Picture Windows, Chicago-Style

Some strong images have stuck with me by growing up in a 1950s ranch house in the suburbs of Chicago. One is the view of these trees, automobiles, and neighbors’ houses afforded by the huge picture window in our living room. The style — double-hung windows flanking a central fixed pane — is often referred to as a Chicago window.

This ideabook assembles a bunch of Chicago windows, in the city and far beyond. It’s an assembly which allows ample views and daylighting while at the same time providing for air and ventilation, significant considerations in only about any place — and as we’ll see, almost any room.

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Mark pinkerton – vi360 photography

A view is most likely the strongest justification for this type of picture window, and this one is a stunner. While I am not sure whether the windows astride the picture window have been operable, their width puts the accent on the squarish central pane.

Laura Britt Design

It’s clear that this picture window brings in lots of daylight, aided by the clerestory that straddles the fixed and operable windows below. While more traditional than the previous case, note the way the windows extend close to the ground, making the wall almost entirely glazed.

The huge picture window in the conclusion of the living room bring in mild in addition to some green; the latter is in the shape of the bamboo which sits just outside.

The Chicago window could be traced to the city’s tall buildings which dotted the Loop across the turn of the 20th century. Afterwards substantial rises also employed the window to construction curtain walls. This project takes advantage of a large picture window throughout the placement of the dining room table along with the window treatment.

Downey Robbins Szafarz Architects Inc..

Here is just another high rise with an image window which takes advantage of this lake view.

Claudia Leccacorvi

This subtle variant on the Chicago window locates the operable window below the middle pane.

Jones Design Build

Chicago windows are not only for living rooms and bedrooms. Here’s an example of a study that strategically orients the chair with a view out the fundamental pane involving hung windows. In my opinion, it’s always good to have a place to daydream while working.

Logan’s Hammer Building & Renovation

Leaves fill an image window at a eating area adjacent to the kitchen, looking like a painting.

Divine Design+Build

Kitchens are great rooms for versions on Chicago windows, ones which are somewhat shorter but also impressive in terms of views. Here one can enjoy the trees and water beyond while washing the dishes.

Neiman Taber Architects

We see the large fixed picture window above the sink.

Here is still another instance of a picture window above the sink. A lot more glass is found to the right and left, however, the operable windows are located by the sink to offer ventilation to your kitchen and also whoever is doing all the work.

ACANTHUS Architecture & Design, San Francisco, CA

This shows what an amenity picture windows above sinks could be.

Elad Gonen

These last couple examples reveal variants on the Chicago window. Here we view a bay with a corner window along with an operable awning below the central fixed pane. The bay is deep enough to work as a bench, a nice perch for looking at the view.

Birdseye Design

Here is just another bay with windows onto both sides and operables below the large central pane. This very low group of awning windows is just about in a individual’s head height while seated on the built in, providing a cooling breeze.

Robert Young Architects

This instance is just two thirds of a Chicago window, as only 1 casement window flanks the large fixed pane. This seems appropriate, given the scale of this room and length of this wall. The horizontal aspect ratio of the picture window makes sense.

Cynthia Lynn Photography

Last, we have just two two-thirds windows with operables below fixed panes. This design almost eliminates the corner, and may be seen as one huge Chicago window which turns 90 degrees.

Next: More styles of picture windows

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A Place on the Water: 4 Inspiring Designs

Living near water has an undeniable allure. Be it a river, lake, or even an sea, bodies of water supply relaxation, a unique vista, and the opportunity for diversion. This ideabook rounds up a few homes next to waterways, considering how they address the gloomy backyards. These examples move closer and closer into the water, until we’re in fact sitting atop it.

See countless beach-home photos | Browse 250K+ house design photos

Robert Young Architects

1. Lake Guest House on Long Island. This house designed by Robert Young Architects is a rather traditional layout for the area, but it will include some modern touches that are crucial to the way it is related to the water.

Robert Young Architects

The Lake Guest House could be put back a little piece from the water’s edge, however it focuses on the water through big porch along with the sliding glass wall that joins inside and outside.

Robert Young Architects

A closer view at the Lake Guest House shows how those perspectives of this water are visible from within in addition to the porch. When you slide open the glass walls, the new smell of this water comes indoors. Note the reflection of the water on the glass walls.

See the main house

Bosworth Hoedemaker

2. Hood Canal Boathouse at Washington State. The boathouse’s water vista is magnificent. Since the doors are strong, having them slide open is essential for taking advantage of this view.

Bosworth Hoedemaker

This small building is situated next to the water’s edge for good reason: it’s a 1950s boathouse that was reconfigured as a place to entertain guests and to store ships. Designed by Bosworth Hoedemaker, the Hood Canal Boathouse is indicated by 2 sets of sliding doors on either side.

