Know Your Window Styles: 10 Popular Designs

There's more to windows than glazing. Learn about the design, history, and practical uses for ten of the most popular styles used in homes today.

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  1. Single Sash Windows


    The sash window consists of two panels arranged vertically. Attributed to the English inventor Robert Hooke, its use caught on quickly due to the design's simplicity. In the single hung sash, the bottom panel moves up to allow the flow of air, while the top panel stays fixed.

    Broadus LLC Architecture + Graphic Design

  2. Double Hung Windows


    The double panel sash window is probably the most widely used style today. It consists of two vertically arranged panels, both of which can be moved all the way up and down.

  3. Casement Windows


    The casement window was popular in the UK before the invention of the sash window and is still popular in many European countries. In this design, the operable panel (installed singly or in pairs) hangs on a hinge that enables the window to be opened like a door.

    Apartment Therapy

  4. Awning Window


    The awning window is a casement that's mounted vertically, with the hinge at the top so the window pushes out. This style of window is especially useful for allowing air to flow without admitting seasonal debris (e.g., falling leaves) or rainfall. 

    Scottish Home Improvements

  5. Bay Windows


    Since their use in castles during the English Renaissance, bay windows have come a long way. Today—in mansions and modest homes alike—bay windows are beloved for allowing maximum light to enter a room, as the sun moves across the sky over the course of a day.

    Walter A. Aue via

  6. Bow Window


    The bow window depends on a curved architecture and uses more glass panels than a bay window does (to account for the curvature). The window pictured is from the Hôtel Otlet in Brussels, Belgium.

    EmDee via Wikimedia Commons

  7. Jalousie Window


    The jalousie window is a distinctly American style, invented by Joseph W. Walker of Massachusetts in 1900. It consists of thin, staggered strips of glass that open and close together like a Venetian blind.

    Jacob Davies via

  8. Palladian Window


    The Palladian window is derived from the work of exalted Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio. The Palladian design is usually a large panel embellished by an arched top and two smaller side panels.

  9. Sliding Sash Window


    The sliding sash window consists of two horizontally mounted sashes that open and close easily by sliding along on a track. Sliders are an excellent choice of window to mount over a counter or sink—any circumstance where there is an obstacle to access. 

    JWS Windows & Doors

  10. Fixed Window


    Fixed windows do not open; they can either be located on exterior walls to admit natural light or set into interior walls (e.g., over a door). These windows come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, and of course custom options are also available.

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