written by:
October 24, 2012

From classic, cool glass swaths to a glowing semi-opaque wall to a crowning oculus of light, we've rounded up a selection of some of the most distinctive and diverse windows from homes featured in Dwell.

Modern cedar house in Great Barrington, Massachusetts

When Jeff Taylor and Alex Miller designed the Pull House in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, they took “form follows function” one step further: Form describes function. Along the house’s facades, deep window openings pop through the silvery, white-cedar cladding in bright bursts. “The punches of color are points of personal expression,” says Taylor, cofounder of Taylor and Miller Architecture and Design. “They let the vitality of the residents leak out so passersby can experience the inside from the outside."

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Originally appeared in Brighten the Corners
1 / 11

Polishing a 100-year-old, 400-square-foot barn in Oakland, California, into a meticulously finished two-story house took Tolya and Otto Stonorov longer than expected, but the renovation proved a tidy transformation that was well worth the wait. We love how this low window box perfectly frames a family moment.

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Originally appeared in Built-In Style
2 / 11
Barn turned vacation house in Pine Plains, New York

The Pine Plains, New York, home of Elise and Arnold Goodman boasts 48 windows, the largest of which measures 8'6'' by 7'6''. As architect Preston Scott Cohen explains, the "free facade makes it impossible to identify how many levels there are, or even to tell the difference between a door and a window." From without, the windows reveal dramatic glimpses of the 18th-century barn farm and new steel structure that support the house. From within, says Elise, "Each season, each time of day, offers a different view of the world. It's spectacular."

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Originally appeared in Raising the Barn
3 / 11

A dazzling display of colored windows wraps the custom furniture–filled Venice, California, home of architect Lorcan O’Herlihy.

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Originally appeared in Kaleidoscopic Cabinet
4 / 11

Jay Atherton and Cy Keener's home in Phoenix, Arizona, boasts an outdoor screen that shifts between being opaque and semitransparent.

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Originally appeared in Startin' Spartan
5 / 11

Keisha Martin and her cousin, Mickeda, chat underneath this home's crowning glory, the oculus, which allows light to spill onto each floor of the house.

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Originally appeared in Modern Rowhouse Renovation in New York
6 / 11

Los Angeles–based graphic designer Chris Loomis created a trio of window decals for the house’s three bathrooms in Surfer's Turf. Grunbaum went with a camouflage pattern for privacy in the master bathroom, which has a wall of floor-to-ceiling glass that looks onto an adjacent patio. “Because we’re sort of in the trees, I wanted to keep the plant theme going,” he says.

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Originally appeared in Modern Surf Shack in Venice
7 / 11

Like a little chapel on the prairie, architect Jean-Baptiste Barache’s simply elegant retreat in the tiny Normandy town of Auvillier is a modern play on centuries-old forms and technology.

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Originally appeared in Modern Wooden A-Frame Retreat in France
8 / 11
master bedroom interior balcony cube

Yannick Raymond takes a break on the master bedroom’s interior glassed-walled balcony, which is cantilevered over the dining area.

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Originally appeared in Split the Difference
9 / 11
LEED Platinum certification modern home renovation

Like most Northern California homes built in the 1960s, the Burnett residence originally acted like a sieve, letting air and heat easily pass through its uninsulated walls and single-pane windows. The design team replaced all of the windows with double-pane glass, which works wonders to hold in the heat.

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Only the rear of the house suggests this building’s earlier incarnation as a 1960s bungalow, and even here the original brickwork is obscured by wood cladding. A horizontal pane of windows lightens the home further.

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Originally appeared in The Tree of Ghent
11 / 11
Modern cedar house in Great Barrington, Massachusetts

When Jeff Taylor and Alex Miller designed the Pull House in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, they took “form follows function” one step further: Form describes function. Along the house’s facades, deep window openings pop through the silvery, white-cedar cladding in bright bursts. “The punches of color are points of personal expression,” says Taylor, cofounder of Taylor and Miller Architecture and Design. “They let the vitality of the residents leak out so passersby can experience the inside from the outside."

Photo by Gregory Cherin.

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