Plantation Shutters vs. Shades: Which Is Better?
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Plantation Shutters vs. Shades: Which Is Better?

If you're looking for window treatments that are both elegant and versatile, plantation shutters may be the perfect choice. Shutters can be customized to match your home's color scheme and style, as well as give protection from UV rays and noise pollution. Plantation shutters are also energy efficient, which will help lower your monthly utility bills.

On the other hand, if you want a more traditional style, shades could work better for you. Shades can be customized in hundreds of colors, patterns and textures. And they give off a friendly, welcoming glow in certain lighting conditions. With so many choices available today it's hard to choose just one window treatment!

Over the years, Louver Shop of Pittsburgh has assisted many homeowners with choosing and customizing window treatments. With your vision and our expertise, we're sure to find a solution together. We'll start with a free, in-home consultation where you can check out samples up close, from the convenience of your living room. Then your local design consultant will be with you each step of the way, from your free quote to professional installation.

For now, let's review plantation shutters vs. shades so you can find out more about the unique features of these window treatments.

What Are Plantation Shutters?

Plantation shutters are considered hard window treatments, because they're made from either wood or faux wood. They're usually white but are also available in a variety of stains.

Plantation shutters have broad louvers that are controlled by a tilt bar, enabling you to customize the amount of light in your rooms. Unlike other window treatments, shutters are permanently mounted to the window frame.

What's the Difference Between Blinds and Plantation Shutters?

The terms plantation blinds and plantation shutters are frequently used interchangeably when talking about window coverings. But window blinds and plantation shutters have some big differences. Let's go over them so you can find the ideal style for your home.

Budget and Personal Style

Both are a beautiful window treatment. But what fits best in your home is based on your personal preference, interior design, existing décor and budget. Our custom-made plantation shutters are a premium product made to last a lifetime, while blinds can accommodate a broader range of budgets. Horizontal blinds are also available in a few other materials, including wood, faux wood and aluminum.

Louver Thickness

Both use vertical slats. But plantation shutters have much wider and thicker louvers than horizontal blinds. These widths vary from 2 1/2" to 4 1/2" and can be customized based on the design you choose.

Pull Cord vs. Tilt Bar

Blinds are usually adjusted with a pull cord, while plantation shutters use a tilt bar that allows you to let in varying levels of natural light. This makes window shutters a safer option for homes with small children or pets, since they don't use dangling, long cords that can be a safety hazard.

Window Size and Shape

Plantation shutters are best for a broad variety of window sizes and shapes, from large windows to specialty shapes. Real wood shutters are recommended for the biggest windows, because they're lightweight.

Light Control and Room Darkening

Plantation shutters provide the greatest light control. Unlike blinds, they can offer a full room-darkening effect. They're able to supply superior light blockage and your desired level of natural light since they're installed within the window frame.

While horizontal blinds offer some relief from the heat, window shutters provide the best energy efficiency. This is true whether you choose a real wood or faux wood style. They help keep you more comfortable by stopping energy loss at the window, where your home loses the most air. This may even help decrease your energy bill!

What Are Shades?

Shades are soft window treatments manufactured from fabric, vinyl or woven wood. Our designer shades from Hunter Douglas come in various colors and styles, including sheer shades, honeycomb shades, Roman shades and roller and solar shades. Certain shades are on a continuous roll while others fold into neat pleats when brought up.

Roller shades have the biggest selection of fabric to select from, including sheer fabric allowing more light coming through but less privacy. Roman shades deliver a more elegant look, while honeycomb and roller and solar shades provide the most energy efficiency.

Which Window Treatments Are Right for My Home?

This answer depends on a number of factors, including your budget and home décor style. Here are a couple of points to consider that will help you narrow down the selection process.

Most Customizable

Winner: Tie

With Louver Shop of Pittsburgh, your plantation shutters will be just like you picture them. You’ll have your choice of wood or faux wood, plus louver dimensions, color and more.

Similar to our premium shutters, our Hunter Douglas shades are made just for your home. When you partner with Louver Shop of Pittsburgh you’ll have access to all the latest fabrics, colors and patterns you need to elevate your home. You can view samples of our innovative shades from the comfort of your sofa during your free, in-home consultation.

Smart Home Automation

Winner: Shades

Whether your shades are on large windows, hard-to-reach windows or you just don’t like the look of dangling cords, PowerView® makes it even easier to move your shades. You’ll be able to adjust your window treatments with a touch of your smartphone or with a voice command via Amazon Alexa, Siri® on your Apple device or Google Assistant.

Convenience

Winner: Plantation Shutters

You’re restricted with how much you can adjust your shades. With plantation shutters, you’ll be able to personalize how much natural light comes through, from fully open to full blackout.

Energy Efficiency

Winner: Plantation Shutters

Plantation shutters are one of the best energy-efficient window treatments. Our LouverWood® shutters are made from an exclusive polymer that insulates up to three times better than wood. This material stops heat, keeps you comfier and may even help lower your energy bills.

A near second for energy efficiency is honeycomb shades. These shades have geometric cavities that capture air at the windows. The result is less heat transfer, improved comfort and potentially cheaper heating and cooling bills.

Most Current

Tie

You might not consider plantation shutters as a modern window treatment, because they’ve been around for so long. Available in contemporary neutrals like white, gray and brown, plantation shutters complement a wide variety of home styles.

Designer Roller Shades or Designer Screen Shades are a great choice for minimalist homes. The Designer Roller is available in more than 400 fabrics, so you’re sure to find an option that fits your décor. Designer Screen is perfect for rooms with intense sunlight, as these shades block at least 75% of damaging UV rays when closed.

Light Filtering

Winner: Shades

Want to transform harsh sunlight into a cozy, pleasant glow? Look no further than sheer shades. You can personalize the opacity of the fabric then enjoy the full convenience of blinds, which hover between the shades. Sheer shades are available in horizontal and vertical styles so you can create a united look across your home.

Blackout Capabilities

: Winner: Tie

Plantation shutters are prized for their blackout capabilities. Ours are able to provide excellent light control because they’re custom made for your windows and installed within the frame.

Some Hunter Douglas shades are available with a built-in, room-darkening panel. That way, you can enjoy light filtering or blackout capability when you want it.

UV Defense

Winner: Shades

With Designer Screen Shades, you’ll be able to see your view while protecting your furniture, floorings and belongings from harmful sunlight. When down, these solar roller shades keep out 75% of UV light.

Start Designing Your Custom Window Treatments Today

Customizing window treatments for your home shouldn’t feel stressful. It should be an enjoyable and even exciting experience. You’ll have plenty of styles and fabrics to look at, but you’ll have expert assistance from your local Louver Shop of Pittsburgh design consultant. We’ll be there to help, from your free, no-pressure quote to professional installation. Ready to get started? Give us a ring at 888-428-1415 to schedule your consultation now.

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