Bosworth Hoedemaker

This straight-on view of this boathouse illustrates exactly how spacious the space indoors is.

Bosworth Hoedemaker

Stepping inside the boathouse, we may see the addition of storage and accessibility to the loft above. The space is open and flexible, allowing it to be utilized for a variety of things waterside.

3. Oval Boatdock at Austin. The Shore Vista Oval Waterfall Boatdock by Bercy Chen Studio is a two-story elliptical building across in the nature preserve on Lake Austin. This situation led to the shape that takes in expansive views of the water and beyond.

The lower level serves as the boat dock, but upstairs is an enclosed space and whirlpool bathtub.

The glass railings make sure that perspectives of the green and blue aren’t compromised.

The top-floor space adds some comfort with chairs, tables, plus a wonderful huge fan.

4. Modern Houseboat in Vancouver. Heading around Vancouver, Canada, Coal Harbour is home to a number of Floating Homes.

Here we zoom in on the modern-looking one that is two floors with a roof deck over. Each floor features sliding glass doors and more outdoor space for using this location.

In the top roof deck, the allure of water living — at least for this smiling man — are quite apparent.

See more of this modern houseboat

More: 20 Spectacular Beach Houses
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Browse 250K+ house design photos

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Cuddly Nooks for Each Space

You will wish you had a large, grand home, however still crave a small nook — a location where you can tuck yourself away to examine, reflect or just relax. Houzz contributors have come up with many ways to create just such private getaways by changing a deep cupboard, using space under the stairs, providing a corner, making a lofty window seat, plus much more. Could one of these ideas work for you?

Ana Williamson Architect

An alcove way up high. Who says window seats have to be chair-level? Climbing a short ladder up for this fun window chair separates you from everyone and everywhere else. I would feel like a little bird perched in my nest.

Susan Jay Design

Convert a profound cupboard into a hideaway space. In case you don’t require the cupboard in a house office or guest bedroom, turn it into a sitting room. Take off the doors and add built-in drawers across the base of the cupboard to create a bed-height bench and provide more storage. Install great overhead lighting and shelves for books, then paint the interior and trim into a warm colour. Throw pillows that encourage friends and family to sit, read and relax finish off the space.

Harrell Remodeling, Inc..

Close off one end of a space with a drape. There is no need to put in a physical wall to create another space. A drape works just as well, and an added bonus is the warm cozy feel that all of the fabric creates when it’s pulled shut. Place a seat, chaisewindow or window bench behind the curtain and relax.

To get this look, use a ceiling pole bracket from Country Curtains with a 3/4″ pole, add rings and hang a curtain or drapes.

Case Design/Remodeling, Inc..

Carve out space under a stairwell. Many times that this area is wasted area or relegated to storage, but a upholstered bench and lots of soft pillows turn it in the perfect nook.

A light shade palette retains a possibly dark little space bright and airy. Retain some of their storage capacity with built-in drawers underneath for storing extra blankets and blankets.

PLACE architect ltd..

Utilize furniture layout to create a corner that is floating. Start with a focal point, such as a fireplace or fireplace of bookcases. Place two comfy chairs in front to create an L-shape. Finish by adding a rug under the chairs. This physically separates the space although there aren’t any walls.

Red Element Style Studio

Place two wingback chairs facing each other under a window or against a wall to create a cozy conversation area. This works because when you’re seated, you’re looking at the individual at the seat facing you, not in the space around you. An ottoman or table between the chairs is both practical and helps enhance the look.

Priester’s Custom Contracting, LLC

Do you have a double-door cupboard on your upstairs hall? Turn it into a reading area. Attic areas and open hallways also work well as small library spaces.


Duncan Antiqued Bronze Wall Sconce – $179

Nooks desire a light source. If the nook is built into a wall or is otherwise quite tight, you might not have space for a floor lamp. Go for a wall sconce instead. If you can not hardwire into your nook, try a plug like this antiqued sconce from Crate and Barrel.


Use knee walls (half walls) to divide a little library nook at a bigger area. Surround the area with shelves filled with books and display items, then make it cozy with a rug and comfy chairs.

Use lighting to highlight a cozy spot. Adding a floor lamp right behind or next to a seat in a corner illuminates only that small space and turns into another area within the bigger room.


Arteriors Circles Floor Lamp – $715.90

This is a superb alternative for a floor lamp. Not only is it amazing and unusual, but its own three-way switch allows you alter the ambiance at the space by controlling the amount of light it sets out.


Create a kitchen nook. Are you in the kitchen a lot? In case you have space, add a couple of upholstered chairs and a small round dining table to remind one to take a seat and relax for an instant.

