Plantation shutters area a great way to add style and value to your home. These fabulous blinds not only look stylish and expensive they also help insulate your house by keeping the sun’s harmful rays out and your cool air inside, saving you big money on your utility bills. You may buy these shutters ready-made off the self, or if you have an irregular sized window you can get these shutters custom-made.
Plantation blinds need not be expensive either, as can be made from a variety of materials, the most common being wood, but also of plywood, affordable plantation shutters composite and even woven wood. Some companies even make plantation shutters out of plastic that resembles wood. These options mean you can afford Plantation shutters no matter what your budget might be.
Plantation shutters are available in almost any color to match your existing décor. If you choose to buy real wood shutters you also have the option to purchase them unfinished and then paint or stain them yourself. This option would allow you to choose a stain or paint that matches your furniture exactly. You will be surprised at how sophisticated and unique these blinds can make your house look.
Once you have your blinds stained or painted to your satisfaction, you have two options on installation. Many companies that sell these blinds offer installation and for a small price you can have your shutters up with absolutely no hassles.
If you are a handy or frugal person you might choose to forgo the installation fees and install the blinds yourself. Rest assured that the process is not difficult at all. First make sure that your shutters are the correct size by measuring your window and then your shutters. After you have done this decide on whether you would like to place the window mounts on the inside, which will attach inside the window casing or on the outside, which will attach outside the window casing.
Now that you have determined where you would like to place your mounts, you may now attach the shutters using an electric screw driver making sure that they are level. Keep in mind that many windows especially those in older homes may not be quite level and this may throw off the way your shutters look. If this is the case with your windows it may be necessary to consult a professional.
Now that you have your shutters installed they are extremely easy to care for. If your shutters are wood, you may dust them weekly with a furniture polish designed for wood furniture, you may choose to also use lemon oil to add a beautiful shine to the finish. If you have faux wood or a plastic type or shutter you should use Windex or a mild soap and water mixture and wipe with a damp cloth. Now you can sit back and enjoy your beautiful new shutters!
What makes the best plantation shutters: vinyl, basswood, poplar, maple or another hardwood?
Plantation shutters are an excellent choice for high quality, attractive and functional window treatments. If you are considering buying plantation shutters, no doubt you quickly learned of the myriad of choices that are available to you.
Plantation shutters can be purchased as stock units or you can buy custom interior shutters to fit your windows. And then there is the construction material – among the most common materials used include vinyl, Basswood, Poplar, Maple and a variety of fine hardwoods. And not surprisingly, each material brings different levels of quality and price ranging from vinyl shutters to custom wood plantation shutters. So which is the best choice for your home?
Plantation Shutter Construction Materials
Here is a summary of the pros and cons for the most common interior shutter materials:
Vinyl Interior Shutters
Some of the most affordable interior shutters are made from vinyl.
While vinyl interior shutters will not warp and typically don’t require a finish, there is an undeniably synthetic look and feel to them.
The advantage to vinyl is it presents the most economical solution and is widely available.
However, vinyl shutters are among the lowest quality on the market and don’t offer the warmth or beauty of wood plantation shutters. And if you are considering vinyl interior shutters, remember that affordable does not always mean value.
Wood Plantation Shutters: Basswood and Poplar
Basswood and Poplar are two of the more common woods used to make interior shutters. Basswood and Poplar are technically hardwoods. But as hardwoods, they are light and relatively soft compared with other hardwoods such as Maple or Oak.
Basswood takes a finish well; it can be either painted or stained. Because Poplar’s color is not uniform, ranging from white to green to almost purple, it should be painted only and never stained.
However, when considering wood plantation shutters made of Poplar or Basswood, one should be aware that both are very soft and susceptible to dents and dings. In larger openings, Basswood and Poplar shutters frequently require additional reinforcing or extra rails or stiles for rigidity. The overall width or height of your window treatment may also be limited.
And finally, research the shutter joinery method. Because Poplar and Basswood shutters typically represent the mid-market pricing and quality range, often times the joinery of these interior shutters is inferior to higher quality shutters. For example, you should look for products where the rails are joined with reinforced dowels.
Hardwood Plantation Shutters: Durable and Beautiful
True hardwood plantation shutters, such as maple, represent the highest levels of quality and value in today’s plantation shutters. While the initial cost is sometimes higher than a comparably sized Basswood or Poplar shutter, the manufacturing quality is generally superior and there is greater likelihood that your Maple shutters will outlast shutters made from more affordable materials.
In addition to the increased durability and longevity of quality wood plantation shutters, solid hardwood shutters provide greater aesthetic appeal, whether stained or painted. The natural beauty and grain pattern of the vast array of hardwood species bespoke window shutters presents a limitless palette of design and style for your hardwood plantation shutters. Plus you can select the wood species and finish to match your existing décor.
High quality hardwood plantation shutters will also be custom made to precisely fit your exact window opening. And with a professional installation, your interior shutters will look like they were meant to be there, enhancing the beauty of your room.
The Best Material for Interior Shutters
When it comes to beauty, versatility and durability, no other material can match a quality, dense hardwood such as Maple. Other outstanding choices are Walnut, Mahogany, Oak, Cherry and Alder. While quality hardwood shutters may cost more initially, the lifetime value of your shutters will far exceed that of cheaper alternatives.