Is your home lacking something? You might not be able to put your finger on it, but adding window shutters can really do wonders for your curb appeal. Now you could go buy those plastic pre-molded ones at the local hardware store, or you could be crafty and make them yourself. It is actually an easy project, just a bit time consuming. You will need a few tools and some lumber. We recommend a mixture of fence pickets and pallet boards, they are inexpensive and make light weight gorgeous wooden shutters.
The very first step is to measure the height of your window frames. Once you have this in mind you can begin gathering materials and the tools needed to construct them all. Keeping our recommended materials in mind, for one window you will need (4) pickets and (4) 13" sections of pallet wood. (1 or 2 pallets should be plenty enough material to gather these.) For the fence pickets, we chose the 6 inch wide option but you can mix it up how ever you choose. If you have smaller windows they make pickets in more narrow options that may better suit your needs. So depending upon how many windows you are planning to make shutters for, you do the math and calculate your required total quantities needed. Example: if 1 window needs 4 pickets and 4 sections of pallet wood, for two windows double it.
Now here is the important part: (The Tool List)
-1 Tape Measure, 1 square, 1 carpenters pencil, 1 drill gun w/ a 1 small drill bit and 1 phillips head bit, 1 circular skill or table saw, 1 box of 1" screws, 1 box of 2" screws.
(Optional Extras) Jig Saw, Level, Crow Bar, ladder, Sander, Stain, Paint, Brush
Okay, now that we got all the required materials and tools.. lets get started! Using your original measurement of the height of your window frames, mark your pickets the appropriate length. Then use your square to draw a straight line all the way across the board. Do this to each picket, then get out your saw and begin trimming the excess off. Be sure to use proper safety gear like glasses and ear protection. Oh and watch them Fingers!!! Once you have all the pickets trimmed to the appropriate height, attack the pallets! No not seriously...but if you want to take out some anger, grab a crow bar and begin prying the slates off the pallet. This can be a hassle, so we prefer the easy way which involves a Jig Saw or Circular Saw. Simply cut out the middle of the pallet by following the inner edge of the interior board or frame. This will leave you with clean nail free boards, ready to be trimmed. Again, use your tape measure and mark the boards to 13" sections (6" picket on one side, 1" gap in middle & another 6" picket on other side.) If you did not go with 6" wide pickets you will need to adjust your pallet board length accordingly. Then use the square and draw straight lines for your saw to cut.
Assembly time, lay your fresh cut materials on a flat level surface like your garage floor, porch, deck or driveway. Now use your measuring tape and square again to mark 1 foot lines from both ends of the picket boards. We chose 1 foot due to our windows being 5 feet tall. You may need to adjust your number as well depending on your height. Just try to remember to leave an even amount of space in the middle. This line is used to mark where to install the pallet pieces you just cut.
Make sure your boards are all straight and aligned, with a 1 inch gap in-between each picket. Then use the drill bit to drill one pilot hole in each side of the pallet wood. Then swap bits and use your phillips head to install a 1" screw on both sides, this will secure your pallet wood to your two pickets. Now do the same thing to the bottom, and Congratulations... You just completed your Very First Window Shutter!!!
Now just repeat this process for how ever many more you need, then use your 2" screws to install them butted up next to your window frames. These should be level with the ground, but feel free to use a level to double check your handy work. Also, if you want to go the extra mile you can sand, stain or paint them to really add some Pop to your Homes Curb Appeal.