The summer months in the Southern Hemisphere fall over a festive holiday period which means fun holidays cooling off in the sea or at home in the swimming pool. But summer stretches out long after we have returned to work and school, and this means higher electricity bills as we try and keep offices and classrooms cool in often unbearable heat.  Concentration levels drop and productivity all but grinds to a halt as children and employees battle fatigue often caused by overheating and dehydration. Germs and illness often spread as air-conditioners are set far too cold to counter the effects of the heat outside, which also decreases productivity caused by absences. Applying Solar and Energy Control Film is an easy way to reduce the risk of overheating, in any environment.

We applied window film to a school in Johannesburg that had sun streaming into their classroom windows. This not only increased the temperature of the classroom but also caused a glare on the whiteboards which made it difficult for students to see.

We installed a 35% Natural Solar and Energy Control Film to the windows. This eliminated the whiteboard glare but also reduced heat by 5°. Because the film was only 35% it didn’t block the view out of the windows and still let in lots of natural light.

The whiteboard problem is similar to that of the computer monitor glare often experienced in offices. Employees often have to close blinds or move to a different seat until the sun moves enough to reduce the glare. In addition, research says that the best temperature for a comfortable working environment is between around 22°.  At the height of our summers and even sometimes in winter, this temperature can only be achieved by the consistent use of air-conditioning. But a Solar Control and Energy Film  on your office windows will reduce heat and your energy bill while increasing workplace efficiency. You can choose the intensity of the film depending on different factors.

Window films are also a great solution for retail outlets that have stock in a street-facing shop window, too. While having a beautiful window display attracts passing consumers, it also bears the brunt of the sun and the UV rays damage items and be very costly to the business. Solar and Energy Control film has UV filters which blocks out 99% of the sun’s harmful UV rays and will protect items in the window but will not obstruct the view in the window as people pass by.

As a low cost yet highly effective product, it’s no surprise that many of our clients are requesting window film installations as an effective option over curtains and blinds. This is because not only is it easy to install, it also is cost effective and give good return on investment as your energy bill are markedly decreased.

 

 

Contact us for a free consultation to discuss personal benefits of installing Solar and Energy Control Film in your home, shop or office.

3 Easy Tips for a Festive Shop Window Display

December is the prettiest time to shop as retailers worldwide vie for the best looking festive window displays. Obviously the big retailers plan months ahead to attract the big holiday shopping market, but even the smaller shops can create a wonderful display using decorative frosted vinyl at the last minute that doesn’t have to cost the earth.

A shopfront is a retailer’s best billboard, yet many shop owners don’t put enough thought into how to optimise its use to attract people into the store. Bad lighting and a cluttered display are not good advertisements when you want to attract the holiday spenders.

These three tips on how to create interesting and affordable window displays will help get more customers into your store.

1. Choose a theme

The festive season holidays offer wonderful ideas for specific themes. The best way to attract attention is to tell a story. Is it a cosy family Christmas theme? Are you attracting people travelling over the holidays? Start by considering who your target market is and what sort of visual elements, including colours and text, will be best to attract them. Think of an interesting slogan or “teaser” text with a relevant image and create a unique design using decorative frosted vinyl and splash it across your shopfront windows to get shoppers intrigued about what is inside the shop.

2. Visit a new angle on an old theme

It’s easy to get caught up in what others are doing or to take the simplest route by using standard Christmas themed visuals like a fir tree, gifts and pretty lights. But consumers have seen that before a thousand times. Finding a new take on an old theme is much more likely to turn heads. Alternatively you can combine the two. A Christmas tree decorated in items from the shop or giant boxes wrapped in interesting fabric to look like gifts are much more likely to draw attention than tinsel and coloured baubles.

3. Don’t be afraid to grab attention

Use striking bold colours and shapes.  There are thousands of colour variations so pick a few in contrasting shades that suit your theme, and have fun. Make sure you use them on areas big enough for people to see from a distance. But remember, less is often more. So don’t choose too many different colours or clutter the shopfront with too many items that will prevent you from making a statement with the overall look. The less you have the more striking it can be. You can use a combination of coloured vinyl on certain areas of the shop windows and items on display set slightly away from the windows to create interesting areas of depth.

Bonus tip: To ensure that you get the most important feature of your display in just the right spot. Use tape on the shopfront windows to measure out where items should be placed in order to get just the right line of vision when you set it all up. Remember that your message and products are the main focus of the display and therefore lighting these correctly is extremely important.

We’re available all year round to help you with all your vinyl shopfront window display needs. Contact us today for a free quote.

 

Boost Office Morale with an Interior Revamp

Most people spend a great deal of time painting, decorating and redesigning the interior of their homes in order to create a happy, comfortable and personalised space. Yet, full-time office workers spend more time in an office than at home. As an employer you should want to put as much effort into creating calm and comfortable office space for our employees as you would for your family at home. Consider keeping employee spirits and productivity levels up with a few key interior design elements.

