As you move into your new home, or if you're redecorating, you might want something a little different around your windows. Interior plantation shutters provide not only a unique look, but also one that can fit any decorating style, from rustic to contemporary. However, these shutters are also useful in other areas of your home. In fact, you can use one to neatly organize those unsightly piles of mail lying on your counter, or other types of paper clutter. This guide explains how.

Step 1: Gather the Needed Materials

  • one shutter
  • sandpaper
  • a vacuum
  • paint
  • a paintbrush
  • measuring tape
  • cardboard
  • pencil
  • a pair of scissors
  • wood glue
  • a picture hanging kit
  • a hammer

Step 2: Sand the Shutter Surface

Lay down some newspaper on your workspace. Smooth out the surface of the shutter with the sandpaper. Depending on the amount of sanding you have to do, you may create a lot of sawdust, so vacuum up the sawdust to prevent it from traveling through the house on your family's shoes, and to prevent specs of sawdust from getting onto your paint job.

Step 3: Paint the Shutter

Paint the shutter, like those from Blinds & Shutters Direct, in your desired color. Since the shutter has many ledges and holes, take the time to ensure that the entire shutter is painted. Wait a couple hours and then apply a second coat.  

Step 4: Cut and Attach the Cardboard

Grab your cardboard and measure the width and length of the back of the shutter. Mark the measurements on the cardboard using your measuring tape and pencil. Use the scissors to cut the cardboard to size and then attach the cardboard back to the shutter using wood glue. Make sure the glue is dry before moving on to the next step.

Step 5: Hang the Shutter on the Wall

Hang the shutter on the wall by installing the hooks from the picture hanging kit. Your kit should have instructions on how to do this, but typically you can expect to secure the hooks to the wall with the tiny nails in the package. Once these hooks are secure, carefully hang the shutter on them and make sure that it is firmly in place. You can then begin sliding pieces of mail into the slats and using your new mail holder.

Expect to spend a few hours completing this project. You'll spend most of that time painting and waiting for the paint to dry. Use your plantation shutter mail holder in the kitchen for recipes, in the office for mail or any other place that tends to see paper clutter.