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Bay windows flood any space with natural light and increase the floor space, an advantage welcomed by many homeowners. You will find them in modern and period homes allowing the owners to enjoy an unobstructed view of the outside. As magnificent as the windows are, they present a problem when it’s time to dressing them.
On the one hand, their size means more light and ventilation for your space, but the same size also limits the window coverings that may suit bay windows. For instance, curtains will be too bulky and may require special rails. But don’t worry because shutters for bay windows provide an excellent and stylish solution.
Shutters are a timeless window-dressing style that has withstood the test of time. Window dressing trends come and go, but they have remained stylish and functional over time. They are durable, affordable, and come in various materials and colours, making it easy for you to choose shutters for your bay windows.
Regardless of the style of bay windows in your home, there is a shutter that will suit them and complement your interior décor. So, whether you have a box, bow, or circle bay window, adding the traditional elegance and charm they are known for, this guide is for you.
We will cover the various styles of shutters for bay windows, their pros and cons and everything else you need to know about them. But first, we start with the benefits.
Bay windows usually feature at the front of the house. If your property faces the street, you will want to prevent prying eyes from accessing your home. Installing shutters is a sure way to maintain the privacy of your home. They feature louvres that can be angled to allow light in but block passersby from seeing inside your home.
Bay window design allows as much light as possible into a room. But sometimes, the direct glare may make a room very uncomfortable, presenting the need for light control. Shutters for bay windows have louvres that allow light to various degrees depending on how they are angled. With this function, you can also direct light to where you need it.
Unlike curtains that may be heavy to push out of the way or blinds that some people find difficult to operate at times, shutters are easy and convenient. Most people, including the elderly, find shutters simple enough as the louvres do not need to be angled every time but only when there is a need. They are also low maintenance, and cleaning them compared to curtains is easy.
Shutters provide excellent insulation for your home. During hot summertime, they ventilate the room and also keep the direct rays away. Similarly, during the cold month’s shutters on your bay windows keep the draft out of the house. The insulation is a plus to your wallet as you save on power bills.
Bay windows are a striking feature of any property. By dressing these windows in style, you add to the curb appeal and the resale value. Shutters are a classic that never seems to go out of fashion, and they complement almost all interior décor styles. If you wish for an upscale look for an affordable price, shutters are a fantastic option.
When buying shutters for your bay windows, be assured they last a long time, and one might even dare to say a lifetime. Curtains degrade over time, and they may even tear. At the same time, the blinds operating mechanism is fragile and breaks down after a period of use. In contrast, shutters guarantee many long years, but only if you take care of them.
Choosing to buy shutters for your bay windows is especially prudent if you or any household member suffer from allergies. The reason being, shutters do not attract allergens, unlike curtains that harbour dust and pet allergens. Finally, closing your shutters helps cancel out the noise, which is helpful if you live in a noisy environment.
Once you decide to install shutters on your bay windows, you have to ask yourself a few questions. For instance, how do you want the shutters to look inside and outside the house? Are you going to open the shutters frequently, or will you be opening the window while the shutters remain closed for privacy, among others? To help you answer some of these questions, here are a few factors that will affect your choice.
It depends mostly on personal preference. There are several styles to choose from: full height style, cafe style, and tier-on-tier style are most suitable for bay windows, though other types are available. Your choice depends on what function you want your shutter to serve. If your blinds are more for privacy, then full height is the way to go, but tier-on-tier is a better option if you want privacy and lots of light in the room.
Also, is there room to open the shutters if you want to open them? You wish to open your shutters, but furniture placement blocks the shutters from opening.
The price of the shutters depends on several factors, such as the materials used to make them and installation costs. If you do not have the budget for the more expensive designer shutters, there are ways of cutting costs. For instance, some materials, such as faux wood, still give you quality shutters but at lower prices. As you can see, you don’t have to compromise on quality.
The choice of materials primarily comes down to your budget. Premium quality does not come cheap, and you will have to dig deeper into your pockets. But the good thing with shutters is that the price range is wide. Also, some materials such as wood, while looking very stately, may not be suitable for moisture-prone areas such as bathrooms and kitchens. Vinyl comes highly recommended for such rooms though you may end up with a cheap-looking shutter.
Shutters are available in various colours, from neutrals such as white to bolder and more vivid colours. Although white is trendy among many homeowners, others such as browns and greys are also quite popular. Neutral colours tend to resonate with more people because it is easier to incorporate them in almost all design themes.