Image Credit : Glass Guards

Create open, social spaces

Research has shown that social businesses where conversation and collaboration is encouraged perform much better than those that demand quiet and less interaction. Hence the rapid rise of the co-working space phenomenon. Modern offices are breaking down cubicles and walls and providing an area where employees can discuss a project, take a break or just have a chat, away from their desks.
One way to do this, is to build a glass partition around an area designed with a fun brand related decorative frosted vinyl or colourful decorative film to maintain a certain level of privacy without cutting it off from the office entirely. This type of partition will also allow more natural light to continue to flow through the office and requires less artificial light to compensate, which is definitely a mood booster.

You can also maintain “transparency” and bridge the management-employee gap by replacing solid office doors with glass doors. If some privacy is required you can use frosted vinyl to personalise it with a name on the door and even a favourite quote, as a conversation starter.

Bring the outdoors indoors

A lot of people feel more at peace around nature and while it’s not always possible to have an outdoor office, it is possible to bring the outdoors in. Astro turf has become very popular as a floor covering for certain areas of the office, as well as lots of indoor plants and “green walls” that generate oxygen and clean air. Water fountains and features are calming and the sound of running water is well known to be wonderful noise dampeners, especially if the office building is close to a busy road. Another way to introduce more inside/outside flow to the office is to replace brick walls with big glass windows or even sliding doors, where possible, that overlook a garden and the outside world,creating an extension of open space. Not a lot of offices have sufficient natural light coming in and considering how much time is spent indoors sitting at a desk this is an important consideration, as too much artificial light can be damaging to the health of your employees. Windows also break the monotony of brick walls and fresh air can inspire creative thinking and reduce sick-leave.

Remember too, that any windows that create strong sunlight glare should be fitted with UV
protective film to keep your employees from feeling fatigued as the office heats up, especially in
summer. This lets in natural light but also reduces glare onto computer screens, which can break
concentration and cause frustration. UV protective window films will save money on energy bills,
which can be spent on morale and mood boosting lunch for everyone in the office.

For advice on how to use glass to enhance your office space and increase productivity, contact us for
a free consultation and quote.

Decorative Frosted Vinyl has seen a surge in popularity recently and is one of the hottest glass products on the market. Homeowners, architects, and interior designers are using it as a convenient and cost effective alternative to traditional sandblasting or acid etching.

Here are advantages of installing Decorative Frosted Vinyl at your home or office:

1. Enhances privacy within your home and office

Humans need both light and privacy. Decorative Frosted Vinyl can be applied to bathroom windows or plain glass shower doors because it lets in natural light and doesn’t become transparent when it gets wet. So you can use your bathroom with peace of mind. Houses in complexes often don’t have big walls around them to create privacy. Decorative Frosted Vinyl windows stop people peering into your home as they go past, and avoid the need for drawn curtains or blinds that block out the light. You can choose your own unique design that enhances both the interior and exterior of your home.

Co-working and shared office space is the new norm for companies these days. Unfortunately, this can create confusion for clients and can be impersonal for employees. Glass partitioning makes the best use of your office floor space by dividing up certain work areas. Decorative Frosted Vinyl branding on these partitions creates a unique office feel and clearly defines your company’s space. It is also very easy to remove without damaging the glass if your company changes its branding or moves offices.

2. Greater flexibility, affordability and wide variety of designs 

Decorative frosted vinyl is able to project a new stylish image and transforms ordinary looking glass into something modern and beautiful. There is almost no limit as to where Decorative Frosted Vinyl can be applied onto glass. It can be used for both internal and external use such as shopfront windows, company branding as well as other decorative purposes. This is definitely a more flexible and cheaper alternative to other options such as sandblasting, curtains, blinds or drapes. These options are expensive and can become very difficult to maintain.

Decorative Frosted Vinyl can easily be changed or removed at any time should you desire to change your design or branding. However with sandblasting, it is permanent and the whole glass structure will need to be replaced which can become a very expensive and laborious procedure.

3. Improves protection from the sun and harmful UV rays.

Open any interior or architectural publication and you will see lots of images of beautiful, sun-drenched rooms. The reality is that the sun can be damaging to wooden or laminate flooring and furniture, as well as curtaining and upholstery fabrics. It can also cause skin problems for pets who like to lie in warm sunny spots. Decorative Frosted Vinyl blocks up to 95% of UV rays but keeps the natural light coming in. It enhances the look of your interior and exterior whilst protecting the expensive and irreplaceable things in your life.

4. Strengthens your windows and makes glass shatterproof

While sandblasting breaks down and weakens glass, Decorative Frosted Vinyl provides a protective layer and stops the glass from shattering into pieces if a breakage does occur. This is especially useful in schools and sports clubs or other areas where there is a high risk of windows breaking. This is also useful for offices or houses that are at risk of burglars breaking through windows that are easier to access than others. Applying Decorative Frosted Vinyl can be a cheaper alternative to replacing broken windows and stolen belongings.

