A quick history of window shutters

Internal shutters for windows have grown at a rapid speed with a wide variety in the past few years. In fact, In fact, they have grown to be so in-demand that The Times has declared them ‘Britain’s window dressing of choice.’ Read more about why plantation shutters for windows are Britain’s window dressing of choice.

When sales are increasing at a pace of 35% annually and showing no sign of abating, it’s safe to say that this is a trend that isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Believe it or not however, window shutters have actually been around for a very long time and they have a fascinating history too.

A Greek beginning

Shutters actually made their debut in Ancient Greece where they were originally made from marble. This made them extremely durable, however, it could be quite challenging to work with those that it’s not appealing to the public.

Although this made them incredibly strong and durable, they were very difficult to work with so naturally, this didn’t appeal to the masses. But as time went on, wood was utilised to enhance the appearance and usefulness of shutters, which led to a rise in their popularity.shutterstock_114673246

Once the idea of shutters reached the Mediterranean, their form really started to change and they started to resemble what we typically see today. Wood completely overtook marble and adjustable louvres were invented to control the amount of light and air entering a room.

Shutters are older than glass windows

Did you know that wooden shutters have been around even longer than glass windows? Popularised during the Tudor period, shutters were originally made from thick wooden boards and were used to cover any holes in the wall which led to the outside world.

Much like our windows today, they were used to block out bright sunlight, keep out the cold air and keep thieves at bay. Even when glass windows were introduced, it was too much of an expensive luxury for the average person so most people had a half-glass, half-shutter arrangement.

More than just a window dressing

It wasn’t until the 16th century that people started to use window shutters for decorative purposes as well as practical ones. At this time, it started to become increasingly common to see ornamental woodwork being used for decorative purposes in homes across the world.

Once we reach the Georgian period, and later, the Victorian period, the walls in houses were no longer as thick as they used to be thanks to the introduction of wood and brick in construction. With the thinner walls came thinner window recesses, enabling shutters to be used externally as well as internally which had been the traditional method.shutterstock_694247332

A worldwide phenomenon

As the Americas became colonised, it wasn’t long before window shutters became a must-have over there too. This style was particularly popular in the southern states, where there was the integration of shutters into large plantation manors. And that’s how plantation shutters got their name.

Modern shutters

Nowadays, the range of window shutters which are available to us has expanded greatly. From solid, plantation and waterproof shutters to all sorts of shapes and styles including café, full height, tier on tier, elongated, circle and triangle, these window dressings are well and truly embraced by home-owners all over the world.

See why window shutters have stuck around so long, and book a free home survey to find out more.

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