Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Interesting windows

Recently, the Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles blog asked
‘What does every home need’? The first thought that popped into my head was ‘original art’. But, the second thought that popped into my head was ‘an interesting window’. Of course, I am stretching the definition of ‘need’ pretty far, but every time I see a home with an interesting window, I feel like the home has something special about it.
I love a window in a shower, and this large statement window is the focal point of the room. Although it brings in great light, its high placement still ensures privacy in the room. Image via Elle Decor.

I saved this picture from a real estate listing last year because the combination of the window and the sink struck me as uniquely beautiful. This is a powder room, so it’s not as if people will use this sink for brushing teeth or any other activity that requires a mirror above the sink. There is, in fact, a mirror on the wall to the left, so that need is fulfilled – making an interesting window above the sink the perfect touch.

My own house has an interesting oval window, in both the shower and the toilet room. I love this window – although my tile person did not love it when we remodeled the bathroom. It took a lot of thought and experimentation to come up with a good way to frame the window with the new tile. I am very happy with the solution!

The most unique window I have seen in recent months was in the Bishop House – this charming stained glass window with its pointed arch can be seen from both the family room and the kitchen. Photo credit: Tina Rowden.

This bathroom, in a home designed by Summerour and Associates, has always struck my fancy because of the round windows above the vanity and tub. It reminds me of being in a ship, as the windows resemble portholes.

A reader emailed this house to me a few months ago, and Cote de Texas just did an entire post on it this week. Note the pretty oval window that flanks the door (there is another one on the other side of the door).

This room, by Sixx Design, looks like it could be in a converted church. The beautiful window makes the space, in my opinion.

This charming window, from a home decorated by Phoebe Howard, makes the space much more interesting.

Every time I visit the Max and Company store in Atlanta, I climb up to the 3rd floor to admire this beautiful window.

An oval window, placed in such an unexpected place, brings sunlight into a space that would normally be in the shadows. Image via McAlpine Tankersley Architects.

An unusually shaped diamond window, with a pretty grid pattern, sits over the sink in this bathroom designed by Suzanne Kasler.

A laundry room from a home in Atlanta has a charming window over the sink. The window was designed to give the rear exterior of the house an interesting look, and I love what it does for the inside of the house too.

Last week, Limestone and Boxwoods posted on the talented Charlotte based architecture firm Pursley Architecture. Image after image was a pure visual delight, but this one in particular really captured my imagination. The architect combined a beautifully shaped window with an interesting interior treatment where the walls are used to shape the space.

Here is the same window, seen on the outside. Although I generally am not a fan of a window in the roofline (despite the fact that it is so characteristic of French architecture), I love the way the oval window is treated in the wing of this house. I particularly like the espaliered tree or vine (getting out of my terminology comfort zone here) on the wall. Image via Pursley Architecture.

And of course, last but not least, the beautiful quatrefoil window from a home in Nashville designed by McAlpine Tankerley. Image via Veranda Magazine.

Do you have any interesting windows in your house, or are there any interesting window images that you want to share with us? Perhaps I love interesting windows so much because they are both an architectural element and a design element, and because they provide an additional way to let in the natural light that I love so much.

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  1. I agree with you. These unique windows really define the spaces they inhabit. I don't have such a great window in my house, but I would love one. Look forward to seeing if you do one in your new house!

  2. Wow, you have some amazing pictures in your inspiration files. I don't believe I've seen many of these. I also never took note of the fact that the oval window in the listing picture was in lieu of a mirror. And I've been in that bathroom! Such a clever detail and it is so well integrated with the counter backsplash.

  3. I'd very much prefer to peer out a window at the sink than to peer into a mirror.

  4. I'm sad that I don't know anything about Max & Co--it's next up on my list of places to visit!

  5. thanks for the AH&L shout-out! fun post. i love that teeny window in that laundry room for some reason!

  6. Clint, I know you have been in the house with the teeny tiny laundry room window! :)

  7. Have I? Which house is it?!?! That's funny (or scary) that i can't remember.

  8. What a fun post! Emailing to architect :)

  9. I love interesting windows and I love the windows in the bathrooms you showed. We are renting and all our windows are plain and boring but one day I'd love to have something fun and more appealing to look at!

  10. Amazing post TTI! I was so taken by the doors in the Barry Dixon room that I NEVER even noticed that petite window next to them. You have an incredible eye for creative design. Great inspiration!!

    Best regards,
    Reynolds Still

  11. We have a small round window in the guest bathroom and I'm sort of obsessed with it. I love the interest it adds to the exterior.

  12. Love your shower. Two shower heads is pure luxury! What's your view out the window?

  13. Your'e so right about those windows making the house. Love all, except value darkness in my bedroom so much...that last window, while beautiful, would never work for me.

  14. Love the round and oval windows, especially the oval one in the powder room - how clever! Agree that although beautiful, would be difficult to have in a bedroom because you wouldn't want to cover it up so the light could be an issue.

