Craft ideas for old windows

Abilene, TX(Zone 7b)

We are replacing all our windows. The old ones are single pane. Most still have the glass. Some do not. The wood is weathered looking. Any craft ideas? So far I plan on making shadow boxes out of a few. I would love to hear your ideas!

Lowell, IN(Zone 5b)

You can faux stain glass or etch them and hang them either indoors or out. I think there's also a spray out there that'll mirror them and you can alternate the panels. They may also look nice mounted from brackets on a fence so that it stands away from the fense and gives a 3d look. the brackets would be on both top and bottom to brevent them swaying. They can be used as picture frames as well. I've also seen some with flowers pressed between the original pane and glass.

Theyu can also have the glass removed and cork alone or wrapped in fabric replaced in the spaces for memo boards. you can also use them to make panels over a frame for a cold frame by hinging one side and using dowels to prop the other side open as needed.

I can go on and on.......there are several good craft books out there with ideas for recycling things like this or found at yard sales or flea markets.

Hulbert, OK(Zone 7a)

Hi Wolf,

Here is what I do with old windows and scraps of stained glass:

Thumbnail by WUVIE
Huntington Beach, CA(Zone 10a)

Hi Wolf,

I also love to find old windows to put into my garden. Here is a picture of what I did with one of them. The paint on the glass is glass paint and painted from the back side. We attached it to the house very firmly. lol

I also just got another larger one with 6 or 8 panes of glass from my dads neighbor. I'm still thinking about how I want to do that one too.


Thumbnail by SoCal
Lowell, IN(Zone 5b)


Great treatment to the window. I pictured several ceramic other media brightly colored frogs surrounding it, kind-of trying to figure out how they could get into the window to the lily pads. Could be a nice 3d addition.

Big Lake, TX(Zone 8a)

I have turned one into a pot rack. I hung it from the ceiling with chain and put hooks in it to hold pots. I have seen one on TV the other day where they made one into a coffee table. They made a box for it and put the window on top for a shadow box affect.

Huntington Beach, CA(Zone 10a)

Fl, that's a great idea with the frogs. I'll have to look for some nice ones to put on the frame. This is right across from my pond...hence the lily pads.


Lowell, IN(Zone 5b)

or on the wall

Las Vegas, NV(Zone 8a)

SoCal~So pretty! I have an old window...I need to find someone to paint it! Where do you live???? Oh ya! I just went and looked...Huntington Beach, CA....I'll drop it off on my way to Vegas to see my DD & DN at the end of the month....wait...I guess it's not on my way:) I wish it were, that's beautiful. K~

Huntington Beach, CA(Zone 10a)

Thank you for the nice compliment, but I have to give the painting credit to my sister as she is the artist. I only gave her the idea and the glass. lol

Oh, and if it's too hot in Vegas, just take a short cut and come by the beach area. It's in the low 80's with a lovely breeze.


Las Vegas, NV(Zone 8a)

YOu never know who may show up on your doorstep:) We were at the Oregon coast camping this past weekend....beautiful, windy but no rain. Perdect for DH and friends kites.

Huntington Beach, CA(Zone 10a)

K, that sounds like a lovely area to go camping. Glad you all had a good time. I haven't been camping for several years and I do miss it. I was raised in a camping family and we used to camp everywhere....loved it and now I'm just too old to sleep on the ground anymore. lol


Las Vegas, NV(Zone 8a)

We love camping...we bought an Aero bed and love it. I would like to get the frame. My DPs bought us a bigger tent so I can really set up house. DH, DB and DF are planning and designing a camp trailer that will be all inclusive. I'd like to get bunks for kiddos that want to stay and the little tall room that holds the potty so I don't have to wake DH to take me to the potty. I sleep pretty well with a little help so do make it till am now:) My fibromyalgia doesn't make sleeping anywhere much fun so what's the difference? We like tent camping us crazy...not that I would turn down a nice trailer but for the $$$ I'll stick to the tent. Camping anywhere in the Pacific Northwest is wonderful. We did enjoy Yellowstone and Mt Rushmore too. My sis-in-law and I have taken our 7 kids to 23/24 different states by car to include British Columbia on my end and Mexico on hers when she lived in San Diego. We've also been to Big Island, HI and Oahu for 2 months when she lived there. Not by car...........:)

Newcastle, ON(Zone 5a)

I used big old window frames for a rose removed.

Thumbnail by Starzz
Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

Hi wolf,

Wow! Lucky you. Old windows are an awesome find. So many things you can do with them. Here are a few that I like:

Replace panes with mirrors. (paint, distress, stain wood as desired). Hang on wall as you would any large mirror. I've seen some gorgeous examples with coat of white paint over existing/partially peeling paint, sanded off in places for that shabby chic look. Wall "mirrors" of this type are quite expensive.

Paint in a color to match the external trim on your house and place window on a windowless exterior wall of your house. This works esp well on a garage wall - to break up the huge, windowless expanse. Can also add a window box planted with colorful flowers to continue the illusion and/or "hang" curtains on the inside of the window (against the house).

Replace panes with mirrors and hang on a garden wall to give the illusion of a larger garden. Best used where it will reflect a very lovely shrub, tree, etc.

Put eye bolts in top of window frame. Suspend window from ceiling via decorative
chain to make a sort of "room or space divider". The open design helps to dilineate space without closing off the space.

Crossville, TN

Here are the windows that caught my eye when they had gourds growing on them.

Arizonabelle lives up the road from me and I would pass her house all the time. Since I love gourds, I decided to stop (being the shy person that I am) and introduce myself. We are now great friends and she has joined DG...and my group of Gourd ladies.

