frugal living, thrift, saving money and penny pinching banner



Light Orientation and Interior Design

by Nikki Willhite


One of the most important considerations in decorating your home is each room's orientation to the sun,  your climate, and the placement of windows in your space. It is also the most overlooked consideration.

When an architect designs a home, this is a priority.  How will the home be set on the lot? Which rooms have a southern exposure? Where should the windows be placed?

Our ancestors built their own homes, and almost all of them put their bedrooms on the east side of their homes so that the sun would wake them up in the morning.

Most of us live in "cookie-cutter" homes, that have been placed on lots with no consideration given to light orientation. To cut costs, most of our homes are designed with the fewest windows possible.

Adding extra windows to your home is expensive. It makes an incredible difference to your home, but few of us can afford it. If you can afford it, or have the skills to do it yourself, and want to improve your home, think about it. For the rest of us, here is some help.

In Hot Climates

Windows should be kept to a minimum on the west and south side of the house. Decorate rooms on the west and south side in cool tones. A wall painted mint green will visually cool you off several degrees.

If you want more light in your house, put your windows and skylights on the northern or eastern side of the house or roof.

Install outside awnings on windows on the west side. These rooms can become unusable for several hours each day in the afternoon and when the sun is going down. If you don't like shutting your drapes, an awning will help.

In Cold or Dark Climates

Windows should be kept to a minimum on the northern side of the house. Install your thermopane windows here first, to keep your home warmer.

Use warm colors in these rooms for a cozy feeling on a cold or drab day. Again, you will be visually warmed.

Windows on the south side will warm your house and fill it with sunshine in the winter. In warmer, dark climates, windows on the south side of your house will provide heat, and your furnace will run less and you will save money.

About the Author: Nikki Willhite, mother of 3 and an interior design graduate, has been writing and publishing articles on the topic of frugal living for over a decade. Visit her at - where you will find hundreds of frugal living tips and articles. Frugal Happy Families- more than just money! 




recipe card


More Frugal Living Sites

Mini Preppers
Scrappy Quilting



wood stove

quilt block

quilt block



HOME     webmaster     privacy