Plantation shutter for full view entry door

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Project by Chauffeur posted 01-04-2017 01:47 AM 2171 views 2 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Built my first plantation shutter over the Christmas holidays.

Custom designed for the exterior door built last summer. Frame is rift cut white oak to match the door. The louvers are QS white oak to add a bit of contrast. It’s attached to door with a hidden french cleat (at the top) and hidden magnetic latches at the bottom.

With 3 rails and 31 louvers, the assembly was a bit of a challenge. I did discover a new use for painters tape.

Spousal unit expectations have been met. That may not be a good thing…

-- Dave, Texas

4 comments so far

View AandCstyle's profile


3288 posts in 3169 days

#1 posted 01-04-2017 10:36 PM

Dave, this is a great looking project. I hope you had an extra pair of hands for the assembly; I have enough trouble when doing just 9 louvers. :)

-- Art

View Chauffeur's profile


38 posts in 2803 days

#2 posted 01-05-2017 02:29 PM


It was assembled without any assistance. There’s probably a better way, but here’s what worked for me:

  1. Glue the rails to the left style. Let it dry.
  2. Attach control arm to the louvers.
  3. Insert louvers and “dry assemble” the right style.
  4. With the louvers open, run a piece of painters tape across the louver edges (Will need to elevate the frame for louver clearance, I used some 3/4” blocks).
  5. Remove right style.
  6. Commence glue up, applying tension to one of the end rails. Work you way through the louvers and rails increasing the tension as necessary.

This process works fine of you are building one of two of these. As it looks like I’ll be making a bunch, I’ll build an assembly jig to position the louvers for assembly (thereby eliminating steps 3 – 5).

-- Dave, Texas

View splintergroup's profile


4120 posts in 2134 days

#3 posted 01-05-2017 03:09 PM

The tape is an excellent idea! Could have used that on a number of occasions.

I thought it was a fluke that Art is still sane after doing his house with shutters, now I see two survivors, excellent!

View Chauffeur's profile


38 posts in 2803 days

#4 posted 01-05-2017 06:42 PM

I’m not a survivor yet.

If I limit myself to the first floor of our home, I’ve got 25 more shutters to build. Nine of the windows are relatively small (30”W x 30”L); the other 16 have similar widths, but are very tall (83” to 94”).

The good news is that only 4 of the tall ones will be made with the white oak combination. All the rest will be painted poplar or basswood.

My go forward plans are to build the white oak ones and then re-evaluate how far I go with this.

-- Dave, Texas

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