These windows look great when they have things growing on them. Jo

Thumbnail by roadrunner
Abilene, TX(Zone 7b)

Hey everyone! Yall have all had such WONDERFUL ideas! I may have enough windows to try them all! I am going to make a large cold frame first then use the rest for fun stuff. Thank you all so much for the ideas.


Gambrills, MD

Hi Everyone! Happy New Years! Yes this is what DH and I are doing this new years'. He's going to the Outback Steak House to pick up some salads and appetizers and we will be staying in! I have been googling my fingers off to try and find some ideas for the old wood window I have. Originally my plan was to paint beautiful flowers on them, so I enrolled in Donna Dewberry's class. I am enjoying that, but my painting is not reading for display so I will continue that. Over the holiday I made some windows for friends and daughter in laws. They turned out beautiful but there is no real skill involved. I bought the crackle paint from Michaels. Took all the glass out of the windows and bought mirror to go in, in place of the glass. The crackle effect is really neat. You have to use their undercoat and their top coat. One one, I painted white first, then the black. When the black started to do its crackle thing the white came through. Once dried, I put a coat of modge podge on it, and on this one, I put four white porcelin nobs accrose the botttom to hang keys on. It really looked great. I've done four others in different colors. Mine had a gold base with white over top. Its going in my foyer to add a little more light. I am going to do coffee tables and end tables, and probably something from the ceiling to hang pots and pans. I'm really looking for something else though. Does anyone have any links to places that have more that a couple of windows. I'm really batting a big fat zero. Thanks for your help! I look forward to getting to know you folks in the weeks and months to come. Have a good night.

(Zone 1)

THANKS everyone for all these GREAT ideas! Now, I just need to find some old windows!

What talented and crafty folks y'all are!

lovemy3sons: Can you post a photo of some of those that you've done?


Frankfort, KY

I have friend who turned hers into a pot hanger for her kitchen. Very attractive.

Strasburg, VA(Zone 6b)

here's a link to various window projects....

i'm saving windows to make a big greenhouse....any i come across that won't work for that project i will definitely find some use for with all of the suggestions :-)


Strasburg, VA(Zone 6b)

yet another site....

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Thanks, Lynda. So many great ideas.

Strasburg, VA(Zone 6b)

Your welcome :-)

Henderson, NC(Zone 7b)

Wuvie, How did you make those big beautiful colored panes...That is just to pretty.

Hulbert, OK(Zone 7a)

Hi Dahtzu,

Many thanks! Someone on the highway put out a bunch of old windows
with a sign that read "TAKE FREE". So I did.

I knocked out the clear panes, then used sheets of stained glass to make
a new window. Some of the old panes popped right out, so after tracing around
the glass on the sheet of stained glass, a pistol grip glass cutter was used,
silicone was used to hold and seal the glass and wa-la.

If you don't want to buy stained glass, you can also clean the existing panes,
then apply Gallery Glass or other glass paint to the panes in your choice of

You can also glue tempered glass to the panes, then grout. This is
yet another project in the making.

:-) KM

Henderson, NC(Zone 7b)

Thanks Wuvie, I've been looking and reading all the threads here and I believe you can do anything. So much talent. Love your work.

Hulbert, OK(Zone 7a)

Aw, Faye, you're making me blush!

I just have fun. :-)

Henderson, NC(Zone 7b) have fun, but you also have a BIG bunch of talent, and it shows. Keep posting..I'm loving it.

Citra, FL(Zone 9a)

Ditto here, datzhu-WUVIE always has interesting posts. :-)
I love the window trellises - and Arizonabelle's is a sculpture! Very appropriate for AZ.

Grantsboro, NC(Zone 8b)

How about the sides to a green house? And if they move up and down that would be even better.


This message was edited Oct 3, 2007 6:25 PM

North West, OH(Zone 5b)

I have a project on the back burner that I'd like to share. I have a very small kitchen, in fact it's really too small to even house a table. Unfortunately I also have very limited counter space so I NEED a table.

My friend gave me a great old 5-paned window in a rather unusual shape that is about to become a service/utility table. When I remodeled my kitchen a few years ago I did a mosaic pattern on my counter-top with tiles cut from broken Fiesta dishes and I plan to follow that same pattern on my new table. I'm intending to break out the remaining glass and place plywood on the under-side. Then I will will place the tiles between the the individual frames and grout and seal just as I did the counter. I have some old porch posts that will serve as legs and voila a table is born.

Topsham, ME(Zone 5a)

Can't wait to see that!!!

Crossville, TN

What an imagination! It should be wonderful! Jo

Citra, FL(Zone 9a)

Beyond imagination, the talent, patience and skill to execute the idea-wonderful!

North West, OH(Zone 5b)

I have the imagination and the patience and it really takes a minimal amount of talent and skill. It's time that always puts a hurt on me. This was originally intended as last winter's project, but winter slipped away and before I knew it I was out in the garden (at which time all else comes to a screaming halt). I'm glad I made my plan public as now I have a push to get me going. Pictures to follow. Promise.

Henderson, NC(Zone 7b)

Lala _Jane, I'm so impressed..What an imagination. Please post before and after pic.
YGF Faye

Portland, OR

I have a bunch of old windows and wanted to make a garden wall out of them. The only thing I'm worried about is the possibility of lead pant getting into my dirt. Should I strip the windows first? any ideas?

(Pat) Kennewick, WA(Zone 5b)

Lala Jane, did you ever get your table made? Do you LOVE it? Can we see pictures???? PLlllleeezzzzzee???

Alachua, FL

Morasha, Have you thot about sealing with a clear coat such as polyurethane? Would be safer than stripping.

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