We Know: How to Buy Plantation Shutters

What are plantation shutters?

Plantation shutters are wood shutters installed on the interior of a house, and can be used to create a modern or traditional look. Most shutter frames are pre-drilled for easy installation. They can be painted, stained, or left unfinished.

How do you measure windows for plantation shutters?

Most prefer to install their shutters on the inside window for a cleaner look. Inside mounts will need exact measurements of the window's interior. Use a steel measuring tape to get the most accuracy. For width, use the narrowest measurement after measuring in three places. For height, also measure in three places and use the shortest measurement. If you will be mounting the shutters on the outside of the window against the wall, add from 1-5" on all four sides.

What should I know about installation?

Remember to leave room for the shutters' mounting brackets which vary in size depending on the shutters. Many plantation shutters come with molding so be sure to verify that the window's depth, width, and height are large enough. Carefully review the measurements with the seller before you order your shutters. Unlike blinds, it is very difficult to trim shutters after they have been cut to a specific size.

How can I create the look I want with plantation shutters?

Depending on the manufacturer, many style options are available and your choices include:

  • Type of wood. Usually they are made of hard woods like alder, birch, maple, oak or cherry. Each creates a unique look and can change the feel of a room.
  • Louvre size. Louvres are available in a range of sizes, each of which can create a different look.
  • Panels. A single window can be hung with one full panel, one half panel, or two half panels, each of which will offer different lighting options.
  • Unfinished wood. Order the shutters unfinished and you can custom stain or paint them yourself. Or, leave them unfinished for a whole different look.
  • Polyurethane foam. These artificial wood shutters simulate the look of real wood, but withstand humidity better. They are easier to clean than real wood and will not crack, peel, split or warp.

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