Craig Denis

Attempt an angled chaise in an empty corner. Place it so that it does not jut out into the space, but instead touches the adjacent walls. The small triangular space behind the chaise is just large enough to fit a table and lamp.


Separate a seating area in your bedroom. Simply turn your chairs off from the rest of the room. They could look from the window or toward a wall of bookcases.

Pilar Calleja – Draw The Line Style

Pull back in the dialogue. If your furniture is centered in the room, pull an upholstered seat back in a corner away from the principal chairs. Add a table and lamp, and you’ve got a little reading nook.

Dwell Design Studio

The ultimate private corner . This timeless design is the very definition of a”corner” The built-in benches with their large sides facing the space include solitude, but the small space does not feel dim or overly enclosed. Wish I had a place in my house for this!

Do you have a special reading nook in your home? Share a photo below!

More: Window Seats for Winter (or Whenever)

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Tastemaker: Reagan Hayes Reinterprets the Classics

It can at times seem like a few young designers are so aim with awaiting that they neglect to check out the past. But for Reagan Hayes, the past is your best source of inspiration. An interior designer switched product designer, Hayes creates products that aren’t about trends — they are about upgrading layouts that have proven the test of time. Keep reading to learn more about this stylish designer’s inspirations and favorite products and her take on the present design climate.


Morgan Lounge

This sleek sofa seat was designed to make a stunning announcement. Hayes drew from her design history and combined strong lines and sharp corners with soft upholstery and a curved back for an incredibly comfortable piece.

Q: How can you begin in product design? What is it all about furniture that inspires you?

A: I was operating in interior design for many years and had designed some custom bits for various clients. Shortly after the arrival of my first son, Henry, I wished to find a way to remain involved with the design sector whilst still spending a significant time for a mom — and that’s when I actually dove into designing couches, sofa chairs, dining chairs and other bits.

I will stay an interior designer first and foremost, however, I really enjoy the reach I have gained designing goods. There is only so many hours in the day so many design projects I can take on at any particular time, but my products can be part of dozens of additional designer’s projects at once!


Marion Daybed

The Marion peek-through chaise almost brings to mind a thinner and more modern version of a Victorian fainting couch. Each end of the chaise is framed in wood and accented with nail heads to get an extra bit of elegance. Place this piece beside a window for a perfect reading nook.

Q: What sort of changes do you see occurring in design now?

A: I think a great deal of designers are moving away from trendy and gimmicky designs to a more classic aesthetic. I also think everyone is trying to do more with less — most of our clients have felt some effect of the tough economy, and that put pressure on designers to get creative with supplying a wide variety of options for clients.


Zelia Chair

A slightly updated take on the classic Klismos chair, Hayes’ Zelia Dining Chair has the exact same comfortable silhouette because its inspiration. The upholstered seat is anchored by one row of nail heads, while the chair’s rear has a Greek key detail that may be done in gold or silver leafing.

Q: What are you trying to say with your bits? How can you describe your style?

A: I like to describe my style as”youthful elegance.” Our bits are based on classic forms that I have updated with sharp details and clean lines to give them a really balanced aesthetic. It’s important to me that each of my pieces can stand by itself and actually make a space special — so every one of them stick out in their own way.


Stanley Lounge Chair

Plush upholstery, a high back, and a deep seat make the Stanley Lounge Chair the perfect piece to sink into after a long day. Hayes styled the piece with graduating wings and one button tuft on the trunk.

Q: How has your work evolved since you first started? How do you see it evolving in the future?

A: I have definitely learned a great deal about how important it’s been for us to focus not only on the aesthetic of a piece but also its purpose. Everybody is always so surprised with how comfortable our bits are — and that’s a reflection on the commitment to not only make really beautiful furniture, but really livable furniture too.


Sylvia Sofa

This bright and tailored sofa was scaled for a more intimate setting, so it has quite a petite frame. The high-back shape is finished with a set of bolster pillows for supreme relaxation.

Q: What are some of your favorite new design trends?

A: It’s a fad that’s been around for a while, but I’m still a sucker for the colour palette and symmetry that comes through with Moroccan design.

Q: What are a few of your new favorite furniture lines?

A: For instance goods, I really like Hellman-Chang and have enjoyed seeing their new goods. They are great men in addition to designing excellent furniture, so what’s not to enjoy?

Interior and Product Designer Reagan Hayes

Q: What designers (past and current ) inspire you?

A: taking a look at projects done by Orlando Diaz-Azcuy consistently gives me a great deal of fresh tips for balancing the distances that I design for clients and including a great deal of specific details. In furniture, I really like Jamie Drake’s layout — he is always pushing the envelope in an intriguing way.

