Why Marvin Windows & Doors Are Perfect for Your DEN

DEN Barnhouse Casa Nevana featuring Marvin doors via Casa Nevana on Airbnb.


 Key takeaways:

  • The process of finding windows and doors for your home build is fine art of listing your top priorities, and finding a brand that fits your budget, needs, and aesthetic desires

  • Marvin is DEN’s preferred windows and doors brand due to their alignment with DEN, quality for cost, modern aesthetic, and distribution area

  • When buying windows and doors, get familiar with the options a brand offers first. Then visit a showroom or request sample materials for a hand-on experience with the products

Over the course of my career as an architectural designer, I’ve dabbled in projects of all shapes and sizes. My work has spanned from large institutions and universities to designing cabin build plans as Design Director at DEN. Regardless of the scale of the project, the same questions come up when executing the construction of a building.

If you’re reading this, you’ve likely made the decision to start a home build and purchased your plans. Perhaps you’ve even found a builder or contractor to help you. You may be asking yourself questions such as “how long does it take to build a house?” or searching “how to calculate square feet” online. There are so many timelines, details, and cost breakdowns to consider. 

A great place to start is by deciding on the specific details for the interior and exterior of your home. While nailing down these details may feel overwhelming, it is also an exciting opportunity to research, compare brands, and find architectural features that fit your exact tastes and needs. If you need a kicking-off point, one of the first things you will want to decide on when starting your build is the brand of windows and doors to use in your house. Below, I will break down some common questions surrounding the selection of windows and doors for custom-build homes and give you an overview of one of DEN’s preferred brands, Marvin.

What are some of the most important factors to consider when purchasing windows and doors for my home?

My view on windows and doors is that they are the way the interior space of a building (or, in this case, your home) interacts with the world around it. In this sense, when making purchases for your home, windows and doors are not something you want to cut corners on, so to speak, as they are your vessels into the outside world. They are something you should invest in. You should also look at your potential window and door providers and assess if their brand and product catalog align with your own values. You want to find the perfect intersection of quality and cost, while still maintaining the aesthetics and needs of your home. It is helpful to make a list of your priorities for windows and doors and rank them to assure your purchase speaks to your highest needs.

DEN Barnhouse Casa Nevana featuring Marvin windows and doors via Casa Nevana on Airbnb.

What should I consider in terms of durability and thermal performance when purchasing windows and doors for my home?

Similar to balancing quality vs. cost for windows and doors, it’s important to factor in how high weather-proofing is on your list of priorities for windows and doors. Many brands, such as Marvin, have a variety of options on a scale of how energy and thermally efficient their windows are without compromising quality. One thing to take note of is the lifespan of a window as well as the materials used, because higher-quality, durable materials thrive in all weather conditions, result in longer product life cycles, and are inherently the most sustainable option both environmentally and economically.

What materials should I consider looking for when making a window and door decision?

The materials used across different window and door brands are very similar. Brands will typically offer a plastic or polymer offering, whether that be vinyl or fiberglass. They will also offer options such as wood interiors with an aluminum clad exterior, as well as purely aluminum products. The difference in these materials is really found in the assembly and detailing of the products. For example, let’s take aluminum-clad wood windows. The windows are assembled by either a single layer of aluminum laminated to wood in a single layer, or an extruded aluminum exterior, which is much more robust. Marvin offers a large range of windows and doors in different materials (from aluminum to different species of wood) that are assembled with longevity in mind.

Color, or finish, is another decision to consider. Marvin offers a range of standard window and door colors and also allows for more customization in its more luxurious lines. 

DEN Barnhouse Casa Nevana featuring Marvin windows via Casa Nevana on Airbnb.

Why is Marvin DEN’s preferred window and door brand?

Marvin is our preferred window and door brand for many reasons that range from value alignment to materials to distribution.

DEN and Marvin both take into consideration how structures interact with the outside world in terms of both aesthetics and functionality. Both brands also value offering quality products at a reasonable price with the most options for our customers. As mentioned above, Marvin has a wide range of options in terms of materials, colors, and structure, but they also offer some of the largest-sized windows in their price range on the market. Finally, distribution and customer support are huge plus points. Marvin is a U.S.-based company (like DEN) and distributes to a large network across the country and beyond. They also offer a great support team of folks, including engineers, that will help with your projects and answer your questions.

In summary, Marvin offers robust, high-performing products at a fair price, and the brand aligns well with DEN’s own values.

What do Marvin windows and doors offer in terms of aesthetics for my DEN build? Do you recommend specific models?

Marvin’s window and door collections complement DEN designs in that they give a clean, modern finish to DEN’s style of cabins.

Marvin’s product offerings are generally set up on a scale that starts with quality options that are a bit more affordable but offer less customization to more expensive windows and doors that are higher-end but offer more customization. A lot of the pricing is based on the materials used. Plastics, fiberglass, and vinyl are typically more affordable, whereas wood, metal cladding, and all metal are more expensive. These options all fall into about three different collections that Marvin offers. Because DEN’s designs are modern and Scandinavian-inspired, we will usually recommend Marvin collections that have a narrower profile and frame with simple, square edges. In terms of windows, we will recommend collections that don’t contain grids for interior window panes, like you might see on a more Colonial-style house. The exception to this is windows for one of our farmhouse designs. Here, we will recommend collections that blend both modern and traditional farmhouse windows, so you may see some interior grids on those.

Typically, we are not jumping aesthetics for any specific plan designs. We recommend clean, modern windows and doors for most of our cabin plans

DEN Eastern Farmhouse rendering and suggested Marvin window and door count.

What steps should I take when starting the process of buying Marvin windows and doors for my home?

I recommend first getting familiar with Marvin’s gradient of options in terms of materials and cost-effectiveness. Understand where your budget and project-specific requirements fall on that gradient. I suggest then going to a showroom or dealer where you will see the products once you have some familiarity with them. When you’re at the showroom, operate the windows and doors. Open and close them, and see what it's like to actually use them. Some dealers that are not Marvin-specific will carry Marvin products, so try to find one that is close to you. If you are not close to a showroom or dealer, it is worth reaching out to the brand to see if they will send along a few samples of wood or materials. Sure, you won’t get to operate windows and doors this way, but it’s a great alternative way to familiarize yourself with the products.

How do I order Marvin windows and doors?

Once you familiarize yourself with Marvin’s products and decide on the perfect selections for your DEN, head to Marvin’s website and navigate to your chosen windows and doors. On each product page, you will see a “Find a dealer” button. When you click that button, you’ll be brought to a page of options that will guide you through your window and door-buying process, from buying for a residential property to inquiring about extreme weather products. Marvin’s team of experts will guide you through each step of the process, and before you know it, you’ll have beautiful, quality windows and doors that perfectly complement your home.


Looking to get started on your own DEN build? Check out our plans here. If you like the idea of building your own cabin but feel overwhelmed by the construction process, check out BuiltBy DEN, our new streamlined home building service exclusively available in New York’s Hudson Valley.


Eric Leathers is a designer with over 10 years of experience in the architecture, design, and construction industries. Eric holds a Master of Architecture degree from Kent State University and has helped lead building and planning projects at all scales.

Eric is passionate about attainable, design-driven residential architecture and buildings that cultivate connections with the natural world. As design director at DEN Outdoors, he continues to explore the intersections of home attainability, thoughtful design, and technology-enabled delivery.