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Tuesday, August 2, 2016

"more" around the house a.k.a. keeping it real...




I really should title this post "trust your gut!"  That said, I have a feeling that I'm going to get some push-back from a lot some of you regarding a recent design decision, but I'm trusting my gut and I'm hoping I can walk you through my design thought process!
As mentioned in my last "around the house a.k.a. keeping it real" post HERE  I said that our next big project was painting the exterior of the farmhouse.  The whole exterior doesn't need painting, just several walls that have taken a beating from our New England winters.  The barn (thankfully for the pocketbook ;) is in good condition.  The barn is stained and the house is painted; the stain has held up much better than the paint (all paint and stain colors are on my sidebar if interested.)  Although we have not done this, it is a common practice here in New England to keep a painter on retainer to come paint one side of your house each year.

The scraping commences.  (f.y.i., that is my antique yogurt pot that stands in the front bed which has been placed on the grass, on it's side, to keep it safe-  it is not one of those half pot thingys that people lay on the ground and plant flowers in :)
Before the scraping, the first thing the painters did was remove all the shutters.




And, unbeknownst to me... I loved it!!!  
I was shocked, but the farmhouse suddenly felt clean, crisp and fresh... and I felt like I could take in a big breath.  Our gorgeous, unusual, antique wavy glass windows suddenly took center stage and the whole house seemed to relax a bit.
I realize this might look a bit naked or unusual if you live in the south or in a metropolitan area, but if you drive through rural New England you will see antique house upon antique house with no shutters.




Before removing the shutters for painting, the windows in the ell between the barn and the farmhouse always bothered me. They didn't have shutters which I liked conceptually since the ell was added after the house and had different windows, but not visually.  But, now that the shutters on the main house are off it all "feels" right to my eye and my gut!  I looked at the house from every angle, close up and at a distance.  After discussing it with Dan, we made the decision of no shutters!  We realized that when we drive around New Hampshire that the antique houses that we are drawn to have a look and a feeling of authenticity and we could now see that the look and feel we loved was the look of our farmhouse without shutters. And hey, I can always put them back if we were to change our minds, but I love the way the house looks and feels.
Before I gave the "no-shutter" word to the painter, I wanted to make sure I was 100% with the decision.  I had the thought that I should look at photos of farmhouses and cottages that I have collected over the last couple of years, and I'll be damned, but literally 99% of them had NO shutters!  Who-knew??!!! I was seriously giggly giddy!  I had just never looked at my saved houses from that perspective.  It was quite a revelation for me and a validation of "trust your gut!"




 The front face after scraping and with the shutters removed.




The house with black shutters.  Classic.  I do think it looks really pretty with shutters, but something about it also seems a bit formal for this simple farmhouse.  When we initially had the whole house painted 7 years ago HERE I remember not being able to get the shutters back on the house fast enough, but thinking about it now the house wasn't landscaped and I was coming from a metropolitan/suburban situation and that was the norm for my eye.  After living here and seeing so many antique houses without shutters my aesthetic for the farmhouse has shifted.  I have taken drive-by photos of antique houses that I love, but can't quite put my finger on what makes me so captivated by them.  I would bet that if I went back to look at all of those houses they wouldn't have shutters!  Don't get me wrong, I love shutters, but for now the house looks and "feels" exactly as it should to me.  
I should also note after getting several comments on the shutters, that the shutters are antique and were original to the house (maybe not to 1853, but perhaps turn of the century?)  The top of the shutters are stationary and the bottoms had movable louvers for air flow.  They were initially operable to close over the windows, but when the storm windows were installed (prior to our owning the house) they were then attached directly to the house.  
And, yes- the house will be remain white!  As I mentioned in the beginning of this post we are only painting several sides of the house.
 photo by Micheal Partenio



Here are some photos of my saved favorite farmhouses, all of which unbeknowst to me until today do not have shutters!