More Tastemakers:
Meet Reiko Kaneko’s Modern China
Jared Rusten
Asaf Weinbroom

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Guest Groups: 20 Beautiful Wallpapers to Enhance Your Space

I find clients pretending to not hear me once I mention that”background” word. I think that they’re remembering the small florals or the textured vinyl with all the fitting border from years back. After I show them some inspirational images and assure them that background adds a graphic/colorful element and won’t look dated, they are less fearful!

I’ve scoured my favorite sources to demonstrate a wide selection of background to match different budgets and styles. Background is similar to artwork, and it is personal, but hopefully there is at least one which strikes your fancy.

True, some of those papers are not for the faint of funding, but if you are not papering an entire room, it won’t be cost-prohibitive. You are able to paper one wall, such as the headboard wall in a bedroom, or make wallpaper panels employing inexpensive moulding. Have fun with it and don’t be afraid!
Vanessa from Decor Happy

Galbraith & Paul

Links Wallpaper

This is a hand-blocked print background that comes in a dozen different colors. The fresh grass green of the one could liven up any space.


Casablanca – Blue Wallpaper – $50

I seen Eskayel’s lovely wallpapers and cloth at ICFF in NYC this past May. I hadn’t ever seen anything quite like it. The background comes from artwork made in pencil and paint. These wall coverings with a watercolor vibe would be the imaginative outcome, and I’m enamored with the silent graphics on this one.

F. Schumacher & Co..

Askandra Flower, Delft

I’m so in love with anything hand-blocked, and also this paisley background is no exception. It comes in four distinct colorways, but this decal one is my favorite.

Graham & Brown

Stella – Yellow & Gold Wallpaper – $85

Want to brighten up a dark room? This beautiful yellow and gold pattern looks relaxed and imperial at the exact same moment.


Pink and Orange Ikat Vintage Wallpaper by Element Style – $100

If you’re looking for something unique for your home, then classic wallpaper might be the solution. This hand-printed ikat wallpaper from the 1950s or 1960s looks current today. I love the orange and pink!

Clarke & Clarke

Indira Wallpaper by Clarke & Clarke

I recently attended an information session where these wall coverings were introduced. Everyone was smitten with this particular one — has to be the stately birds.

Clarke & Clarke

Dahlia Wallpaper by Clarke & Clarke

The stylized dahlias and the dim gray background of the background would appeal to both women and men, don’t you think?

York Wallcoverings

Dotted Paisley Wallpaper by Candice Olson – $64.99

This gorgeous turquoise paisley is from the Candice Olson collection. I am able to see this framed in panels and hung in a dining room.

Eclectic Wallpaper

Quadrille is a luxury cloth and wall covering firm with gorgeous patterns and colors. I love this picture design that looks fresh above subway tiles in a bathroom.

Crown Wallpaper & Fabrics

Shimmer Collection Wallpaper by Crown

If you’re craving a little glam in your space, this background has a metallic backdrop. The black on the parchment color is bold and chic.

Farrow & Ball

Farrow & Ball – The Lotus Papers – $275

Farrow & Ball papers are not inexpensive, but each roll is handmade to order. This lotus flower pattern is a modern spin on a 100-year-old layout. It’s offered in 30 colorways and 2 distinct pattern sizes. I’m loving it in this burnt orange color.

Conventional Background – $250

I don’t think there’s anyone that does not favor the Greek key design. I love it in this subtle colorway.

Cole & Son

Patina Wallpaper

This routine is a popular one for a girl’s room, and I could see why. It is feminine and pretty without being overly sweet or juvenile.

Cole & Son

Fan Tree Wallpaper

This tree theme on a yellow ground is indeed charming. I think that it could breathe life into any room.

Farrow & Ball

Farrow & Ball – Crivelli Trellis Wallpaper – $245

Farrow and Ball papers are timeless and elegant, and this simple trellis pattern in purple is a fantastic example.

Wallpaper Collective

Little Gold Leaf on Mars – Orange – $86

Orange is hot right now and just might be the Pantone color of the year for 2012. I love this golden foliage ostrich theme on a fiery floor.

Farrow & Ball

Farrow & Ball – Broad Stripe Wallpaper – $175

I would hang this broad stripe horizontally for a more modern look. It would appear sophisticated in a girl’s room.

Eclectic Wallpaper

This is a modern spin on a traditional ikat design. The green and blue colorway makes it refreshing and vivid.

F. Schumacher & Co..

Chevron Texture, White Gold

What’s not to love about golden and herringbone? This background would amp up the glam factor in any space.

F. Schumacher & Co..

Rampura, Delft

I think this has to be my favorite wallpaper at the moment. It is a hand-block print (no surprise!) In colors of blue. I’m thinking of using it in my living room behind the TV and media console. It would add life to an otherwise empty wall.

Next: More background that wows

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