Should I get Shutters? Where from?

Since I very first moved into my house, my dream was to have shutters in the bay window in my lounge. I absolutely love the look of shutters and both my older sisters have them throughout the house, so I know exactly how they work and function. When the previous owners, left their current blinds up, I thought I would leave them because they function fine, and it saved money. 

Over the last year, I have dreaded the blinds constantly. Each time I come to clean them, it takes forever, dusting each individual ring and then they move and hit the wall, scraping off the paint over and over again. 

More so, they're also a little damaged. For the first 6 months, the cover on the larger, middle pane kept falling down part way. I would stick it back up daily and went through so many command strips to no avail. Eventually I decided to just take it down and leave it down. The strings to move the blinds were also broken. A couple had unravelled so were really long and touched the floor, one had lost all it's length and had an inch long piece at the bottom and the other lost it's clip to keep the 3 strings together which ended up being more of a nightmare than one would care to admit. 

After months of deliberating, I confidently decided that despite the big purchase cost, as it had been considered in depth and I was still keen for the purchase, that I should go ahead. The next question was: where from? The two big well known shutter companies were Hilary's Blinds - where my older sisters had got them - or Shuttercraft. Plus, there were lots of smaller local companies. 

I ended up having 5 companies come and given quotes. Hilarys was far over the price I expected coming in at almost £2000, even with the discount. Shuttercraft was just over £1200 and then the smaller companies were cheaper, varying from £850 to £1100. Following a lengthy decision making process, I ultimately decided to go with Shuttercraft. I did deliberate for another month, and was sold my a further sale which made it just over £1000. 

Whilst the smaller companies were lovely to talk to, thorough and detailed, I felt that the reviews of the bigger companies and more importantly, the guaranteed warrantee was the selling point. They were honest and basically told me that the majority of shutters were made in the same singular factory in China so the quality would be the same regardless, which I felt reassured by. Hilarys was out of budget, but I felt with the further discount, Shuttercraft was more reasonable and had a relatively quick turnaround time of 8 - 12 weeks, compared to the 12 - 16 weeks of the smaller companies. You could pay a premium price for a faster date. 

My final order was for Full Height Shutters with 76mm louvres and central tilt rods in Pure White. I selected a 5 panel configuration to match the windows, with the side panels opening individually and the front panels opening with two bi-folding to the left and a single panel opening to the right. I also chose the finish to be in Antigua, made with MDF which is the middle price range product.