Important Design Concepts for Traditional Garage Doors

March 1, 2021

One of the most incredible things about residential architects is the sheer number of historic homes that still stand. When you include the massive number of modern homes that are built to mimic historic architecture—from Tudors to colonials and gothic revivals, etc.—there are large swathes of U.S. homes that look like they could have been pulled right out of an earlier century. When it comes to types of garage doors that are placed on these homessomething traditional is undoubtedly needed, which is the primary reason for the recent revival of carriage style garage doors. 

These types of traditional garage doors have a few features that are setting the trend for the industry. 

Trim Styles

Traditional wooden garage doors can be customized with various trim styles that give a different design aesthetic to each door. Trim may seem like a minor feature, but it can completely change the look of your door. Complete customization allows you to create a style that is unique to each project, but there are a few styles that are commonly used: 

  1. Clean (no bucks): this allows for the millwork to really show through without any other additions to take away from it.
  2. V or A bucks: single trim pieces are used to add a small bit of flair to the door. 
  3. X bucks: two trim pieces that are crossed on each door section to create a complex look. 

Windows and Glass 

The windows that are added to a garage door can really define its style, and it’s not only their size, shape, and style that matter. The type of glass that is used can make a difference. Traditional garage doors used wavy or more opaque glass, usually in the style of crown or cylinder glass. While these styles of glass are unique and traditional looking, they may not be right for all homeowners. This is because they can obscure the view in and out of the garage. However, for those looking for more privacy, this can be an ideal option for a garage door window. 

When it comes to the addition of windows, the top style of the garage door also matters. Window shapes and number will change based on whether a curved top or rectangular top is chosen. But these are not the only options, fully custom garage doors can be built with any number and style of windows regardless of the top shape of the door. 


Wrought iron was the material of choice for traditional doors. This gives the most unique and timely look for hardware like handles, hinges, clavos, latches, etc. While wrought iron can still be included in doors, there are many other metals that can be used, and certain finishes can make them look more historical, timely, and “well-worn.” 


Ready to design your new door? Let the experts at CAMBEK be your guide! We can transform any door design into a fully finished product.

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