Good Questions: Skylight Help in Paris?

Good Questions: Skylight Help in Paris?

Maxwell Ryan
Jan 8, 2007

Hello AT,

Dear AT,

I'm in the process of buying a tiny apartment in Paris. While it is in fairly decent nick, there are a couple of things I want to improve; as much as possible, I'd like to have a pretty clear idea of what I'm going to do before I meet with the contractor next month (I'm doing things long distance, eek).

I have a couple of things I need help with; I'll space them out so I'm not too much of an irritant. I do think all have general relevance.

First off, the skylight:

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I've never had one before, and I love it, but I'm a really light-sensitive sleeper. Two things: how would you cover the skylight? The current owner made a neat little canvas curtain on rails that she flaps down over the skylight using a dowel with a hook on its tip. It works, and is charming in its simplicity, but does anyone have any better ideas? The second: the glass in the skylight is frosted safety glass with a wire mesh grid - would you change the glass to clear, without the grid? I thought it might be nice to see sky rather than light.


Jonathan H.

Dear Jonathan,

What a lovely apartment? Please do send us more pics when it's all done!

As for your window situation, blocking light completely is quite difficult and you really need a tight "seal" if you want to make it really dark.

Our simplest advice would be to use the same concept but make the shade much wider and longer so that it a. really enlarges the scale of your window and b. makes the light work harder to get around the edges. You could also place a simple wooden flange along both sides that stopped the light from leaking out the sides if that didn't do enough for you.

On the window. We've seen it done both ways in NYC and sense that there may be some safety or fire codes that require the wire glass. What they do in Paris is another matter. We'd agree with you, however, if your roof is not accessible and not hospitable to robbers and peeps, we'd switch the glass, but make it thick enough that a stray bird or branch doesn't break through.

Anyone else??

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