In the last post I showed you our exterior makeover. What may not be immediately obvious in the photos above is that we replaced our shutters too. I feel like it's one of those details that's not super noticeable, but that makes a big difference overall. It's all in the little custom design choices.
Honestly, I never even thought about making my own shutters until I saw someone do it on Instagram. Not only are these farmhouse shutters super easy to make, they are very inexpensive!! Way cheaper than buying new shutters! That my friends is a DIY win!
This post contains affiliate links to the products I use and recommend. Using these links pays me a small commission, but costs you no extra. To see my full disclosure policy, click here.
The shutters on our house when we started are good old traditional shutters, but they were plastic. A couple of them cracked as we took them down. They were painted a nice navy blue which I really didn't mind, but I knew with our new exterior style I had something else in mind.
The old shutters were taken down and I measured them for a template. The top ones are a bit shorter than the bottom ones. 52" vs 59" to be exact. They are basically just slightly taller than the window case opening.
I used cedar fence posts for the shutters. These boards are under $2.50 each at the hardware store, so they work perfectly. I cut them to the height I wanted and then used the scrap to cut cross pieces. All in the shutters came to less than $10 each.
Cutting took the longest, but once all the cuts were made, building the shutters was easy.
Let's talk for a minute about sealing exterior wood. Have you ever installed a new mail box post or deck only to have it turn gray over time? I learned this is called silvering. While sometimes this age and patina is exactly what we want, it was not what I had in mind here. I contacted General Finishes and asked what I could do to prevent this from happening and to keep my beautiful cedar looking like new.
An exterior top coat is not enough. On interior projects if we want to keep the color of the original wood, we can add a layer (or three) of clear topcoat and call it done. It will maintain the original finish. Not so with exterior wood! The exterior topcoat isn't able to completely protect it from silvering in the sun, so the solution is to add some stain to the topcoat. Using it as a glaze of sorts we are able to give the wood a bit of color preventing the wood to silver over time.
I tinted my topcoat with stain, just adding enough until I was happy with the color. This does change the color of the wood, but it's not so dark that it hides the beauty of the cedar.
Once the shutters were dry, the painters were nice enough to hang them back on the house (I'm not such a fan of heights).
They screwed them directly into the brick/siding with deck screws. You don't even notice the screws there unless you really look for them.
The stained shutters coordinate nicely with the garage doors and the color of the roof. It's also a great contrast to have the wood stain against the sage green siding. Farmhouse shutters for the win, don't you think!?
If you aren't needing outdoor shutters, these would also be cute for that farmhouse style we all like inside too!
Until next time, keep creating!