Expand Your View with Picture Windows

Expand Your View with Picture Windows

Expand Your View with Picture Windows

Picture windows — big fixed windows typically without glazing bars — are a terrific way to bring in light or highlight a special view. Preservationists may shout in the notion of image windows in certain styles of historical homes, however, as with anything, there is a time and a place for image windows.

Especially appropriate in modernist homes, picture windows will help create a focal point for a room, which is helpful in areas lacking architectural detail. And let’s not overlook the above unobstructed views — both external and inward. While we mainly think of the view from inside looking out, ancient image windows have been viewed as an chance to exhibit a favourite vase, lamp or special accessory as people seemed in from the outside.

Advantages of image windows:
Unobstructed views of the outdoorsExcellent insulation and weatherproofingDurability; without the mechanical parts to break and no operations to compete withPicture windows may cost significantly less than similarly-sized windows with moving partsOpportunity for high-performance low-E coatings, tints, solar cool reflective glass and argon gasDisadvantages of image windows:
Non-operable windows do not offer ventilationThe big expanse of glass may make them more vulnerable to breakageMore: Frame the Views With Divided-Light Windows

Cary Bernstein Architect

Talk about a focal point! This may not be a large room, however installing such a window actually leaves an impact on this particular landing. I think I’d plop down on that window seat and forget why I was going down or up the stairs.

See Building

Everyone can enjoy a view whilst doing chores like washing dishes, but just how can you achieve this some if you need all of the storage you’ll be able to get — especially in a small kitchen? Answer: make the backsplash window. Done and done. Professional!

Divine Design+Build

This kitchen-window trio uses a central fixed image window flanked by two operable casement windows to bring in some breeze with that perspective.

Cary Bernstein Architect

There is nothing I enjoy more than dining al fresco. On days when it is improper (or impossible) to sit outside for dishes, I notice that I scoot my chair nearer to the window to absorb as much sunlight as possible and pretend I am outside. Blur the barrier between indoors and out with amazing floor-to-ceiling (or, in this circumstance, bench-to-ceiling) windows that bring the outside emotionally, even when you can not be there .

A exceptional appraoch was taken within this living room design. The image windows flank the fireplace, making them seem more like paintings.


I genuinely appreciate how the architect made the tall, skinny image windows a work of art within this space. Not only are they practical in terms of earning light, they add a compositional element that enhances the room. Well done! Accomplish a similar look by calling on Pella, Anderson, Marvin or some number of window companies to customize windows to your area.

Witt Construction

If you’re not prepared to eliminate classic windows entirely, but wish to achieve an unobstructed view, I believe this approach hits the jackpot.

Hugh Jefferson Randolph Architects

Picture windows are as much about the opinion out since they are about the opinion in. Should you go the image window path, consider carefully the look you want to introduce to the outside world.

Sutton Suzuki Architects

Having constant corner windows expands perspectives, increases light and makes for an extraordinary architectural detail. If you want a full-glazed room, Marvin now offers a ventilation image window with a patented hidden display system that enables it to start evenly on either side for air exchange and cross breezes, when aligned with different windows.

Bertram Architects

I am not sure how much work I’d really get done sitting in the front of this scenic window in this writer’s studio, but that I might be highly motivated, so you never know…

Doing dishes doesn’t seem so horrifyingly annoying when you get to gaze out onto a forest of greenery, does it?

Cary Bernstein Architect

I am all for windows in the restroom. There is nothing like having a natural light-flooded toilet to make you feel like you’re king or queen of earth. They may present an insulation/moisture-leaking problem, however a photo window is an excellent feature.

David Vandervort Architects

Double-decker glazing allows for more light to come in via the high windows without sacrificing privacy on the lower windows. The high-contrast materials (light walls, dark casings) and low-key furnishings are a superb complement to these feature windows.

More: Skinny Windows: Exclamation Points of Light
Ribbon Windows: Privacy and Cool, Modern Design
Architectural Details: The Peephole Window

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