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Glass - The Last Light Bender

January 09, 2023
Last updated on January 11, 2023

The history of architecture is the history of the search for light, as light dispels all darkness and illuminates a path. A poorly lit area not only lacks visual appeal, but it also radiates a dismal and unpleasant mood. Is it any wonder, however, that light and the brightness it creates guide designers down the road of innovative home design?

Glass possesses a level of power that no other substance can match. Glass is an unusual substance, and its optical qualities govern how it interacts with light. It has nearly limitless potential for modifying a room, both practically and artistically, and recent technological breakthroughs have expanded these possibilities even more. Given its versatility, besides the usual fenestrations, one can create play of Light in Effective Ways by using glass in the following new ways.

Incorporate Skylights

Glass Roofing

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Skylights are referred to as "windows for the roof" because they allow waves of natural light to enter without being blocked or obscured by exterior objects. In the case of modern renovations, including structural glass into the design may transform a typical room with little light into a bright, light-filled area that changes character throughout the day.

Glass pantile or roman roof tiles are an excellent way to provide pockets of natural light from above without the 'evident' presence of a roof light. This design concept is understated but really effective. Instead of a plain glass panel, a vibrantly colored or stained glass roof may be used to make any space seem more attractive and vivid.

Creatively Implement Glass Walkways or Floorings

Glass Skylight

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Installing glass walkways or floors in a house can help users get the most out of natural light. Light can travel through glass walkways in the floor. If the design includes a light-filled upper level, a glass floor can be installed to allow light into the room below. Adding glass floors or pathways will not only make any area more bright and dynamic with the use of light, but will also allow the creation of a distinct design statement.

They enable designs to flow vertically from one space to another, which would not be feasible without an open-plan structure. Glazed floors have become a powerful design tool in their own right, with transparent, colored, and even more unconventional types such as sand-blasted and printed glass available.

Design a Glass Staircase

Glass Staircase

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The staircase, an often-overlooked component in the home, may have a significant impact on how light passes between different floors. A staircase would normally make a building darker; however, this is not the case with a glass staircase, which reflects light at different angles to give the space a brighter and larger feel. Whether a rising, helical, or zigzag form is chosen, open treads provide a larger feeling of space and enable light to flow down. When combined with a window or roof light above, this innovative use of glass will make a bold statement while also adding dynamism to an otherwise neglected area.

Use Glass Walls

Glass Wall

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Glass walls primarily give a feeling of horizontal continuity. While a basic window may provide a framed view of an external element, frameless and spacious glass walls provide the impression that an interior space expands beyond its actual limits.

Glass Wall

Photo by Jason Briscoe on Unsplash

A glass wall as a large fixed/open able window in a living room or bedroom can be both beautiful and functional. While glass walls were once cumbersome and obstructive due to the requirement for thick supporting frames, modern glazing techniques now allow for the creation of completely frameless panels of almost any size, which can be accentuated by frosted, colored, stained, or clear glass for dynamic light play.

Accentuate with Mirrors

Mirror Glass

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Mirror glass on the adjoining walls of windows is one method to add vibrancy to any living area. The brightness of the area may simply be increased while adding liveliness to the space. This is due to the fact that mirror glass is produced in such a manner that it reflects light incredibly effectively, allowing a room to get the most amount of natural light possible. Mirrors may be used to make wall adornments as statement art pieces that offer a focal point in the area while also providing light, depth, and whimsical reflections.

About Author

Shiza Christie is an Architect - and Urban Designer, an observer of the phenomenon of time, and forever enchanted by the power of words. These days she spends her time deliberating on urban complexities, its constituents, and placemaking.