Should I go with less panels or more?

Yasmeen 11/15/2019 1:51:12 PM Ask Yasmeen
Our “Ask Yasmeen” posts will tackle some of most frequently asked questions about plantation shutters.

Today’s question is: Should I go with less panels or more?

A plantation shutter is comprised of panels, the doors that swing open and closed, usually mounted inside a frame, or in some cases hinged directly to your window casing. Based on the width of your window opening, our website will provide you with possible options for the number of panels.
This shutter is comprised of 4 panels: 2 bi-folding to the left and 2 bi-folding to the right.

To decide whether to go with less panels or more you will want to think about how you plan on operating your shutters, and what style you are looking to achieve.

How you plan on operating your shutters

Some people mainly keep their shutters panels closed and use the slats to control the amount of light that enters the room.

If this is the case, you may want to opt for less panels in each window opening. Wider panels will allow more sunlight in and look less busy.

You can keep your shutter panels closed and control the light by opening or closing the slats.

Others will regularly swing the panel doors open to allow full light entry and visibility out the window.
If this is the case, you may want to opt for more panels in each window opening. Narrower panels can fold neatly to the sides of the window opening, without taking up too much space.

If you have an obstruction like a kitchen faucet in front of the window, or limited wall space at the sides, this is another instance where smaller, bi-folding panels will be optimal.
You can swing the shutter panels open to have complete light-entry and visibility.

Modern vs. Traditional Style

Wider shutter panels (less panels per window opening) give a nice modern look. There are cleaner lines, and less light blockage with wider panels. Use 3 ½” or 4 ½” slats and a hidden tilt rod to add to the modern design.

Narrow shutter panels (more panels per window opening) can be paired with smaller 2 ½” slats and a central tilt rod to achieve a more traditional, colonial style look.

If you are ordering solid raised panel shutters, the same considerations apply – wider panels for a more modern look, and narrower panels for a traditional look.

Modern shutters with wider panels, larger slats, and a hidden tilt rod.

Traditional shutters with narrow panels, smaller slats, and central tilt rods.

Solid raised panels need to be at least 10” wide per panel to achieve the raised panel design.

A balancing act

You don’t want to go too wide and end up with very heavy, saggy panels. You also don’t want to go too small and end up with too much solid material within the window opening or something that will look too chunky for the window size. Generally, shutter panels should range from about 10” to 30” per panel.

Our website will steer you in the right direction with the appropriate panel options for your window size. And our shutter experts will always be here to advise you on the suggested number of panels for the right balance of form and function. Check out the “Design” section of our video library or our customer gallery for inspiration. 

This post was brought to you by Yasmeen, one of The Shutter Store USA's experienced shutter consultants. Contact our team today for advice on your shutters. We're here to help!