How to Measure for Shutters

Measuring for shutters may seem like a headache but, we promise you, it’s not all that daunting. We’ve even made this useful guide to ease the entire process from start to finish.

You’ve already made the smart decision to save money and fit your new shutters for yourself. It’s now just a case of acquiring the right tools and mind-set for certain success!

Simply follow these straight-forward steps and take your time so that you can be as accurate as possible.

Here’s our handy guide to get you started for measuring shutters:

1. Get the right tools

To ensure the best results, so that your shutters slot into place with no mishaps, equip yourself with the following:

  • Quality Steel Tape Measure
  • Pencil or Pen
  • Notepad

2. Check the window for shutter suitability

Not all windows can accommodate shutters, especially if it’s an old building that’s experienced some movement. It’s imperative that the window recess is straight (a window recess is the gap between the surface of a window pane and the wall that the window is built into). The easiest way to tell is to measure the distance of each diagonal from corner to corner.

Make a note of each distance. It might be that they are slightly different but do not worry. As long as the difference between the two is no greater than 12mm (1.2cm), you are good to go. Although if the measurement is above 12mm your windows are not suitable for shutters, unfortunately. However, we do have other solutions you can choose from, in the form of curtains and blinds instead.

3. Measuring for Shutters

Here you have two options. Luckily, our shutters are designed so that you can choose either. Depending on how you envisage your shutters to be installed, you can select to measure inside the recess or at the front of the recess.

Basically, would you prefer your new shutters to have an inside or outside mount? This can be an aesthetic decision or a practical one, depending on your existing window frame or wall.

Measuring for inner recess

This option means that your shutters will sit somewhere around half-way within your window recess. Closer to the window itself but giving you more space on your windowsill.

  • Firstly, you will need to assess your window for things such as air vents and window handles to make sure nothing will hinder your shutter installation


  • Second on the agenda is to measure the width of your inner recess. Measure this in 3 separate places (top, middle and bottom) and record each measurement in centimetres. Ensure you have measured the full width of the recess and not just the window frame


  • Finally, take 3 more measurements in alternative places (left, right and centre), to assess the drop of your recess. Essentially, from the top of the inside recess to the windowsill.

Once you have each of the measurements, make a note of the smallest of each. The smallest one of the width measurements and the smallest one from the drop measurements. These will be the best ones to supply us with.

Measuring for front of recess

This option allows your shutters to be flush with your wall. Allowing the windowsill and recess to sit fully behind your shutters.

  • Again, you will need to measure the width of the recess or space you want to cover, with 3 different measurements of the top, middle and bottom


  • Do the same again for the drop measurements, taking readings from the left, right and centre of your window recess

Make a separate note of the smallest of each in centimetres to readily supply us with.

Measuring for mid-rail

If you have exceptionally large windows which need extra lengthy shutters, you may require a mid-rail. A mid-rail is just a way of better supporting the shutters for your window.

As a rule of thumb, if your shutters require a drop greater than 1,400mm (140cm), you will need a mid-rail. The good news is that you can choose where you would like your mid-rail to go. Our recommendation is that you match the mid-rail to any transom bars on your windows. Structurally, it is required that your mid-rail is a minimum of 380mm (38cm) and a maximum of 1300mm (130cm) from the top and bottom of your shutter.

In terms of measuring for the position of your mid-rail, measure from the bottom of your window recess to the centre of where you would like the mid-rail to sit

If you are matching the position of your mid-rail with a transom bar, measure to the centre of the bar.

Make sure the measurements are in cm and you notify of your need for a mid-rail upon ordering.

4. Check your measurements

Look back through your notes. Check that there are no obscure looking measurements that seem out of place. It may even be that your own handwriting has confused you. Either way, it’s always better to measure again than to second guess. The last thing you want is to supply us with incorrect measurements and receive shutters that don’t fit!

5. How to measure shutters for different window types

Of course, every home is not the same. Decades of innovation, design and architecture may have impacted on the type of window you have. That’s why we’ve got a breadth of measuring guides to help with the range of windows out there:

6. How to measure for different shutter types

Shutters can come in a variety of types. Once you’ve decided on your style, it’s important to measure according to that style, so that you get the fit and look just right.

And there you have it. You are now a master shutter measurer! Now that you have the knowledge and accurate measurements, you can jump over to our website and discover the ideal shutters for you.