We always knew that we wanted a kitchen extension. Our Edwardian terraced house had a typically dark kitchen that never received much natural light and when the sun did get higher enough in the summer months, the neighbour’s house would then cast its shadow onto us.
Our home also felt a little disjointed. My husband and I would often be cooking in the kitchen whilst the children would be in the lounge at the front of the house. Their snack demands would have us back and forth!
Our kitchen had a narrow area of decking to the side of it, which was accessed via the virtually unused dining room. We felt that we could extend out to the side of the kitchen to create a kitchen/dining area and then switch the current dining room into a playroom snug where the children could play and watch television whilst still in sight.
Our biggest challenge was how we could have a side return extension and get as much light into the room as possible. We were governed by exterior pipework and also our neighbour’s wall height, which we were building onto.
After consulting with the team and Vario by VELUX we realised that the best option for us would be their Long Slim Rooflight. Its fully bespoke style meant that we could tailor it to fit our space. Because the rooflight sits on an upstand, it creates a feeling of height, even though it’s essentially a flat rooflight.
This bespoke rooflight lends itself well to my style of house, which is long and narrow with little space around it due to the terraced style. It also means it’s not disruptive to the neighbours privacy.
By having this style of rooflight we could get as much light as possible into the kitchen and look straight up to the sky and give a feeling of bringing the outside, into our home.
Another challenge we faced was getting the rooflight lifted into position. With a narrow space at the rear in which to lift and during a time when many businesses were closed and limited help was available we had to consider how we could actually lift the rooflight. Once we had figured out the logistics and managed to source lifting equipment, the process was very simple. After levering it up we literally placed it onto the upstand and secured it. Very simple and only took a few hours and that’s working with a very tight and narrow space too!
Now that our kitchen extension is completed we marvel at the rooflight. It’s the “wow” item of our kitchen that everyone comments on. It gives a completely different feel to the kitchen that is not present in other rooms of our house but somehow it doesn’t feel modern or out of place with all of the character of our 1910 period home.
To sit at the kitchen table with a cup of tea and watch the clouds blow past really is a thing of joy. On a sunny warm day I feel like I’m not missing out if I have to be home working and on a rainy day it’s calming to sit and watch the rainfall. We even sat under the rooflight and watched the neighbour’s fireworks above from the comfort and warmth of our home.
As an outdoorsy family, it feels like the outdoors has merged into our home and during a time when we can’t travel or spend as much time outside, it’s been a calming influence in our house to see the light and the tranquility that the rooflight brings.
For anyone thinking of getting a Vario by Velux rooflight I would say spend some time looking at your space and figuring out what shape and style rooflight could work to seamlessly bring the light in.
Use the daylight visualizer on the Vario by Velux website to enable you to see how the product will look in situ. You can then start creating an end picture in your mind, which enables you to proceed with putting together the décor in the rest of the room.
If you’re moving into a new property then I would advise just to live in the space before deciding on where to put your rooflight. I think it’s important to live in a space, get a feel for the room, and see where the light is needed or where the sun hits before you rush into a decision. You won’t be disappointed with your rooflight; it has completed our home.