Q: Can you paint white vinyl windows black? I just adore the look of those thin metal windows and how they look so good. I just can't afford to replace my windows, though. Thanks. - T.
A: Those are steel windows you are talking about, and, yes, they are open and airy and beautiful - especially with white painted walls. But real steel windows can be expensive, and it's not as simple as just buying a can of black paint. Because this black steel frame trend is just getting started, it'll be a while before we will see black vinyl windows. I'm sorry to say, with the type of paint and prep work you might need to do, and the manufacturer's warranty of your windows, you may have a lot of research ahead.
First, try to find out who made your windows and what your warranty might be. Some vinyl windows are paintable, but there might be limitations when it comes to dark colors. If you can't find any information, talk with a licensed painting contractor or ask at your favorite paint store for information about how to prepare your windows.
If everything checks out, consider the look from the inside and outside. The frames and mullions of steel and single-pane wood windows have such a small profile, they'll look great if you can paint the inside and outside the same color. But with double-paned glass, there might be inner parts that you can't access.
If you can't paint the entire window, you might still be able to get a look similar to the sharp black outline. Consider leaving the parts of the window you see from the outside of your house white, and just paint the inside trim black. Or add a new thin piece of wood trim inside the sill. That will be much easier, especially if you paint the piece before adding it to the window.
Let me know what you find out, and good luck.
Jennifer Adams is a designer, author, and TV personality.