Understanding Your Options for Plantation Shutters

Today’s plantation shutters are designed to fit every type of window, from unusually shaped designs and arches to French and sliding glass doors. Interior plantation shutters are easily customized to blend in with your existing home furnishings and overall style. They provide functionality, through light and privacy control, but they also add beauty and value to your home.

While a traditional plantation shutter is probably what you first think of when you think of a plantation shutter — something covering the complete height of your window — there are also designs that cover only part of the window (known as a café shutter). Here’s a closer look at the many options available to you as you invest in plantation shutters for your home:

Interior Window Plantation Shutters

Adding interior plantation shutters to your home changes the look and feel of your home for the better. Your plantation shutters will serve as the stunning focal point of every room in your house all on their own, but you can also choose to coordinate your plantation shutters with curtains or valances. All will depend on the style of shutter that you choose.

Traditional Plantation Shutter

When you think of a plantation shutter, this is the one that you’re thinking of — a full-length window shutter that covers your window completely from top to bottom. Your choice in louver size or tilt rod design will make this traditional plantation shutter your own, as will your decision to include or forgo a fabric addition, like curtains.

Café Shutter

Believe it or not, café shutters are the original plantation shutters. Centuries ago, when glass was too expensive, residents chose to place glass in only the upper part of the window. The bottom half, meanwhile, was covered with a shutter. Of course, today’s café shutters offer contemporary options, such as your choice in louver size, that make café shutters a cutting edge window treatment. You can even choose to place a coordinating valance on top. As the name reveals, these are particularly common in kitchens.

Sunbursts and Arches for Uniquely Shaped Shutters

There are so many different kinds of windows and each one can have its own custom crafted plantation shutter. No more worrying about finding the right blinds or curtains to fit your unique window. For circular designs, you might consider the attention-grabbing sunburst plantation shutter. With a sunburst plantation shutter, the louvers travel in the same direction as the circle, like a burst of sun. You can also use traditional plantation shutters specifically crafted for your circular window. Plantation shutters for arches can be made to look similar to a sunburst or have a more traditional look. Shutters can be crafted for any window cut, even gothic arches!

Plantation Shutters for Your Door

Of course, plantation shutters aren’t just for windows, and can add style and elegance to doors with large glass panes such as french doors and sliding glass doors. Here are a few options:

Shadow Box for French Doors

The shadow box option at Shenandoah Shutters is an ideal way to install plantation shutters on your French door. With the shadow box style, plantation shutters fit easily on your door, and are expertly crafted to accommodate the specific shape of your door handle.

Slider for Sliding Glass Doors

For your sliding glass door, Shenandoah Shutters offers a slider option that allows the sliding movement of your door to be unaffected by the addition of your plantation shutters.

Choosing Your Louver

When you order custom interior plantation shutters, you are able to choose your prefered louver size. Louvers are the slats in your plantation shutter that move and allow sunlight to enter in or filter out.

The most common louver sizes available are 2 and a half, 3 and a half, or 4 and a half inch louvers. A larger louver size, such as the 4 and a half inch louver, is more characteristic of American plantation shutters, while a narrower size more closely resembles English homes. Both are classically elegant and simply a matter of personal preference, however there are a couple of small differences between the two that might influence your decision. A larger louver size will also offer you a greater view between the two slats, as well as close more completely, letting less sunlight into the room when the slats are closed.

If you’d like a little more sunlight when your louvers are closed, or a little less of a traditional plantation shutter look, then you might prefer smaller louvers. If, however, you enjoy the more common, traditional view that is offered by wider louvers, then you’ll want to consider a 3.5 or 4.5 inch louver style.

You can also choose what shape of louver you’d prefer along with your sizing. Flat louvers are exactly as they sound, flat on top and on the bottom, while contoured louvers are wide in the middle but more flat toward the ends. The different shape options allow you to customize even more and choose which louver gives your plantation shutter the right look and feel for your home.

Choosing Your Tilt Rod

Shenandoah Shutters uses a wooden tilt rod that allows you to control the movement of the louvers. Traditionally, tilt rods are placed in the center of the shutter, running down its middle, but you can choose a design that allows you to hide the tilt rod. With either choice, you’ll have the same control over your slats, but you might personally prefer the traditional appearance of the visible tilt rod or the modern appearance of the hidden tilt rod. Alternatively, you can also choose a divider or a split tilt rod without a divider that allows for independent control of the upper and lower louvers.

What About the Finish?

Hand-finished, hand-sanded shutters truly give you plantation shutters of the highest quality. When it comes to color choice, you’ll see homes with plantation shutters that are custom stained, in shades of white, cream, or custom paint, and even solidly a wood, such as oak, to match existing molding. Choosing the finish that is right for your home really rounds out your custom plantation shutter.

What About Material?

Contemporary plantation shutters are available in a variety of different materials, with words like faux wood, vinyl, and composite shutters often tossed around when discussing plantation shutters. Despite all of these available materials, the material that has best represented plantation shutters since the beginning is wood. In fact, all of these other materials are made to resemble wood. When you buy all-wood plantation shutters, you know that you are investing in a material that is real and authentic. Plus, there’s just something about wooden plantation shutters — they are aesthetically satisfying to have in your home, are naturally durable, and are easy to clean.

This is why, for decades, Shenandoah Shutters has specialized in only the all-wood interior plantation shutter. Contact us today to see our samples and learn more about the different styles available for your home, or if you’re in the neighborhood, stop by our Richmond, Virginia showroom and see our team in action.