DIY board and batten shutters

The repainting of our house exterior is almost done…just need to finish painting the garage and front doors and update the hardware for the front door, and I’ll be ready to share it!  Devin and I spent this past weekend making new board and batten shutters for the front window to replace our old, sad looking louvered ones.

It was a fairly simple project, though in hindsight there is one thing we would have changed which I’ll note later in this post.  I based the measurements off of our old shutters, though if you don’t have those to reference, ideally the height should be the same as the height of your window (including the frame) and the width of each shutter should be half the width of the window.

Our old shutters measured 21 1/4″ wide x 55 1/4″ tall, though we ended up going with shutters that were slightly narrower than the old ones.  I wanted each shutter to have five boards across, spaced out just enough to see the definition between the boards.  Knowing this, I calculated that we’d need five 1″ x 4″ x 10″ boards, each cut down to two 1″ x 4″ x 55 1/4″ (with excess) for a total of 10 vertical boards.  Then for the cross boards, we needed  one 1″ x 3″ x 8′ board cut down to four 1″ x 3″ x 24″ for a total of 4 cross boards with room to trim down once we had the final width decided (pending the spacing).

Supplies Purchased

  • Five 1″ x 4″ x 10′ redwood boards
  • One 1″ x 3″ x 8′ redwood board
  • 1 1/4″ wood screws
  • Wood glue
  • 2 1/2″ wood screws
  • Anchors
  • Exterior wood putty / spackle
  • Paint

Tools Used

  • Measuring tape/pencil
  • Putty knife
  • Caulking gun
  • Masonry bit
  • Drill
  • Impact driver
  • Miter Saw
  • Clamps

We had Home Depot cut the boards down for us since they do it for free, and we don’t have much room in the garage right now to set up a big workspace due to the renovation going on in there.  Plus, you should know by now about me and shortcuts :).

First we primed and painted all of the boards on all sides.  We decided to paint them all before assembly since it would be hard to paint the spaces between the boards once they were all screwed together.  We also purposely decided that we wanted to use the rough side of the boards for the front of the shutters to give them a slightly rustic look.

The paint color is Myth by Behr in exterior semi-gloss.  It’s the same color that we painted the front door, and I LOVE it to bits and pieces.

Originally we tried to use paint sticks to keep the spaces even between the boards, but these little cork things worked better.  I have no idea what they’re for, but Devin had them on hand.

So we laid out the boards five across with a spacer on both ends.

Then Devin clamped the boards together nice and snug.

For the cross boards, we decided to place them 8″ from the top and bottom, so Devin marked off where they needed to go, then cut the cross boards down to the correct width using his miter saw.

Next we put glue on the back of the first cross board, then while I held it in place Devin started screwing the cross board into the vertical boards, two screws for each board.

It wasn’t until after we were already halfway done with the first shutter that we realized we could’ve just screwed from the BACK of the vertical boards into the crossboard, thus eliminating the need to fill the screw holes.  Ah well…now I know…for the NEXT time we make shutters, whenever that is ha.

Once all of the shutters were assembled, we removed our spacers, then filled the screw holes with spackle and let it dry.  Once the spackle was dry, we painted over the spackled spots and touched up everywhere else.

Then it was time to hang them.  I won’t lie.  Hanging them wasn’t my favorite part…and it’s definitely a two person job (hence no photos of this phase).

First, Devin drilled pilot holes into the four corners of the shutter.  Then with me holding the shutter up in place, Devin stood on a ladder and used a masonry bit to drill through each pilot hole and predrill into the stucco.

Next, he tapped anchors into the four predrilled holes.  Then I held up the shutter again, lining up the pilot holes to the anchors while he screwed the shutter in place.

Good times people, good times.  HOWEVER.  The end result was well worth it.  We still have to fill the holes in the four corners, but they’re looking good.

I love the natural imperfections in the wood. (Please excuse the large plant with the flower stalk in the way.)

We both agree that they’re a vast improvement over the old shutters.

Stay tuned to see the rest of the exterior, hopefully later this week!

*UPDATE:  You can see the rest of the painted house exterior here. *



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43 thoughts on “DIY board and batten shutters

  1. Wow, that’s a lot of work, but the end result is so worth it. I can tell the exterior is going to be dynamite. I love the color you chose for the shutters and door. Can’t wait to see the rest.

  2. I love these! I’m getting ready to repaint the shutters on my house. Of course, they’re just the regular vinyl ones, but I would LOVE to have some like yours. If we didn’t have 14 sets on the house, I might consider making some. 😉

    • Wow 14 sets?! I don’t blame you then for not making them …I just had one set to do so it was easy 🙂 I’m sure even just repainting them will make a big difference though.

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  4. They look beautiful. You did such a nice job and make it look so easy that I’m going to make some myself! Yay me! 😉 Can’t wait to see the reveal!

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  10. I was looking for directions so I could make shutters for our house. We just repainted the outside of the house and got rid of the old plastic shutters. My husband wanted something that looked rustic to fit the house. So I found your website and followed it. However, we have 27 windows! I am using 1×4 cedar boards, and we are putting four boards on each side of the window with 2 cross pieces. I have cut all of the wood and painted everything with two coats of primer and two coats of color. I have almost all of them assembled, only 6 windows to go. We are going to begin hanging them this weekend (Labor Day). I can’t wait to see how they look on our 149-year-old house! Thanks so much for posting your shutters. It helped us tremendously!

reading all of your comments makes me happy. thanks so much for taking the time to post your feedback!

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