How to Get Bugs out of Silhouettes

Many of us have invested in Silhouette® blinds, manufactured by Hunter Douglas. Have you had yours at your home for  years, or are they a new purchase? The Silhouettes® offer so many great features, they’ve become one of the most popular window shadings on the global market. It is estimated that over 200 Million homes have installed Silhouette® blinds.

As designers, we show clients the benefits of selecting the Silhouette® family of products for their home. One of the most important features is being able to see through the sheers on the back and front, allowing a filtered view, light, and superior insulation all at the same time. For a truly clear view, the Silhouette® blinds easily roll into a headrail at the top of the window. Or the vanes may be closed for privacy. When the Silhouettes® are covering the glass (in the down position), they keep out about 60-65% of the heat in the summer and the same amount of cold in the winter, making them a very good insulator, while they preserve your view. UV protection is 88% when the blinds are in the down-open position. When the Silhouettes® are closed the UV protection is 99%. To get that kind of protection, insulation and a view at the same time is impressive.

Over time, bugs and debris make their way into the vanes and get stuck inside the vane openings of the shades. There are many “homemade” solutions to get the bugs out of the blinds which are often ineffective or harmful to the shading. Masking tape on a yardstick with the sticky side out is one of the solutions. A hair dryer on the cold setting, a vacuum used for upholstery cleaning with a hose, and canned air are some of the solutions people have used in the past. Lou Manfredini, host of Chicago’s WGN Mr Fix It Show  mentioned that our CamilyWand™ was better than using a leaf blower to get the bugs out of the openings during one of his New To Lou Too segments .

Silhouettes® are a relatively durable window shading. However the edges on the Silhouette® product itself are laser cut and are able to fray if abused during the bug removal process. Our CamilyWand™ is a simple, safe, inexpensive solution to the sticky, bug removal problem.

Lynn Severson, our owner/inventor has worked on her CamilyWand™ for a decade. She is thrilled to hear all of the comments from homeowners, designers and manufacturers singing praises for her  sticky bug removal tool.  Camily, LLC, her company, holds the patent for CamilyWand™.

We have heard of a myriad of uses for our tool beyond the window covering arena. It’s a great overall tool to have in your home. It reaches lightweight items or spiderwebs and debris  from inaccessible places. The list of chores it will do is never-ending.

We have a demonstration video that thoroughly explains the tool, how to use it, how to clean it and shows additional uses beyond removing bugs from the Silhouettes®. We know you’ll enjoy learning about our cleaning tool! The video is on our website at the bottom of the blog posts, the “About Us” and “Home” pages.






Evolution of a Blind Cleaning Tool

Evolution of our CamilyWand Sticky Bug Removal Tool™ began over 40 years ago when Lynn Severson, our owner, began her interior design career. Armed with a bachelors degree in interior design, her first job was at an upscale home furnishings store, where one of her duties was to increase sales in the window covering department.

At that time, the 1970’s, the main window treatments were “soft coverings”, as in draperies, top treatments, and other fabric related window coverings. Our available “hard treatments” were generally mini blinds, vertical blinds, woven woods, roller window shades, pleated shades and interior shutters.

The shading industry was in for a big shake up in the late 1970’s. The first honeycomb product was developed later in the decade, and acquired by Hunter Douglas. They brought that product to market as Duette® in the mid 1980’s. Their research and development department has invented many different fabric products named Silhouette®, Nantucket™, Luminette®, Vignette® and Pirouette® window shadings, bringing them to market throughout the  years. These window shadings (and Vignette® Modern Roman Shades) offered many different insulation options as well as being beautiful additions to window dressings.

All of a sudden, consumers had other options to cover their windows. The drapery industry had different design options for residential and commercial interiors. The shadings were generally invented and first manufactured by Hunter Douglas, and other companies have followed their lead.

Hunter Douglas opened up infinite opportunities for interior designers to use in their projects. The shadings have different energy effeciency options, some with excellent R values, for heating and cooling benefits. Talented designers combined the beauty of  soft fabric treatments with the new shading and blind opportunites in the market to create brilliant and beautiful window settings for their home or office interiors.

The window glass was covered, allowing privacy, insulation and views, depending on the position of the blind or shading in a window. In the age of energy effeciency, shadings to cover the glass added to drapery treatments is becoming the norm. Light is of paramount importance. The new shadings coming to the market address many issues in beauty, energy effeciency, child safety and many other concerns that allow us to cover our windows in new, innovative ways, adding beauty, functionality, and elegance to room decor.

Lynn’s favorite product to come from the new inventions is the Silhouette® sheer shading. That family of shadings offers more oppportunity for light control, energy effeciency, privacy and beauty than any other previously invented product in the industry. When the shading is lowered to cover the window glass, it may be in the open position, where the slats are horizontal, allowing a filtered view. Or the vanes may be closed for privacy. If it is rolled into the headrail, it allows a clear, clean view.

Lynn began selling the Silhouette® window shadings soon after their introduction in 1991 and it became a staple of her design business. When consumers wanted that type of shading, they fell in love with it and its attributes. Her clients loved them, however they were disturbed that the bugs liked them too. They were attracted by the light, got into the horizontal chamber, and couldn’t get out.  After several years of suggesting home remedies or other dangerous and often inneffective methods to remove the dead critters, Lynn came up with the idea of a sticky tip on the end of an extension pole to safely capture the bugs and easily remove them from the chambers between the vanes of the Silhouettes®. This method preserves views and investments.

In the early part of the new century, Lynn began the process of getting a patent for her tool.  She achieved that goal and brought her new tool, named CamilyWand™, to market in 2008. Silhouette® window shading owners rave about the ingenuity of her tool. Our demonstration video below and on the “about us” page explains the Sticky Bug Removal Tool™ in detail. The WCMA (Window Covering Manufacturers Association) recognized Lynn’s ingenuity with the Best Techincal Innovation Award in 2010. Lou Manfredini, the Ace Helpful Hardware Man and Today Show contributor, featured our CamilyWand Sticky Bug Removal Tool™ on his WGN Radio show in Chicago, suggesting it was better than using a leaf blower to “clean” the Silhouettes® window shadings. In addition, it retrieves spider webs, light weight objects, and debris from high & hard to reach places, making it a good all- around tool for the home or office.

Our tool is by far the safest, easiest solution for the pesky bug, moth and debris removal from many blinds, including Silhouettes®, Nantuckets™, Pirouettes®, Vignettes®  and Shangri-La® shadings.  It is a very inexpensive solution to preserving views and protecting investments in homes and offices.

How many of you have had some unusual bugs or insects in your shadings? One of Lynn’s clients found a small gecko in her Silhouettes® sheer shadings. It left the blind by itself, but could have been removed with our Sticky Bug Removal Tool™. Let us know your story of pesky critters in your blinds, and we’ll feature them in a future blog. We have heard many humorous tales and are sure you have some of them too. Right now, Colorado is being bombarded by moths. There is sure to be a need for our CamilyWand™ here this spring and throughout the year.