For most homeowners, lighting or luminaires is merely an afterthought when designing their interiors. It often happens if you only consider lights as utilitarian details of a room instead of something that offers aesthetic value. They don’t realize that when done right, light fixtures are the unsung elements that can take your home design to a whole new level.
With this short luminaire guide, you will get to learn some of the important information, tips, and tricks on how to effortlessly light the different rooms in your home. Whether you are just planning your new house, or your old lights require some fixing, you can use the details in this article to help you achieve the best results.
Know Your Available Options
A very common mistake that homeowners make when it comes to lights for their design is assuming that only one type of light, specifically the dreaded overheads, will be enough to put an entire room together.
However, if you ask an interior designer, these experts will surely tell you that this is far from the truth. Lights tend to work best if you use them in layers.
So far, there are three primary types of indoor lights you can consider, and it is recommended that every room will have all of them. These are the following:
Accent lights are used to highlight a specific focal point, just like a piece of wall art. Track lights, picture lights, or wall-mounted fixtures are quite common. Dimmers are also typically used on these fixtures to create mood lighting.
Ambient lights, also called general lights, can fill up most of the room so you and your whole family can move around easily and safely. This often comes from wall-mounted fixtures, track lights, or recessed lights.
Based on the name itself, task lights are used to help you complete a specific function. It can range from anything, including pendant lights hanging over a kitchen island to desk lamps.
Use the Room as the Basis for Your Layout
Once you have learned about the different options available for luminaires, the next thing you should do is to decide where and how to install your light sources in every room.
Although it is still a matter of personal preference at the end of the day, there are several standard layouts that can work well.
In case you are not sure where to begin in the first place, use the tips below to get some inspiration:
It is common for bathrooms to feature recessed lights. You can also install some task lights around your bathroom mirror. If you want a more dramatic touch, you can put an overhead source above your tub.
It is ideal for bedrooms to have a primary overhead source of light and table lamps on dressers or nightstands.
Entryways work best with a chandelier overhead or dramatic pendant light. Floor or table lamps can also be used as supplementary light sources.
- Dining Room
Out of all the rooms in your house, your dining room is probably the easiest and simplest way to light. Your primary source of lights must come from a chandelier or a large pendant light that is centred over your dining table. You can also use a table or floor lamp to supplement if there is any dark corner in the room.
The kitchen lights are quite complex. You might want to begin some recessed lights. The focal areas such as the dining table and kitchen island must have chandeliers or overhead pendants. Work areas can benefit more from additional under-cabinet lights. You might also want to add certain task sources at the stove and sink.
- Living Room
Your living room is a great place to use recessed or track lights all over. If there is a main seating area in your room, you can use bigger overhead luminaires to centre it. You can put some floor lamps to light up any shadowy corner. If there is a buffet or any other large piece of furniture, you can also add a table lamp.
For your home office, you can begin with a primary overhead source or recessed lighting. Make sure that you add floor or table lamps by seating areas or in dark corners. It is also important to have a desk lamp in your primary work area.
Think of Aesthetics and Size
When it comes to the size of luminaires, these mainly include overhead statement pieces. There is a simple formula to determine the right size of the lights you will use. What matters here is to find the correct diameter.
If you want the fixture to light up the entire room, make sure that you measure the width and length of the room first and add these two numbers. Convert their sum to inches from feet to know the suitable diameter for the light source to use.
For instance, if your room measures 10 feet by 12 feet, the sum is 22, which means that the diameter of your fixture must be 22 inches. But if you want to centre the fixture over a specific furniture piece, you have to measure the width and length of that piece rather than the entire room itself.
When it comes to aesthetics, remember that beauty is always in the eye of the beholder. It means that you should match whatever style is available with the rest of the room.
Your choice of lighting can easily make or break any room. When done properly, this can lend the ideal atmosphere and ambience to make your design truly shine out. On the other hand, using the wrong lights can end up ruining your chosen aesthetics.
If you are ready to take your home’s lighting to a whole new level, now is the perfect time to do some tweaks and changes and transform your interior to just what you have always envisioned!