Buckle up, dear readers — and get ready to delve into our latest warehouse full of wonders: a NOS mega-stash of vintage window treatment materials and more — quite possibly our biggest discovery since readers tipped us to the now defunct World of Tile in 2011.
It all started with The Astronaut Wives Club
This gleeful discovery came when Pam interviewed production designer Mark White about all the fabulous interiors inside the homes of The Astronaut Wives Club. It was a Sunday morning, during the phone interview, that her ears first tweaked to Mark’s mention of using retro woven wood roman shades by a company called Beauty-vu … or something close
“They have a line of wood woven blinds,” White said, “a page of retro woven shades — they still make them brand new, and they’re amazing.”
So of course, as soon as they hung up, Pam jumped online and within a few googles found the company.
Retro woven wood shades — with yarn woven into it!
Howdy hudee, here it is: The one-and-only, amazing Beauti-Vue Products Corporation — maker of custom window treatments since 1947 — that’s 68 years! — including retro woven wood roman shades — the kind with yarn woven through them.
Pam has been lusting after roman shades like these for years. And she’s looked. After finding Beauti-Vue on google based on Mark White’s tip, she now understands why she could not find them: She can’t see that anyone on the internet has ever written about Beauti-Vue and their stash of New Old Stock window treatment materials before! Now, woot(!): We have it the complete story — 11 days of stories!
And yes: As Mark White promised, these window shades are amazing. But beware: While Beauti-Vue can still make these into custom shades for you, all of these retro wovens are made from New Old Stock that is no longer manufactured — once this material is gone, it’s gone.
Thank you, Mark White, for this amazing tip!
My visit to Beauti-Vue — the mini-series!
Making this story even more wonderful: Beauti-Vue is located less than hour away from where I live. As soon as we could swing it, Pam had me rocket down there for a visit.
My trip to Beauti-Vue was loads of fun. The company has long been family owned and operated. The current owner is custom window treatment guru Stormy Grumbeck, and several other family members work there too, including Stormy’s sister Joy and his daughter Kristin. Beauti-Vue is a family affair for sure — all but two of the company’s employees are related — making coming to work each day a family reunion of sorts.
During my visit, I spent nearly three hours asking many questions, photographing and ogling their retro-licious goodies and hearing all about the company’s history — including fun personal stories about everything from catalog photo shoots to Stormy’s childhood growing up in the custom window treatment business.
Everyone I encountered at the factory was very friendly, welcoming and had sense of humor that made my time there quite enjoyable. By the time I left, I had a much deeper knowledge of the evolution of window treatments, the process of making woven wood window treatments and an even deeper love for the gorgeous stockpile of NOS retro woven wood shade material and products at Beauti-Vue.
Beauti-Vue blitz — 11 stories all lined up and coming at ya!
The biggest story inside Beautie-Vue is all of their New Old Stock rolls of retro woven shade material meant to be made into roman shades. That gave us plenty to investigate and photograph. But you know how these places are: There were more treasures, too. We were very inquisitive. We Brenda Starred them all.
Yup: That epic Astowives story led to another epic Beauti-Vue series: For the next 10 days or so [barring other breaking news], we will be highlighting everything Beauti-Vue — from the company’s history to all the New Old Stock goodies and other surprises that I found during my visit. All with an eye, of course, to how you can get your hands on some of these amazing treasures yourself.
Next: Click here to take a deep dive into Beauti-Vue’s retro woven wood shades, with tips and photos from my visit.