Friday, July 20, 2012

Old Window & Shutters -- Tutorial!!!

Today's tutorial is a DIY Old window, shutters and shelf!

When I made this, Blogs were not common place to do a step by step process with, so I have to do this tutorial using my existing window, shutters and shelf.  

1.  An old window.   (I found mine at a glass company.)
2. 1-  Pine or Mdf board for the shelf.  (Mine is a 1x7 and is cut 341/2 inches long, but depending on the size of your old window, yours will be a longer or shorter length.)
3. 2-  Decorative Brackets for underneath the shelf. I found mine at Home Depot.

4. Bi-fold Shutter style closet doors  I bought mine at Home Depot.

5. 4- Vintage hinges to secure window to shutters.  I bought mine at Home Depot.

6. Small Flat metal brackets to secure shelf to window.
      1-  2 inch bracket
      2-  3 in. brackets
7. A handful of various sized grabber screws
8. Paint to match your old window
9. Gel stain to antique.

Build your shelf:
1.  Take your old window.  Measure the bottom of it to cut your pine board or Mdf board to the length you measured of the bottom of the window.  Cut your board.  (Remember this is not assembled yet, I'm only using my finished window to demonstrate.)

Figure out how far you want to space apart your brackets on the underside of your shelf from both side ends of the board.  Mine are fairly far apart, about 3-4 inches in from the edge.  Its totally up to you where you want your brackets placed.

Attach the brackets to the bottom of the pine board.  Make sure you line up your brackets flush with the back of the board.
Also Note:
That these brackets are smaller at the front of the bracket as opposed to the back of the bracket. When you attach your bracket to your shelf board, remember you are going to need shorter grabber screws for the front to drill down into the bracket to anchor it.  You will need longer grabber screws at the back obviously because your bracket is longer at the back.
(Remember this still is not assembled yet, I'm using my finished one as an example.)

Here is a shot of where the I placed the grabber screws.
(Again, still not attached to the window).
There is a grabber screw at the front of the bracket, (needs to be a shorter in length grabber screw because your bracket is shorter in length at the front.)
There is a longer grabber screw at the back of the shelf. (its under the window at this point on my photo.)  Still shelf is not attached yet.
Now that your shelf is built, put it aside.  

Next:  Cut the shutters to match window.

1.Take your bi-fold doors.  Unwrap them.  You will need to dis-assemble your bi-fold door.  They usually have some type of hardware.  Take apart the hardware. You will need both panels from your bi-fold doors to create your shutters.  One for each side of the window.  
2. Lay your your shutter panel flat on the ground.  
3. Lay your old window next to the shutter panel to get your measurement.  
I made a simulation here with the one that's in the package still at the store for demonstration only.  Please have your shutter door out of the package, dis-assembled and laying flat on the ground.

Make certain your shutter will line up for the cut on the solid part of the shutter.  Do not cut your shutter below the solid surface or your shutter slats will fall out.  You want your shutter to have some solid space at the top of the shutter and at the bottom of the shutter like in in this photo.
 Double check your measurement of the window with a tape measure before you cut.  Make your cut of the panel door to make your shutter.  Repeat the same step for the opposite side with your remaining shutter panel door to create a second shutter.

Time to Paint!
Once your shutters are cut and your shelf is assembled they need to be painted:

  I had Home Depot mix me some paint to match my window.  I took in a small paint chip off the old window.  They did a great job. 

Paint both your shutters.  I did the front and back of the shutters because you can move the shutters once they are attached with the hinges to the window, so the backs of the shutters will actually be seen when it is all assembled.  

Paint your shelf. 
Once the shelf and both shutters are dry, you can antique them.  I antiqued mine because I wanted them to match the old window.  

You can use sand paper and do it by hand or if you have a palm sander that will work too.  Sand various areas (like the edges and shutter slats) of the shutters and the shelf to reveal the wood again... it's up to you how much you want to sand down.  

Once you have sanded down various spots of the shutters and shelf then take some Gel Stain or stain.  I use the Minwax.  You don't need very much stain.  Use an old towel, dip it in the gel stain.  Rub it lightly over the whole surface of the shelf and the shutters, take a clean towel and wipe it off lightly.  This will give it a stained and antiqued look, its up to you how much stain or gel stain you want to apply to get the look you want.

Turn your window over to the back of it.
At the top of the old window, drill two holes at each end so you will have them to hang your window with when it is finished.

Now you need to attach your shelf to the window. 

Keep your window turned over and line up your shelf flush with the window.  
Attach them together with some metal brackets and shorter grabber screws. Be careful not to drill through the front of the window when you attach the brackets.
You will use your longer flat brackets at the ends and the shorter flat bracket in the middle.

Close up of the end bracket attachment. 

Attach shutters:
Once your shelf has been attached to the window, turn it back over to the front and lay it flat.  Lay your shutters next to your window and determine where you want your hinges to be placed.  

Attach your hinges in place.  Now you are finished.  It's time to hang it and enjoy.  We made certain to place our screws that we hung our window with into the studs in the wall, due to the heaviness of the window and shutters.   Make certain to measure your distance between to your holes on the back of the window and line them up with the screws you put in your wall. If you do not have a stud you can anchor your hanging screws with, I would recommend getting a wall plug that goes into the sheetrock to anchor and support the weight of the window and shutters.  

Once your screws are mounted in, hang your window and shutters.  Here is a sampling of the different options you can do with your window and shutters.

I have put my kid's pictures in them:

Some different seasons like fall...



4th of July...

So there you have it!  If you do make one of these I hope you enjoy it as much as we have enjoyed ours!

Also I note, I have finally (I can't believe it has taken me this long) signed up on Pinterest, AND added a pin it button to my blog posts. You are welcome to pin anything on my blog, and follow me on Pinterest, I'm still in the process of creating my boards!  

Pin It

Thanks again for being my fabulous blog readers!
With Much Love & Gratitude,


  1. Hey, I love the quilt it is resting on in some of the shots!! Who made that, she must be one talented girl too? ;) haha!

  2. I have an old window I like to change up with the seasons. These are great ideas!

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  4. I am glad that you shared this useful info with us.

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  6. Very Appropriate. Very interesting, good job and thanks for sharing such a good blog.

  7. You’re doing a great job. Keep it up.


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