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How to Daylight a Bathroom

Three strategies for balanced and efficient natural lighting

One of architect Cathy Schwabe's goals when she designs a bathroom is to introduce daylight into the space in a way that minimizes the contrast between light and shadow. In this article, she explains how she meets that goal when introducing daylight from the side, from the top, or from both. Photos illustrate each scenario, with labels identifying the specific techniques used. For all baths, she decides where to place windows, doors, or skylights by considering both inline and adjacent surfaces. Inline surfaces lie in the same plane as the daylight source and are naturally in shadow, while adjacent surfaces run perpendicular to the daylight source and reflect light into the room. In sidebars, Schwabe describes the connection between natural light and health, and offers suggestions on how to daylight a bathroom without sacrificing privacy.

How to Daylight a Bathroom

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