House to the North: How to lighten a dark room? – Testimony of Claudine and Alain in Paris

A house in the North often has one or more dark rooms because the sun never reaches the windows . Yet as you may have discovered in our last article: there is natural light available even when there is no sun. Find out how Claudine and Alain managed to lighten their north-facing kitchen with the help of a light reflector.

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Claudine and Alain’s home

Can you show us your home and your kitchen?

Claudine : We bought our house about 20 years ago in the suburbs of Paris. Our kitchen was small and located on the street side, facing south. We had an extension built on the north side of the house, on the other side of the house, in order to install a larger kitchen and to enjoy our garden more.


Did you think about the brightness of this room when you designed it?

Alain : This kitchen receives natural light through 3 openings to the outside: a main window to the north overlooking the garden, a small window in a corner and a French window to access the terrace. The main window is about 1.20 m by 1.80 m and we have chosen fine woodwork so that the daylight enters well inside.

Claudine : To give a warm atmosphere to our kitchen, we have chosen to paint the walls in light orange. But here we are, going from a south-facing room to a north-facing room without any sun… I hadn’t thought about the consequences of not having the sun’s rays anymore. The natural light was missing a lot, especially in winter and on rainy days.

Especially since this kitchen is really the living room of the house: I cook in it, my husband does his homework, our daughter does her homework, I have coffee with my friends, my husband works on his computer… The room was sad and we had to constantly turn on the light to feel good in it.

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The arrival of the Espaciel reflector

How did you think about the light reflector?

Alain : I discovered this system on television a few months ago. I thought it might be a good idea to brighten up our room without doing any new work.

Claudine : At first I was a little skeptical and I didn’t really know if it was going to work. This window is in line with the entrance of the house, you can see the garden as soon as you enter the house. I was afraid that the reflector would “block” this pleasant perspective. I made a request via the Espaciel website and a counsellor named Lucie called me to advise me.

She sent me pictures taken by other customers to show me installed reflectors and the gain in natural light thanks to before/after. I was finally reassured about the aesthetics of the light reflector.

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Alain :I had some doubts about the use because I handle my shutters morning and evening. Lucie explained to me that you can easily tilt the reflector several times a day. We ordered on the internet a 100 cm window sill reflector to install it above our balustrade. The light reflector arrived at our house by mail within a few days.

How was the installation?

Alain :I’m not much of a handyman and yet I managed to install it quickly! The assembly of the product is simple thanks to the instructions full of photos: you can quickly see what you need to do. No tools are needed for the assembly, which I did alone and in a few minutes.

Claudine : I saw my husband do the editing and I think I could have done it myself.

And now that your light reflector is installed, what do you think?

Claudine : Well, our kitchen up north that was dark has become light! There’s a lot of light coming in, while the window is in the shade all day. We didn’t imagine that there was so much light next to the window because the sun doesn’t reach that level, and yet… And then, the perspective on the garden is preserved because the reflector is very thin: you can still see the trees and the sky as soon as you enter.

Alain : From the reflector fixed in front of the window, we could see the effect on the ceiling and on the back wall. We chose the angle with my wife to get the brightness we wanted. It works every day, but for me, it’s really when it’s grey or raining that the effect is most striking. And I can always close and open my shutters without the reflector interfering with the handling.

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Any last words?

Alain : You get used to it very quickly. It’s a good, simple and effective solution.

Claudine : The Espaciel reflector seems to me very resistant to the weather. It has already spent 8 months outdoors, in rain, snow…and it is still in perfect condition. You just have to clean it from time to time with a cloth, but it’s fast. I’m happy with our purchase.


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    Thanks to Claudine and Alain for their testimony. If you too would like to send us your before/after pictures and tell us about your experience with your light reflectors, write to us at info@espaciel.com.

    Do you have a dark room and want to increase its natural light? Contact us and we will be happy to give you personal advice:

     

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