French doors are glazed units hinged on the side that open inward, providing easy and ample access. Americans like to think these doors are from France, but how French are French doors really? Obviously, the French use a different name for these wonderful architectural features Parisians actually refer to them as porte-fenêtre, which literally translates to window-door.
To learn more about the origin of these traditional doors, Renewal by Andersen® of New Mexico goes back in time to uncover their roots:
Conceived in Italy, Born in France
We can trace the beginnings of French doors to the 17th century when France was at war with Italy. After their victory, the French brought home some Renaissance architectural ideas previously unheard of in France. Renaissance architecture placed emphasis on light and symmetry, highlighting the necessity for glass panes equally divided by grilles. The French drew inspiration from this, gradually reshaping the construction of their doors.
Originally, French doors consisted of small pieces of single-paned glass with wood. They resembled the appearance of windows, which was a primary source of light during daytime. At a time when electricity wasn’t available for household use, the popularity of French doors increased quickly. They were installed in balconies, and were utilized to illuminate hallways and window-less rooms. By the end of the century, this new door design began appearing in England.
French Doors in the 21st Century
Over time, the original French door design has undergone constant improvements. Every manufacturer has tried to experiment with different ideas to meet unique needs.
At Renewal by Andersen of New Mexico, we’ve combined innovative glazing and gorgeous hardware with the refined craftsmanship that classic French doors are known for. We also designed a sliding patio door version to save space and offer easier opening methods.
To learn more about our stunning Frenchwood® French door designs, call (505) 395-5120 right now. We’ll be happy to schedule your FREE estimate in Albuquerque, NM, at your convenience.