Window Shutter Options
Give up? Don’t want to buy new exterior wood shutters?
Check out some Optional Mounting and Shortcuts for Vinyl Shutters
By now you should thoroughly understand the correct and ideal way to mount shutters is to use hinges even if you plan to only use your shutters as decoration. There is one option, or should I say a trick, to be used only as a last resort. I only provide this information to those who will not purchase hinges as advised, in my effort to reduce the number of ugly houses.
Even if you have a vinyl sided home, with vinyl shutters, and have no intention on replacing them, you can still achieve a more authentic look.
Screw two, 1-inch thick blocks of wood on each side of the window casing near the opening where the hinge would normally be. You may need to shave off the outside corners of the blocks. Take the shutter and screw it to the blocks of wood on the window side, and the other end of the shutter directly to the facade of the house. This will result in an angled shutter – creating additional shadows – resulting in a much much better looking home.
Another shortcut is attaching a false tilt rod. Purchase a wooden dowel, paint it and attach it to your louvered shutters with a liquid nails adhesive.
Shutters for Other Types of Windows and Spaces
Depending on the style of your house, each window does not have to be shuttered. This is determined mostly by architectural design and window style. For example, on a Queen Anne style house, windows in a tower may or may not be shuttered. Larger ornate or smaller sized windows can be left without shutters or may only need one shutter on one side of the window (fit to cover the entire window).
Think in terms of shutter use.
1.) Back in the day, would it have been practical or useful to have shutters on this window?
2.) If not useful, would it provide balance in design or match another window with shutters? Colonial style architecture is symmetrical and you need to maintain this symmetry.
A Ganged window is two windows side by side separated by a mullion (a vertical piece of wood separating the windows – part of casing). In this situation, you have a few choices (not in any order), but first look for ghost marks of earlier hinges. If the window had shutters there would be ghost marks of hinges visible.
- Attach a large (double size) shutter, the size of the window on each end.
- Mount double shutters at each end. The shutters would appear single, but actually are two hinged shutters, folded over. The shutter will close from one side for each of the two windows. The visual effect of patterns will not be disturbed.
- Mount four shutters in the manner you would normally if the window were not Ganged. Since there is minimal space at the mullion between the two windows, the shutters will remain in a semi-opened position and held in place with a tie-back attached to the sill, extended out to the shutter. I have seen this method in original 19th century design plans. If you find ghost lines, you have your answer.
There will be other situations where a window is next to a down-spout or a wall of a house where the shutter will not be able to be parallel to the house when open. Do not omit the shutter.
Here are some examples:
Unless noted all examples are historically correct.