Window Grilles are the checkerboard pieces that divide the glass in your window. Some people refer to window grilles as muntins, grids, and mullions. Choosing a window style that suits your architecture and purpose is hugely important; however, equally important is the grille chosen to separate the glass. Windows are considered the eyes of your home! You wouldn’t throw on glasses that don’t suit your face or the wrong prescription. It just doesn’t make sense!
That said, the style of your home semi dictates what type of grille design you want on your windows. There are plenty of patterns to choose from in both ready-made windows and custom versions… almost too many, which makes selecting a window style and then a grille pattern difficult! At brick&batten, we have done tons of research on this subject to be sure our clients are getting the appropriate style and pattern.
Let’s get some info straight about grilles, grids, muntins, etc.:
♦ Some grilles are permanently bonded to the inside and outside of your window glass. They are essentially fake muntins. It’s one large piece of glass made to look like individual window panes.
♦ Muntins are wood grids that separate different panes of glass in true divided light windows.
♦ Grilles may also be attached to windows with latches. This makes removing the grilles possible so cleaning is easier.
♦ Aluminum grilles are permanently sealed between the panes of window glass. This creates a smooth surface that’s easy to clean.
♦ Grilles come in lots of different materials, including: wood, aluminum, fiberglass, vinyl, etc. Pella has done an excellent job showcasing the different types of grilles in each material.
What grille pattern is best for your home’s style? Let us help!
Colonial or Cape Cod
A Colonial or Cape Cod style home will typically have divided light, double hung windows. If you’re choosing to stick with the historic style, you will see six individual panes of glass separated by muntins in both the top and bottom panels of the windows. However, you have the option of choosing the number of glass panes in each sash. Looking at this photo, the windows seem right on, but the shutters are a complete disaster. Read our blog on shutter house fails to find out why!
A Prairie style is a type of Modern home. Straight lines and a simple grille pattern open up the viewing area of the window. Casement style window is usually used.
A Farmhouse window grille allows for clean and sleek lines. There doesn’t need to be a lot of window trim or hype. Think simple! This features two panes of glass separated by a muntin on both top and bottom sashes of double-hung windows. This results in a four-pane glass window when closed. That said, some farmhouse windows do a 2 over 1 design. That means there are two panes of glass on the top and one large pane of glass on the bottom of the double hung window. Both styles are beautiful and completely appropriate for a farmhouse.
Craftsman or Bungalow
Craftsman and Bungalow style homes feature double-hung windows with muntins dividing the upper sash into four or six sections. The lower sash remains unobstructed for a clear view of the outside. Also, more commonly, Craftsman and Bungalow homes go for a more updated look with elongated grille panes on top sash of the window and continue with a clear view and no grille on the bottom sash.
Contemporary or Mid-Century
Contemporary is sometimes confused with Mid-Century Modern architecture. A Contemporary home means what’s happening now and in the future. A Mid-Century Modern home refers to an era and home style that lasted from the mid 1930’s to mid 1960’s. Both have similar window style. As with mid-century, contemporary homes let in the light! The windows are usually casement and aren’t obstructed with grilles to block the view.
Overall, choosing the correct window style and grid patterns can be a tad overwhelming. There are just so many options to choose from. Windows can make or break curb appeal so you want to be sure you love your windows. That said, many homes are a combination of architectural style… so window styles and grid patterns can be interchanged depending your likes and dislikes as well. Can you have a Modern Farmhouse? Yes. Can you have a Craftsman Bungalow? Yes. Can you have a Mid-century Art Deco? Yes. Just one more thing to consider when choosing window styles and grid patterns….and one more reason our brick&batten designers can help when you’re feeling overwhelmed.
Test yourself… do you know what grille style would best suit your home?