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Let the outside in
Creating space with doors and windows
Folding doors and windows are a fabulous way to open up your living areas.

Fold back the windows and enjoy the view
Fold back the windows and enjoy the view

22.05.2014 - Folding doors and windows are those which, as the name implies, fold back on themselves.  Once open, they stack to the sides leaving a large area with no posts or fixed panels to get in the way of views.  They also allow breezes through to cool stuffy houses, as well as a higher amount of natural light, giving you the opportunity to make the very best of any room.

Window varieties can be particularly useful in areas such as a small kitchen or study room, allowing the space to be opened out considerably when the weather is sufficiently clement which, let’s face it, is much of the year in most areas of the Islands.

Folding doors also have an extra advantage: they can be used to create a moveable wall which allows you to connect and divide living areas, and an every-day swing door can often be incorporated into the design for daily use.

Both windows and doors usually work along a single track system and can be designed to open inward or outward, to the left or right, or from the centre to both sides.  They come in a range of finishes, including stainless steel, wood and aluminium, as well as a variety of styles and designs.  Maintenance-wise they generally only need regular cleaning to keep components clear of grit, and occasional lubrication to ensure they continue to run along the guides smoothly.  Some even come with integral insect blinds which retract into the doorjamb or window frame when not in use.


Things to look out for when choosing your system

As with everything, it is always worth buying the best you can afford at any given moment.  Though modern systems are a vast improvement on older versions, in some cases folding doors can become difficult to manoeuvre due to a building’s movement, shrinking or swelling in wood versions, or an opening not being plumb and square.  Therefore it is worth investing in a system that can be adjusted horizontally and vertically to compensate for these issues.  If you are buying wood it is also important to make sure that it comes with weather-sealing that is appropriate for the area of the islands you live in.  

That said, folding doors and windows are a simple and attractive way to deliver an expansive feeling to the home, dramatically expand livable areas, and to create unity between indoor and outside living areas.


Gallery: Creating space with doors and windows
Fold back the windows and enjoy the view 
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Living & Lifestyle
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