Weekend Projects

D.I.Y Wood Shutters

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Today, I am expanding the possibilities and broadening the horizons of your preconceived notions about…wait for it… window treatments!  So my house is a split level. Very interesting, but slightly challenging layout to design.  When we moved in, the previous owners kindly left all their gaudy, outdated curtains at no extra charge (including a nice layer of dust, I might add)  for just about every window in the house.  When I began prepping our lower level walls for painting, I removed the large valance curtains that adorned our small windows to reveal an incredible surprise.  Once the curtains were down, it was as if a brand new, large window emerged. Suddenly, all this natural light came in (which is hard to accomplish in this kind of space).

I knew once I took the curtains down, I could not put up anything that remotely resembled what was there before, because it seemed that would be too much of a disservice to the sun’s rays shining into the room.  But I debated for some time as to what my solution would be for these windows.  I was familiar and in love with the concept of sliding barn doors and have even seen a few versions of sliding window shutters.  In this particular space, however, I did not have the room to install a sliding system, but I did have space for shutters. So I decided to put up stationary wood shutters instead.  The shutters add a beautiful, rustic charm that the room lacked before. And not only was the D.I.Y project easy, it’s incredibly affordable!

The inspiration of my template for the shutters came from pre-made shutters I found at Home Depot.  But they were asking $55 for a set of two. Not bad, you might say. But being the humble homemaker, I knew I could do better.  What if I told you I made my shutters for $10 a piece? Sounds even better, right?  And with a total time investment of 2 hours, this project may even fit into one of your  busier weekends.

Here’s how I did it:

  1. Buy a slab of natural wood.  The length may vary, depending on the size of your window, so be sure to measure first!  You want something with some wood grain in it. It needs to be relatively thin, comparing to the thickness of your exterior household shutters.  The dimensions for my shutters are as follows:
    1. Length: 2 ft. 11 in.
    2. Width: 11 1/4 in.
    3. Thickness: 3/4 in
  2.  For the three detailed pieces on the shutters, I found two longer pieces of wood that were about 8 ft. in length, but  the same thickness as the shutters (3/4 in.).  The width of the wood was slightly less than 2 1/2 in.  I had these long pieces of wood cut to 11 1/4 in. lengthwise because this is the width of my slab piece. (someone from Home Depot or your local hardware store can measure and cut the wood for you).
  3. Pick a stain. I chose a darker stain, but you can select whatever you think is best to compliment your existing furniture and home décor.  Also select a good staining brush, sand paper and wood glue.
  4. Measure the large slab of wood. Measure and find the middle and mark with a pencil. Wood glue a smaller piece to that pencil mark. (My middle measurement was 18 1/4 in. from the top).
  5. Measure the two end pieces at 3 in. away from the top and bottom, respectively. ( make sure there is an equal distance between the top-middle piece and the middle-bottom piece). Again, these measurements may vary depending on the size of your shutters, so place them accordingly to what looks appropriate for the size of your shutter. Wood glue the end pieces. Allow to dry for 30 minutes.
  6. Lightly sand the wood to remove rough or split edges, as the smaller cuts of wood may have some splitting.
  7. Stir the stain well with a wood stick.  Stain along the grain of the wood, making sure you cover all areas. You can stain the back, but I opted out of that option since it will be against the wall and not seen. Repeat coats, if necessary. Allow 45 minutes to completely dry.
  8. Since I am not a fan of hammering nails and creating holes in my walls, I chose to use heavy duty command strips. I bought a set of strips that can support 12 lbs.. I placed one towards the top and one towards the bottom of the backs of the  shutters. Mount right beside the window at desired placement. Viola!

This was such an easy project that reaped extraordinary results! It’s the perfect solution for windows that you don’t want covered or just simply want to stand out! Hope you have fun and enjoy your weekend project!

God’s Blessings,

The Humble Homemaker

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