Colored Glass Windows: Your Complete Guide

colored glass, MI Windows and Doors

Popular in the Middle Ages, colored glass windows are still going strong today. Although often associated with churches, colored windows are also found in government buildings, schools, and private homes. If you’re looking to upgrade your home’s aesthetics, you might want to consider installing colored glass panels in some of your windows.


What Are Colored Glass Windows?

Colored glass windows have glass panels that have been stained either one color or multiple colors; this is why colored glass is sometimes called stained glass. Depending on what you want your windows to look like, colored glass windows can have a simple or complex design. In some cases, the panels are a solid color, like red or blue, but you can also find stained glass that has intricate representations of snowflakes, animals, mountain ranges, and more. Colored glass can be used in any window style to elevate your interior design.


The Evolution of Colored Windows

The earliest known stained-glass windows were created around 600 CE, during the Early Middle Ages. Within a few hundred years, they’d become extremely popular throughout Europe, often appearing in the most ornate churches and cathedrals. One of the most famous examples is in the renowned Cathedral of Our Lady of Chartres in France, which boasted 143 stained glass windows, many of which still sit in the cathedral today.

Stained glass windows began to decline in popularity during the Early Modern Era but have made a comeback over the past 200 years. Today, there are many artisans who can fabricate amazing colored glass for windows. Plus, many window manufacturers fabricate colored glass panels in-house or through a vendor.


How Are Colored Windows Made?

The methods for making colored window glass have become more sophisticated over the years, but some of the same techniques still apply. Today, most stained glass is manufactured in one of the following three ways. 



The co-extrusion process is remarkably similar to how colored glass was made in the Middle Ages: Artisans mix two or more colored materials into the liquid before it cools. It’s the most well-known way to make colored windows and is the same method used to make colored vinyl.


A relatively new technique for making stained glass, lamination has become quite popular in recent years. It’s actually two layers of glass that are bonded together, with a colored interlayer in between them. Laminated colored glass is often just one solid color and can be used for windows, doors, and as cladding, which is the outer layer of a wall. 


You can also make colored glass by simply applying a coating or coatings. In fact, many people who create stained glass as a hobby do so using stained glass paint, which is available at most hardware stores, arts-and-crafts stores, or online. Many types of tinted glass are made with coatings, for example, Low-E coatings create UV-resistant, energy-efficient windows.

colored glass, MI Windows and Doors

Let’s Take a Look at Colored Glass Window Designs

When it comes to colored glass window designs, you’re only limited by your imagination. Do you want a glass panel depicting a group of different birds nestled at a birdbath? Done. Are you interested in images of trees with their fall colors fully ablaze? You got it. Or are you determined to re-create an all-American scene of a boy hooking a trout at the local fishing hole? No problem. 

You can even eschew designs altogether and incorporate colored glass block windows – which are configurations of squares, either of the same color or different colors – into your space. In short, there are many ways to decorate windows with colored glass. Here are some of the most popular types of colored windows.


Rose Colored Glass Windows

One of the most prominent custom window colors used in glass windows, rose, complements any architectural style or interior design. And rose is a perfect year-round color: Roses bloom continuously for a long period of time – generally from spring to mid-autumn – and the color rose is considered a “winter color.”

Antique Colored Glass Windows

Highly prized for their historical value, antique colored glass windows are an aesthetic marvel. They can give your home an ornate look while increasing its curb appeal. Generally speaking, antique colored glass is any colored glass over 100 years old. It often resembles amber stained glass, but you can find antique colored glass that features just about any color. Depending on where you live, you might have trouble locating antique windows in your area; your best bet is to go online to find antique stores that have them in stock.

Etched Colored Glass Windows

Similar to frosted glass windows, etched colored glass windows boast an aesthetically pleasing look. The difference between the two is that etched glass typically features some kind of design. Because etched glass is not conducive to clear sight lines, it’s typically used in spaces that require privacy, like bathrooms and bedrooms.

Modern Colored Glass Windows

Thanks to modern technology, you can get almost any color and/or design in your colored glass windows, making it easy to find windows that fit your style and enhance your home’s aesthetics. Indeed, after decades of declining popularity, colored glass windows are starting to make a comeback. If you find colored glass windows that work for your home, you can be at the forefront of a home design revolution. 


Consult the Color Experts at MI Windows and Doors

Colored glass is just one way to make your windows pop. At MI Windows and Doors, we offer a variety of tinted glass, as well as obscure glass, which comes in different textures and tints. Plus, you can choose from a wide selection of colored window frames, including everything from gray to bronze to forest green. Check out our selection of windows to find the color that’s perfect for your project. 

More Helpful Articles

window installation, MI Windows and Doors

How to Install a Window: Tips and Tricks from the Pros

Looking to install your new replacement windows yourself? Learn how to install a window and get important tips and tricks in our complete guide.

window installation, companies, MI Windows and Doors

How to Find the Best Window Installation Companies

Need to replace your windows and do not know where to start? Let this guide from MI Windows and Doors walk you through what to look for in the best window installation company.


Vinyl Windows From MI Adorn St. Jude Dream Home® Near Kansas City, Missouri

Located in the chic neighborhood of Reserve at Stoney Creek in Lee’s Summit, Mo., the St. Jude Dream Home® Kansas City is a beautiful new structure that was recently sold at auction to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.


New In-Law Suite Brings Grandmother Closer To Family With Superior Windows From MI

Originally dubbed “Providence” by the farmers who emigrated there in the early 18th century from southeast Virginia, the town of Fairfax still provides a heavenly slice of Americana for its 24,000 citizens.


MI’s Vinyl Single-Hung Windows Create Stunning View To Experience Outdoor Pleasure

Viridian Reserve at Hickory is located in the heart of Chesapeake, Virginia


Kitchen Redesign with New MI Windows Helps Bring in the Light for Entertaining

In modern society, we shop, stream movies, and compete in online games with competitors from around the world — all from the comforts of our home.


MI Windows Bring The Light Into Pennsylvania Sunroom With Top-Selling Replacement Windows

Sunrooms – or, as they’re also known, solariums – can denote a certain level of status.

lancaster case study

Upscale Units In Lancaster Boast MI Vinyl Windows With Clay Exterior

Like many medium-sized cities across the country, Lancaster, Pa., is going through a renaissance.

melbourne case study

Tiny House Manufacturer Unveils New Model With MI's Energy-Efficient Windows

A number of factors have combined in the 21st century to create Americans’ current fascination with tiny homes, including the demand for a greener lifestyle and a craving for simpler living.

Towson Case Study

Apartment Residents In Towson, Md., Enjoy The Quiet With New Sound-Absorbing Vinyl Windows

If you’re looking for examples of how American suburbs are transforming in the 21st century, look no further than Towson, Md.

Add a comment

Restricted HTML

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a href hreflang> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote cite> <code> <ul type> <ol start type> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <h2 id> <h3 id> <h4 id> <h5 id> <h6 id>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.