Plantation shutters

Plantation Shutters; What to Know Before you Buy

What are Plantation Shutters?

Shutters with fixed louvres originated in Ancient Greece. Early Greek stone masons cut the shutters out of marble (marble was a cheaper material than glass). 

The popularity of shutters grew and spread throughout the Mediterranean. Over time, the marble louvres were replaced with adjustable wooden louvres to better control air flow and light.

Planttion shutters for arched windows
Plantation shutters for arched windows and doors

What do Plantation Shutters look like?

Often white in colour with horizontal louvres that sit inside a frame, they can be used for window and door openings. The frame is mounted and operated via hinges, a sliding track or bi-folds.

The louvres can be tilted up and down to control the amount of light, heat and air entering the room. Their simple, straight lines reflect their ease of use and clever design. They look stylish when seen from outside the property as well inside.

Modern shutters are made from durable, easy clean polymer, aluminium or timber. They are reminiscent of a tropical lifestyle. They suit beach properties in particular, instilling a relaxed sophistication that’s been key to their continuing popularity.

Plantation shutters close up
White plantation shutters

Why are they called Plantation Shutters?

The Spanish introduced shutters to the American South when they colonised the region in 1492. They quickly became popular in the grand plantation homes being built at the time. Thus ‘plantation’ was added to the name.

Are shutters good for bedrooms?

Yes, bedroom plantation shutters provide complete privacy. They also give you control over the amount of light entering, while still allowing air flow through open windows.

Another benefit; because polymer shutters have a silky-smooth surface, they’re ideal for dust mite allergy sufferers. That’s because they don’t harbour dust the way bedding, fabrics and textures can. But if you like the plush softness of fabric, consider combining shutters and curtains – they can work well together – choosing a man-made fabric can help reduce allergens.

White plantation shutters for a bedroom window
Plantation shutters in a bedroom

Do Plantation Shutters block out light?

Yes, they are an excellent choice for controlling and blocking light. Why? Because, the fully adjustable louvres give you full control over the amount of light entering the space. When the louvres are fully closed they eliminate almost all the light.

Close up of white plantation shutter slats
Polymer plantation shutter louvres

PVC Plantation Shutters

Our custom plantation shutters are very similar in appearance to PVC shutters, but they’re quite different. Ours are made from eco-friendly polymer, strengthened by an aluminium core. Polymer has several advantages over PVC. For example it can withstand high temperatures and always maintains it’s shape. The beauty of polymer is that water runs off the surface and moisture cannot penetrate.

That means these shutters can be installed anywhere, including wet areas. And the benefit of that is you can create a uniform look that flows throughout your home. That uniformity is visible from outside as well as inside, and can be great for small homes. Why? Because it has the effect of making the home look bigger.

Dust and debris is also less likely to settle on polymer shutters because the surfaces are silky smooth. And when the shutters do need cleaning, dust and dirt slides off easily.

It is important though, to check the quality of the materials used. Ashwood’s shutters have a 20 year warranty. They’re made from long lasting, eco-friendly high-grade polymer with an aluminium core.

Close up of shutter slats showing adjustment mechanism
Custom made white bi-fold plantation shutters
Bifold plantation shutters

Do Plantation Shutters insulate against heat and cold?

White reflects heat, keeping the interior cooler, while black and dark colours absorb heat, warming the interior.

The standard colour for polymer shutters is white (custom shutters are available in various shades of white, allowing for close-matching with your colour scheme). If you want to insulate against heat and cold, choose polymer rather than timber.

Custom made plantation shutters bedroom windows
Floor to ceiling plantation shutters

Are PVC Plantation Shutters toxic?

As long as they’re made with high-grade polymer (which our shutters are), PVC shutters are not toxic and will not emit harmful toxins at any time, even when exposed to the sun and heat.

Are plantation shutters good for security?
Because they provide privacy when the slats are closed, your property can be more secure. For outdoors, locks can be fitted to the shutters to secure outdoor spaces.

