Win­dows: not just for look­ing through

A great start­ing point for home re­mod­el­ing

The Covington News - - SHOWCASE OF HOMES -

Many peo­ple choose to build a new home or re­model an ex­ist­ing home to cre­ate a dwelling tai­lor­made for them.

They don’t want to be con­fined to a home de­signed for some­one else’s lifestyle or pref­er­ences. Homes to­day are cus­tom­ized to their own­ers -— from the en­try door to the pa­tio door; from the peak of the great room to the choice in floor­ing. And build­ing ma­te­ri­als man­u­fac­tur­ers are re­spond­ing with more op­tions to please a range of tastes and bud­gets, and prod­ucts that out­per­form those of only a few years ago.

Take win­dows for ex­am­ple. Win­dow and door man­u­fac­tur­ers con­tin­u­ally re­fine their prod­ucts to in­crease their en­ergy ef­fi­ciency rat­ings. More man­u­fac­tur­ers of­fer prod­ucts de­signed to with­stand hur­ri­cane-force winds. And aes­thet­i­cally, win­dows have be­come an in­te­gral part of homes’ ex­te­rior — and in­te­rior — de­sign.

“Win­dows have be­come a much more in­te­gral piece of a home’s ar­chi­tec­ture and in­te­rior de­sign in the past sev­eral years,” said Dave Koester, brand man­ager for Weather Shield Win­dows & Doors. “As a man­u­fac­turer, we try to stay ahead of the trends and of­fer home­own­ers the choices they want when de­sign­ing their homes. We con­tin­u­ally ex­pand our op­tions in ex­te­rior col­ors, in­te­rior wood trim species, grilles and hard­ware in or­der to cre­ate win­dows and pa­tio doors that ap­peal to home­own­ers’ var­ied tastes.”

Ac­cord­ing to Koester, home de­signs no longer have a sin­gle oblig­a­tory win­dow in each room but rather fea­ture mul­ti­ple win­dows that add di­men­sion and char­ac­ter to a room, bring the sun­light and views in, and art­fully fol­low the pitches of the vaulted ceil­ings inside and the rooflines on the out­side.

Monumental pa­tio doors, tran­soms and cus­tom-shaped fixed win­dows, along with dou­ble hung, case­ment or awning op­er­at­ing win­dows cre­ate huge glass ex­panses, par­tic­u­larly for the back of a home. More home­own­ers and builders are us­ing tele­scop­ing pa­tio doors and bi-fold pa­tio doors up to 23- or 24feet wide to add dra­matic ef­fects to a room’s aes­thet­ics, open­ing up a room to more light, out­side air and big­ger views.

Th­ese doors are tai­lor-made for blend­ing in­door and out­door liv­ing ar­eas.

Win­dow ex­te­ri­ors are avail­able in sev­eral ma­te­ri­als; one of the most pop­u­lar is aluminum clad wood.

Through ad­vanced paint­ing sys­tems, se­lect man­u­fac­tur­ers can paint cladding in vir­tu­ally any color imag­in­able. What­ever your plea­sure — Indigo blue, dark night blue, Aegean blue, they’re all avail­able on the mar­ket to­day.

Home­own­ers look­ing to fur­ther the his­toric look of their New Eng­land salt­box or the rus­tic na­ture of their ranch home of­ten use grilles, ei­ther in be­tween the two sheets of glass or on top of the glass, in a variety of stan­dard and cus­tom shapes. If you pre­fer the so­phis­ti­cated look of cut-glass or v-groove glass, man­u­fac­tur­ers can de­liver th­ese rich op­tions for rel­a­tively lit­tle ex­pense. Weather Shield of­fers spe­cialty glass de­signs in ob­scure, ever­green, rain, bronze, span­drel and wire.

Win­dow man­u­fac­tur­ers of­fer ex­ten­sive trim op­tions inside that can match a home’s base and crown mould­ing, built-in shelves or even hard­wood floors.

Home­own­ers can re­quest win­dows in wood species such as char­ac­ter alder, oak, ma­hogany, cherry, ash, maple, and Amer­i­can fir. In­te­rior trim styles with rosettes pro­vide strong and at­trac­tive win­dow frame­work, whether it be above the kitchen sink or head board in the mas­ter bed­room.

Ex­otic styles and unique hard­ware fin­ishes also con­trib­ute to the in­te­rior de­sign of the home. A variety of con­tem­po­rary or tra­di­tional hard­ware styles are avail­able for win­dow and door locks and han­dles, in­clud­ing hand-cast bronze hard­ware pro­vid­ing old-world charm. And fin­ishes like oil-rubbed bronze, brushed nickel and an­tique brass, of­fer sub­tle hues to com­ple­ment any dé­cor.

Many man­u­fac­tur­ers high­light some of the more im­pres­sive in­te­rior and ex­te­rior de­sign ideas on their Web sites. Weather Shield’s site (weather­shield.com) in­cludes an idea house and scrap­book­ing tool for you to col­lect your fa­vorite ideas.

Clearly, win­dows have evolved both tech­no­log­i­cally and aes­thet­i­cally, and cre­at­ing a dis­tinc­tive and invit­ing look for your home is made easy by tak­ing ad­van­tage of the mul­ti­tude of op­tions avail­able in win­dows and pa­tio doors.

The ex­te­rior de­sign is only one con­sid­er­a­tion when it comes to choos­ing win­dows and doors. Hav­ing it all come to­gether on the inside is im­por­tant as well.

Metro Creative Ser­vices

Inside: This kitchen’s beau­ti­ful dou­ble-hung win­dows and bay win­dow have rich white in­te­ri­ors to com­ple­ment the sur­round­ing cab­i­netry and wood­work, and en­hance the room’s over­all in­te­rior de­sign.

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