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Posts Tagged ‘operable louver’

If you find yourself traveling towards the South Jersey beaches this Memorial Day set aside some time for a little side trip down Route 9. This will take you right through the village of Cape May Court House where you can see the Cape May County Court House that was built in 1850.

In the 1990’s when it came time to replace the exterior shutters of the Court House their maintenance department turned to us for our DIY Shutter™ Kits. Over 20 pairs of operable louvered shutters and shutter hardware were supplied in our exclusive kits for the department to assemble. Now, over a decade later, the exterior shutters still adorn this historic landmark for all to see on their way to Cape May.

Exterior shutters on the front of Cape May County Court House

Kestrel shutters on the front of The Cape May County Court House

Kestrel exterior shutters on the front of The Cape May County Court House

The shutter style used on the Cape May County Court House is our 1.7/8″ Traditional Operable Louvered design. Since these are exterior shutters they were made from solid Spanish Cedar. Frame joints are traditional pegged mortise-and-tenon joinery construction which makes the shutters easy to assemble on-site with a pair of clamps, a bottle of exterior grade glue, and a drill.

exterior shutters on the Cape May County Court House

click  here to get a  shutter quote

Here is what was used on this project:

Kestrel Exterior Shutters style 1020 – 1.7/8″ Traditional Operable Louvered D.I.Y. Shutters kits

Exterior Shutter Material: Spanish Cedar

Kestrel Exterior Shutter Hardware:

Lift-off Mortise Butt Hinges: HE1-401, Size 3″ x 3″

Shutter Dogs / Tiebacks: HE2-35, Plate Mount Cast Iron Flower

A naturally beautiful and renewable choice- Wood shutters and doors by

Kestrel Shutters & Doors, Inc.   www.DIYShutters.com   1-800-494-4321 / sales@diyshutters.com

Here is another terrific outdoor project. This customer made great use of Kestrel Exterior Shutters and Louvered Doors when designing their outdoor dining area and kitchen for their coastal home.

To allow for both air flow and privacy an Operable Plantation Louvered Door (style 6212) was used for the bathroom. All of the outer windows were fitted with awning style Bahama Shutters. Operable Plantation Louvered Bahama shutters (style 1010) were used where privacy was needed while the other windows had Plantation Fixed Louvered Bahama Shutters (style 2010) to provide constant air flow. The exterior shutters and door were custom sized and built from Spanish Cedar using traditional pegged, mortise and tenon joinery.

Beach house with operable louvered doors and operable louvered bahama shutters

Below you can see the Operable Louvered Doors and the exterior view of the Bahama Shutters.

Bermuda Shutters overlooking the beach




Here from the inside you can see how the Bahama Shutter Hardware is mounted to prop the shutter open creating an awning which is quite effective at screening the sun. We installed Bahama Shutters on the exterior of our Southerly facing office last year. The temperature inside was significantly reduced and the shutters also provided our Geranium packed window boxes just under each shutter a bit of sunscreen.

This project turned out great!

A naturally beautiful and renewable choice- Wood shutters and doors by

Kestrel Shutters & Doors, Inc.   www.DIYShutters.com   1-800-494-4321 / sales@diyshutters.com

We often think of Plantation shutters as the most gracious of window treatments, giving interior windows a true Southern charm. Really, there are many other applications well suited for this airy wide louver style. Over the years we have had the following questions asked and the answers show the true versatility of Plantation Shutters.

Can Plantation Shutters be used as Exterior Shutters?

Plantation Shutters used as Exterior ShuttersYes! Plantation Shutters are at home as exterior shutters and even interior rooms with high huimidity. Exterior Plantation Shutters must be made with wood that can withstand harsh weather and environments. This is why we hand build our exterior Plantation Shutters out of Spanish Cedar. Spanish Cedar is a durable hardwood that is highly noted for its resistance to rot, decay and insects.

Can Plantation Shutters have fixed louver blades?

Plantation Shutters used as Exterior Bahama ShuttersWhile Plantation Shutters are known for their ability to control ventilation and the sunlight coming in to your home, they can be made with non-moving louver blades. The fixed louver blades still allow indirect light to filter in as well air flow.

A good example are the awning style Bahama Shutters used on this Barnes & Noble Booksellers storefront. They wanted the look of Plantation Shutters without operable louvered blades.

Plantation Shutters used to enclose a porch

Can Plantation Shutters be used in place of trellis screening?

Yes. Louvered Shutters will screen a view and also stave off a gusty breeze. The airy appearance of Plantation Shutters will provide a perfectly cozy partition extending your living spaces outdoors.

Plantation Shutters used as Interior Doors
Can Plantation Shutters be used as interior doors?

