Balcony Windows:  Windows  by Architects Scotland Ltd

12 clever ways to naturally brighten your dark rooms

Amy Buxton Amy Buxton
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Artificial lighting is a fantastic resource in your home but we think you should also capitalise on natural light, especially in homes that have dark pockets of space where you might not want to add additional light fixtures.

We're constantly staggered by the solutions architects dream up for dark homes so, with that in mind, we brought together some bright ways to use natural sunlight to show your home off to its best. 

From simple solutions to more high-end, complex designs, you'll be inspired after taking a look at some of these options!

1. Partial glass roof

Bishops Park SW6: modern Kitchen by CATO creative
CATO creative

Bishops Park SW6

CATO creative

Isn't this kitchen an absolute dream? It still would be without the glass roof strip, but it would also have been much darker! 

By adding this glazed section, bags of natural light pours in just where the cook needs it and thanks to an all-white décor, light will also bounce around the room.

2. Structural glazing

Barnes, London: Culmax Glass Box Extension: modern Conservatory by Maxlight
Maxlight

Barnes, London: Culmax Glass Box Extension

Maxlight

How's this for a conservatory from the future?! By building the entire structure from glass and slim metal, sunlight just drenches the home. 

3. French doors

French Windows - Loft Conversions: modern Bedroom by LMB Loft Conversions
LMB Loft Conversions

French Windows—Loft Conversions

LMB Loft Conversions

A tried and tested method for welcoming the outside world into your home, French doors are a lovely way to draw natural light into even the darkest room. 

The great thing about this solution is that they can usually be fitted to any room, even a first-floor bedroom when you've added a pretty Juliet balcony!

4. Amazing skylights

Loft conversions are popular way to take advantage of dead space in your home. However, without enough light they can become rather oppressive and dingy.

Skylights, especially in the form of Velux windows, are the perfect solution to flood the space with gorgeous sunlight.

5. Open tread staircases

Richmond, London:  Corridor & hallway by Maxlight
Maxlight

Richmond, London

Maxlight

For a more low-key way to spread natural light around your home, you could consider opting for a more modern staircase. 

While solid stairs are more common, open tread varieties help to stop sunlight being blocked by an immovable object, allowing it to filter through into corners that could have been left in the dark.

6. Double-height windows

Linkside: Oversized Culmax Oriel Bay Windows:  Windows  by Maxlight
Maxlight

Linkside: Oversized Culmax Oriel Bay Windows

Maxlight

Standard windows always help to improve a dark space, but just imagine how much brighter they would be if you had double-height varieties installed.

These ones are extra clever as they also have a glass top, meaning they snatch up valuable light from every angle!

7. Glazed gable ends

The gable ends of your home are a large, solid structure that serve a practical function, but you could make them doubly useful by adding windows. 

Thanks to their height, you'd be able to install sizeable glazing that would welcome the sun into your home.

8. Totally glass roof

Side Return Glass Box Extension:  Windows  by Maxlight
Maxlight

Side Return Glass Box Extension

Maxlight

If you're thinking about adding an extension to your home, please consider completing it with a glass roof. This side return extension looks phenomenal, having added a wealth of extra space and light.

Terrace houses in particular favour this style of extension.

9. Double-height open spaces

Frameless glass for mezzanine floor:  Terrace by Ion Glass
Ion Glass

Frameless glass for mezzanine floor

Ion Glass

Open-plan homes are fast becoming the norm, and you can make sure yours stays light and bright by not boxing off the top floor.

These glass safety rails are an extra bonus as any light that flows in will be uninterrupted. You can already see that as the sun moves around, the light from downstairs starts to creep up into the first-floor area.

10. Atrium entrances

External photo : modern Living room by Trombe Ltd
Trombe Ltd

External photo

Trombe Ltd

We love atrium entrances, but not just because they look so grand.

Essentially just boxes of glass, they create a stunning sun trap that draws natural light in through the front of your home and disperses it around the wider spaces. When a solution is both practical and pretty, you've hit on a winning idea!

11. Roof lanterns

Roof Lantern above stairwell :  Corridor & hallway by Westbury Garden Rooms
Westbury Garden Rooms

Roof Lantern above stairwell

Westbury Garden Rooms

This roof lantern perfectly demonstrates exactly why they're such a great natural lighting solution. 

This landing would have been so much darker without the lantern and, thanks to the narrow design, feels perfectly proportional.

12. Glass balconies

If you're lucky enough to have space for a balcony, always opt for crystal clear glass safety rails as they prevent sunlight being stopped before it gets anywhere near your home.

You'd naturally pair a balcony with some French or bi-folding doors, so you really want to draw the light all the way through, not halt it in its tracks!

From natural to artificial, here's some outdoor lighting inspiration: 15 ideas to light up your home exterior (which look great!).

Have you used any of these techniques in your home?
Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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