How a Long Window Can Make a Good Kitchen View Even Better

updated May 30, 2019
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(Image credit: Tracy Stone Architect)

If you should find yourself in the fortunate position of adding on a kitchen or building a new house, I want to put an idea out there: horizontal windows. Out of all the spaces in your home, a long, low strip of horizontal windows is perfect for the kitchen. Here’s why.

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Long windows below and a clerestory above. (Image credit: Tracy Stone Architect)
A large window just above the backsplash and a clerestory above the upper cabinets. (Image credit: SHED Architecture & Design)

When you’re in the kitchen, you’re often bustling about. From refrigerator to counter to stove and back, the kitchen is the one room that’s mainly about moving instead of remaining in one place. Horizontal windows make perfect sense for such a room! As you bustle to and fro, such openings offer continuous views outside.

At eye level, horizontal windows provide direct views to the garden, yard, or street. Placed up high as a clerestory, views are to the sky and treetops, which are particularly appealing when a more direct view is of the side of the neighbor’s house, a busy street, or a parking lot.

Horizontal windows also do much to light the countertop when placed just above, or to light the entire space when used as a clerestory.

Did you do this (or would you like to do this) in a kitchen renovation? Or is it too contemporary of a look for your taste?