A couple weeks ago, Daniel submitted a living room redesign, and it was a huge hit, especially the work he did to transform the plain windows into this beautiful paned version. Daniel was kind enough to offer a tutorial on how to recreate the wooden panes. As it turns out, with just a little patience and precision, you can have these windows in no time! Here’s the scoop from the designer himself. Thanks for sharing, Daniel! — Kate
Walking along in my West Village neighborhood, I happened upon a nice restaurant with expensive French windows that had, at certain points, de-laminated from the glass. Realizing they were fake, I got to thinking about DIY ways that I could replicate the same strategy. I put my architecture brain to work and, having worked with dowels in my models, thought them the perfect material. I think it’s wonderful when you can enjoy windows not just as views to the outside world but in and of themselves. — Daniel
Read the full how-to after the jump!
- 1/8” thick 1/4” Wide x 36” long balsa strip dowels
- Elmer’s Glue
- X-Acto knife
- 3M painters’ tape (sticks well to glass without leaving residue)
- self-healing cutting mat or wooden chopping block
- cutter blade
- a patient friend :)
1. Measure horizontal and vertical window lengths and divide by the number of French panes you think appropriate for the window size. I prefer my panes to be shaped as closely to 9” x 12” as possible. Mark each increment of length with a soft pencil line drawn on the window’s mullion so no measurements will need to be taken when you’re balancing Elmer’s, painting tape and a level.
2. Using a foam brush or roller, paint the dowels (Gently! They snap easily.) the same color as your home’s molding and trim. The wood’s very porous, so two or three coats will make a huge difference. I prefer to use a semi-gloss finish because the shine helps them appear very elegant even when they’re a bit dusty.
3. Once the dowels are dry (30 minutes/coat), begin measuring and slicing the dowels into the individual vertical lengths measured on your window.
4. Get your painters’ tape ready. Carefully spread Elmer’s glue along the 1/8” side of a single short dowel and align it with the left-most pencil marking on the bottom mullion and place it vertically against the glass. It’s important to use a small level to ensure the dowel is perfectly vertical. Quickly place strips of tape across the dowel to prevent it from peeling away before the glue has a chance to dry (2.5 hours). Don’t worry about smudging glue on the glass because a cutter blade will be used to peel it off once everything’s finished and dry. Glue and tape as many verticals as you need to complete the row.
5. After the bottom row of short vertical dowels are glued and taped (they don’t need to be dry), repeat Step 4 but instead of placing the dowel vertically, glue and tape a single long dowel horizontally against the top edges of the vertical dowels. Repeat Steps 4 and 5, building horizontally then vertically, until all the panes are complete.
6. Once completely dry (15 hours), carefully peel off the tape and scrape the smudged glue residue off the glass.