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The Decorative Window Film Alternative


The expense of stained glass in the sanctuary is justified by the beauty and inspiration the artwork imparts to the congregation during services. Many would like to have more decorative glass in their facility, but the expense of stained and etched glass is often prohibitive.

An affordable alternative is decorative window film. For less than the cost of a single stained glass window, 10 windows or glass doors can be decorated with window film.  There are two considerations when evaluating window (and glass door) film for your facility: "type of design?" and "adhesive or non-adhesive film."

For design, consider if you need privacy or can it be see-through, and if you want a "strong element" or "wallpaper" like design. Strong element designs are centered on a window or door and have a focal point meant to attract attention. Wallpaper designs are repeating patterns that decorate without demanding attention and are often used to cover large areas.

The other choice is adhesive film or non-adhesive static film. There are a variety of materials and adhesives used by different manufacturers, some permanent and some removable. The least expensive ones are polyester based and a very thin 2 mil (easy to tear) and usually difficult to remove. Recently, there have been new vinyl and embossed vinyl adhesive films introduced, which are thicker and tear-resistant. The jury is still out on how easily they can be removed after a few years of sun exposure.  Adhesive films have no recyclability; they are one use and, when removed from the glass, become trash.

Non-adhesive static films adhere to glass like a magnet to steel. Most are made with a thick, 8 mil vinyl film, which is durable and tear resistant. Adhesive-free static films are removable and reusable. As facilities are ever-changing in their use, when the purpose of a room changes, the window film can be removed and reapplied somewhere else instead of having to be thrown away.

Installation is the final step in the process. Adhesive films are the more difficult of the two types to install and are best applied by an experienced window film installer.  Adhesive-free static films are recommended for the do-it-yourself and handyman installer. Though window films are easy to trim to size, some manufacturers offer the films already trimmed to size, eliminating the most time consuming and stressful part of a window film project. When the film arrives, it is a quick and easy, peel and stick to finish the project.

This article is courtesy of EtchArt, www.wallpaperforwindows.com.









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