It is no secret by now that black windows are in! However, convincing my husband that they are also timeless took a minute. I told him black windows have been around forever. I backed up my argument with a few photos of some old french county manors and he was convinced (see below). Really my hubs has given me complete design freedom and he is amazing. He may question me from time to time, but in the end he trusts me (even when I shouldn’t be trusted lol).
Black Steel windows and Doors- The look for less
If you recall, I explained in my last House update that I changed the traditional french county arched windows from the original design to a cleaner squared off look. You can click here to catch up on the building process. I am teetering the fine line of French country modern and trying to create a home that is not only timeless, but current.
I shared the same inspiration photos with my architect stating that I wanted these large black windows that almost touched the floor. The architect asked me what my budget was…
“Why do you ask?” I questioned.
“So far all of the photos you have shared with me are steel windows”. He continued… “They are absolutely stunning, but they are pretty much the most expensive windows out there.” Here are some examples.
Dang that expensive taste of mine! I wasn’t going to budge on the black windows, I just had to find a more economical solution. Side note: since our house has a basement and something to do with the water line here in Utah…yada yada, I couldn’t do the windows that practically hit the floor either. Compromises had to be made!
So my black steel window dreams had been crushed, but their death only ignited a search fire in my heart for a solution that fit our budget. My designer sister shared with me a quote when I was talking to her about having to rethink some of the design decisions in my home. She said “never get married to your first design…inevitably there will be bumps in the road and ups and downs in the building process. But, in the end you will end up with a better design than the original. ” I think that is sound advice sister! I’ve made some mistakes, but I am learning as I go, and I want to share with you the untold stories of the design process.
Thankfully my seasoned architect knew what he was talking about and designed the home for windows that would fit the parameters of Utah codes and relayed the kind information about the hefty price tag that came with steel windows and doors. Since I couldn’t do the windows that came super low to the floor, we just increased the size of the windows. The master bedroom window and the garage windows are huge!
When we met with our freaking rockstar builder I shared with him my visions of large black windows. Again, their popularity is on the rise, but manufacturers still haven’t caught up to the new design trends. There are options, but not as many with black interior and exterior. So here is the low down for all you black window dreaming peeps like me. I hope I save you some work!
There are 4 brands of windows that mimic the steel look – Lincoln, Jeld-Wen, Andersen, and MI. We went with Lincoln but Jeld-Wen is also amazing and you can get these windows locally in Utah (Salt Lake, Orem, and St. George) at Rocky Mountain Windows. Rocky Mountain is not sponsoring this post, but they worked really hard to get our business and were so helpful throughout the whole process. We did the aluminum clad on the exterior with a wood finish on the inside. Notice I’m saying it “mimics the look” because it is not the same as steel windows—not at all—but as this post says…it is THE LOOK FOR LESS. And I could paint the interior wood any color and even change it from room to room if I wanted… So there is an upside here Yay!
Lincoln manufactures an aluminum clad exterior with a wood finish on the inside. We will be painting the inside black which will give them the steel look. I went ahead and went crazy traditional with the grids since I got rid of the arches. Again…teetering the traditional french country with modern touches. And just to differentiate my home from the rest, I threw in a Roman X detail on the front transoms…which I know is not french at all, haha.
Jeld-Wen also manufactures a great product and comes in a similar finish. We ended up getting a better price point on the Lincoln and ultimately liked their product a bit better.
Andersen 100 series is a black on black composite material similar to a vinyl. Honestly this option didnt come in the sizes we needed but could be a great solution for smaller windows.
MI windows are amazing as well. The big hang up I had here was the interior window only came in white. Remember when I said earlier my heart was set on black steel windows…well enough said. I did however, use MI windows in all the basement bedrooms. They were less expensive and I didn’t care if the interior was white in those specific areas. That saved us some cash.
So the moral of this story is…if you own a yacht and 3 vacation homes around the world, go ahead and splurge on those steel windows! But if you are still saving for that yacht like me, aluminum clad wood windows are a much more affordable option. No, they aren’t a steal (or steel) but they fit our budget.
Honestly, I couldn’t be happier with how they look and they aren’t even done yet! Just wait till the whole house is complete and the interior is painted! In the end, like everyone, I am always looking for a great value, dollar for dollar, and I feel like I got that.
I hope my experience helps any of you out there that are building, planning to build, dreaming of building, or remodeling. I’ll leave you with a couple more photos of our look for less, black steel window copycats.
Oh and some teasers for what’s coming next on the home build… What I chose for my bricks and how I saved a little cash. (see above photo) Below is my roof sitting right in front. Cant wait to share more. Please subscribe to my blog below to get all my new build updates, diy projects, recipes, and more right to your inbox. You can also follow me on Instagram where I share behind the scenes footage on my stories. I’d love for you to join all the fun.
PIN THIS IMAGE
Add to favorites or read later