The Art of Lighting Up Your Rooms
Whether you’re looking for ideas to improve the lighting of a certain room or want to plan an entire house lighting overhaul, here are a few room-by-room tips to keep in mind.
The idea of layering light is important in the living room area. This is the area of the house where everyone gathers for long stretches to talk, engage in different activities, read, watch TV and even use the laptop. In this kind of space, choose lights that bounce off the ceiling and offer ambient illumination. Light that bounces off the ceiling creates a sense of brightness. For a warm country glow, take a look at our sconces.
Accent and decorative lighting can be used to focus on architectural elements in the room, such as a painting, fireplace, plant or bookcase. Uplights positioned on the floor are great for highlighting plants, while a small lighted twig tree is a decorative piece all on its own.
A kitchen’s heavy focus is, of course on food preparation and cleaning up. I know in our home, my kitchen tends to be the place where everyone gathers. Kitchens requires careful consideration of both ambient and task lighting. Consider, especially, task lighting for the counters where most of the preparation takes place, as well as over the sink. You can dress up your kitchen windows and still allow maximum light to filter through. You might consider prairie curtains or just a simple valance for the windows.
One of the main reasons sinks are usually placed beneath a window is to take advantage of the natural lighting. You can augment that natural light with a recessed or ceiling mounted fixture above the sink. Under-cabinet lighting is a great way to illuminate your countertops without needing to rely on overhead lighting that tends to cast shadows when you’re working at the counters.
A really modest lighting plan for kitchens include one central, ceiling-mounted fixture that offers ambient light, combined with under-cabinet fixtures that offers counter task lighting. If your kitchen has an island, a pendant light fixture works great for additional light.
Since the bathroom’s main emphasis is on personal grooming, you need to be able to see yourself in the mirror. Too many bathrooms tend to feature a central ceiling-mounted light that usually casts a shadow when you’re trying to use the mirror. One of the best things you can do for your bathroom is to light both sides of your mirror. If you have a small bathroom and need to choose between an overhead fixture or a wall-mounted fixture to the side of the mirror, always go for the wall-mounted option. It’s the best bet for avoiding shadows in your bathroom.
When it comes to older bathrooms, a common lighting design involves a central ceiling-mounted fixture as well as a fixture above the mirror. To improve your lighting plan, eliminate those features and replace them with two or three wall sconces, one on either side of the mirror and one on the opposing wall, offsetting from your mirror’s position.
Most people have some sort of overhead lighting in the bedroom. It is a great idea to add other ambient lighting the bedroom so you have option for softer lighting when you want it.
A lot of headboards now are being made with sconces on each side so both you and your husband can have control of the lighting. This works well for when you want to unwind and read in bed for a little bit before you fall asleep.
Lighting is but one feature of a room, albeit an important one. Take a look at Primitive Star Quilt Shops’ range of home décor, lighting, primitive country curtains and other accessories to help design your rooms.
- Jacki Alcorn