Decorating & Design

June 23, 2016

Now Or Never: Iron Doors & Windows

Get designers’ takes on current trends in our online series Now or Never.


Industrial-style black iron windows and doors have been the darlings of the design world for a few years for their breezy, open look, but are they a flash in the (metal) pan? We asked two designers to weigh in.

Sarah Keenleyside, Principal of Qanuk Interiors Inc. with Lindsay Konior


“We believe iron doors and windows are timeless, it’s not just a trend, it’s a revisited aesthetic. We’ll use them in a loft-life space, or a commercial space with exposed ceilings — something that has that factory look especially because the windows tend to be so large — proportionally the mullions add a lot of interest to such a large opening.

There are some drawbacks, iron windows and doors aren’t great in northern climates because they lose and conduct heat very quickly, so we also use them as interior doors. As a shower door, the black iron mullions look so cool against white subway tile. Because iron doors are designed for exterior use, they withstand moisture and are totally waterproof.”

Jeffrey Douglas of Douglas Design Studio


“There is a move away from iron windows and doors. I still have clients who like them because they look so open, but I think what will replace iron frames are larger panels of glass that slide back and forth to open up the back of a house and bring in lots of light, but in a contemporary way. And we live in Canada not California; single panes don’t provide a good thermal break in temperature extremes, and you may get ice and condensation buildup inside the pane.

Black on windows and doors is certainly an on-trend choice for windows and doors, particularly in brick Victorians or limestone homes. But I think people are looking to soften that crispness and are opting for wooden mullions in a deep, warm grey.”

Author: Wendy Jacob

Sarah Keenleyside portrait, Donna Griffith Jeffrey Douglas portrait, Michael Graydon Interior, Donna Griffith


Interior, House & Home February 2014 issue