Never Underestimate the Power of a Fresh Coat of White Paint

No one can resist a classic Georgian sash window in a period property beautifully finished in Old English white.

It’s a timeless look which is why Georgian sash windows have been repeated endlessly throughout the decades and even now are seen on new build developments. So, it’s a bold person who thinks about departing from white when repainting their sash windows. However, sash windows don’t always have to be white.

Fifty Shades of White

Actually, it’s more like hundreds of different shades of white! How can this be possible? Well, slight variations in pigment, texture, undertone and colourant are behind all shades of white and impact the eye differently. If you look closely, you’ll see sash windows in all types of variations of white, from a winter white or off-white to buttermilk or a creamy yellow. Ask a bridal boutique what white means to them, and you’ll be presented with numerous shades and hues.

Brilliant white is quite an intense, even harsh colour, and it’s not a colour commonly present in nature. Traditional mellow red brick or stone houses suit a muted white finish, particularly rural properties. There are loads of varieties of off-white moving through to cream with quite strong yellow tones. These create a softer, more mellow appearance.

Colour Matching

If you’re replacing some windows but leaving others alone, it can be challenging to match the paint colours. Brilliant white might look odd when there are other windows which were once brilliant white but where the paint has aged. Sometimes, choosing a slightly different shade of white can help blend the new windows with the old. The same applies if you are refurbishing some sash windows and not others.

Add a Splash of Colour

Rendered and whitewashed properties, both new and old, can benefit from sash windows painted in a colour other than white. Soft pastels look good on rustic cottages, whilst the trend in the southwest is to use a seaside blue on pretty beachside houses. There are some examples of faded blue or sage green sash windows on the North Norfolk coast, where the properties tend to be brick and flint with warm red pantile roofs. These colours also work well for stone properties without any exterior render.

Another option is to paint the frame one colour and the actual window panels and glazing bars another. This looks nice with stone mullions if the window sash itself is white, but the frame is a different colour, usually chosen to blend with or complement the tone of the stonework.

No Paint

It’s always an option to leave the wood bare to create a rustic look or even something a bit continental if you have shutters. In reality, natural means treated and stained; leaving wood exposed to the elements will only create rot and deterioration.

How to Choose the Right Colour for Your Sash Windows

If you look at different shades of white on colour charts, you’ll probably end up with your eyes crossing! You’re best off keeping it simple. Consider whether you want to stick with white or change colour. Here are some helpful principles on colour choices for all types of windows.

  • Light shades and colours highlight the window
  • A dark window frame on a light façade creates contrast, depth and character and can be a really eye-catching architectural feature – this applies to both old and new properties
  • A high gloss finish can actually make a frame appear more distinct, even darker than the actual colour
  • Muted, subdued, or dark colours make a window frame disappear into the glass and give a smoother, flat appearance, popular in contemporary buildings
  • A matt finish makes the window frame appear lighter and more subtle
  • Choosing a strong colour works best when it is combined with a calm façade which balances it out

Take account of the house’s style and age and what’s around it. You don’t want your home to stand out from the rest of the road for all the wrong reasons. If you have a listed property or live in a conservation area, there will be regulations that apply to your windows, including the choice of paint colour. If in doubt, it’s always better to play safe with a period property anyway.

We bespoke manufacture sliding sash windows for all styles and ages of properties, from the very ancient and historic to the uber-modern and contemporary. We offer a limitless choice of paint colours applied using spray paint technology for the best finish. We also refurbish and restore existing sash windows. All our windows offer the best blend of traditional craftsmanship and modern materials to produce a finish that is aesthetically pleasing and superior performance in acoustic control, thermal regulation and draught sealing.

Contact us here to learn more about bespoke sliding sash windows and our repair and restoration services.