10 Transom Window Ideas for All Areas of the Home

If you want more natural light in your home, use these transom window ideas as hard-working home accents.

Transom Window Ideas

Transom windows are small and sit on top of a door or window frame. They originated in the 14th century as a way to let light and ventilation into a home without affecting privacy. Most of today’s transom windows are fixed but increase natural light and add to the character of a home.

Consider these ten ideas if you want to add a transom window to your house.

Put a Transom Window in the Shower

Put a Transom Window in the Shower
Sheila Rich Interiors, LLC

Transom windows are popular for the bathroom since they’re small and high, allowing privacy and natural light. 

Consider a window like this if you need to illuminate your shower. It also doubles as a shower shelf. You can opt for a frosted window or add privacy film as a layer of protection.

Heighten Your Windows with Transoms

Heighten Your Windows with TransomsView in gallery

If you ever wished you had bigger windows, make them appear taller by adding transoms. 

The transom windows work well for this coastal home, maximizing natural light. You can use this idea for any style – just match the transoms to the home’s design.

Add Natural Light Over the Vanity 

Add Natural Light Over the Vanity View in gallery

Getting ready in a dark bathroom is never fun, and neither is applying makeup in bad lighting. Solve this problem by adding transom windows overtop the vanity.

Not only will this strategy help you better prepare in the morning, but it reduces the need for artificial lighting.

Create a Picture-Esque Front Entrance

Create a Picture-Esque Front EntranceView in gallery
Everything Home

Exterior transom windows not only let daylight in but they add character. The thick trim around this transom window accentuates the house’s craftsman style.

You can carry the look into the home by adding these windows over bedroom and bathroom doors.

Use an Interior Transom Window for Added Character

Use an Interior Transom Window for Added Character

Consider adding interior transom windows if you have an older home or want to give your new home old-world character.

These windows go over door frames, and you can place them anywhere. Popular options include bedroom, bathroom, and kitchen doors.

Go For a French Country Look

Go For a French Country LookView in gallery
Carolina Design Associates, LLC

If you want to create a crisp, French Country dining room, stick with neutral colors and add transoms over all windows and doors. Use window muntins or grilles to prevent the windows from looking too minimal.

When the room is so well designed, you can go light on the decor and still make a significant impact. 

Illuminate Your Space with Multiple Bathroom Transom Windows

Illuminate Your Space with Multiple Bathroom Transom WindowsView in gallery
Highmark Builders

Reduce electricity usage and artificial light sources by installing several transom windows. You can do this in all areas of your house or concentrate the effort in specific locations, like the bathroom.

The designers added large windows over the tub and transoms over the vanity for a space that only needs artificial light at night.

Add a Traditional Touch with an Interior Transom Window

Add a Traditional Touch with an Interior Transom WindowView in gallery
DeCocco Design

Transom windows don’t always serve a purpose. Sometimes they add to the look of a room, which is the case for this traditional space.

Transom windows are easy to add over any door frame. So, if you want to install one just for the character, do it.

Put a Modern Spin on the Transom

Put a Modern Spin on the TransomView in gallery
Arbonies King Vlock

Looking for modern transom window ideas? Consider making them prominent and in triangle shapes. 

There are large spans of windows on the exterior wall of this home. The transom windows help pass the light to more rooms while giving the space a modern look.

Consider Exterior Transom Windows that Open

Consider Exterior Transom Windows that OpenView in gallery
Bonaventura Architect

The original transom windows allowed light and air into a home. If you want to reap the same benefits, install an exterior transom window that opens.

You can use an awning or hopper window. Both open on hinges, only an awning opens up and outward, and a hopper opens in and downward. 

What are the Best Coverings for Transom Windows?

Since transom windows go above a door frame, they allow for privacy. Most homeowners don’t choose to cover them. If you want to cover them, your best bet is a privacy window film or a transom window blind.

You can cover transom windows atop regular windows by hanging your curtain rod over them and using standard drapes.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

Are transom windows out of style?

Transom windows are not out of style. They are popular over front doors, windows, and the interior of a home. There are many styles to suit specific home designs.

Can I put grids in transom windows?

You can order a transom window with grids or purchase special snap-in grid kits for your existing windows. Adding grids is an easy way to change the look of your window.

Can I get motorized shades for transom windows?

You can get motorized shades for transom windows, but depending on your window size, you may need to special order them. Also, since transom windows are so small, it’s hard to find in-stock blinds.


You can place transom windows on the interior or exterior of your home to help natural light pass through. These windows are not only practical but can add character.

Since these windows sit atop door and window frames, most homeowners choose to leave them bare. Consider adding a privacy window film or blinds if you want coverings for your windows.