If you are looking for window treatments that will improve your home's value, energy efficiency, and looks, you might be in the market for interior shutters. Unfortunately, once you hit the interior design showrooms, the shutter decisions can stack up fast. Here are two things you need to consider before you go shopping so that you can develop an idea of what you are looking for:
When most people think of shutters, they picture architectural, slatted panels fixed to entire inside of window jambs. However, standard shutters aren't the only option on the market anymore. Here are three types of shutters and which rooms they might be best suited for:
- Solid: Are you looking for a way to bolster your privacy? Instead of choosing shutters with slats, consider the solid variety. Solid shutters contain decorative panels that block visibility and light, which makes them perfect for bathrooms, offices, or master bedrooms. If you are worried about the solid sheets of wood looking heavy, you shouldn't be. Panels can be decorated with matching crown molding or painted light colors to brighten up the space.
- Café: If you love to let sunshine pour into your home, you might not like the idea of choosing between a complete lack of privacy and blocked-off windowpanes. However, café shutters offer the best of both worlds by only blocking off the lower portion of your windows. Café shutters are perfect for areas you might want to keep a little brighter, like living and dining rooms.
- Tiered: For an even more versatile option, consider tiered shutters. Tiered shutters contain multiple panels that are fixed on independent hinges—letting you open either the top, bottom, or middle section separately. Because tiered shutters are so dynamic, they work well in most rooms.
Before you choose shutters, you should also consider the orientation of your home. If you have westward-facing walls that let in loads of afternoon sunlight, café shutters might not give you the heat control you need. On the other hand, if you are looking for a way to keep your nosy neighbors from peeping into your kitchen, tiered shutters might not be enough.
When you are asked to choose a shutter material, you might be tempted to look for the most expensive variety, assuming it is the best. Unfortunately, each shutter material is made to handle a different set of circumstances, and some are more forgiving than others. Here is a description of each material, and how to tell if it is right for you:
- Hardwood: If you are looking for the go-to material for shutters, you might walk straight to the hardwood section. With the ability to stain or paint hardwood shutters any color under the sun, the versatility might be enough to persuade you. However, hardwood shutters are the most expensive option, and they are more difficult to maintain than other options. Because wood is porous, they need to be cleaned and dried carefully to fend off warping. Also, painted shutters might need to be repainted occasionally.
- Vinyl: If you are looking for a maintenance-free shutter variety, vinyl versions are just about as close as you can get. Composed out of durable polyresin materials, vinyl shutters won't crack, fade, or peel. Unfortunately, vinyl planks aren't as strong as wooden ones, which means that vinyl shutters can't be manufactured wider than 29 inches.
- Composite: Composite shutters are made from a mix of wood particles and vinyl resins to solve a variety of concerns. Composite shutters are finished to look like real wood, but can be cleaned as easily as vinyl versions.
Becoming familiar with your shutter options might help you to hone in on the perfect set for your home, so that you can beautify your space. For more information, contact a company like Aero Shade Co. Inc.