Hilary Farr's Sleek Window Design Idea Lets Light In Without Compromising Privacy

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Hilary Farr never disappoints when it comes to finding clever solutions for problems her clients are facing in their homes. In one episode of HGTV's "Tough Love With Hilary Farr," the celebrity interior designer is challenged with renovating a small, dark bedroom in a bungalow. The room is crying out for more natural light, but since the bedroom is at ground level and faces out onto the street, privacy is a real issue. As we have come to expect from Farr, she finds a way to address the problem that is both functional and stylish.

Using a unique window installation, Farr redesigns the bedroom to allow sunlight to flood the space while keeping it hidden from view to passers-by. The window design Farr opts for is a narrow rectangle shape that runs the width of the room. It is set just above head height so that privacy isn't compromised. The window serves double duty, creating a brighter room and the illusion of a bigger space. Farr explains via HGTV UK on YouTube, "When you bring a window up high, you actually get more light in anyway than you would when it's lower."

Strategically incorporate windows to upgrade your interiors

Struggling with a room that simply doesn't receive enough natural light? Follow in Hilary Farr's footsteps and install a new window in a solid wall as a smart way to brighten up a dark room. Natural light can turn a dull and dank room into a bright and welcoming haven, so it should be a major consideration during renovations. Further, factor in the aspect of the room and how your windows relate. For example, a window on the south-facing side of a room will provide natural light all day, while a window on an east-facing wall will provide natural light in the morning. 

If privacy is a concern, windows fitted higher up can address the need for natural light without compromising privacy. Windows installed towards the top of a wall also increase your furniture layout options because they won't get in the way of headboards or a tall chest of drawers. Like Farr, think about your windows as part of your decor. The streamlined shape of the window she selected for her clients in Season 2, Episode 7 of HGTV's "Tough Love With Hilary Farr" (via HGTV UK on YouTube) worked really well with the contemporary decor. Commenting on how the window installation turned out, Farr said, "This also gives it a kind of cool, sleek look."

Upgrade existing windows to prioritize light and privacy

If a new window isn't in your budget, you can upgrade your existing windows with some easy hacks to maximize both light and privacy. Many homeowners use window dressings to improve privacy during the day, and Hilary Farr loves the look of curtains. "For a modern look, hang curtains from the ceiling with a very simple pleat at the top so they will hang straight," she told Parade. To keep your room from feeling too dark, you could choose transparent curtains that still let sunlight in. 

You could also consider frosting your windows for maximum privacy using a frosted glass spray paint like one by Rust-Oleum from Amazon, which can be applied directly onto any type of glass and dries in just 10 minutes. Alternatively, window privacy films are economical, decorative, and offer similar benefits. Try a privacy film from Target which provides up to 98% UV protection, allows natural light to filter through, and creates privacy. Frosted glass spray and privacy window films can be easily removed, making them a great solution for anyone who can't make permanent changes to their home, such as those renting a property. If you do want an irreversible way to make your windows opaque, try an etching cream like this one from Amazon. It is suitable for beginners and can also double up as a unique DIY to give your boring mirrors a funky upgrade.