Five Lighting Ideas for Your Home

Kitchen Lighting DesignWhat is the best way to brighten up or illu­mi­nate your home? Here are five light­ing ideas that can trans­form any room!

  1. Prior to Remod­el­ing or Redec­o­rat­ing, Com­mit to a Plan. Before you start, ask your­self: How will this room be used? A liv­ing room, for instance, can have mul­ti­ple uses: din­ing area, TV room, part-time office, a place for entertaining. How a room is used should deter­mine light­ing choices and placement.
  2. Incor­po­rate Lay­er­ing. When a room serves many func­tions, then lay­er­ing (com­bin­ing dif­fer­ent light­ing types for appro­pri­ate bal­ance) is impor­tant. A sin­gle type of light­ing is often not enough. So when lay­er­ing con­sider a room’s size, the avail­abil­ity of nat­ural light, a room’s dimen­sions, and ambiance desired. A large chan­de­lier can work well for dis­trib­ut­ing ambi­ent light; table lamps or pen­dant lights are ideal for read­ing; and wall sconces can cre­ate the desired mood or atmosphere.
  3. Famil­iar­ize Your­self with Light­ing Options. There are three broad cat­e­gories of inte­rior lights– ambi­ent, task and accent – and it may take all three to get the desired light­ing effect you want.
    – Ambi­ent Light­ing. Gen­eral light­ing is another name for ambi­ent light­ing and is typ­i­cally the start­ing point for illu­mi­nat­ing an entire room. Recessed lights, chan­de­liers, track lights, out­side lights, and torchieres (stand­ing floor lights) are exam­ples of ambi­ent lighting.
    – Task Light­ing. If you have a job or duty to perform—reading, cook­ing, study­ing, writing—you’ll need a handy task light, such as a desk lamp, table light, van­ity light or pen­dant light.
    – Accent Light­ing. When look­ing to cre­ate a sub­tle or dra­matic effect, use accent lights. Accent light­ing will draw atten­tion to art objects, archi­tec­tural fea­tures in a room, wall hang­ings — almost any­thing you want to call atten­tion to.
  4. Swap Out Cer­tain Lights. If your kitchen has recessed track lights, try swap­ping them out for pen­dant lights. Pen­dant lights, a type of task light­ing, can be low­ered to pro­vide more direct light on food prep areas such as kitchen counter tops or islands.
  5. Buy a Fam­ily of Lights. Light­ing man­u­fac­tur­ers often cre­ate light­ing fam­i­lies, lights with sim­i­lar styles or design com­po­nents. Stylistically-related lights offer visual con­ti­nu­ity and take the guess work out of buying.