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Sliding Sash Window History

A brief analysis of the Historical Influences on Sliding Sash Windows from a designers perspective.

different window styles

Looking at historical influences is a worthwhile exersise before starting on a re-design. Having a look at the technical, legislative and fashion influences on a design can help put any decisions and compromises in to perspective.

My project to design sash windows for our house has been influenced by similar factors that have applied in the past.

a) The plans have to be technically feasible taking in to account modern materials and processes.

b)Window design is effected by legislation (Currently regarding safety and heat loss)

c) Fashion - Looks, status and current thinking on desirability. This is what drives us away from uPVC and towards more "traditional" style.

Looking at the historical influences of window design helps to free up my mind from constraints that could limit the design. I’m not restricted to making replica windows. I don’t have to detail the construction as “old time” joinery. I can design windows that take all the best from current thinking as well as tried and tested solutions to make good looking, high performance windows that I can be proud of.

Some folks might me more interested in “replica” windows. That might be the way to go for listed buildings but have a read through and see if there’s any historical precedent for either traditional or replica. Although styles are revived over time with the prefix “neo”, I think you’ll find historical copies to be an ultra modern fashion.

If you have views on this subject please let me know.

Next: First Windows

Other pages:

Intro Sliding Sash History

First Windows

Early Glass Production and Window Design

Rapid Development in Window Design in the 17th Century

Taxes and Technology Change the Looks

Sliding Sash Windows, Fashions and Variations

End of the Sliding Sash Era

Sliding Sash Revival

Price Forces a Different Route