Choosing a unique and eye-catching design for your new windows can make your exterior stand out. Just remember: when it comes to exterior design, consistency is key. Certain window grid patterns have been traditionally associated with certain architectural styles. While you don’t necessarily have to follow the traditional design scheme for your window installation, deviating from it too much is risky.
Here are some design tips from the experts at Renewal by Andersen® of Eastern NY.
A Brief Overview of Window Functionality
Understanding how the functionality of windows developed can help you pick the right kind of window for your home. Historically, double-hung windows were installed in colonial homes and cottage farmhouses. Double-hung windows’ main functionality was providing excellent ventilation—the bottom sash lets in cool air while the top sash lets the warm air out.
However, as architectural designs became more streamlined (giving way to the emergence of Prairie-style homes) and the use of air conditioning and heating became more widespread, casement and gliding windows became more popular. The functionality of windows shifted from focusing primarily on ventilation to letting in more sunlight and giving better views.
Listed below are common window styles, the architectural style they’ve been historically associated with, and the grill patterns that best complement their designs.
Two-Pane Double-Hung Windows in Cottage Farmhouses
Simple two-pane, double-hung windows work perfectly in architectural styles that prioritize utility and simplicity. You can customize your double-hung windows with a variety of frame colors and hardware options.
Other Patterns: Colonial Grilles
Don’t restrict your choices to traditional styles. Cottage farmhouses usually have a traditional exterior, but there is still room for creativity. Quite a lot of farmhouses have fun exteriors with whimsical features, like gingerbread trim and window boxes, so don’t be afraid to experiment a bit. That being said, if you prefer sticking to a traditional theme, colonial grilles are always a good choice. These grilles divide a window into four, six, nine or smaller panes.
Double-Hung Windows With Colonial Grille Patterns in Colonial Homes
Colonial grilles are a natural choice for colonial homes, a house style known for its symmetrical lines. These grille patterns also look great on Gregorian-style homes, which are quite popular in the southern regions.
When to Choose Colonial Grilles:
Colonial grilles can make tall and narrow windows look a little wider. You can also use them on cabinets to spruce up your interior.
Casement Windows With Prairie Grills in Prairie-Style Homes
Prairie-style homes have a simple aesthetic. Frank Lloyd Wright, the visionary architect behind this house style, believed that a home should be able to meet a family’s needs without being too intricate design-wise.
Prairie grilles help draw attention to the artful use of glass on casement windows. The simple grill pattern outlining the window also fits in with a prairie-style home’s defining features, namely its horizontal lines, flat roof and open floor plan.
Diamond-Pattern Window Grids for Victorian and Neo-Victorian Homes
Older architectural styles, specifically Old-World European ones, usually feature windows with ornate patterns. Gothic architecture is particularly popular in these types of homes.
Victorian homes are lavishly embellished with decorative trim, often in bright colors, due to the romantic belief that furniture should be beautiful rather than practical. That’s why diamond-pattern grids are a common fixture on the top panel of windows in Victorian homes, although the lower panel is usually less intricate, having just one glass pane. The windows in Neo-Victorian homes are even more intricate, usually featuring six individual glass panes separated by muntins.
Six-Pane (or More) Casement Windows in Tudor Style Houses
Diamond-pattern window grids are also a common feature of Tudor-style houses, which are known for their brick, stucco and exposed timber accents. Their clustered casement windows usually have six or more individual panes arranged in diamond-pattern grids.
Sleek Casement Windows in Contemporary Homes
Contemporary homes look best with windows with a sleek, clean design as opposed to windows with intricate details. Crank-out casement windows with plain, large glass panels are a suitable addition to any contemporary home. Diamond-grid patterns and colonial grilles would also look great on the casement windows in a contemporary home.
If you want to maximize the view and natural light provided by your window, you need to choose windows with expansive glass panels. This can be a challenge from a manufacturing standpoint because larger glass panels require more support from thicker frames. Fortunately, our exclusive Fibrex® composite is an extremely durable frame material that can support heavy loads.
Made of 60% polymer and 40% reclaimed wood fiber, Fibrex combines the low-maintenance nature of vinyl with the durability of wood. These qualities allow Fibrex frames to support a massive glass panel that would normally require thicker frames.
Aside from durability, Fibrex also has excellent insulative capabilities and can withstand extreme temperatures. Rigorous testing has shown that Renewal by Andersen windows were practically in the same condition as newly installed windows, despite being exposed to frigid winters and scorching summers for 20 years.
Consult a Professional
Having trouble deciding on a window style for your home? Our design professionals can help you decide. Renewal by Andersen of Eastern NY offers free consultations to our customers so we can manufacture custom windows according to each customer’s exact needs and preferences.
Need new replacement windows? Our consultants can help you pick the right casement, double-hung or bay window design options. To schedule your free consultation, call us at (844) 486-0203, or leave us a message here.