Wooden plantation shutters make wonderful additions to any type of home. The environmental control, privacy, and security they provide to a property allows homeowners to quickly and easily make adjustments to suit their needs. Their gorgeous appearance can even increase the home’s overall market value. However, shutters haven’t always been exactly like they are today, and they’ve been around for much longer than many people think. This is the history of plantation shutters and how they’ve evolved to suit modern times.
Though they aren’t sure of the exact dates, historians believe that the history of plantation shutters first began in ancient Greece. Chiseled out of marble rather than built of wood, these window coverings were designed to be heavy and durable to withstand elemental hazards. Since harsh and violent storms off the coast often plagued this area, homes needed as much protection as they could get. At the time, windows were also just openings for ventilation, so they didn’t offer homeowners much more than a way to get light and fresh air.
It’s also interesting to mention that even the earliest shutter designs had the louvered slats we still see today. The only difference is that these slats couldn’t move and were merely carved into the marble.
As this initial design gained popularity around the Mediterranean region, builders realized they couldn’t make all these products out of marble. This led them to turn to much cheaper alternatives, such as cloth and, ultimately, wood. The more flexible materials allowed homeowners to customize their shutters, and builders were even able to make the slats moveable. These strides paved the way for Europe, and later the southern U.S. region, to refine the classic shutter into something we still use to this day.
The sleek, beautifully carved shutters we use today are products of Greek ingenuity, European style, and Southern charm. As such, when we use them on our homes, we’re celebrating a rich, cooperative history. Because of this, we can say with confidence that there’s a plantation shutter kit to go with any type of home design.