If you love – and want to keep – your curtains, but hanker after shutters, too, the good news is they’re a perfect match. Here’s how to get your window dressings just right.
Why combine curtains and shutters?
If you ask us, they’re a match made in heaven. Curtains on their own can leave a window looking unfinished, and fitting blinds to complement them isn’t a great solution (blinds block light from the upper half of the window and only improve privacy when they’re pulled down).
Add shutters to a window with curtains, though, and you’ll get all the benefits of shutters (light control, tons of privacy, an insulated window and plenty of kerb appeal), plus you’ll achieve a layered look that makes your rooms feel interior-designed.
What’s more, the streamlined angles of the shutters create a striking contrast to the soft curves of the curtain fabric, adding both texture and interest to the space.
Which shutter style to choose?
Start by having a good think about why you want to have shutters fitted. Is it to improve privacy in a room that is overlooked? For energy efficiency? To block out chilly draughts, street lights or noise? Or is it for purely aesthetic reasons?
Café-style shutters are the ideal choice if privacy is an issue, and they’ll leave the upper half of your windows free, allowing in maximum daylight. Full-height or tier-on-tier shutters are a great solution for blocking out noise, the cold and invasive streetlights. Solid shutters are the perfect choice for anyone who wants a pitch-black bedroom at night.
All these shutter styles will suit both contemporary and traditional rooms, but bear in mind that wider louvres and hidden tilt rods create a more modern appeal and suit larger windows, while period-style rooms and smaller windows look better with narrower louvres and tilt rods on show.
Remember, too, that having curtains either side of your shutters means it’s unlikely you’ll open the panels and are more likely to rely on tilting the louvres to let in light.
Which shutter finish to pick?
Wood? Classic white? A colour-matched shutter finish? Start by considering whether you want your shutter material to contrast with that of the curtains or to complement it. Generally, a contrasting scheme will make the window look busier – and possibly smaller as a result. A one-colour approach will enhance its proportions and look more streamlined.
Matching wooden shutters with curtains
Wood brings added warmth and texture to the area around the window, and works brilliantly with other wood finishes within the same room, ideal if you want a relaxed, welcoming look. For a Scandi appeal, attempt to match pale woods in the room with our Classic Wood finish; for a more traditional or minimal scheme, choose our Premium Teak Wood finish. All wood finishes work well with curtains in natural materials, such as linen.
Choosing white shutters to complement curtains
For a natural or minimalist scheme, classic white shutters are a good choice – and easy to redecorate around in future. White shutters look wonderful paired with white curtains – but they are also the perfect match for curtains in neutral and bold shades. Linen curtains are a good match for white shutters, but they also suit sheer voile, silk, cotton and damask.
Picking a bold shutter colour to suit your curtains
Considering colour-matching your shutters to other colours in the room? Picking an accent shade from a patterned curtain fabric for your shutter colour – or matching it exactly to the colour of your plain curtains will give the room a co-ordinated feel, and will make your window look elegant. Or, you could choose a colour for your shutters that’s picked out by your wallpaper’s design, or even by your room’s upholstery. Greys, like white and wood, tend to suit natural materials, such as linen. Shutters in brighter colours work well with fabrics with a sheen, such as velvet, silk and satin.