25Feb 2016

Wood sash windows: What the Edwardians got right

Posted in: sash windows and period homes  –  By Patchett Joinery

Usually, wood sash windows would only be associated with Georgian architecture, which came about before the Edwardian era, but wood sash windows actually enjoyed somewhat of a resurgence with the Edwardians. The Edwardians did some really interesting things with their wood sash windows, evolving the style and laying the groundwork for many modern features that are still commonplace today, from glazing bars to clear window panes.

When we think of Edwardian architecture we think of light, bright spaces. Huge rooms with tall windows and swooping curtains that could make just about any home feel palatial. It’s a stark contrast to the Victorians who we often associate with shadows and darkness. For the Edwardians, windows were important for a lot of reasons, and that shows in the attention they paid to their design and construction. You could liken Edwardian architecture to folk music in a way; they borrowed ideas and designs from previous eras and added their own unique spin, and the results were breathtaking.  While some of the designs around their sash windows became complex, the results were always simple, elegant and focused on one thing – maximising light and space.

For this reason, wood sash windows are still an extremely popular choice for many modern homes. They have a unique ability to make the smallest spaces seem huge, letting light swoop in and fill the room unhindered. The way wood sash windows open – often with a slide – is also designed to maximise air flow and create an nice, cool and natural ambience in the home during the hot summer months. Wood sash windows truly are an attractive feature of any home, but they look their most perfect when part of an old, Edwardian build.

Signs of an Edwardian home might be red bricks or pebbled walls, steep pitched roofs with gable-ends and chimneys that protrude elegantly at an angle. All of these things could give you cause to stop and think, “Is this property Edwardian?” but the things that really give it away are the beautifully crafted wood sash windows. Nothing compares to the authentic and traditional vibe that wood sash windows can give, particularly if they’ve been professionally restored or still have traditional wood frames that are uniquely carved and fitted.

If you’re considering purchasing a new property or are lucky enough to live in a period home, take a look at the windows and see what they’re like. If you were considering replacing them altogether, you might be better off getting them restored to their original glory. Not only will it turn heads, it’ll probably increase the value of your home in the process.