Spotlight on Skylight Shades

Material Highlights

In the first installment of our Skylights series, we discussed the benefits of introducing skylights into your home. This week, we are exploring skylight shades: the perfect addition to improve your skylight experience.

Integrating skylights into projects offers many benefits to homeowners, including natural light, warmth in winter, and beauty all year round. However, skylights also introduce a unique set of challenges, such as preventing overheating during hot summer months and reducing glare during the brightest parts of the day. Because of this, we incorporate shading features into many of our projects.

Skylight shades give our clients the freedom to use their skylights in the ways that work best for them. Check out some of our favorite types of skylight shades:

Exterior Skylight Shades

This home includes a huge, 5 panel skylight by Lamilux overlooking the rear of the house. We opted for an exterior shade by Warema, supplied by 475 Building Supply, with an interior switch for easy operation. The powder coated shade housing for this project matches the skylight finish and maintains the skylight's clean aesthetics. To protect the shade and increase its longevity, sensors will automatically retract the shade during rain, snow, or high winds. An exterior skylight shade is a perfect option to improve the utility of large skylights.

Interior Skylight Shades

Interior skylight shades can be built so that they are completely retractable. For this project, where a skylight opens up the roof of an attic-level bedroom, interior shades were the perfect option to maximize utility of a small space. The skylight, made by Lamilux, includes a custom internal motorized unit designed by Ed Monzi of Edward's Interiors, Inc. As seen below, the shade slides across the interior frame, which offers privacy, heat control, and light control, with virtually no visible profile.


For some skylights, such as this one which sits on the floor of a rooftop patio, a higher-tech form of skylight shading is preferred. We collaborated with Sam McAfee of SG Build, using a surface-applied InvisiShade electromagnetic film to cover the window instead of a motorized shade. The film is switchable and reduces interior cooling demand. Our clients love that the InvisiShade allows them to prevent overheating caused by the skylight and control the opacity of the skylight from the rooftop patio.