Gray and Dick glass extension to a modern home

Inside, Outside: Integrating Structural Glazing into Your Home

Structural glazing may be the preserve of many large corporate buildings, but it’s just as complementary for residential properties.

Inside, Outside: Integrating Structural Glazing into Your Home

Modern glass extension to a home in Scotland.

Structural glazing may be the preserve of many large corporate buildings, but it’s just as complementary for residential properties. There’s an old phrase that states that “people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones”. While the proverb refers to fragility, the metaphor ceases to be relevant with modern-day architecture. Glass houses are, indeed, anything but fragile.

Bricks and mortar might be the first thing we think of when we picture residential construction – but structural glazing is growing in popularity.

What is structural glazing?
The term ‘structural glazing’ refers to any structure in which glass forms the integral foundations of the structure – that is, when panes of glass take the place of traditional bricks or other materials. These panes are held together with heavy-duty stainless steel struts, which helps them to bear sufficient weight to support the entire building.
You’ll no doubt have seen structural glazing in some of the world’s most memorable examples of architecture. Everything from the Louvre to landmarks in London’s skyline features some magnificent examples of glass being manipulated for aesthetic impact.

Likewise, we’ve worked on structural glazing architectural projects such as the St Enoch Underground entrance on the Glasgow subway.

How does it work?
Though glazing in itself has been used in architecture since medieval times (such as stained-glass designs in churches), modern weight-bearing structural glazing has come a long way. Glass is often tempered or toughened for use in buildings, staircases, doors and even load-bearing floors – as seen at many high-level tourist attractions.

So, how can we incorporate structural glazing into the home?

Transitioning from indoors to outdoors
Many homeowners choose to integrate structural glazing as a way of naturally transitioning outdoors. It’s particularly useful for properties with little access to natural light. By letting it in, homeowners can benefit from rooms looking larger, as well as the physical and mental health perks of sitting in natural sun.

One common choice is to have ‘glass extensions’ – whole glazed structures that can be added to a home and used as a separate space. These are ideal for entertaining, complemented by indoor or outdoor lighting systems for dining and relaxing.
Alternatively, even a wall to ceiling sliding door lets light pour in – offering a biophilic effect that immediately lifts the mood in the home. We’ve put these to good use with our Sky-Frame range, used on lakeside properties to allow homeowners to appreciate the view in full.

Levelling up

Another example, and a testament to the strength of structural glazing, is to try a glass staircase. There are no limits in terms of shape or size. You can enjoy a straight edge or curved staircase to your heart’s content. This gives visitors a ‘sneak peek’ between upper and lower levels and offers a durable touch of sophistication to any property.

Find out more about adding structural glazing to your home
If you’re not sure about structural glazing, remember:
·       It is totally durable thanks to load-bearing support from steel structures
·       It can be bent and manipulated to suit any design
·       It adds natural light to the home
·       It can be used as a supporting wall or as part of interior features.

Our services
Gray & Dick is the market leader in the design, supply and installation of high-end structural glazing. With more than 40 years’ experience, we partner with the best brands to deliver a long-lasting product that will transform your home.

To find out more about structural glazing from Gray & Dick, call us on 0141 952 9619 or send us a message via our website contact page.

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