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Dead Space Do-Over

Marvin Windows

When working with an awkward layout, adding windows can turn wasted space into a user-friendly focal point.

With a housing market that’s now returned to its robust, pre-recession status and, “…the ever-presence of multiple-offer situations and bidding wars,” according to a recent article on, many homeowners are choosing to upgrade their existing home with extensive renovations rather than join the buying frenzy. 

If one of a homeowner’s primary goals in remodeling is creating more space, but lot size or conservation restrictions prohibit an addition, architects and designers need to come up with solutions that meet their client’s needs while working within an existing footprint. When faced with this situation, every available square foot of living space needs to be maximized.  When a home has “dead space” – an oddly-shaped corner or over-the-garage storage area – adding windows is the go-to solution.

The placement of this closet, likely added to create much-needed storage in this historic home, resulted in an odd pocket of dead space that lacked a purpose. A new window and a custom-made window seat turned the space into a charming alcove.

In this home, the fairly-small space over the garage had limited ceiling height and was virtually unusable. A half-round window, from Marvin Windows and Doors, which loosely mimics the contours of the ceiling, floods the area with natural light and made the room feel larger.

Marvin Windows and Doors

With a cathedral ceiling and floor-to-ceiling fireplace, this room had ample amounts of charm, but with a diminutive size, there wasn’t much use for it. With windows now wrapped around the corner and a daybed tucked into the alcove, it’s the perfect place to enjoy reading in front of the fire on a chilly day. It also doubles as sleeping space for guests.

Marvin Windows

Fitting this entire alcove with windows transformed what had been a little-used few feet of floor space into an eating area with views of the home’s wooded yard.