Upcycle Your Old Windows: 8 DIY Projects

You’ve finally done it. You’ve committed to getting new windows installed by S&K and now you have old window panes and shutters to worry about. First off, congratulations on your new windows! Secondly, why not upcycle your old windows to create new and fun decor in your home? We’re all about finding creative ways to recycle old goods, so check out these 12 do-it-yourself projects that transform your previous windows into something new:

Divided Chalkboard:


Great for decor and even better for communicating with your family, this chalkboard window is a perfect way to use an old window frame. It may look complicated, but all you need to do is clean the glass, tape off the frame, and spray with chalkboard paint! Easy as one, two, three. Check out a tutorial here.

Accented Mirror:

A mirror like this can be used in an entryway, restroom, or even as a piece of decor in a living room. Simply remove the glass frames and replace them with mirrors (or potentially one large mirror). You can learn more in this tutorial.

Fireplace Screen:

Image via DIYnCrafts

An unexpected and innovative way to reuse your old window, this fireplace screen is easy to make. Follow this tutorial for a step-by-step guide.

Family Picture Frames:

These rustic window frames are perfect to transition into a picture frame. You can paint the wood however you’d like to match your decor the add family photos. Learn how to do it here.

Box Planter:

Image via 1001Gardens

Take your DIY projects outside with this converted window to box planter. This is a great project for spring and adds just the right amount of rustic flair. Find a brief tutorial here.

Pot Rack:

Talk about a functional use of an old object! This upcycled pot rack is a great way to use you old windows and save space in the kitchen. Achieve this look by following the tutorial.

Gallery Wall:

Perhaps the easiest way to upcycle your old windows, especially if you have a bunch of different sizes and shapes. Clean off your old windows and hang them in a gallery wall. Add a pop of color, like the wreath in the photo above, to brighten up the look.

Advent Calendar:

Expand your holiday decor by transforming an old window frame into an advent calendar. This would be a great addition to any mantle or living room during the holiday season. Follow a tutorial here.

There are tons of other things you can use your old windows for, like shelving, making a small greenhouse, and more. What do you plan on doing with your old windows?



Energy Efficiency for New Windows

Image via Angies List

According to, “windows are responsible for 25-30% of residential heating and cooling energy use.”

If you are selecting windows for a new home being built or replacing existing windows on your home this spring, energy efficiency is important to consider. Energy efficient windows are a great way to reduce energy use, therefore saving money on energy bills and in turn, making your home more comfortable.

There are some things you should know about replacing your windows. Tons of decisions go into the type of windows you purchase and the type of replacement you will make. You may have the ability to replace windows in their existing frame. Discuss this with your window retailer and installer to see if this is an option for you. If not, you will need to decide on the fame type you would like for your new, energy efficient windows.

Other things to consider when looking at window type:

  • Glazing type
  • Gas fills and spacers
  • Operation types

Beyond type, you’ll also need to look at design, energy use and labeling, warranties, and proper installation. Check for the ENERGY STAR label when shopping and then research the energy performance label to find the best option that fits your needs. You can find ratings from the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) here, which includes ratings on all ENERGY STAR certified windows. This is a great tool to compare products.

Here are some tips for window selection:

  • Look for ENERGY STAR and NFRC labels
  • Consider gas-filled windows for colder climates
  • For warmer climates, select windows with coatings to minimize heat
  • Look for low solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) to reduce heat gain in warm climates
  • Opt for a low U-factor for better thermal resistance in cool climates
  • Consider both SHGC and low-U factors to maximize energy savings in temperate climates

The most important factor when looking at energy efficient windows is the installation. Without having the windows properly installed, the windows won’t be able to do their job properly. Installation can vary based on window type, construction of the home, home exteriors, and more. Everything should be installed according to manufacturer’s recommendations in order to perform correctly, including flashing and air sealing.

While the whole process is a lot to consider, energy efficient windows are extremely helpful in saving energy and money. Does it seem overwhelming to select windows on your own? We take the time to make sure we select the right product  and the right price for you and your needs here at S&K. Check out our window services.


This Great Upgrade is a No Brainer

This Great Upgrade is a No Brainer

“Capping” . Makes the door / window low maintenance and makes it look better.

Here at S&K, we’re constantly finding ways to upgrade your home’s style while finding ways to make your life easier. This particular upgrade is called “capping”. This easy project will make your door or window low maintenance and look great!

Check out this before and after shot.