Have a look at our gallery for inspiration and contact us for wide variety of designs to discuss how we can help you solve your glass problems with Decorative Frosted Vinyl.

4 Simple Reasons Why You Need Window Film

These are the 4 most common reasons why architects and builders of commercial and residential properties say that window film is a necessity. It’s an eco-conscious choice that keeps the light in and the danger out.

  1. It saves you money and saves the planet. We are really lucky to have gorgeous, sunny weather all year round. And it’s great to have the sunlight streaming into a home you have specially chosen for its north-facing balminess. These days, window tints are designed to keep the light streaming in, but also retain warmth. This means that during the winter months you would pay much less on heating bills. In summer the heat is diverted, keeping your rooms cool and saving heavy air-conditioning costs, making it a simple “green building” choice.

 

  1. It keeps you safe. It also keeps your pets and indoor plants safe, too. Window films keep the sun’s harmful UV rays out, while letting the warmth in. People don’t realise that the sun’s UV rays are still harmful indoors. So while your family basks in the winter sun indoors and your cat sleeps in their favourite chair under the window, the tinted window film is saving you from damaging sun-rays. Safety film also guards against window breakages that can happen at any time in both commercial and residential buildings. A violent storm, a football being kicked in the wrong direction, or a criminal break-in can wreak havoc.  Window tints and films can prevent glass from shattering and spraying out, causing injury or damage to anyone or anything in the vicinity.

 

  1. It protects your heirlooms. Using a tinted or decorative window film means the wood of your priceless antique furniture won’t fade and the upholstery won’t get sun damaged. Even if you are not a collector of antiques, a brand new wood floor or dining table can quickly fade if it is exposed to a patch of sunlight, daily. Often you have to move carpets around to avoid the inevitable dark patch of flooring that occurs as the floors fade around it, or you have to draw the curtains when the sun comes in. But with UV protection film your interior décor is safe from the sun.

 

  1. It increases your privacy. Applying a window film is a great way to increase privacy, especially if your office is on a busy street, or your home is in a housing complex. Window tinting not only reduces your nosy neighbour’s ability to see in to your home, it also reduces the risk of potential burglars noting expensive items in the house. If you have glass doors in your office and require extra privacy, you can have decorative window film applied, which enhances the aesthetics of your office and stops people from glancing in as they walk past. It’s also useful if your computer faces a window and you have to try and manoeuvre your way around the afternoon sun. Window tints will eliminate glare while still letting in the natural light.

If you’re experiencing any of the above problems, then contact Glass Guards today for a free window tint quote and affordable, fuss-free installation.

Image credit: Koi Restaurant/Window Film Glass Guards

Unfortunately in South Africa many motorists become victims of vehicle smash and grab crimes and the sad reality is that it is a real threat to our commuters.

Smash and grab incidences play on elements of speed and surprise. What happens is when vehicles are stationary at traffic lights or when there is slow moving traffic due to congestion, opportunists will smash the passenger side windows. Due to the short paralysis experienced by the driver allows enough time for the thieves to grab something of value from your car. These car burglaries can be costly, from the cost of repairs to the vehicles and windows and replacing stolen belongings. In most cases the victims are likely to be traumatised and feel victimised for a long time.

The best way to prevent such an occurrence happening to you is to become more vigilant and cautious as to what is happening around you. Prevention is better than cure and it’s better to be safe than sorry!

Here are some hints and tips to help prevent you becoming a victim of smash ‘n grab:

  • Keep all doors locked at all times.
  • Always be on the alert as to what is happening around you when driving. Criminals will tend to go for motorists who are on their cell phones and are not paying attention. Be on a constant lookout for suspicious characters.
  • Ensure that your valuables are hidden away. You become a target if thieves are able to see your valuables from outside the vehicle.  Store such items in the boot of your car.
  • If there are obstacles in the road such as rocks do not get out of your vehicle to remove them. In many cases thieves are hiding and waiting for you to get out of your vehicle so that they can steal your belongings.
  • Be on the lookout and always be wary of people hanging around intersections. Avoid getting into discussions with vendors or people handing out flyers. These people may be innocent but the criminals will wait for such opportunities due to distraction.
  • When driving at night and approaching a red light, slow down well in advance. This allows you to try and reach the light when it turns green. Also drive in the middle lane if possible as perpetrators like to hide in the bushes next to the side of the road.
  • Leave a space between yourself and the car in front of you when stopping. This will give you a chance to escape should anything happen.
  • Fit your windows with a protective smash and grab film. This is a protective film pasted on vehicle windows to help prevent smash and grab incidents. These are usually tinted which prevents people from seeing what is in your car and also prevents your window from smashing into small pieces. This will give you that extra protection and those couple of extra seconds to regain your thoughts and drive away.
  • If you don’t have smash and grab protective film installed, leave your window slightly open (approximately 3cm but no more than 5cm). This prevents the glass from shattering when struck by a sharp object.

Please be vigilant and be safe out there !

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