  15. What an incredible post! I love all of your examples and absolutely agree that an interesting window takes a house to the next level! Thanks, Tracey xx

  16. I am so glad you like this post! I have been thinking about it for a while, but after seeing Pursley Architects website, I felt compelled to write it up and dig through my files.

    My new house will have an interesting window or two, count on it!

  17. Beautiful every one. Pursley closet is unbelievably elaborate. It will probably keep me awake tonight.

    The new house nearby has an oval window which makes sense from the outside, This week I got to see it from the inside out. The builder knew that I would react. It was irresistible. I just had to walk up to it and peek out. You couldn't see until your head was in the window. Then there was an unexpectedly charming view. I turned and the builder was grinning at me. He knew.

  18. I love unusual windows too. These are all just beautiful.

    Here is a link to a picture I flagged a long time ago as a favorite. Hope the link works for you... http://www.flickr.com/photos/moline/424840099/

  19. Heidi - I have never seen a window like that! Thanks for the link.

  20. I love them all. Really love them. Wish I had one in my house. Looked into once and it was so costly...likely I will just have to enjoy them here!

  21. I love the round/oval ones in the bathrooms. I have a couple of eyebrow windows in our great room. Sometimes the placement of these interesting windows are not too good though; I've had several clients that try to get window treatments over some odd shaped windows because they are in a master bedroom and the light coming in interferes with their sleep.

  22. The beautiful quatrefoil window is in a guest bedroom - as beautiful as it is, I agree with all of you, having a window like this would not be conducive to sleeping in (although I can't remember the last time I slept in, given that I have 3 young children).

    I like it when people use pretty mirrors over their beds, as this gives the look without the light.

  23. We have two beautiful half rounds near the roof line of our house. I also love the windows in my dormers too. When we were pricing the windows, several people suggested we drop the half rounds and replace them with six over sixes, but I stuck to my guns (they were also important to the architect) and we kept them and I am so glad we did.

    Here's a link to the post about the dormers:

    Holly - I'll send you a photo of the half rounds.

  24. Wonderful examples here.
    I am a sucker for bronze casement windows.
    You know the type. You can open them and let your hair hang out so a prince will climb up.

  25. I really liked the sixx design room the best. Windows definately add character to spaces when done right.

  26. Just saw another interesting round window over on the Elements of Style blog:


    It's the last picture on the right at the bottom.

  27. so gorgeous. I dream of having steel windows that push open.

  28. There is another great window on Nest Egg, from her post a few days ago...


  29. I love this post. The bishop house window might be my favorite, but they are all beautiful. Are you doing any windows like this in your new house?

  30. What a beautiful post! I love these windows!
    I am always attracted by these small windows!
    Thank you for the inspirational images!

  31. This is an amazing collection of beautiful windows. I love them all but especially love the Elle Decor bathroom and the Max and Company ones. The Sixx Design one is pretty spectacular as well.

  32. I love the rose window in the Sixx Design living room -- truly spectacular. Also the quatrefoil window above the bed. These are really statement windows and I only wish more builders would experiment in this way!

  33. YES YES YES! If you have the luxury, including interesting windows in your design is a must. What they do for the exterior is just as important for what they do inside. Not to mention, who doesn't want more light! Or maybe that's just the dreary Chicago weather making me feel that way! Beautiful images! Marija

  34. I love interesting windows too {inside and outside perspective}. I should have sent you one from my parent's powder room {where I have seen them most often}. But, your made me think about having a fun window in a closet like the one toward the end of your post. Perfection in my book. Another wonderful post.


  35. I've actually read this post two or three times but haven't had the quiet time to comment...until now! An absolutely fabulous post full of amazing images. I have a soft spot for oval windows--the one in lieu of the mirror in the Powder Room is especially charming! I think we've spoken before about the quatrefoil window in the MBF bedroom from their Nashville project--I agree it wouldn't be terribly condusive to sleep, but it sure does look good. Wonderful, wonderful stuff all around!

  36. These windows!!! Beautiful! That big shower with the window in it is dreeeeamy. Thank you for posting pictures that I've never seen before. Always inspiring... xoRH

  37. Love all of these wonderful windows, I agree I think you NEED at least one in your new home. Your other home had two so to do without at least one in this new home would just be a shame. Go for a new and interesting window. Notice I am voting and there is no poll???!!!! Kathysue

  38. Love, love, LOVE all these gorgeous windows!! WOW!! It's impossible to pick just one favourite, they're all so spectacular!!

    Unfortunately, our house has boring regular windows. But if we ever build a dream house, it'll definitely have amazing windows :-)


  39. I knew when I saw the title that you'd put up those James Michael Howard ones. They are some of my favorites. Little windows are so fun and special!

  40. I've finally found a gorgeous windows, well i spend for 2 weeks just search for a very spectacular window for my new house it is very luxurious and elegant well how about the quality and the cost? I like it.

  41. The Pursley Architecture house with the interesting window in the roof line is currently for sale and belongs to the former CEO of Bank of America. The "vine" you referred to is actually an espaliered pear tree. The home is in my neighborhood. Lovely post.


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