Sunny disposition

Several elements conspire to ensure this project brings natural light into the heart of the home
Story by: Charles Moxham Photography by: Jamie Cobeldick Several elements conspire to ensure this project
View of beautiful wooden floors & stairway ceiling, daylighting, estate, floor, flooring, hardwood, home, house, interior design, laminate flooring, living room, molding, real estate, room, stairs, wall, window, wood, wood flooring, gray, white
View of beautiful wooden floors & stairway

Originally, this bungalow had closed-off living areas that robbed its interiors of natural light. The addition of an entry portico in the 1980s merely compounded the problem, making the hallway even darker than it was.

Architect Jonathan Smith undertook the remodel of the bungalow, which included a new upper level and a light-infusing transformation of the residence at the ground level.

"We removed the portico and restored the original frontage," says Smith. "The new entranceway, taller than usual on a bungalow of this era, allowed us to introduce clerestory windows to draw natural light into the interior.

The original hall did not have any exterior windows. The space was dark, and wasn't in keeping with today's more open-plan interiors.

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Close up view of the stairway and chandelier

The previous jumble of closed-off rooms was replaced with a more spacious layout, partly achieved by removing an interior wall that restricted the central hallway. With this gone, sunlight now enters the house from the front or rear windows, according to the time of day.

The access stair to the new upper-level study and bedroom was designed with an open tread to further optimize light flow through the space.

The study at the top of the stairs and bedroom beyond it each have two skylights, and the internal glass window allows sunlight to filter right down through the double-height hall to the house.

"In the winter, sectioning off internal areas makes sense in terms of keeping rooms warm," says the architect.

View of entrance to the stairway architecture, ceiling, door, floor, home, house, interior design, stairs, window, white
View of entrance to the stairway

To achieve energy-efficient heating, pocket doors now close off the rear of the hall and the living areas from the voluminous entrance an expensive space to heat.

"Glass panels in the sliding doors maximize light from the winter sun," Smith says.

May 11, 2010

Credit list

Interior designer
Client; Bellingham Architects; Trinity Interior Design
Kitchen and bathroom designer and builder
Roko Furniture Makers
Designers Guild from Icon; GP & J Baker; Mokum
Bathroom vanity
American oak
Kris Andersen Builders
Savoir Faire in Briar from Mondial; Whitecliffs Timber
MJN McNaughton
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