Yes. This actually adds quite a bit of functionality as it allows you to control both ventilation and sound within parts of your home. Some good examples would be doors to cover utility rooms and doors that lead from living areas into screened in porches. When Plantation Shutters are used as interior doors we increase the proportions of the stiles and rails to add stability and look proportional.

Hopefully this has given you some insight in to the different ways Plantation Shutters can be used. So the next time you find yourself thinking about adding exterior shutters to your home or replacing some closet or interior doors, consider Plantation Shutters.

A naturally beautiful and renewable choice – Wood shutters and doors by

Kestrel Shutters & Doors, Inc. www.DIYShutters.com 1-800-494-4321 / sales@diyshutters.com

If there is any one style of shutter that is requested more than any other it is Plantation Shutters. What is surprising is that many people come to us for Plantation Shutters without even knowing what they are. Simply put, there has been so much publicity on Plantation Shutters over the years that people recognize the style as something desirable without fully knowing the style.

Custom Oak Plantation Shutters

What are Plantation Shutters?

Plantation Shutters, in their basic form, are louvered shutters with approximately 2″ to 3″ wide operable louver blades. Our Plantation Shutters feature a 2.1/2″ wide operable louver blade.

Why are they called Plantation Shutters?

While some of the old plantations in the South used operable louvered shutters with wide louvers the term is much more recent. The term “Plantation Shutters” is really just a marketing idea someone came up with along the way, most likely not long after the release of “Gone with the Wind” and our introduction to Tara, Scarlett O’Hara and Rhett Butler. Let’s face it, “Plantation Shutters” sounds so much nicer than “Shutters with wide, operable louvered blades”.

So get a price quote on Plantation Shutters but remember they are only one of many styles of interior shutters. We’ll be happy to price as many shutter styles as you would like.

A naturally beautiful and renewable choice – Wood shutters and doors by

Kestrel Shutters & Doors, Inc. www.DIYShutters.com 1-800-494-4321 / sales@diyshutters.com

Deciding on a Louver style is a combination of how the louvers will be used, the surrounding décor, and your own personal preference.

First to think about is how will the louvers be used. For both inside and outside applications knowing the purpose of the louvers is helpful to determine if you need fixed or operable louver blades- then you can decide on louver width. Some things to consider when choosing a width are if the louvers are going to be used for privacy, ventilation, and if you will be adjusting them for viewing. If you prefer to have operable louvers, both narrow and wide louver widths will provide privacy when closed. However, a larger louver blade width will have a wider viewing area since each louver is spaced further apart. Also, a wider operable louver blade will allow for greater ventilation since blades can be adjusted to a fully opened position. The opposite is true with our standard fixed louvers. In a smaller stationary louver greater ventilation is achieved because there are more open areas simply because there are more louvers.  When louvers are used to hide appliances make sure that you have the required amount of cubic feet per minute, CFM, of air flow. Keep in mind that fixed louvers do not offer complete privacy but if you like the look of louvers and do not have ventilation requirements you could choose a faux louver which will provide privacy with a louvered look.

The next consideration is the surrounding décor. Your home may be anything from Traditional to Contemporary, Cottage to Art Deco but, regardless of styling, any of these could match a narrow louver blade or a wide louver depending on room, window, and furniture proportions. Match the louver size with the scale of what you see. In my last post, “Made to fit vs. Make it fit”, I mentioned proportions and how some are more comfortable then others. For example, a large window with one shutter might not suit smaller louvers but be perfect with wider louvers for a more open and airy appearance. The same window when fitted with several smaller shutters will look proportioned correctly with a smaller louver.

Sample louvers can help you see which looks best for the application if you are just not sure. Much like taping paint color samples onto a wall when deciding on room colors and glancing at them at different times of the day to see which one you like; do the same with louver samples, you’ll know in a matter of days which one is just right for you and your home.

Did you know? Plantation Louvers may give a hint of a Southern style but it is actually just a generic marketing name that refers to an operable louver shutter with a louver blade that is between two to three inches in width. However, you will find that louver blade widths can be dependant throughout regions due to both climate and cultural differences.

Note: If you live in an old historic home then you also need to consider what the home should have. If you are lucky you will have some of the original shutters but if not check other old homes of a similar style nearby that might have their original shutters. Most likely yours had very much the same. The historic commission in your area should also be able to lend some assistance with old photographs.

Louver & Panel combination shutters:

Kestrel Shutters & Doors

A naturally beautiful and renewable choice – Wood shutters and doors by

Kestrel Shutters & Doors, Inc. www.DIYShutters.com 1-800-494-4321 / sales@diyshutters.com



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