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Windows: How to choose the right window style for your project.

Windows are one of the most important pieces of any construction project. Whether you’re installing replacement windows for an existing project or choosing the right windows for a new facility, they are an extremely important item.

The focus of this post will be window styles. We’ll save window construction types, energy efficiency, etc.  for a later post but I wanted to write about how to go about choosing which style of window is appropriate for your project. In my neck of the woods I see a lot of speculative buildings being built and some of the window choices are hit or miss. What I mean is, the architectural style of the building may be craftsman style but the window style will be a prairie style window. I understand that everybody has their own taste but do you want a building that looks like an amalgamation of architectural styles? Or do you want a building that looks like it has been well thought out and designed with an architectural style in mind?


Windows II

Residential Design Concept


When we meet with clients one of the first questions that I ask them is what architectural style is their favorite? If they don’t have one then I recommend a few books and I recommend that they collect photographs of projects that they like. It’s a quick way to understand what direction their project needs to take.

Windows are one of the major details that make a project the architectural style that it is (or isn’t). Some window manufacturers have taken it upon themselves to educate people on architectural styles and the windows that are appropriate for those styles. One example is Andersen windows. They have created an online home style library that illustrates what architectural styles and window styles go together.

See link below:

If you’re drawn to a particular architectural style and want to incorporate different window styles/patterns into your building design, we can do that. See the photos below. The windows aren’t exactly the same but compliment each other within the same design aesthetic. It’s important to note that not all the windows have to be the same pattern to communicate the architectural style.


Window 1

Left: Designed by McMillan Pardan Smith Architects located in Charleston, South Carolina. Right: Historic building located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Window styles are an essential piece to any building design project and it is imperative to discuss your options with an Architect that understands their importance within your desired design aesthetic.

Thanks for reading.