CHALLENGE: Patio sliders seem to be an issue in many homes, including that of my latest client. The home incorporates two large sliding glass doors in the family room and three large sliding glass doors in the living room. As you might guess, this client loves the outdoors, and this large family is always using the sliding doors many times a day.
Energy efficiency is a high priority as the home is located in Arizona
where temperatures soar into the 100s. With energy costs rising
it is very important to incorporate an energy efficient solution
and, at the same time, incorporate the clean lines required by the
client inside the home.
I am searching for a solution that will lend itself to an open palette
of color choices for my client, as well. The family collects art
and most of the artwork incorporates very strong accent colors.
This is why it is so important to include a neutral palette on the
walls and window treatments. Nothing frilly—and ease of maintenance
is also a priority!
Could you please offer some suggestions and possibly include a photograph
of your solution to my problem so I can share it with the client?
SOLUTION: Yes, the
famous patio slider . . . I have received more questions about patio
sliding door dilemmas than any other!
It seems you have a few problems to solve for the client. The first
incorporating high use, the second being energy efficiency and the
third including a soft palette for walls and windows for the client.
I am thrilled that you are paying special attention to the client’s
needs and wants, as many designers tend to forget who they are working
for when they are focused on interior colors and materials.
I have researched the efficiency of wood shutters mounted on a sliding
patio door and the results seem to be highly desirable. Shutters
such as the ones displayed in the photograph, are an excellent solution
to the patio slider dilemma. A frame is built around the window
protruding anywhere from four to six inches from the wall depending
on the size louvers you are specifying on the shutter panels. This
will create a frame for the two sliding shutters. The ease of gliding
the one panel on the side that you will enter in and exit out is
When not needing to use the door, the shutter panels can be closed
and the energy efficient advantages are wonderful. I personally
can attest to this as I have them installed in my own home!
As for the color choices, the neutral palette of colors that will
blend with your client’s wall choices are excellent. The shutters
can be painted to the client’s specifications. Maintenance
could not be easier, as your client may dust or wipe with a damp
I can highly recommend sliding shutters for your client as an excellent
solution to the slider dilemma.
Editor’s note: This is a continuing series of articles
written by Sharon L. Anderson that will answer some of the many
questions we receive at Draperies & Window Coverings as well
as questions Anderson has encountered in her own business. If you
have a question you would like Anderson to address, please send
c/o Draperies & Window Coverings
1724 E. Grand Ave.
Lindenhurst, IL 60046
Fax: (847) 356-9013
Sharon L. Anderson has more than 20 years experience in the residential
and commercial areas of interior design. She is currently a faculty
member at two Southern California colleges. Anderson has been featured
in numerous books and publications.