Martha Stewart...That magic moment first thing in the morning on the Fourth of July!  from...  http://lifeofstyle-lifestyle.blogspot.com/2010/11/thank-you.html:
photo via


 :
photo via


Out on the farm:
photo via


Connor Homes - The Sarah Taylor House II:
photo via


Blackberry Farm,:
photo via


Nora Murphy Country House - Note To Self:
photo via



photo via


Farmhouse Decorating:
photo via


.:
photo via


15 Aesthetic Farmhouse Exterior Designs Showing The Luxury Side Of The Countryside
photo via


peoplecallmejim:
“ Glendalough, Co. Wicklow.
”
photo via


Fotos de casas abandonadas:
photo via

If you would like to read about the history of exterior house shutters this is a really good (and humorous) blog post about them HERE.



105 comments:

  1. I love every inch of your house : ) The shutters didn't bother me before but feels so much lighter and classic without. I grew up in an 1840s farmhouse. No exterior shutters but shutters on the lower half of the windows on the East interior windows. I have always longed for a house with the interior shutters like in some of the buildings at Colonial Williamsburg. Very deep sills and the shutters folded to the side.

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    1. I LOVE interior shutters also! I have a client who has pocket interior shutters on her windows (think pocket door except at the window) on her antique home. They are"fabulous!"

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    2. Pocket shutters! I have never heard of those. Will have to Google those and no doubt add them to my shutter wish list: ) Thanks, Sarah

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  2. Okay I was preparing to see your house painted some weird color and I was in an emotional tailspin. Then saw the sans shutter photo and thought how much more I liked your house without them! So I was relieved to read that's what the news was! Love it. So crisp.

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    Replies
    1. ha SA;) No hot pink here! The white will remain!

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  3. I like the no shutter look! Without shutters it looks more vintage! And, you're right it makes it looks so clean. I like your gravel drive too!

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  4. I do like the no shutter look. The house stands out a little more without the shutters. I like that but I LOVE the picture of the three girls. My two girls had a "spa" day today and they smell so much better tonight. Unfortunately I gave them black beans again today so they won't smell so good later. Love them forever. Patty

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  5. I love your house with or without shutters. I did love the look before you removed them, but it's very pretty without as well. Besides, you and Dan are the ones that should make the decisions, no matter what the gang in blogland say! :-)
    xo,
    Karen

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  6. Love, Love, the no shutter look. Clean, fresh, and lovely!

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  7. First I have to say we have both saved some of the exact same photos of houses, none of which have shutters. I have always LOVED your farmhouse but always thought that the bump out which is the dining room and bedroom something wasn't "right" like it stated here I am or that it was missing something, like maybe a window in the attic or a bigger overhang on the roof. Now that you have taken off the shutters, even with the paint scrapped it's perfect. This entire time it was those shutters, much simpler and classic. I LOVE IT.

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  8. Ohhhh Joan & Dan,
    I love love the farmhouse without the
    shutters. I know being a Southerner,
    shutters, were just suppose to be.
    I think the shutters maybe really dressed
    up the farm house, but now it just looks
    so in tune with the era, like now ya see
    those beautiful windows!!!

    Thank you for sharing the pics,
    Awesome Choice!!!!!!!

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  9. We didn't put our shutters back when we painted 2 years ago & I Iike our house without them. But I love your house without shutters, it just looks right somehow.

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  10. I told my husband when we retire to New Hampshire in a few years I want to find a white farmhouse without shutters. I [too] have pinned numerous white farmhouses without shutters. Love the look!

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  11. your house is gorgeous with or without... but I really think without calls out to the farmhouse feel. my house was built 32 years ago ( brick traditional) with shutters as are most in my neighborhood. i think no shutters fits a vintage farmhouse perfectly!!

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  12. Your house looks "right" to me now. It feels as if this is what was meant to be from the beginning, although the shutters were attractive. Though originally from Austin, I lived in CT for many years and the pristine unpretentious air of houses like your were always irresistible to me. We lived in a cape built in 1845 which I absolutely adored. It had been added to higglety-pigglety over the years which was charming to me. New England will always be my real home. This is the real reason I love your blog so much. It takes me back...

