Design Decisions

Black vs White Windows

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In the design community, there is huge trend with black windows. Does this mean white windows are out? Does this mean black windows are just a fad? The answer to both of these questions, in my opinion, is no.

Both black and white windows are great options according to the style of home you are looking to build or redesign.

When choosing a window color and design, both heavily rely on two factors: what style of home you are building and your personal preference.

Black Windows

Although black windows have become very popular just over the past few years, they actually date back to the twentieth century. Black steel windows were originally installed in warehouses and factories. Then they eventually made their way into residential properties.

As we are seeing black windows used more frequently in new construction and older homes now, some think it may just be a trend. I disagree, I actually feel like black windows are classic and considering they date back so far, they have a sense of character and timelessness about them.

Black windows can be used in all different design styles. The one we probably see the most is in modern farmhouse design. When people see a white exterior with black windows, they instantly think “farmhouse”. But they are certainly not limited to modern farmhouses.

Modern homes also commonly have black windows. They are natural fit in these types of houses considering their industrial origin.

Photo Credit: Studio McGee

But as I mentioned, they are not limited to one particular style of house. The house we are currently building is a cottage style home, and we are using black windows inside and out. I think they will create contrast and give the exterior a touch of modern.

Cons

If there is one negative to black windows it is that sometimes the grilles can be hard to see in the daylight on the exterior. They blend in with the dark glass if there isn’t something bright reflected in the windows, or if there are no curtains or blinds directly behind the glass.

White Windows

While Henry and I are huge fans of black windows, we also love the classic white window. We seriously debated if we were going to go this route for our new build. We struggled with the choice for several weeks, but in the end black was the winner.

Photo Credit: Grand Tradition Homes

White windows work well when you have lots going on within the exterior design. They allow for a subtle touch while drawing more detail to other architectural features. White windows are simply a very clean, classic design that will go with any style of home.

Cons

One reason that we didn’t go with white windows is that we were afraid the color difference would be too noticeable between the white of the window and the shade of white that we are painting the house. With black windows, this is not an issue since it is a drastic contrast.

Both black and white windows are great options depending on your overall look. The price of black windows is significantly more, but both are timeless looks that I feel will always be around.

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13 Comments

  • Reply Janice @sawdustsisters

    Thank you for the info! Love the black! Question , how much more are black windows when compared to white, percentage wise?

    June 21, 2019 at 11:43 am
    • Reply Brooke

      Hey Janice! We have had lots of quotes and it would probably be at least 15-20% more. This is based on quotes we have gotten in the past.

      June 22, 2019 at 7:41 pm
  • Reply Chris

    Great looking windows! what brand, series, etc? thanks!

    June 27, 2019 at 9:41 pm
    • Reply Brooke

      Thanks! Our windows in the farm house are Plygem Myra Double Hung.

      October 15, 2019 at 12:59 pm
      • Reply Lauren

        Are all the windows throughout the house double hung?

        November 7, 2019 at 6:08 am
        • Reply Brooke

          Hello Lauren! Yes, all of our windows are double hung in our current home.

          November 7, 2019 at 6:12 pm
  • Reply Maria Colappano

    Would you recommend mixing both black and white windows (black door systems and white windows) in an open concept space?

    September 5, 2019 at 6:59 pm
    • Reply Brooke

      Hi Maria. I don’t see anything wrong with that. In fact, I think it would look great!

      October 15, 2019 at 1:00 pm
  • Reply Leslie

    I have seen another article stating that you could have black exterior windows but white interior windows if you’re worried about the contrast of black inside your home but want the look outside your home. I am so new to this but we are getting ready to do an addition. Is this actually possible? That would be super ideal for me. You say here that you are using black windows “inside & out” so it makes me think maybe that is a thing??

    October 22, 2019 at 4:35 pm
  • Reply Brooke

    Hello Leslie!
    Yes, this is for sure a thing and doable. Once you meet with the company you are ordering from, they will be able to give you different options. We just prefer the black on both interior and exterior, but you can do either way. It’s actually cheaper to only do on the exterior!

    October 22, 2019 at 5:38 pm
  • Reply JB

    Hi
    All the windows in my home are white, I’m getting a new window in my kitchen when I renovate and am considering having the inside of the window black with white trim. Exterior will be white like the rest. It will be one piece of glass, no dividers. Is it wrong to have one interior window in my home black when the others are all white? There is only one window in my kitchen. Thanks for your help!

    November 8, 2019 at 3:57 am
    • Reply Brooke

      Hello JB! I think it will be fine to have this one black window as long as it’s in another room. Each room can have it’s own look, consider this like a piece of art. It will look great!

      November 8, 2019 at 2:27 pm
      • Reply JB

        Thanks Brooke!

        November 9, 2019 at 12:35 pm

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