I've just finished painting the shutters and realised how unusual it is for a small B & B in Blairgowrie, originally built as a gardener's cottage, to be so carefully designed. Usually shutters were only for 'grand' houses, but maybe the architect who designed this house, back in the 1840s, had visited France or perhaps Italy and been impressed by the decorative effect and practical uses of them there. I like to think we have a bit of continental building design right here in Blairgowrie.
When we bought the house in 1991 the shutters had been nailed back with what seemed to be thousands of nails. My 5 year project was to see if I could make them work again because it seemed such a waste just to have them for decoration.
Two years, hundreds of hours later (an hour each evening after work), several very small files, the help of a friendly joiner and the advice of a paint expert - et voila! For years now the shutters have been used daily - or perhaps I should said 'eveningly' as they are closed once darkness falls - and at this time of year they are invaluable for keeping out the cold.