Eight Specialty Window Ideas to Personalize Your Home

December 16, 2009

Remember in grade school drawing pictures of your house? A square box with square windows, right? Sweet symbols of security. But windows don't have to have be square; the use of specialty windows can go a long way toward personalizing your home. Specialty windows refer to windows that are made without 90% angles. They can be either pre-made or custom made. Try some of these specialty window ideas to personalize your home:

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  1. Quarter rounds - use quarter round stationary windows on the sides of a bathroom window to increase light along the length of a tub.
  2. Half rounds - can be used atop a square or rectangular window to soften the shape and allow in more light. Half rounds are one of the most popular shapes, and can also be used over doors to increase the perceived height and importance of the entry.
  3. Full rounds - use as a frame for an especially lovely outdoor view, or to restrict the eye to a small portion of an otherwise boring or unsightly view.
  4. Octagonal - used with many styles of architecture from contemporary to traditional, this shape when dressed up with a grille, is often associated with colonial-style homes.
  5. Ovals - ovals are versatile because they can be used either vertically or horizontally. A horizontally placed oval is a good choice for a landing between flights of stairs.
  6. Archs & Gothic - sometimes selected to mimic a roof line or a doorway, these arch-style windows often are seen with grilles or art glass.
  7. Bay and Bow - these windows protrude outward from the exterior wall line and provide extended views as well as cross ventilation if installed with operable flankers. Bay windows can be built with window seats, doing double duty as windows and architectural features.
  8. Free Form - it is possible to have windows to match just about any line of masonry, cement, or wood. Custom made windows add drama and focus to any wall on which they are placed from bathroom to garage.

Most specialty windows can be further enhanced with internal or external grilles, textured, opaque, leaded, stained glass, or other art glass.

Make your new windows work hard for you by getting windows with coated glass. Coating sheets rain or sprinkler water toward the edges of the window, instead of allowing it to bead so your windows stay sparkling with little or no washing.

Finally, check with your contractor to be sure that whatever windows you select will receive building permits and pass inspections.

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