The Renter-Friendly Upgrade TikTok Swears By For Instant Charm In A Dull Space

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If you wish you could add some classic and vintage-looking charm to boring or ugly windows, there are a number of ways to create the look of centuries-old paned window glass at a very low cost. Mullions and muntins, the terminology for the cross beams found holding smaller panes of glass and providing support on many older windows, fell out of fashion as the 20th-century Industrial Revolution made it easier to create larger pieces that covered the whole window. But that doesn't mean the look of these vintage windows never really went out of style, with many window designs today reverting to a mullioned or muntined-look. There are a number of ways you can get this look on your windows commitment-free, a great hack for covering up renter-unit windows that may be less than inspiring. Approaches include pre-made insertable window muntins, window films, and peel-and-stick stickers. There are also some great approaches if you're looking for a permanent, inexpensive solution as a homeowner.

Even better, most of these DIYs are budget-friendly are completely removable when you move out. While a grid pattern is a favorite standard, you can also create unique designs and diamond shapes. They are a great way to counter an ugly view outside or add architectural interest to the room.

Renter-friendly muntins

TikTok user @lonefoxhome showed off a precut muntin insert that fits right into the window frame and is held by tension. These sets are available from Amazon or Etsy, and are paintable, so you can match them to fit both the indoor color scheme and the outdoor one. You can also do an even more cost-friendly approach by purchasing thin pieces of wood or molding, like these Balsa Wood Sticks from Amazon, then cutting them down to size to create a grid with wood glue. Use strips of double-sided tape to attach them to the window. 

You can also purchase muntin sticks from Amazon that already have adhesive backs, or vinyl stickers from Etsy that use static cling like many window films to attach to the glass and create a grid. If privacy is also a need you can also purchase window film from Target that gives the effect of carved glass and ready-made muntins.

Permanent muntins

If you own your home, there are also some more permanent solutions to creating muntined and mullioned windows that are more permanent but don't involve completely renovating all your windows. Thin molding can be cut down to size, and instead of double-sided tape, you can attach with hot glue or a sturdy adhesive like E-6000. Another Youtuber used paint to create stylish muntins on a newer window by using a straight edge, painter's tape, and white chalk paint after carefully measuring out the lines by hand. You can also create a black-painted diamond shape for a more English Tudor look.

Since new windows are often weatherproof and double-pained, this is a great way to get those functionalities and good quality windows while achieving an antique look or the look of custom windows. Removable or permanent, adding muntins and mullions is a great way to add character to large expanses of glass, making the view as pretty inside as outside.