As snow continues to fall here in Des Moines -- day after day after day -- I long for a hint of spring when I can once again open the windows and doors and smell the fresh air. That was probably why I was drawn to some spectacular windows and sliding doors when I attended the the International Builders Show in January.
Imagine simply rolling away an entire wall that separates your family room or kitchen from the outdoors. Marvin introduced "their largest door ever," a series of glass door panels that will slide open to create up to a 48-foot-wide by 12-foot-tall opening. Smaller configurations are available, of course, to fit typical home dimensions.
What makes this system particularly appealing is that the doors slide on a track that is flush with or recessed into the floor, enhancing the seamless indoor-outdoor connection. Marvin's system is called the Ultimate Lift and Slide Door because of its engineered mechanism that makes the door easy to open, close, and lock in place. Depending upon your preference and building situation, the panels disappear into a "pocket" in the wall or stack one in front of the other so they look like one single panel.
Marvin isn't the only manufacturer helping us live outside the box. NanaWall offers gorgeous floor to ceiling glass walls that fold or slide back, opening the indoors to the outdoors. Each panel operates on a hidden overhead track and stows out of sight when open. The folding systems create openings up to 36 feet wide, while the sliding systems are virtually unlimited in width size. NanaWalls also offers shorter panels that can be installed over a countertop, allowing a kitchen to open to a pool and patio area when entertaining.
Gorgeous windows open up your home to natural light and views, as well, and there are some fabulous designs to choose from, including this from Andersen. It's a enough to make me think spring might come afterall.