Our house was built in 1978 and has been modernized over the years. When you look at the ceiling line, you can see where walls have been removed to open up the space. There is no real hallway although I think there used to be. You enter through the front door into a great room that serves as kitchen, living room and dining room all in one.
It took several months of living in the house before we could pinpoint what was really lacking. It was the lighting. It just wasn’t working well. The space is generally quite dark as it does not get sun during the day so we always felt the need to have lights on. There are French doors that open onto the patio so light comes in from the side but certainly does not flood in. We engaged a lighting designer who came up with a better plan for ambient and mood lighting in the space. She also came up with the best idea yet which has transformed the space. The designer suggested that we add a bank of clerestory windows to let in more light. I had never even heard the word before. A clerestory window is a small window above head height, usually found in churches. She said they would let in more light so we did not have to have artificial lighting on all day.
These windows have made an amazing difference. Our house was always cold in winter because of the bad insulation. The extra sun coming in has meant we need far less heating. We often found that it was chilly in the house and hotter outside so we would be wearing sweaters on a nice warm day. That extra warmth and light has made the area so much more inviting.