For so many of us, lighting is an afterthought in our interiors. This happens when you think of it as a utilitarian detail of the room, rather than something that adds aesthetic value. When it’s done right, lighting is the unsung element that brings your design to the next level. Our ultimate lighting guide gives you all the info you need to effortlessly light every room in your home. Read our tips and keep them close at hand. You never know when you may need to tweak the existing lighting in your home or to build a new layout from scratch.
Sizes do matter
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When we talk about the size of lighting fixures, we’re mainly talking about those statement pieces that are overhead. There is an easy formula for determining how big one of these lights should be. It’s all about finding the right diameter. If the fixture will be lighting the whole room, measure the length and width of the room and then add those two numbers together. Convert that sum from feet to inches to find the ideal diameter for your light source. However, if you’re centering the fixture over a piece of furniture, you’ll want to measure the length and width of that specific item instead of the room as a whole.As far as aesthetics are concerned, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. That said, make sure it matches whatever style is present throughout the rest of the room.
Keep it balanced
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Layering the lighting in your space will give it warmth and depth. The best way to accomplish this is by thoughtfully placing three different light sources throughout the room:
- Ambient Lighting: Sometimes known as general lighting, this is the light source that illuminates the entire room to help you move around freely, such as chandeliers, track lights, ceiling fan fixtures, and recessed ceiling lights. Ambient lighting is the base layer of a well-balanced room upon which other light sources are meant to be built.
- Task Lighting: These fixtures should be positioned to assist in particular activities that will take place in the room, such as reading, applying make-up, studying, and cooking. Common task fixtures include desk lamps, table lamps, vanity lighting, pendant lighting, and recessed lights. Task lighting is an important feature in any room, but especially in offices, bathrooms, and kitchens.
- Accent Lighting: Highlighting a key feature of your room, such as artwork, a plant, or an architectural feature, with accent lights is an effortless way to give your space a dramatic feel. There is an array of accent lights to choose from, including wall sconces, track lighting, pendant lighting, and picture lights.
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Like your furniture and decor, the light fixtures that you choose for your home should be an extension of your personality and taste. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box when it comes to making your house feel bright and welcoming. Choose lamps and fixtures that will meet your needs, while also adding charm and visual interest. An easy way to do this is by replacing the fixtures that came with the home when you bought it with pieces that are more in tune with your individual style.