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  13. First, I am so glad you didn't paint the house some wierd color (although MY gut told me you wouldn't do that). Second, I like the house with and without the shutters, but agree it looks less formal and more homey without the shutters. Finally, it's your house so you should do whatever pleases you. And Dan. And the girls - although I'm quite sure they don't care as long as the nibbles and the kisses keep coming!!

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  14. YES! YES! YES! As you know, I left the shutters off my house and I LOVE it!!! It just gives it a little updated, fresh look! I can't wait to see it all painted! I was afraid you were going to say you were painting your house a different color! :) xox, Emily

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  15. I'm spitballing here, but the shutters look like they weren't "real" functioning shutters. They were decorations tacked on the sides of the house and never closed. That style has never been right in my eyes. It's always off, size wise. I always spend time staring at houses with those trying to figure out what's wrong and then I realize that the shutters are a stylistic decoration and it explains everything.

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    1. I added this in the post since several people have mentioned this...

      the shutters are antique and were original to the house (maybe not to 1853, but perhaps turn of the century?) The top of the shutters are stationary and the bottoms had movable louvers for air flow. They were initially operable to close over the windows, but when the storm windows were installed (prior to our owning the house) they were then attached directly to the house.

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    2. Your house is beautiful either way, but I thought the same thing - shutters are for shutting. We have recently designed Bahama shutters for our coastal house and are saving for the ones that actually cover the windows. Why is the size we need for everything always exponentially more expensive than one size down? Is it just me?

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    3. I prefer your home without the shutters but I think that is because of the way the shutters were mounted before (attached to the house instead of the window trim). They were reminiscent of those fake shutters that are basically glued to the left and right side of windows in some new construction homes, which is one of my biggest house pet peeves, along with garages on the front of the home! Thank you for the shutter link, which was an interesting read. Glad to confirm that the shutters are mounted correctly on my 1920 Colonial!

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  16. I also love your house with or without shutters. In fact, I love every inch of your house, and will say that it looks beautiful without shutters. I also love all of the farmhouse pics that you have saved and shared with us. You have impeccable taste.

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  17. First, I'm so glad you explained that pot because I was wondering what in the world a mediterrean styled planter was doing on your farm! Second, I LOVE the shutter free exterior ๐Ÿ˜ Pamela

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  18. You are so right! As I look up and down our lake and drive into town...Almost none have shutters...including our little house with the farmers porch. I too love shutters...but my house in Houston doesn't have them either...it is a faux Tudor (!) but I have plantation shutters inside that fulfill my shutter envy. Your house looks lovely! And as my husband loves
    ...less painting!
    Holly Rigby, up here on the pond!

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    1. I had plantation shutters in my house in Dallas and loved them!

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  19. I am currently building my dream white farmhouse. Without shutters. Everyone...and I do mean everyone has questioned that decision. They all are simply wrong. Your house is perfect when YOU think it's perfect. And even though it doesn't matter one whit, I agree. No shutters is best.

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  20. Personally I usually prefer no shutters and your house looks great without them too! It looks great with them also but I have always preferred no shutters unless they are truly operational shutters like you might find in France or even the Caribbean. Please keep the white paint though. There is nothing prettier, IMO.

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    1. Lynne, Yes, the house is staying white! I added this to the post since so many comments where made about this...
      the shutters are antique and were original to the house (maybe not to 1853, but perhaps turn of the century?) The top of the shutters are stationary and the bottoms had movable louvers for air flow. They were initially operable to close over the windows, but when the storm windows were installed (prior to our owning the house) they were then attached directly to the house.

      Delete
  21. I love your house and agree it looks better without the shutters.

    I just did a historic exterior renovation and so I now know more about shutters than I ever thought possible, and notice them more than I ever thought I would (an effect that I hope will wear off over time). I think the reason your shutters looked off is that they weren't sized or hung properly. They should be able to cover the window when closed (even if they are fixed in place), and should be mounted so that they partially cover the casing, or they won't quite look right. They also need hardware that holds them at the right angle so that they catch and cast the right shadows, or they will always look a little off in a way that's hard to identify. Not having shutters is a much better alternative (in my opinion) than having the wrong ones.