This is not to say you cannot go bold and match your shutters to the colours of your furniture for a harmonised look. Or have them prepainted the same colour as your walls for a seamless look especially when they are closed.
Traditionally shutters were primarily made of wood but with advancements in technology more synthetic materials are available. Synthetic and metallic shutters are suited for high moisture areas, unlike natural wood.
Natural wood makes a room feel warm and has an authentic look that is lacking in synthetic materials. Though pricey, it is durable and comes in many finishes, including stained and painted to whichever colour you wish. Wood shutters can fit any window shape.
Most of the popular wood used include pine, mahogany, cypress, red cedar, and basswood. While natural wood gives a degree of class to any space, unfortunately, it is not suitable for high moisture areas.
It is durable and lightweight and the cheapest amongst all the materials. If you wish to have shutters for bay windows but on a tight budget, vinyl is your best bet. They have a cheap look to them and fade over time due to exposure to direct sunlight. Unlike wood, painting vinyl shutters do little to improve their appearance.
Are you looking for the classic wood look, but you are on a budget? Faux wood is your solution as it gives all the wood finishes but at a lower price than natural wood. More people opt for faux wood as an eco-friendly alternative to natural wood, becoming more expensive. You can paint faux wood in acrylic or latex paint.
It is lightweight, durable, weather-resistant, and easy to install. Aluminium shutters can be customised to fit any window shape. Most manufacturers are looking towards this metal as an alternative to wood for most modern home accessories. It does not warp, bend or crack compared to wood.
The three types of shutters that are suitable for bay windows are full-height shutters, tier-on-tier shutters, and cafe-style shutters. Solid panel shutters are best suited for bathrooms and track of sliding panel shutters are the best for french doors.
As the name suggests, these are single panels that cover the full height of your window. Large tall windows such as bay windows look particularly good when dressed in full height shutters. They create a simple yet exquisitely elegant look for your bay windows.
A support rail is often included in the middle of the shutter, which allows the top and bottom half of the shutter’s louvres to operate independently. As such, you can open the louvres at the top to allow light in while the bottom half remains closed.
They are excellent at light control and privacy while providing substantial noise cancellation.
It comprises top and bottom panels that operate independently of one another. You can have the bottom close and the top open. Tier on tier shutters gives excellent control over light and privacy control. When closed, they also offer noise cancellation. When you wish to enjoy the view from your bay window but still need privacy, they are an excellent choice.
They cover only the bottom half of the window. Cafe-style windows are great at providing privacy in an urban setting while letting the room flood with natural light. They are relatively cheap compared to the others and are best when styled with other window dressings such as curtains and roman blinds. Cafe-style shutters offer less protection against the elements such as cold draughts; most people consider them as decorative pieces.
Louvres come in 43mm, 63mm, 76mm, 89mm, and 114mm widths. Experts refer to 89mm and 114mm as the wide louvres, and it’s important to note they allow more light while giving a more modern contemporary look. But if privacy is of significant concern, the smaller louvres are more suitable.
Small spaces and windows are best dressed in wide slats unless privacy is essential. Bay windows can benefit from the smaller louvres, but you can still opt for the wide louvres to maximise the light. If your wooden floor comprises wide slats, it makes sense to choose wide slats for your shutters to match the floor.
Installing shutters requires some essential skills that many people may not possess. But if you do choose to install the shutters yourself, ensure the measurements are accurate, as any slight miscalculation will lead to gaps on your shutters.
In contrast, professional installation guarantees precise measurements by experts and advice on the style and materials that best suit your situation. Most of them have years of experience in designing and installing shutters services. They also offer advice on all things shutters. Most professionals can be found online and will provide samples to help you make a decision.
Bay windows are a striking feature on any property from the outside and inside of the home. When shutters are used to dress them, they result in an elegant and stylish look for your bay windows. You can choose between the three types of shutters most suitable for bay windows.
Full height shutters are the best if your main focus is privacy but if you don’t want to compromise on light then cafe-style and tier-on-tier will be excellent choices. But remember cafe style shutters are a more decorative choice.
Shutters come in various materials and depending on your budget you can choose among natural wood, aluminium and other synthetic materials such as faux wood. We recommend you have a professional install your shutters for a perfect fit.