In the right space, black-framed windows and doors can add serious drama and style. They can set the scene for elegant and traditional interiors, as in this Sydney home, but they can work just as well as a backdrop to ultra-contemporary or industrial styles too.
Contrary to what people think, black windows don’t stick out as much on a wall surface as many other colors do, and often look like a shadow line and disappear. When you are in the home looking out the window, the black frame disappears and you simply see out the clear window.
This disappearing act is also the reason black nets are used on tennis courts — the players’ focus can remain on the ball.
We opted for black window and door frames on this project — a conversion of an old church into a home fit for modern family living.
Black or White?
Black frames aren’t always the way to go, however. Black frames can look out of place in a light and airy space where white is the predominant color. White frames work best for the windows in this light-filled open-plan kitchen-dining area, for example, but black has been used effectively on the separating the more traditional main house from the contemporary addition.
As this photo shows, black frames can enhance the view out a window and draw the eye outside.
In a wooded, garden or ocean setting, black blends into the view while white more frames the view.
Beating the Heat
It pays to be aware of a potential downside to black window frames. The black color will absorb more heat, which can be a good thing, depending on the area, But if your windows face the western sun or it gets particularly hot where you live, heat transfer can be a definite negative. Fortunately, there’s a solution.
If your black window frames are aluminum, opting for thermally broken frames. They feature plastic separators to prevent heat from transferring between the internal and external frames. And that means a cooler home.
Aluminum is a budget-friendly window option for renovations and new builds, but choosing black over the other colors available is an easy way to make a home look higher-end.
Although wood frames can be painted black, we rarely advise doing so. Black aluminum windows will always look more expensive than their [wood] counterpart painted black.
And then there’s the other option: black steel frames, which can take a home even further upscale.
The Beauty of Black Steel
Steel frames are more expensive than both wood and aluminum frames, but if you’re after an industrial or contemporary aesthetic — and your budget allows — blackened steel could be the way to go.
Steel-framed windows have an appealing “handmade” patina, an imperfect finish (as opposed to the smooth finish of aluminum) that delivers texture as well as visual appeal, particularly when blackened. The strength of steel means it can handle larger panes of glass, and slimline mullions are more easily achievable than with aluminum or wood.
Steel-framed windows were first used for industrial purposes in factories and then, from the early 20th century, in residential architecture. They fell out of favor once aluminum windows hit the scene and are only now enjoying a resurgence as the industrial trend has evolved into mainstream architecture.
Black frames often look great on contemporary or modern homes, we’ve also seen them used successfully on Victorian-era homes where not only were the window frames painted black, but also the fascia and gutter and wood trim. This can work because the color black is not competing with any other color; it’s simply there to complement the red or brown brickwork.
If your house has a lot of character and charm, black frames can look like they don’t fit, like they don’t belong, If it’s a contrasting addition, it can work, but I’m not usually a big fan of addition that doesn’t fit with the rest of the house.”
Five reasons black windows and black trim are trending!
- Black windows eliminate the need for window treatments. Just say no to heavy window treatments. Black windows are meant to be shown off and accent your home décor.
- Dark window frames create a modern look. Black windows may feel outside of your comfort zone, but the end result will be a chic modern look.
- Black window frames create high contrast. Black window frames work really well with white or light-colored walls, creating a strong contrast.
- Black windows provide the perfect frame for your view. Use black windows to create a stronger connection with the outdoors and blend your outdoor and indoor spaces.
- Black window frames are timeless. The color black is elegant and goes with everything. No matter your home’s décor, inside or out, black window frames will be the perfect pairing.