    I love your house without them, but if you ever decide to make a change, Old House Guy is a go-to resource for all things shutters: http://www.oldhouseguy.com/shutters/. My new ones (to replace hideous vinyl ones when we removed the vinyl siding) were built by Shutter Craft, in Madison, CT.

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    1. hi Christy, You must have missed the link at the very bottom of the post where I linked to Old House Guy's shutter info;) Great info! I added the following to the post since several people mentioned this in comments...
      the shutters are antique and were original to the house (maybe not to 1853, but perhaps turn of the century?) The top of the shutters are stationary and the bottoms had movable louvers for air flow. They were initially operable to close over the windows, but when the storm windows were installed (prior to our owning the house) they were then attached directly to the house.

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    2. Wow, I could have sworn that they were all the same size while the windows were different sizes (leading me to think that they were replacement shutters), but glad to see that you are also an Old House Guy devotee!

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  22. I have to agree, I love how your home looks without shutters. It looks like a classic older farmhouse. When we built our home to resemble an older square center entrance colonial we did not put shutters on, boy did we ever hear from everyone about when we were going to be putting up the shutters. Now 18 years later we still have not and do not plan to. I love visiting your home even when it is just for maintenance posts. Enjoy your summer.

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    1. hi Alaina, Funny how people have very strong opinions about shutters!!! Thank you for liking the maintenance posts!

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  23. Your "gut" was so correct! Love the house without the shutters. The simplicity is absolutely gorgeous. Bravo!!!

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  24. "Trust your gut" love love love it!! You have impeccable taste!!��

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  25. A side comment...the shutters were originally the wrong size and hung wrong. Maybe that is why you didn't like how they looked.

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    1. hi McP family,
      I added the following to the post since several people mentioned this in comments...
      the shutters are antique and were original to the house (maybe not to 1853, but perhaps turn of the century?) The top of the shutters are stationary and the bottoms had movable louvers for air flow. They were initially operable to close over the windows, but when the storm windows were installed (prior to our owning the house) they were then attached directly to the house.

      Delete
  26. I like the house both ways, seems a little more formal with shutters, and more modern farm house without shutters.

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  27. I think it is much less busy without the shutters but might like window boxes on the two right side windows. You could change the plants for each season and would' be great at Christmas with evergreen boughs and big red ribbons. Just an idea.

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  28. I always say, do what YOU love because only you has to live there! I like the house with and without the shutters. I never would have thought that was a problem but then when I saw the pictures of all the other farmhouses I see what you mean. So, what color will the house be? I am guessing the same???

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  29. To thy own self be true. It doesn't matter what others think-happiness is self relevation. Don't mean to sound so philosophical, but honestly we shouldn't care what the neighbors think-you've given this much thought, research and heart. Love it till something else moves you.

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  30. I am liking the no shutters look too, change is always good.You seem to have the same house folder I have. The next time repainting ( many years down the road) happens they can go back up.

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  31. I love the no-shutters! It's very authentic. So, did you save all those photos of lovely houses withut shutters to sell it to Dan? That's something I would have to do with my husband ;)
    Everything is a sales job :)

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    1. ha! Actually I sold him with commentary and then had him look at all my saved photos and he was witness to my giggling giddy reaction when I realized how all the saved houses had no shutters!!:)
      I'm very logical with decorating and find that (especially with clients) if I explain the "why's" and reasons behind a design decision (as opposed to just do it or it will just look better, etc.) people seem to "get it" much quicker. And photos always help!

