17 Feb

5 roof lantern ideas for your home

A roof lantern is a visual showstopper, adding architectural interest to your home that a simple flat roof cannot compete with. Get inspired with these ideas from some of our past projects.

Striking and elegant, you see a roof lantern as soon as you walk into a room. Typically, these magnificent structures sit atop a single-storey extension and are also suitable for rooms and hallways on the top floor, providing the roof is flat. Clients love how they amp up the standard ‘flat roof’ look by letting in the light, with the timber joinery’s symmetrical lines bringing a classic character to any space.

Glazed roof lanterns are often recommended for dark and gloomy parts of the house. Unlike a flat skylight, the roof lantern’s primary function is to rise above the roofline and let natural light stream in from all angles. You can strategically position a roof lantern to define specific zones in open-plan living areas, such as a central kitchen island or a dining room table bathed in natural light.

They are also ideal for rooms that could use some extra ventilation, as a roof lantern can be a great way to get air circulating around your house. Through automatic vents, they encourage cross-ventilation by drawing warmer air up and out during the summer. Rain sensors will react to the very first drops of rain and close as the weather changes, so you don’t have to rush to shut them yourself.

How we make our timber roof lanterns

Unlike other materials such as uPVC, you can achieve exquisite detailing from timber, which gives your roof lantern character and charm. We use Accoya® for the outer facing sections of our engineered wood, especially vulnerable parts of the structure such as the ridge cap of a roof lantern or the external window cill. This material is CO² neutral throughout its full lifecycle, 100% biodegradable, and offers exceptional performance and longevity.

We pair the roof lantern’s timber sections with high-spec double glazing and aluminium capping for a premium end product that looks beautiful and is very low maintenance. We use 4-16-4 toughened panes filled with argon gas and sealed with a Low E coating as standard, ensuring exceptional performance all year round. In addition, we offer upgrades such as laminated, low-maintenance, or solar reflective glass if it suits the client’s requirements.

We finish the roof lantern with three coats of Teknos paint, a high-quality, water-based, microporous paint system. As it dries, the water evaporates, and the joinery is left with a flawless, protective layer of colour that shields the timber from UV exposure, weather conditions and fungal damage. By combining Accoya® and Teknos, your timber roof lantern frames could last for 50 years or more.

Shape plays a significant role when bringing a roof lantern’s design together.

If you’ve taken a look at some of our roof lantern projects, you might have noticed that shape is one of the most important aspects we consider when working with a new client. Whether it’s a statement-making octagonal roof lantern in the drawing-room or a subtle square in an unexpected corner of the landing, the right shaped roof lantern can pull everything together to create a balanced and dimensional look.

Want to see our guys in action? Follow this link to see them building a rectangular timber roof lantern in our specialist joinery workshop.

1. Choose traditional joinery

Although we’re all for creating visual drama in the home, sometimes the best interior features are the ones that show exceptional craftsmanship and quality design. A roof lantern’s proportions should all be well balanced between depth of the shelf, beam dimension and hip shape. Decorative moulding crafted with traditional joinery techniques finishes the look.

2. Octagonal roof lantern

Octagonal roof lanterns bring a regal feel to a room, creating the impression of a dome structure from the inside. Octagonal designs are perfect for circular or polygonal rooms often found in period homes with towers or turrets. Here, we designed a perfectly balanced octagonal roof lantern to transform a dated dining room in dire need of more natural light.

Dining Area with roof lantern

3. Perfect for upstairs hallways

Don’t be afraid to experiment and create interesting focal points in a space. Sometimes discarding the rule book when it comes to roof lanterns can give you the best results. We specified a long rectangular roof lantern that added interest to this upstairs hallway and elevated the staircase’s overall look and feel.

4. Square roof lantern

Typically we tend to see more rectangular roof lanterns in both modern and period homes. While this shape will forever be a classic, we’ve found that fitting square roof lanterns helps create balance in smaller rooms, and they are also well-suited to homes with a contemporary feel. We designed a neat, perfectly symmetrical square roof lantern to balance the room’s proportions and create an inviting feeling in this side extension.

Square roof lantern internal shot

5. Fishtail Detailing

We added a traditional fishtail glazing bar design to this two-tiered roof lantern with a cupola. We love how the curves bring balance to the very straight, square structure. A ball-shaped resin finial completes the look.

We use our skills and expertise to design impressive, balanced roof lanterns tailor-made to perfectly fit any home. Think a roof lantern is right for you? Get in touch and speak to our experts for more details.