When you take a look at what the industry has to offer right now, the choice is astounding. It certainly dwarfs what was available when I first joined the industry nearly ten years ago. Back then it was a very limited choice of white or the standard wood grains. How things have changed. After the PVC industry had a profound rethink about it’s product and what it really needs to provide to the client, things really have changed at a massive pace. So it got me to thinking, is this the best that windows and doors have ever looked? I’m going to use some examples out there, and some of my own installations to prove a point.

Colour glorious colour

People really are bored of white. When PVC was first launched, white was very much the main choice. A bit like when Ford launched their Model T car. They said you could have any colour you wanted, so long as it was black. OK perhaps it wasn’t as extreme as that, but when ti came to colour choice, it wasn’t exactly a buffet. Now, thanks to major advancements in foiling and spraying technology, it really has changed what we’re installing. Here’s one example:

And this is the infamous gold/yellow door I have been bleating about! I have not seen it in the flesh, but it actually looks better than I thought it would. The customer is very pleased with the finished article.

You may have seen this on Twitter once or twice. This is what we like to call our engineered door. It’s PVC, but not as many would sell it usually. The client had an original timber door, flag and side windows in this arrangement. The property was approaching 100 years old and it was important to the customer to keep as much character as possible. That is why this one took nearly three months to finally land on a design that the client was happy with. We were pretty chuffed with it too! Here’s some more examples of funky colours we’ve installed:

Doors really have become an art form over the past few years. Couldn’t have imagined selling this at all a decade ago!

Composite and timber alternative 

It’s not just colour which has helped to improve the overall design of what we sell, but the actual basic product itself. In the past decade I have witnessed the meteoric rise of products like composite doors and timber alternative PVC. Both of these products have helped to fragment the hold of standard PVC and help inspire homeowners to be a little more creative when it comes to changing their windows and doors.

In the timber alternative market we have had two major players help drive the market:


Residence 9

These two are responsible for bringing the timber alternative market out from a niche into a full blown market of it’s own. With superior look to standard PVC and aesthetics as good as timber, it has allowed homeowners to view PVC in a totally different way. We probably all sell one or the other of these two products, and I’m sure we can all agree that these are some of the best looking windows being produced right now.

But let’s not forget composite doors. Again this is a market that has gone from niche to full blown sector in the space of very little time and has helped to shift the dowdy nature of our industry:

Those were a mix of high end examples at this year’s FiT Show and a couple of our own jobs too. All look fantastic and definitely look better than what was available a decade ago.

Not just PVC

It’s not just PVC that has got better. Have you seen the sorts of jobs the timber and aluminium areas of our industry are pumping out at the moment? A quick scan on the NFA Cool Wall and you’ll see all sorts of high end, colourful, architectural projects, mostly residential too.

Over the past few years the focus from the industry as a whole has moved to quality, functional design that appeals to everyone. It’s really starting to pay dividends now and I think it’s also helping to improve the overall opinion of our industry.

Does this new focus of design and style mean that the current crop of windows and doors the best looking we’ve ever had? All comments welcome in the section below.