      Delete
  32. So agree with you. The house looks taller, the lines are clean and the Windows stand out. Think the shutters cut the house in half horizontally after looking at before and after pics. Love a freshly painted house and the landscaping is really coming along. Happy days to you and yours. Lots of love from lillian in HK and AU

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  33. hi joan, such an interesting topic to me. A couple years ago we were standing in our driveway and heard sounds overhead. Looked up and then looked at one another...bats. Yes, we had bats behind our shutters. So off they came, with the bats clinging to the backside and then flying off. I've yet to put the shutters back on the house. So your new post is of great interest to me. I don't have a big farmhouse. It's always bothered me that I never put the shutters back up, but now will take a different look at it. Thanks so much!

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    1. I'm glad the post will have you take a different look at it! "If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change." -Wayne Dyer
      Did you put up a bat house? I adore bats. So many people have such a misinformed opinion of them, but they are so beneficial- and eat LOTS of mosquitoes!!! Not that I want them living behind my shutters, lol, but love having them on the property at night!

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  34. I'm so glad you explained the antique yogurt pot. It was the first thing that caught my eye and I thought it was one of those sideways pots. Which look fine on a patio in New Mexico, but I immediately thought this wasn't your style and seemed out of place. Ha ha! Your house looks great sans shutters. More vintage and serene. We removed our shutters after a few were damaged in a storm last spring. And we did the same thing and thought it looked better without them. I'm wondering if this is partly due to the whims of the design world as it seems like I'm seeing a lot of scaling back. A more edited, clean look. Is it just me? But I do find the eyes crave change.

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  35. I like shutters.......IF they are real.....operable, and can shut and protect windows! Most shutters are NOT! They are false; they are nailed to the outside....have no hinges, no latches, and , if closed do not even fit over the windows!

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE your house without shutters! It probably never had them.....and, if it did...those were not the original ones! So wonderful without them!

    Well done! Abolish fake shutters, I say!!!

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    Replies
    1. hi Penelope,
      I'm thinking the farmhouse (originally the caretakers home of the large estate that our front face) got shutters around the turn of the century to match the estate house since it was all owned by the same person. I agree with you that originally, when built in 1853, the farmhouse did not have shutters. I added the following to the post since several people mentioned this in comments...
      the shutters are antique and were original to the house (maybe not to 1853, but perhaps turn of the century?) The top of the shutters are stationary and the bottoms had movable louvers for air flow. They were initially operable to close over the windows, but when the storm windows were installed (prior to our owning the house) they were then attached directly to the house.

      Delete
  36. ...the farmer would approve...and so does the housewife from possum hill...blessings...laney

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  37. Agree with no shutters, also. They didn't look terrible before..nothing in your house or landscape is, but, somehow this seems more "real" like the old farmhouses around New England, as you said. Also, they really weren't functional, I don't think, so why have them if you're going for authenticity. Anyway, Joan, it's beautiful, as always, and I do like the no shutters look. Bev

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  38. Love your house with NO shutters--so pure and clean! Great job Joan!

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  39. Somewhat under the category of 'you'd look fashionable in a burlap dress' - THAT is your house. Seriously. It looks fabulous both with the shutters and without. The true balance is when you see the image of the back of the house it blends well with the barn room.
    Sometimes less is more.

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  40. I love the house this way! So pure and simple - unabashedly itself. Great decision I say
    !

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  41. If I was ever going to trust someone's "gut" it would be yours!! You have the best eye and style of any blogger I've read. I thought I couldn't love a farmhouse more than yours but I love your's even more now. It makes perfect design sense and all the farmhouse photos are beautiful. If we would only study our inspiration photos closer it would make our design decisions easier. :) Your landscaping looks so pretty and lush too. ;)

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  42. I love the house without shutters! I have to admit, I've never thought about it either (my house has shutters). Also, I once had a neighbor that had one side of her house painted each year, thus keeping the house maintained, but not breaking the bank, or the back, by painting the entire house each year. I loved the wisdom!

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  43. This is what I've done on my house - took off the (plastic) shutters and didn't put them back on after I painted. Gave them away on Craigslist. Personally I think shutters are more historically accurate and keeping them off is a modern reinterpretation of old house. And that's fine because I think that's your aesthetic.

