications to insure that they fit correctly and perform well. The real question is, how are custom-made shutters fabricated?

The first step in process is to properly measure the window openings to ensure a great fit. Your Eclipse Shutters retailer uses trained professionals to measure your windows. Since every component is cut to meet the specifications submitted, it is wise to have a professional take care of this job to ensure that the measurements are correct. One incorrect measurement can result in a costly mistake.

Next, the shutters are created using your measurements and the materials that you chose. A shutter is made of five components: the louvers, tilt-bar, top and bottom rails, divider rail and frame. Each of these is customized to fit your window. You can also choose different widths for the louvers and select one of our neutral colours. Your dealer will be able to explain which components/configurations work best for your application; he takes into account any obstructions in the building that may hinder the function of the shutter. Eclipse California and Plantation shutters are may from the very best material and are cut with state-of the-art precision equipment and assembled by our skilled staff.

The finished product is delivered to the retailer, who arranges installation by a professional. Eclipse Shutters come with a 25 Year Warranty which can be registered on the Eclipse Shutter Canada web-site or mailed to us.

You will find that custom-made shutters are a wonderful addition to and investment in your home.

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Here at Eclipse Shutters, we know that after a long day at work, the first thing you want to do is kick back and relax. Everyone unwinds in their own personal way, but the color of your home's walls can have a significant impact on how you get to this state of mind.

This is no trade secret; many studies have been conducted on the psychological impact of the color spectrum. Bright, bold shades like yellow and green are motivating, uplifting and energizing, while more neutral earth tones are praised for their tranquility-inspiring powers.

A New Approach to Neutral

Armed with this knowledge and a desire to give their customers complete control over how to craft a unique living space, Benjamin Moore has recently launched a new neutral color palette for its 2014 paint inventory. These swatches illustrate an emerging trend, one that focuses more on the experience you get when you walk through the door.

Your home is your sanctuary, and these neutral tones were created to make this part of your life stand out and be noticed in a subtle yet captivating manner. The shift away from bold and daring to beautifully humble is here. These colors instantly set the mood and complement existing room decor like our California and Plantation shuttersand other window coverings.

The neutral palette is organized into four broad color sections. The first is the "Greens and Earthy Neutrals," and they range from the brightest Van Alen Green to the darker Sparrow. This color scheme is ideal for people wanting to craft a warm and inviting atmosphere. As such, they are recommended in rooms that are meant to be a source of comfort rather than stimulation (e.g. bedrooms, restrooms).

The "Plums and Lavender" section is comprised of five tones (Lavender Mist, Super Nova, Nightingale, Black Satin and Iced Mauve). Formal living spaces and master bedrooms are where these colors shine. Purple is a naturally feminine tone and is a great way to add a touch of flair to a much-needed space. Black Satin is the darkest shade on the new neutral palette (some may consider it outside the spectrum) and should be placed in larger rooms when the goal is to direct attention or to form a dramatic focal point.

The "Blue Family" is light, cool and airy, but also features some darker colors as well (Van Deusen, Flint and Normandy). The last group is the "Pinks and Neutrals," which includes Light Peach and Coral Essence. 

Every shade in Benjamin Moore's 2014 collection is intended to mesh well with home furnishings. Neutrals go perfect with artwork, pottery, textiles, carpet and especially your interior California and Plantation shuttersfrom Eclipse Shutters.

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Eclipse MarathonIn 2012, our goal is to raise $50,000.00 for Sick Kids by entering The Eclipse Shutters Canada Team in The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon Charity Challenge on Sunday October 14th, 2012.  The Eclipse Shutters Team consists of staff and our business partners who are entered in the Scotiabank Toronto Marathon Charity Challenge. All Eclipse Shutters employees will be working with the runners to ensure that their pledges are achieved. Would you like to be part of the Eclipse Shutters Team? By making a donation on-line, you can become an integral part of our fund raising effort. All monies will be donated directly to the Sick Kids Foundation.

Click here to learn more.
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Source: The Toronto Sun - by Dr. Charles Moore

For Building, Vinyl is Green

Architects and home builders across Canada are increasingly interested in green building. Yet green building must not only be environmentally friendly - it must also be affordable.
Green products that are out of reach for the average consumer will remain niche products that have little change to make a positive impact on the environment.
Moving green building beyond niche status and into the mainstream requires the use of affordable, widely available and environmentally friendly products. We know how to measure affordability and availability, but how do we determine what's environmentally friendly?

Fortunately, tools are being refined that help builders and consumers choose. Lifecycle analysis (LCA) is the science of examining a product's entire life from extraction of raw materials and manufacturing to transportation and installation to final disposal or recycling. Another tool is risk analysis. All activities, including making and using products of various materials, carry risks.
LCA shows that two of the most important environmental features of products are renewability and durability. Renewable materials and energy sources are green by nature. Durable materials last longer and require less frequent replacement and upkeep.

So, which materials perform well in life-cycle and risk assessments? Wood, of course, is abundant, renewable, requires far less energy to make than either steel or concrete, soaks up carbon dioxide and has diverse applications. It has a strongly positive life-cycle impact.

So does vinyl. More than half derived from common salt, vinyl is one of the most energy-efficient materials to make. Vinyl's energy efficiency attributes are highlighted in the performance of products like windows. Vinyl is durable and lasts for decades with relatively little maintenance compared to other materials. At the end of life, it can be managed in the same fashion as other building materials. There continues to be increased recycling of vinyl building products at the installation and even end-of-life stages.
Yet vinyl gets targeted by environmental activists.
The fact is vinyl's environmental issues have been thoroughly studied and answered.
Vinyl scores well in life cycle tests. The U.S. Green Building Council, European Commission and the state of California all looked comprehensively at vinyl's prod and cons and concluded the overall impacts were in line with those of other materials - and that vinyl could do better than the competition in some applications.

Vinyl products are constantly being improved and new products are being certified as environmentally sound by third parties under programs such as TerraChoice Eco-Logo, FloorScore, Green Label Plus, and GREENGUARD® standards.
The best way to deliver affordable, safe drinking water is through a vinyl pipe. Drain waste and vent pipe made from vinyl has significantly displaced old cast iron pipes in the marketplace due to its lighter weight, easier installation and superior longevity.

The best way to insulate electrical wiring is with a vinyl coating. In hospitals, vinyl is used widely for floors and wall coverings because it is easily cleaned and disinfected. Vinyl is a durable, cost-effective siding for buildings because of its low maintenance and long life. Building with vinyl saves on energy and material costs.

And, in case you don't think affordability has a place in this discussion, don't forget the money saved up-front on energy-efficient materials like vinyl can be spent on other environmental add-ons, such as a ground-source heat pump that uses clean geothermal energy to make a home even more sustainable.

Dr. Charles Moore is a co-founder and former leader of Greenpeace and Chair and Chief Scientist of Greenspirit Strategies Ltd.
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