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5 Unusual Window Shapes to Beautify Your House's Façade

Your windows do more than let the sunshine in. Windows affect the overall architectural appeal of your house both inside and outside.

There's certainly nothing wrong with standard rectangular windows. However, have you ever considered a different shape, such as an oval or an octagon? Outfitting parts of your house with unusually shaped windows can increase your home's visual appeal.


A porthole is simply a round window. The porthole gets its name from the round windows found on ships, and the obvious geometry of the shape makes it ideal for modern homes. Add trim or multiple panes, and your porthole can offer a charming cottage feel.
You can have a round window installed in many different parts of the home. For instance, a porthole high up a wall can draw attention to the height of vaulted ceilings. Likewise, the unusual shape makes an attractive addition to a vaulted stairwell. You can also have a round window installed in a modern bathroom to emphasize the geometry found in that space.


A close relative to the round porthole is the oval window. While the geometry is obvious in this shape as well, oval windows often feature trim and glass panes. This makes oval windows attractive for cottage-style and especially historical homes. In fact, according to Better Homes and Gardens, ovals in architecture date back to the Baroque era, which was from the 1600s to the 1750s.
You can use oval windows in many of the same situations as portholes, such as to emphasize vaulted ceilings. However, you often see oval windows lower on the wall and combined with other trim such as wainscoting. Indeed, a trimmed oval window with multiple panes of glass is a beautiful entryway addition. You can even opt for stained glass to further the decorative effect.

Octagon and Extended Octagon

Octagon and extended octagon windows are close relatives to portholes and oval windows, just with angles. One often finds octagon windows in doors or high up with vaulted ceilings. These windows tend to be more traditional and often feature specialty glass.
Extended octagon windows are slightly less common. Some homeowners use them in in place of arched windows for classical appeal. In fact, extended octagons are a stylish shape for dormer or bay windows. Because of their rarity, extended octagon windows tend to be the centerpiece of a window array.


Arcs in architecture promote a classical appeal. Arched windows are one option, but some homeowners prefer to top rectangular windows with semi-circles. Semi-circles offer the same chic classicism but with more design options. For example, for more visual interest, you could choose a semi-circular window with fanned panes to go with a rectangular window featuring a traditional grid.
Semi-circular windows don't have to top rectangular windows. In fact, semi-circles can be made up of quarter circles, so you can break up a semi-circle with a square window or a post in between the sections. Semi-circular windows are also a common shape for eyebrow windows, which is a distinctive style of dormer. Such an installation changes the architectural façade of your roof.


Sometimes you just want a classic arched window. And it is a beauty, with its straight lines topped with graceful curves. Arched windows can be made of single or multiple panes of glass, which may be etched or stained. Such specialty glass gives your arched windows a spiritual appeal.
Arched windows work best in traditional and historical homes. While they can stand alone, one commonly sees them in repeating patterns across the house's façade. In fact, arched windows are a beautiful choice for bay windows.
If you want to make your home's façade and interior more distinctive, consider choosing one of the above shapes in windows. Talk to City Glass of Bloomington, Inc. about which window shapes will work best with your home's style.