When it comes to window treatments I must admit I am a curtain lover. To me, they finish off a room, make it look tailored and elegant and add a prettiness and cosiness that is hard to recreate with other window furnishings. I’m big on rooms being cosy, particularly for the colder months.

Curtains don’t necessarily suit every room of every house or every budget, and they don’t have to be voluminous and puddling all over the floor, but they do have their advantages, and not just for privacy. Not forgetting they are also another opportunity to use a lots of gorgeous fabric.


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It’s very common practice in Australia, particularly in coastal areas to use plantation shutters on windows. The are practical, functional and simple, suit our climate and lifestyle, they are easy to maintain and clean, although can be quite an expensive investment. I considered them for our house, for the rooms that face the street because I wanted privacy but also to let in light. Instead of the commonly used wide blade, I wanted the narrow blade similar to those you might see at India Hicks’ place in the Caribbean. But when I had a local blind company come to quote, the woman said I shouldn’t do it because it would look “disgusting” in her exact words! Needless to say I didn’t go with them and had pretty roman blinds made instead.


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Often we assume you have to have either one or the other, curtains or shutters. But why not have both? Have you considered combining plantation shutters with curtains in your home? We often have blinds and curtains, but most of the time here shutters are used on their own.

Griffin Balsbaugh Interiors2


So, if you decide to use plantation shutters for their functional features, think about using curtains as well, for the aesthetic benefits. In fact, I think curtains are a great way to soften the look of shutters and bring a warmth, softness and cosiness to a room. They just finish it all off.

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If you are concerned about expense, and who isn’t, you don’t have to be able to draw them, just a hanging panel either side  of the window is enough to get the effect without having the cost. Don’t forget that curtains are also a wonderful way of adding visual height to a room.

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If you hang the rod as close to the cornice or ceiling as possible, well above the shutters, you will give the illusion of height in the room.

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Images from Houzz – see my Pinterest Board.

Pretty aren’t they? Would you consider combining plantation shutters with curtains?

PS A heartfelt thank you to everyone for all the wonderful warm wishes and congratulations on the new website and blog. I appreciate the comments and compliments – I’m so glad you like it!

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35 Responses to Combining plantation shutters with curtains

  1. Love the look, its so finished and tailored. Wonderful post with plenty of gorgeous examples!

  2. Patty Day says:

    In a heartbeat! They add the finish!

  3. Anastasia says:

    It finishes it off perfectly!!
    Love the new site you have done an AMAZING job!!!

  4. jshunter says:

    I adore window treatments with plantation shutters! I have them throughout my home…it definitely softens the feel of the room! Enjoy the day!

  5. Alice says:

    I never thought about combining both, but I am so glad you have shown us all the beautiful photos. I am absolutely inspired to get some more “feminine” curtains to surround the plantation shutters we have, especially in our bedrooms….I have always doubted my decision on installing plantation shutters…I think it was the only functional decorating decision I have made!! Adding some curtains could be perfect…now to decide on the fabric!!

  6. Lisa says:

    I really love the look of shutters with curtains. I agree that it softens the look and adds something to them. When we moved into our last house it had very modern venetian blinds everywhere, good quality ones but they were so stark that I had to put up curtains in the bedroom with the blinds to try and give it some lightness.

  7. Ellen Lisi says:

    Love plantation shutters and curtains add warmth to a room

  8. Mum E says:

    Thanks for providing so many inspirational images. I think this could be a good option for the windows and french doors in our house.

  9. I do combine the two…love the look!

  10. I think the combination of shutters and curtains is far more elegant than either option by themselves!

  11. Blinds says:

    blinds and curtains is the main categories of interior designing and your blog is very informative about interior designing i like your blog .

