Thursday, July 23, 2009

Transom Windows – A Lost Detail…

I love transom windows for the style they bring to an ordinary doorway and also for their functionality. They allow light and air to travel between rooms and visually provide just a glimpse into the room beyond. If they work, they are great for ventilation, and if placed in a bathroom without a fan, they give steam a place to escape. Style-wise the look of a transom casually leaned open gets me every time… I recreate this look in renovations again and again.

My first place, a row house in Baltimore, had two of them upstairs above the bedroom doors. I upgraded my very plain and simple ones with clear leaded glass and they looked beautiful. Ever since then I have been a hooked, and am always on the lookout for them at salvage yards.

Decorative transoms are beautiful - I particularly like curved ones. I have a pair of gothic arched transoms that I have been looking for a place for in the last 2 renovations. They look like the ones shown here in this conservatory. Sadly they may need to wait yet again, as they would have the most impact if featured as a pair. So far I have not found the right space as each is 4 feet wide.

Recently I went in for a consult on an apartment pre-renovation. When I called attention to her transoms, she said her architect planned to take them all out. I tried my best to change her mind… Why have an ordinary door when the transoms you have are unique and add so much character?

My main dilemma is always choosing between a door + transom and a taller door. I love the look of both so that decision is a hard one. Mixing them is a great compromise so I always tend to settle on a little of both.

No comments: