A few years ago, we added on to our house. We ended up with a really large family room. It's on the north side of the house, but we put three windows and a pair of french doors in, so the room is usually flooded with light during the day. We don't have a lot of neighbors, so I wasn't too concerned with adding any curtains for privacy at first. There's one window that faces the road, and after awhile, I started feeling like I was sitting in a fully lit store window at night. I didn't want curtains. Mostly because I didn't want to sew them, but also because I wanted something with more personality.
We had some tongue and groove paneling left over from our laundry room project, so I came up with a plan. Something that looked like barn doors. Something like this.
I did very little actual measuring. I held up the planks to the window, and marked where I needed to cut them.
I glued the planks together,
Wiping off the excess as I went. I didn't clamp them together to dry. I just laid them flat and put paint cans all around the perimeter to keep the boards in place.
These are your best friend. I went through a lot of these while I was gluing.
I did have to measure the width of the window, deduct 1/2 inch, then divide that measurement in half. That's so I'd have two doors of equal width that would fit inside the window but still open and shut easily. For the length, I only deducted 1/4 of an inch of the total length.
I used leftover strips of lattice for the trim detail. Here's how the shutters look on the window.
(A word about the chair. I think it's ugly as sin. Way too modern looking. BUT~it's a massage chair. A very good massage chair. Function won over form in this case.)
I was surprised that they fit as well as they did, since my methods were kind of unorthodox and I just made this all up as I went. I painted the shutters with the same paint that we used on the window trim, and used plain gate hinges. I spray painted those black for contrast. The handles were very cheap cabinet door handles, also black. I liked the shape, but have thought a few times since we put them on that I should have found some bigger ones.
The inside of the shutters is trimmed out a little more plainly. The tongue and groove is a little rougher on that side, too, but I didn't sand it. I like the roughness on that side.
It wasn't really a hard project, but I did have to give myself a pep talk before I used the saw. If you want a different look for your windows, I'd recommend giving some shutters a whirl. You could use sheets of bead board paneling if you didn't want to cut individual pieces of tongue and groove, and there are so many different looks you could go for, depending on where you place the trim on the door.
One more look.
Thanks for reading!