Bay & bow windows are a beautiful home improvement solution and a great way to add character and charm to any UK home. In this blog, we’ll highlight the differences between bay and bow windows to help you decide which option is the best fit for your home. Whether you’re looking to create more space, add more natural light, or simply enhance your home’s kerb appeal, Bedford Bi-folds has got you covered.

What are bay windows?

Bay Windows are constructed from three window panes, usually consisting of a large picture window in the centre and two smaller angled windows on either side. The central window provides an unobstructed view, while the two smaller windows may be fixed or vented to allow fresh air into the home.

What are bow windows?

Bow windows consist of four or more window panes, arranged in an arc formation that projects from the front of a house. They offer a spacious window sill area and allow ample natural light to enter the room. Similar to bay windows, they extend outward from the house, but instead of sharp angles, the entire bow window has a curved shape.

What are the differences between bay and bow windows?

Whilst these two styles may look alike at first glance, they have distinct differences in design and construction, read on to explore these below:


Bay windows are typically square or polygonal shaped and extend from the exterior of a home. Angled bay windows are a traditional design feature in Victorian and Edwardian buildings. The angular design provides sleek lines that add a traditional touch to modern properties.

On the other hand, bow windows have a curved shape that is better suited for period and heritage homes. Their rounded design adds a softer touch that compliments older properties.


Bow windows are comprised from more glass panes than bay windows, enabling them to allow a bigger flow of natural light into homes compared to bay windows.


Whilst bow windows are typically wider, bay windows will usually extend farther to the outside, adding more space to the inside of the home. This is because the brick wall below the bay window will be the same shape as the window, creating more usable floor space.

Planning permission:

As touched upon earlier, the creation of a bay window will normally require planning permission and adherence to building regulations as it will involve a structural alteration to the property.

Unlike bay windows, the brickwork beneath a bow window is flat, making it much easier to convert a standard flat window into a bow window. This could normally be achieved without the need for any structural work, planning permission, or adherence to building regulations.

Transform your UK home today with bay & bow windows from Bedford Bi-folds

Our high quality selection of bay & bow windows are made from either practical uPVC or premium aluminium, with a wide range of customisable options to suit your needs.

Whether you want a classic curved bow window, or a contemporary angled bay window, Bedford Bi-folds have a design fit for you. Stylish, airy, thermally-insulating, safe and secure, our bay & bow windows are guaranteed to compliment any setting in Bedfordshire and beyond. Features include:

Excellent thermal performance:

As homeowners, it’s important to consider the energy efficiency of any new window design. Here at Bedford Bi-folds, our bay and bow windows are thermally efficient, and reach impressively low U-values.

Strength and durability:

We recognise that home security is a top priority for homeowners in the UK. Our bay and bow windows have secure locks and handles offering you maximum security and added peace of mind.

Weatherproof design:

At Bedford Bi-folds, we made sure full testing was completed on all of our bay and bow windows, to ensure your new windows will withstand even the harshest weather conditions.

Variations of styles:

As a homeowner, your home’s style and personality will be unique to you. Luckily, we can provide you with a wide range of styles to choose from, so your new window is tailored to your home. These styles include elegant flush sash windows, innovative tilt & turn windows, and classic casement windows to name but a few.

Popular colours and finishes: 

All of our products can be finished with bespoke colour design, authentic wood grain effects, and exclusive powder coating finishes.

Deluxe glazing options:

Alongside modern double glazing and triple glazing, we offer temperature moderating low E-glass and stylish decorative glazing, available in a variety of finishes.

Get in touch

If you think beautiful bay or bow windows would suit you and your home’s needs, we’d happily provide you with a free quote to get your dream home improvement project underway. For more information, simply contact our friendly team today or visit our showroom in Bedfordshire to see our full range of high-quality window designs for yourself.