April 2015

Weather Queen Shades: Got Pollen? The solution to your screened-in porch problem

Author: Courtney Hillis

Spring has finally arrived! The weather is perfect…not too cold and not too hot. It’s the time of year to enjoy being outside after hibernating for the winter. Here in the Lowcountry, we love our screened-in porches. They protect us from the nagging mosquitos and no-see-ums and allow us to have outdoor living and dining rooms. However, with the warmer weather comes pollen. If you are tired of constantly cleaning your screened-in porch, or worse, not being able to use your porch in the beautiful spring weather, there is a solution.

No need to bring all of your porch furniture indoors anymore; don’t glass in your screened porch. There is a better answer. Exterior shades by Weather Queen Shades (WQS) protect your screened porch from pollen, dirt and rain. What’s more, these ingenious shades also create privacy, are great when closing up second homes for the off-season and help block the sun and control the temperature in your outdoor living space.

In a testimonial, Eric from Hayward, Wisconsin said, “We saw Weather Queen’s shades installed on a house and knew we had to have them. There is no comparable solution for keeping the weather out while maintaining aesthetic appeal. The quality, style options, functionality and passion of the Weather Queen team exceeded our expectations.”

Carla Ingram, designer and founder of Weather Queen Shades, originally created these one-of-a-kind exterior shades for a custom drapery client. In fact, Ingram worked as a designer of custom window treatments for over 30 years. The client loved the custom draperies Ingram designed and asked for an exterior covering that could be installed outside of the screens on a porch and easily operated from inside.

Using a simple pulley method (manual and power operated are available), Ingram produced a Roman shade-style design that gives the house a clean, finished look while creating protection from the elements.

Furthermore, the easy to use shades roll all the way up so as not to obstruct the view. Simply “tie the shades off like you tie off a boat,” said Ingram’s brother, Greg Erwin, who likes the simplicity of the manual pulley system. They hang straight down, unlike an awning that protrudes out, but when power operated use the same motor as an awning, he explained.

Weather Queen Shades uses Sunbrella® Awning and Marine fabrics, with over 80 color choices, to produce the highest quality product. This true marine grade fabric is mold and mildew resistant when cleaned properly, which is a simple washing procedure explained on Weather Queen Shades’ website. Both the Sunbrella fabric and powder coated paint on the track system have 10-year warranties, and Ingram stamps her finished Weather Queen Exterior Screen Porch Shades with a seven-year warranty. These simple problem-solving shades are also made in the USA—in a mom-and-pop store in Wisconsin, according to Erwin.

Weather Queen Shades, a member of the local Home Builders Association, loves working with builders as homes are being constructed so that the shades can be installed exactly the way the homeowner wants and everything fits correctly. However, the shades can certainly be added to existing screened porches. The added protection from the elements also opens up flooring options and allows homeowners to incorporate fireplaces and kitchen areas. Homebuilders up north have been able to install hardwood floors on screened porches with the protection of Weather Queen Exterior Screen Porch Shades.

After a decade in business and sales that have doubled from year to year, WQS has proven to be a well established and successful company. The product, however, is new to the Lowcountry. Knowing how much people in the South love their screened porches and being so impressed with what his sister created, Erwin decided to bring Weather Queen Exterior Screen Porch Shades to the area. He provides service throughout the Lowcountry including Savannah, Bluffton, Beaufort, Hilton Head Island and Charleston.

These custom exterior shades are perfect for anyone with a screened-in porch. “I think it actually enhances your house,” Erwin said, providing a clean look with functional durability and protection. Easily ordered through Weather Queen Shades’ website or by contacting Erwin, the product takes about six weeks to arrive and can be installed in a day or two. Erwin can show fabric samples and track color samples in person and also answer any questions.

Weather Queen Exterior Screen Porch Shades are not meant for hurricane protection but can be taken down or rolled all the way up in the event of a hurricane.

Fall in love with your screened porch again. Builders and homeowners alike love this product. 

For more information please visit the company’s website weatherqueenshades.com or contact Erwin directly at (912) 655-4918.

Raving fans of Weather Queen Shades:
“We wanted to build a porch cabin reminiscent of the 1930’s with a screened porch filled with rocking chairs, a porch swing, bed, soft blankets, pillows, and a fireplace. It was to be a place for our family and friends to relax, visit, play games and enjoy the fresh air. Our one challenge was finding a way to close up our screened porch to keep the screens and all of our furnishings clean and dry.
We are so thankful we found Weather Queen Shades! When we leave our cabin, we simply lower our shades, keeping all of our cushions, blankets, books and games where they are, knowing they will be protected while we are gone. When we return, we raise our shades and begin another memorable visit at our cabin!”
Katie, Lino Lakes, MN


“[We] are truly delighted with the aesthetics and quality of the screen porch window and door coverings you designed and installed in our cabin. The color of the covering absolutely matches the siding, the ability to open and close the awnings from the inside of the screen porch makes it very easy to use and the quality is amazing. The awnings protect the screen porch furniture and interior from rain, snow and wind very well. It’s a great investment and we recommend it highly to anyone building a screen porch.”
Siren, WI


“We saw Weather Queen’s shades installed on a house and knew we had to have them. There is no comparable solution for keeping the weather out while maintaining aesthetic appeal. The quality, style options, functionality and passion of the Weather Queen team exceeded our expectations.” Eric, Hayward, WI

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