    I haven't put shutters on because of no money! But, rethinking, maybe I'll keep them off.

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  44. Fabulous! Hmmm, now that you've hit the reset button, what would it look like if the trim [trim ONLY; not the door itself] around your front door were painted white [like the trim around your windows]?

    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcRWF0kagQs/TOHE1_nYWyI/AAAAAAAAClM/tSiex-vZQzk/s1600/SSEntry%2B007.JPG

    Hmmm.

    -Flo
    Amelia Island FL

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    Replies
    1. It would make my door look very diminutive Flo! I painted it black to give it scale to match the front of the house. This is one of my favorite design tips- to paint the frame of the front door to give it a bigger presence! I've done it with many clients and they all love the look. For my antique house (think not perfectly plumb;) it also allows me to paint the door and frame "straight" where it would otherwise be VERY unlevel !!!

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  45. I love the looks without the shutters...this from a born and bred New Englander! Like you said the house looks crisp and clean, now.

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    1. So nice to hear that from a native, thank you Marigene!

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  46. Hello Joan, Of course it is your house and your decision, but I kind of like your house with shutters. I am sure that you will not discard the original shutters, and if you do put them back I'm sure you will have them hung properly.

    I collect 19th-century photos of houses, and one feature that I find charming is the existence and active use of shutters. But not all early houses had them, even originally, and many had interior folding shutters, resulting in a no-shutter look on the exterior. Its all a question of preference.
    --Jim

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    1. We will for sure keep them. And if we choose to put them back will have them restored to their original glory;) and hung correctly. But, honestly, I don't see that happening in the near future as I am loving the feel and look sans the shutters. As always, I thank you for your input Jim!

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  47. I absolutely LOVE your home with or with out shutters. Sometimes it's nice just to change it up a bit anyway but I do get how you say it feels fresher. What I have always loved about your home too is the side porch/veranda and above balcony! I would love to have that on my home! cheers!

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    Replies
    1. The side double porches really are a wonderful feature! Very southern from my point of view, and everyone always comments on them!

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  48. My 1870's farmhouse had shutters when I purchased it in 1996. They were not original, but were nice old, wood shutters. When they were removed during restoration, we found that we preferred the fresh uncluttered appearance, too. 20 years later, and still very happy with that decision.

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  49. I love the look, Joan! Our 1894 farmhouse in NC is also sans shutters and I love the clean look of the windows without them.

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  50. Joan, Dan, and girls: First, a belated happy birthday and happy anniversary! I do like the new look! Our colonial does not have shutters and it used to drive our former neighbor crazy; he made a point of always telling us how much nicer it would look with shutters but we like the 'uninterrupted' look.
    With your eye, your home will always look nice.
    Cindy

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  51. I'm always up for a change. I must admit the simple elegance of no shutters appeals to me. The architecture became the focal point. I think your home looks taller! I wonder how the beautiful sea glass blue green you love would look on the front door? If you have a change of heart - you have the shutters. I think your farmhouse is lovely without the jewelry!

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  52. I agree about the shutters- my 1862 stone farmhouse has no shutters either. I do think it needs a more decorative, "beefier" trim around the windows though, especially on the front, and the gable on the front needs something, a small arch window maybe. Then again there is much to like about a pure simple New England salt box type look. Either way, it will be unique, and a reflection of what you love. Your instincts have been spot on, and I have no doubt you will make the right choices.

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  53. I love no shutters! When I built my "new" farmhouse 15 years ago I did not put shutters on. I got plenty of whys.... but when the man came to install my counters he thought we had redone and old farmhouse! And then because we live in an area where there are Amish, I get teased that my house looks Amish. But I don't care, I never regretted my decision of No Shutters!

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  54. Love the look, Joan! This would have never crossed my mind to do this.

    I love your antique farmhouse, and hopefully Steven and I will have one similar one day. I am so envious of your life in New Hampshire! We discussed before my trying to find a federal job in the northeast, but nothing has worked out yet :(

    We just arrived back home yesterday from seeing family in central PA. We didn't want to leave. We left Harrisburg with it 73 degrees at noon to arrive in Jackson at 3:30 PM to a 98 degree humid mess.

