My first apartment in New York was my first peek into “interior windows.” As you can see in the photo below, my room was likely “invented” in the main common space so that the landlord could charge more for the space. Wanna guess how much this room was in 2010?? $740. The craziest part is that it was a STEAL given the prime East Village location. But I digress. So yes, I can’t say “entirely windowless” because up in that crawl space were two rows of chunky glass cubes that let in a tiiiiny bit of light from the front room where the actual light lived. Long story short, it was in that apartment I truly realized the importance of natural light. It not only makes a space beautiful but it helps your mood and prevents you from not sleeping until 1 pm because your body thinks it’s always nighttime.
Are interior windows a new idea? No, not at all. But I have been seeing them way more and honestly I can’t get enough. Let that light in! We need to feel joy again! (kidding…or am I?) They also invite the perfect balance between an open concept home and a traditional closed floorplan.
But Jess, where and/why is an interior window a good idea? Thanks for asking, Jess. One fun/solution-based way is to put one between a load-bearing post and a wall like Emily did in the mountain house dining nook. Since they couldn’t move that post and weren’t in love with the original pony wall, Em and the design team decided not to close up the wall and instead install a window that matched the windows in the nook. This kept things looking and feeling airy.
Emily is actually keeping the good interior window times rolling in the farmhouse. She’s repurposing some of the original exterior windows and using them for the pantry as shown above. It’s going to add just a sweet architectural moment that is also special to this house specifically. Actually adding a vintage interior window (depending on the style you are going for) is SUCH a great way to bring in some soul to a home without having to worry if it’s sealed perfectly like it would need to be if it were being used as an exterior window.
Now, let’s get into all of the examples I found (well, not all but some of my favorites:)). This one above by Michelle Mele is perfect. Had that wall been solid it still would have looked nice but now the whole space feels more open and larger. It feels modern yet classic while also being decorative but ultimately functional (because it lets in light).
I also wanted you to see it from a more pulled-back angle. It really adds so much to this whole space. Let an interior window be a functional piece of art!
Ok so technically this is more than “just a window” but it has the same function on a larger scale. This window wall gives the feeling of the living and dining rooms being two separate spaces while still letting the light bounce around in both rooms. It’s almost too pretty. Ok, it’s definitely too pretty.
P.S. This was also one of the rooms that inspired me to get my shag rug. I need mine to look like that!
What I also love about interior windows is the style variety. This isn’t something that’s exclusively modern, traditional, farmhouse chic, etc. It’s for everyone and every home.
Something else to note is that they don’t just have to be picture windows (ones that don’t open). As shown in this beautiful living room by Blanc Marine Intérieurs with those awesome functional vintage windows. Let that air circulate if it makes sense with the flow of the house and design.
I’m not sure if this entry and interior window were original to this house but regardless it’s so smart. This home is in Seattle so it’s wet and the need for an entry with storage is a must. This example design by The Residency Bureau shows us how to get that needed entry without losing all of that precious light in the living room.
Big, bold interior windows at their finest. When I saw these photos I gasped. They perfectly separate these spaces, add architectural interest, AND make the space feel simultaneously cozy and grand.
But if you just want cozy, feast your eyes on this home from HGTV’s Fixer Upper by the one and only Joanna and Chip Gaines. It’s the same idea as the space above but on a much smaller and vintage-inspired scale. This is what I mean by adding some soul.
I love that they doubled down (literally) by adding in these functional windows to this home office. It makes everything brighter and if you are a parent this is a great hack to be able to work and still be able to keep an eye on the kids (or animals for that matter).
Or maybe you have a dark laundry room and want to let in some light… how sweet is THIS WINDOW?!
As a simple gal like myself, this window has my whole heart. Molly of HeyFeatherstone installed this one herself and I can’t stop looking at this. Why have a wall when you could have a window?
Think how great this window wall is for a party? The host can be prepping while there are people around the island and then some can go into the dining room while still feeling like there are all together. But mostly I just think it’s beautiful.
Did y’all think there wouldn’t be an arch?? No way. And not just one, we’ve got a double arch. I feel like whoever lives here doesn’t walk but actually floats from room to room, it looks so airy.
We featured this space by Marianne Evennou in a Link Up a few weeks ago because we all LOVED IT. Not only is this whole space so well designed but that window enclosing the kitchen from the hallway is a knockout. I would assume it also helps with lowering the noise level from the kitchen to the bedroom at the end of the hall. It keeps the kitchen bright but the zones in this small apartment (shared by a brother and sister) clear.
Here are some more photos because I couldn’t not.
Do you have a room in a hallway (like an office or playroom) that doesn’t need all the privacy? Put in an interior hallway window. I can guarantee this helps to make this space feel bigger. Plus who doesn’t want to look at all that cool art as much as possible? Oh and remember that you can always add a curtain in situations like this one for a little bit of privacy when needed.
Modern, organic, and bright. See? Style versatility, people.
They are even perfect in a mid-century modern home. Again, I know this is an entire wall but you should know that it’s an option (and a very good one at that).
From mid-century modern to modern, modern. When you live in a loft and your bathroom is in the center, why not put in privacy glass windows to brighten things up? I’m really into this kind of glass right now (it’s also been trending) because it’s the same idea as those silly glass blocks but waaaay cooler.
Do you have very high ceilings spanning to your second floor and don’t know what to do with ALL of that wall space? Well, why not add a functional (or picture) window to the room on the other side of that tall wall? It can add airflow and light and a lot of beauty.
Here’s that window from inside the room:)
The way this window (and matching interior shutters) help to gently break up this wood wall is genius. Warm and modern and I want to go there so bad. This is an example of the many ways windows are simply not just for your exterior facing walls. Have some fun!
So what do you think? Do you also love this idea? Or do you want to keeps walls, walls and not have to involuntary look at anyone in your house? Have you already taken a sledgehammer to your nearest wall and are searching Etsy for vintage windows? Let’s talk about it!
Love you, mean it.