Plantation Shutters vs. Shades: Which Is Better?
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Plantation Shutters vs. Shades: Which Is Better?

If you're searching for window treatments that are both elegant and convenient, plantation shutters may be the perfect choice. Shutters can be customized to match your home's color scheme and decor, as well as provide protection from UV rays and noise pollution. Plantation shutters are also energy efficient, which will help reduce your monthly utility bills.

Having said that, if you want a more traditional look, shades could be better for you. Shades can be custom made in hundreds of colors, patterns and textures. And they give off a friendly, inviting glow in certain lighting conditions. With so many choices available now it's difficult to decide on just one window treatment!

Through the years, Louver Shop of Louisiana has assisted many homeowners with choosing and customizing window treatments. With your vision and our expertise, we're sure to discover a solution together. We'll begin with a free, in-home consultation where you can check out samples up close, from the convenience of your living room. Then your local design consultant will be with you each step of the way, from your free quote to professional installation.

For now, let's review plantation shutters vs. shades so you can find out more about the distinct features of these window treatments.

What Are Plantation Shutters?

Plantation shutters are considered hard window treatments, since they're manufactured from either wood or faux wood. They're usually white but are also available in a collection of stains.

Plantation shutters have broad louvers that are controlled by a tilt bar, enabling you to customize the amount of light in your rooms. Unlike other window treatments, shutters are permanently mounted to the window frame.

What's the Difference Between Blinds and Plantation Shutters?

The terms plantation blinds and plantation shutters are frequently used interchangeably when referring to window coverings. But window blinds and plantation shutters have some big differences. Let's go over them so you can find the ideal style for your home.

Budget and Personal Style

Both are a beautiful window treatment. But what works best for your home is based on your personal taste, interior design, existing décor and budget. Our custom-made plantation shutters are a premium product designed to last a lifetime, while blinds can accommodate a larger range of budgets. Horizontal blinds also come in a few different materials, including wood, faux wood and aluminum.

Louver Thickness

Both use vertical slats. But plantation shutters have much wider and thicker louvers than horizontal blinds. These widths range from 2 1/2" to 4 1/2" and can be customized based on the style you select.

Pull Cord vs. Tilt Bar

Blinds are frequently controlled by a pull cord, while plantation shutters use a tilt bar that allows you to let in varying levels of natural light. This makes window shutters a safer choice for homes with small children or pets, since they don't use dangling, long cords that can be a safety hazard.

Window Size and Shape

Plantation shutters are great for a broad variety of window sizes and shapes, from large windows to specialty shapes. Real wood shutters are best for the largest windows, because they're much lighter.

Light Control and Room Darkening

Plantation shutters provide the most light control. Unlike blinds, they can provide a full room-darkening effect. They're able to supply superior light blockage and your desired level of natural light since they're mounted within the window frame.

While horizontal blinds give some relief from the heat, window shutters provide the best energy efficiency. This is true whether you choose a real wood or faux wood style. They help keep you more comfortable by stopping energy loss at the window, where your home loses the most air. This may even help decrease your energy bill!

What Are Shades?

Shades are soft window treatments made from fabric, vinyl or woven wood. Our designer shades from Hunter Douglas come in many different colors and styles, including sheer shades, honeycomb shades, Roman shades and roller and solar shades. Certain shades are on a continuous roll while others stack into neat pleats when raised.

Roller shades have the biggest selection of fabric to select from, including sheer fabric allowing more light coming through but less privacy. Roman shades deliver a more elegant look, while honeycomb and roller and solar shades offer the greatest energy efficiency.

Which Window Treatments Are Right for My Home?

This answer depends on a number of things, like your budget and home décor style. Here are a few points to take into account that will help you narrow down the selection process.

Most Customizable

Winner: Tie

With Louver Shop of Louisiana, your plantation shutters will be just like you envision them. You’ll have your option of wood or faux wood, plus louver dimensions, color and more.

Just like our superior shutters, our Hunter Douglas shades are made just for your home. When you work with Louver Shop of Louisiana you’ll have access to all the latest fabrics, colors and patterns you need to elevate your home. You can view samples of our innovative shades from the comfort of your sofa during your free, in-home consultation.

Smart Home Automation

Winner: Shades

Whether your shades are on large windows, hard-to-reach windows or you just don’t like the look of dangling cords, PowerView® makes it even simpler to move your shades. You’ll be able to move your window treatments with a touch of your smartphone or with a voice command via Amazon Alexa, Siri® on your Apple device or Google Assistant.


Winner: Plantation Shutters

You’re limited with how much you can adjust your shades. With plantation shutters, you’ll be able to customize how much natural light comes through, from fully open to full blackout.

Energy Efficiency

Winner: Plantation Shutters

Plantation shutters are one of the most energy-efficient window treatments. Our LouverWood® shutters are crafted from an exclusive polymer that insulates up to three times better than wood. This material stops heat, keeps you cozier and may even help reduce your energy bills.

A close second for energy efficiency is honeycomb shades. These shades have geometric cavities that trap air at the windows. The result is less heat transfer, improved comfort and potentially lower heating and cooling bills.

Most Current


You might not think of plantation shutters as a modern window treatment, since they’ve been around for many years. Available in contemporary neutrals like white, gray and brown, plantation shutters flatter a wide variety of home styles.

Designer Roller Shades or Designer Screen Shades are a fantastic choice for minimal homes. The Designer Roller is available in more than 400 fabrics, so you’re sure to find an option that complements your décor. Designer Screen is perfect for rooms with intense sunlight, as these shades block at least 75% of damaging UV rays when closed.

Light Filtering

Winner: Shades

Want to change harsh sunlight into a cozy, pleasant glow? Look no further than sheer shades. You can personalize the opacity of the fabric then enjoy the full adjustability of blinds, which float between the shades. Sheer shades are available in horizontal and vertical styles so you can create a cohesive look across your home.

Blackout Capabilities

: Winner: Tie

Plantation shutters are prized for their blackout capabilities. Ours are able to deliver excellent light control because they’re customized for your windows and installed within the frame.

Some Hunter Douglas shades are available with an integrated, room-darkening panel. That way, you can enjoy light filtering or blackout capability when you need it.

UV Defense

Winner: Shades

With Designer Screen Shades, you’ll be able to see your view while safeguarding your furniture, floorings and belongings from damaging sunlight. When down, these solar roller shades keep out 75% of UV light.

Start Designing Your Custom Window Treatments Today

Customizing window treatments for your home shouldn’t feel difficult. It should be an enjoyable and even fun experience. You’ll have many styles and fabrics to review, but you’ll have expert assistance from your local Louver Shop of Louisiana design consultant. We’ll be there to help, from your free, no-pressure quote to professional installation. Ready to begin? Give us a call at 888-428-1415 to schedule your consultation today.

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