How to choose Plantation Shutters


  • the style of your property and the effect you want to achieve

  • the purpose of the shutters and how they are best used

  • the need to maintain a view, or gain privacy

  • the need for shade or insulation

  • accessibility for cleaning and maintenance

  • the type of opening and therefore how the shutters should be fitted,

 and more! Talk to us

Still looking for information and inspiration? Visit your local showroom (by appointment) or call us in Melbourne or Brisbane

Custom made plantation shutters
Plantation shutters viewed from outside
White custom plantation shutters fitted to bedroom french windows
Hinged, custom-made plantation shutters

What is the best material for Plantation Shutters?

This depends on where the shutters are installed and how they’re used. It’s hard to beat polymer for interior plantation shutters because of its durability and beautiful crisp and clean look. And given their long lifespan our polymer offer excellent value for money.

The polymer we use to make our shutters can certainly withstand the harsh Australian climate, and for many years. They are covered by our 20 year warranty.

Custom shutters outdoors for a barbeque area
Outdoor plantation shutters

Outdoor Plantation Shutters
Outdoors, powder-coated aluminium shutters are a good choice because they’re durable, can withstand the harsh Australian climate and will last in good condition for many years. 

Are Plantation Shutters waterproof?

Yes, outdoor shutters are waterproof when the louvres are closed. Although rain and water spray can pass between the shutter louvres when not fully closed, aluminium shutters can be used to provide some protection. They can also filter wind and reduce heat transfer.

Custom made brown plantation shutters for a lounge

Indoor Plantation Shutters
Choose between various types of timber and polymer for interior use. Timber shutters are a more expensive option with an attractive natural appearance. A variety of timbers are used giving you a choice of colours and finishes. But they’re not suitable for wet areas like bathrooms and laundry rooms. Instead, polymer shutters can be used. Polymer is ideal because it’s waterproof and can withstand heat, steam and moisture.

Allergy-resistant window coverings - do Plantation Shutters fit the bill?

Eco-friendly polymer is a perfect material choice for sufferers of dust and pollen allergies, for a few reasons:

  • The shutter surface is smooth and impenetrable.
  • Any dust that does accumulate can be easily removed with a vacuum cleaner using a brush attachment, or with a damp cloth.
  • No cleaning products or chemicals are needed.

Are Plantation Shutters worth it?

Yes, when you consider they can last for 20 years, or more, they are definitely worth it. Plus our shutters are less expensive than you might think. And they’re perfect for all the reasons they have long been popular:

  • controlling air and light
  • maintaining privacy
  • protecting furnishings from sun
  • giving your home a crisp, clean, sophisticated look, inside and out.

Shutters are both practical and elegant. They’ve been popular for centuries. That popularity is unlikely to wane, given that modern shutters are so easy to use and keep clean. Plus, good quality shutters are made using materials that resist water, sun, heat and cold. And the modern, quality paints and coatings don’t discolour, maintaining their fresh, new look for decades.

Plantation shutters in a bathroom
Hinged plantation window shutters in a bathroom
Custom made plantation shutters fitted in a bathroom
Polymer plantation shutters in a bathroom
Brown custom made plantation shutters
Plantation shutters can be opened and shut remotely with a motorised system

If you’re interested in installing shutters for your home, we’d love to help. Our high-quality polymer shutters are custom designed and made to suit your windows and doors, and your lifestyle.

We’ll advise you about the right configuration to suit the opening and your lifestyle. Remember all our shutters (polymer, aluminum and timber) are covered by a 20 year warranty.

We’d love help, using our experience and knowledge to advise you through the process of choosing shutters. We can also help you combine your shutters with other window coverings for a really special look.

Plantation Shutters 20 Year Product & Installation Warranty

Our 20 year Plantation Shutters warranty is comprehensive, it covers both your product and installation and indicates the quality of our product. There are only a few exclusions:

  • Goods ordered and supplied outside of the standard specifications.
  • Alterations not carried out by Ashwood Blinds or contractors of Ashwood Blinds.
  • Incorrect installation if not carried out by Ashwood Blinds or contractors of Ashwood Blinds.
  • Movement of the structure in which the product is installed or to which it is attached.

Note that if there are any specific warranty limitations relating to your particular installation, we will discuss those with you at the time of quoting.

For more information, call us on 03 9888 272

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