    Keep posting your stories, Joan! I always look forward to reading about your little piece of heaven!

    Larkin
    Madison, MS

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  55. It's a beautiful and fresh look! I love it!

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  56. Last weekend, my husband and I were tightening the screws on the shutters of our 1860s Italianate-style house. I stepped back and thought how much better the house would look without them. A few of the shutters are very old, others were replaced recently due to rotting wood. All are non-functioning. Unfortunately, I'll never get my husband on board with removing them.

    Your house is beautiful with or without them, but I'm excited for you to make this change.

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  57. Just love how informative your posts are. Thought it was funny that I never noticed the pattern of your window panes until this post. Actually noticed that some of your favorite farmhouses had very small window panes, and then compared that look to your home. I've always loved your white house with black shutters - now I will love your white house with distinctive windows!

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  58. It's lovely with and without and I love the inspiration photos you have posted but I must say in your particular house I personally prefer "with". This is because your side porches (terraces? what are they called?) are more formal/ornate and the shutters match/balance that aspect of the house's architecture. Regardless, just my two cents, as I said, it's gorgeous either way.

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  59. Without the shutters, the pretty details of the prairie window grids are now the star! Very nice!

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  60. Your house looked lovely with the shutters, but since seeing the transformation without the shutters I do agree, the house looks more original without the shutters, more simplistic in it's look. So I guess they are staying off?
    Sharon x

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  61. I love it without! I also love the look of white houses with black painted windows- although not necessarily a traditional look.

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  62. I guess many of us thought you were going to pop a new color on us! I like the home both ways but it doesn't really need the shutter/window dressings does it. When I first found your blog it was because of a search relating to Bunny Williams and I just assumed there was some influence to the look of your home because of hers. Your home is always enjoyable to see.

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  63. Joan, we live in a white siding rental home and i have always loved shutters, however buying them and adding them was not an option so we painted all the aluminum on the outside of the windows (forget what you call that) black and I loved it. Last Thursday and Friday after reading your post they installed all new windows and these ones just didn't seem to go with the black. A couple cans of white paint and my husband and I loved it....after ONE window! I totally got what you were saying, the house looked calmer, clean, crisp and fresh!!! I can't stop looking at it. We are so happy we did it.
    Angela

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    1. Love hearing this story Angela! Thank you for telling me:)

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  64. I LOVE finding something new to do in my home (or on it) that makes me happy and that is unexpected. LOVE it. Makes me happy for you!
    I moved my dang coffee maker to a different spot in my kitchen and it made my whole day! Ha! The house is too pretty for words :)

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    1. I do that all the time too Mandy! It's the little things, yes?!!

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  65. Agree with your decision 100%. LOVE your house without the shutters, it just feels right.

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  66. While I understand your decision, personally I like your house with shutters. Ann

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  67. Lovely house that you live in. I would think it was fabulous even with shabby paint so I won't even comment on shutters-no shutters..lol

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  68. Without the shutters makes me think of every summer when my son would get a crew cut. Without the shutters it looks like your house got its summer cut! It looks great both ways, though!

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  69. I really like it without the shutters, it looks so streamlined and authentic that way.

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  70. I'm behind in reading but wanted to add that I love your home without the shutters! I loved it before, but this is really a nice change. We removed our shutters about 10 years ago, too, thinking we can always add them back. Never have.
    We have friends, too, who paint 1 side of their farmhouse every 1-2 years. They would really like to change the color but explain that it would take about 6 years before it would all be the new color!

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  71. It looks nice both ways but I prefer the shutters (installed properly of course). I prefer a more formal look but I also think it just looks more expensive with shutters. It looks unfinished without them but I've seen enough photos of homes with and without so I do understand. As long as you are happy, that is what counts:)

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  72. Very clean looking - I like it without the shutters!

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