The Latest Comeback Of The Mansard Roof And Its Unusual Advantages

Mansard roofs first became popular in the 17th century and they had multiple comebacks over time since then. This type of roof was popularized by Francois Mansart and was eventually named after him. However, he wasn’t the first one to build a mansard roof. That action can be attributed to Pierre Lescot who built it in the 1550s as part of the Louvre.

But what is a mansard roof exactly? From an architectural point of view, this type of roof is defined by two slopes on each of its sides. The lower slope sits at a steeper angle than the upper one and has multiple dormer windows. Such a roof basically adds another habitable floor to a building, turning the attic into a spacious and comfortable space with few restrictions when it comes to interior design.

A mansard roof is sometimes also known as a French roof or a curb roof. After its initial debut, it became fashionable again during the reign of Napoleon III during a period known as the Second Empire. The mansard roof’s popularity was revived in the 1850’s during the rebuilding of Paris. It became a fashionable architectural feature for most of the building from that period.

During the Second Empire period, this type of roof was used to top towers rather than across the full width of a building. Later, in the 19th century, the mansard roof became a common feature for many buildings from both Europe and North America. It became a common feature not just for large structures but also for private homes.

At one time the houses in France were taxed by their height or by the number of floors below the roof. The peculiar design of the mansard roof allowed people to go around that and to add an extra floor to their homes without paying taxes for it or even without requiring additional masonry. This type of roof provided builders with an easy way to add one or more floors to a building without a lot of planning.

In Europe, the concept of mansard defines not just the roof itself but also the interior space of the attic. It’s a design that allows a maximum use of the interior space of the attic thanks to the gentle slopes and the presence of the windows.

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Mansard interiors

As already mentioned, because the mansard roof has this distinctive structure and design, it transforms the attic into an extra storey for the building, allowing it to be fully functional and inhabitable. There are, of course, a few design-specific details related to the interior and the multiple interesting ways in which it can be organized and used.

The slopes of a mansard roof are not as abrupt as in the case of a pitched roof for example and that means a more spacious and open floor plan.

This chalet has an extra floor under its mansard roof. It has a wooden ceiling with exposed beams and windows that let in natural light.{found on designalpino}.

A lot of apartment buildings these days have mansards. This allows the apartments on the upper floor to be turned into lofts or to create an independent new floor with separate apartments.

In addition to the windows, a space situated in the mansard of a building can also gave skylights.

There are many uses for mansard spaces. They can be really nice and cozy living spaces with comfortable sectionals, sofas and armchairs but they can also serve as workspaces.{found on bo-design}.

The attic of this modern loft apartment is really spacious thanks to its mansard roof. It has large windows and panoramic views of the surroundings.

The apartments with the sloped design of the roof by leaving the window area unfurnished so the focus can be on the views.{found

Not all mansard spaces have the same characteristics. Some can be pretty small while others, like this one, are large and spacious, with sloped roofs that don’t really pose any problems when furnishing the space.{found on nmhof}.

Aside from the gentle slope of the ceiling, there are no elements that suggest this is an attic space. If anything, the slopes make the space a lot more comfortable and inviting.

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Although it’s true that it can be difficult to furnish an attic or a mansard space, there are lots of great ways to make the most of its unique architectural features.

The furniture is usually custom made for attic spaces. This house has a mansard roof and its attic has the floor, walls and ceiling covered in wood and some really interesting custom pieces.

I guess there are two main strategies to choose from when decorating an attic with a mansard roof. Either try to make it look really cozy by using wood and lots of textures or make it look bright and spacious by using light colors, glass and skylights.{found on raca-architekc}.


A cool idea to maintain a mansard space open and cozy and to avoid a cluttered and cramped look is to opt for casual furnishings such as floor pillows instead of armchairs or a really low bed frame.  You can also just put the mattress directly on the floor.{found on guillaumedasilva}.

It could be a bit difficult to design a bathroom under a mansard roof but if you place the important elements where the roof is taller you can then find custom solutions for everything else.

The slope of this mansard roof actually makes the whole space feel a lot cozier and more inviting. The skylights are a really nice touch. They bring in more light and the open the space in a really beautiful and sophisticated way.{found on ideea}.

A mansard is a lot like an attic but with a higher ceiling which offers more flexibility in terms of the furniture that be used and the interior design strategies suitable for the space.

The windows of mansard roofs are pretty small but that doesn’t mean you can’t make the most of them. For example, put your desk in front of one of the windows so you get to enjoy the natural while working.



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