How to install shutters in windows with wainscoting and chair rails

This post addresses one of the more complicated installations of shutters in rooms with wainscoting, since the wainscoting and chair rail actually wrap into the window jamb itself. Although a gorgeous look overall, this millwork package does nothing to compliment most inside mount window treatment installation.

Plantation window before

Here is a before photo of the window

How did we arrive at shutters, and could we have done other window treatments?

If we were to do, for instance, a wood blind or honyecomb in this window we would have the option of ordering the blind with a cut on each side so that it woudld fit around the trim work in the lower area, and be the correct width above the paneling too. Most all other hard treatments would have to be ordered to the narrower width in between the paneling and would be unsightly when lowered. Not to mention that the arch portion of the window would still be exposed. There would be so many limitations to the fit of the finished product te homeowner would have ordered a custom product, but not had a very custom looking finish.

Drapery might look nice here, perhaps on medallions, but as light control was an issue in the office, is still not the most functional option.

So back to the fit! The customer chose a decorative z frame that we call a CZ. The CZ frame is gorgeous, but necessitates modifation for both the face sider of thethe paneling and the part that wraps into the window.

Here is how we did it:

  • Kirtz undersized the shutter unit by the thickness of the paneling (3/4″) on each side.
  • We then made filler strips that would install above the wainscotting, in effect bringing the jamb of the window in on both sides 3/4″ and providing a uniform look from the streetside (no unsightly gaps when you are walking up to the house).
  • Next, we handled the front(or flange of the frame) the same way, making filler strips to install above the wainscotting. You can see the seam of the filler strips in this close up.  It was important to send filler loose so that it could be cut to fit nice and snug on site as this seam would be highly visible.
  • Once onsight the chair rail was shortened by our installers to where it finishes nicely right at the finish of our shutter frame.
plantation shutters in windows with wainscotting

finished look of customized framework for shutters in windows with wainscoting

Pretty gorgeous finished work, and most importantly it looks like the shutters was part of the original plan!

stained oak shutters with painted casing

Piano Room finished with chair rail modifications

finished room view, red oak shutter with decorative frame

finished room view, red oak shutter with decorative frame