Monday , June 27 2022

Window Style Guide

Window Style Guide

Stuck when it comes to choosing the right type of window for your home and lifestyle? Here’s what you need to know.

To begin, it’s impossible to make informed choices without understanding these terms:

  • Awning — A single-sashed window with a hinge at the top to open up and out from the bottom.
  • Fixed glass — This type of window does not open. Available in a variety of shapes to use in combination with other windows. Large fixed windows are also called picture windows.
  • Tilt — A double-hung window where the sashes tilt for cleaning purposes.
  • Single-hung — A window with two sashes, but only the lower sash is movable.
  • Double-hung — A window featuring two sashes that bypass one another vertically. Opens from the top and bottom.
  • Casement — A single-sashed window with a hinge on the left or right that opens with a lever or crank. Provide maximum ventilation.
  • Simulated divided light —Windows with muntins attached to the inside and outside of a glass panel to mimic the look of true divided lights. Snap-on grilles are easily removed for cleaning the glass.
  • Specialty — Typically refers to unusual shapes (triangular, round, half-round) and other configurations that are not standard, such as bow and bay windows. Most are fixed and are often used to create architectural interest in a home.
  • Gliding — A window featuring two sashes that bypass one another horizontally in a common frame. Also known as sliding glass windows.
  • True divided light — Windows with two or more individual panes of glass assembled in the sash using muntins.


Finding a window that embodies the look you want inside and outside your house.

Single- and Double-hung Windows

  • Found on traditional Cape Cods and colonials, multistory Victorians, early-20th-century bungalows, and other architectural styles that are considered “period”.
  • Muntin and grille designs give strong stylistic hints, but basic design stays versatile.
  • Appropriate for all but the most modern contemporary home designs.

Casement Shapes

  • Tend to be more tall and narrow, so wider wall openings typically feature multiples, sometimes with a large fixed window in the center.
  • Ranch, Prairie, and other 20th-century home designs often feature this window type.
  • Grilles help create a more traditional look, while large expanses of glass provide a contemporary feel.

Awning Windows

  • Feel more traditional when fitted with muntins, but are more contemporary in general.


  • Because of their strong horizontal orientation, they work best with Ranch or Prairie-style homes with strong horizontal lines.

Fixed-glass Windows

  • When large and uninterrupted by muntins or grilles, they give a very modern feel.
  • Can copy most traditional looks with smaller-sized windows and grilles with appropriate trim.

Specialty Windows

  • Are able to complement a more traditionally styled larger home.
  • For smaller homes, which tend to feature simpler window shapes, they are more appropriate for contemporary designs.


Your new windows should be easy to operate and let in the light, not the bad weather.

Casement Windows

  • Provide generous ventilation because the entire sash swings open.
  • Exposure of the outward-swinging frame is only problematic in the case of sudden rain.
  • High winds can also be problematic.


  • Because they are horizontally orientated rather than vertical, they are able to shed water harmlessly if left open during a rain.
  • Can be used along, but are often installed above or below large picture windows for ventilation.

Picture Windows

  • Best when used in areas where maximum views are the objective. Offers the least visual obstruction.
  • Ventilation requirements are often solved by pairing operative windows above, below or alongside.

Speciality Windows

  • Provide more light and ventilation in a given amount of wall area.
  • Create a more spacious feel
  • Provide room sill shelves, window seats and other features.
  • Bring a lot of charm.

When choosing new windows for a bedroom, remember that many casement and awning windows do not meet building code requirements for egress windows, where passage in the event of fire is provided.

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