  12. This is a good combination of plantation shutters and curtains. This combination will enhance the look of our home.

  13. We have amazing style of blinds,curtains,bed sheets,pillows,sofa setting and have great designs of interior designs so we have offered many colours for bed sheets

  14. your blog is very nice i really like this

  15. this is very nice blog i really like it

  16. your post is very nice i must see and like this

  17. Awesome idea! I totally agree with you that plantation shutters are really expensive. But with proper cleaning and care, this window treatment is worth your investment.

  18. Michele says:

    Thank you for this post. We have shutters in every room of our house with only a couple exceptions. I want to add the style that curtains create without taking down the shutters. I appreciate all the examples of successful examples. 😉

  19. your post is very nice i really like this its amazing blog

  20. I do love the Curtains you have installed. The picture you have shown give a pleasing feeling to the eyes. Love the way the blinds and shutter are match according to the room colour and light.

  21. Looks beautiful, the light spreading all over the place make the rooms more beautiful and contrast.

  22. J EDWARDS says:

    I had plantation shutters installed and immediately regretted the ‘clinical’ look.
    As a result, I have added floor to ceiling voile curtains on window poles in the bedrooms.
    In the living room, floor length, striped silk, eyelet-headed curtains, on a window pole and hanging to each side of the shuttered bay window.

    Sleek and sumptuous!!

  23. Trish Thibeault says:

    I am on my 4th home and have added plantation shutters to them all. They are functional and beautiful and easy to keep clean. I too am deciding about adding panels to my bedroom windows for the softness and color however I am not loving that the panel treatment and rods are higher than the plantation shutter and window trim. I know I can add a valence, but that would be over kill. Any other suggestions?

  24. Yes, I agree, if you want and can afford to set up both curtains and shutters, then why not? There’s no debate when it comes to their function and beauty – they’re both assets to the home.

  25. Mathew Reed says:

    I never dreamed that there was such beautiful curtains, only thought in movies or large department stores.Because of your post people can bring more beauty in their homes in budget.
    Onsite Mobile Curtain Cleaners

  26. Nicole says:

    I also love the combination and am looking at installing curtains over our existing shutters in the kids bedrooms to offer darkness. My only concern is what to do on the highlight windows that also have shutters. I can imagine a short little curtain would look appropriate. What would you suggest? thank you

  27. Emma Hopper says:

    So magnificent ideas here! I love the design shown on these pictures! Thanks a lot for the incredible article! Charlton Carpet Cleaners Ltd.

  28. Karen says:

    I found the pictures to be beautiful and inspiring. I sell lots of shutters and lots of drapery. I have been thinking about combining the two and this definitely gives some great ideas. Thanks!
    Karen Marshall, Something Unique Interior Decorating, Morrisburg ON

  29. Mathew Reed says:

    I like this…I went to college and never used sheets on the windows. I like prints on sheets more than the prints I find on curtains…I think its a great idea. Love the color scheme!
    Curtains Cleaning Services

  30. Wanda says:

    Beautiful!! Any suggestions where I can find a rod with about a 6 inch projection as I am going to install draperies over a pair of sliding shutters over a patio door and with wanting to leave shutters open I need a large bracket for clearance.

  31. Jenny says:

    Beautiful examples and very helpful as we are considering plantation shutters throughout our house. Our problem is that we have diamond shaped leaded light windows and are concerned that using shutters against them will look very fussy. Comments would be much appreciated please.

  32. B. Rittinger says:

    I love the look as I have shutters and was told by friends that I should not have them there, Glad it is okay and that I am not wrong,. I like the variety you have, I would love to get an idea of a neutral paint colour to paint our house as we have so many different cans of paint and would love to have one colour that would suit all décor and would be ideal colour for future resale and would not be dated – 2 or 3 years down the road, Interior of house.——– Great Website ———
    Ontario, Canada

    • Melinda says:

      Hi Brenda,

      There are lots of Benjamin Moore colours that are suitable for that kind of thing, the HC colours are classic and neutral. I wish we could get them here.

  33. Janette says:

    This is exactly what I was considering for my living room, wonderful to see so many examples of curtains with shutters! Thank you

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