Interior Design tip No. 1 (A series)

Lighting

Lighting is often overlooked and not given a second thought, but it is one of the most important features in a space. Proper lighting can make or break a mood, theme and feel of a space. Think of lighting as the accessories to an outfit, it enhances and puts emphasis what is already there.

The information that I am including here in this blog post are just a few simple things that you can do to improve and enhance the lighting in your home. These lighting tips by no means cover all aspects of lighting, as that would take years of study and practice to master!

Given that your home is where you spend a large amount of your time, it is a space where you should feel safe and comfortable. With most homes and rental properties the very minimum amount of lighting has been added by those who designed and built the space. The lighting that is there just addresses the basics of building codes and safety requirements only.

It is up to you to change and add lighting as needed.

This Chandelier in my dining room serves two purposes: it provides ample Ambient lighting or it can be dimmed and used as an accent light.

There are three kinds of lighting:

  • Ambient – This is the most common kind of lighting and it’s purpose it to serve as the overall illumination in a space.
  • Task – Task lighting focuses on a specific area in which you need more light to complete a task. (For example a desk lamp).
  • Accent – This is the fun stuff. It is the least functional of all the lighting types and should never be the only source of light in a space. It is a fixture used to highlight a piece of art or a funky table lamp used to set a mood.

Here are a few visual examples of the three kinds of lighting.

An example of Ambient lighting in Hallway
An example of Task lighting above my kitchen island and workspace. These fixtures can be lowered and raised as needed.
Pot lights provide accent lighting for the brick and plaster walls on either side of the fireplace.

A few important things to keep in mind when sourcing and purchasing lighting for your home are scale/size, style, finish and existing natural light.

Try to keep the light fixtures throughout your home consistent in terms of finishes and style. It is okay to have a few eclectic pieces but keeping it simple is key. And don’t forget about natural lighting. Do you have a lot of windows with sun streaming in or is your home dark most of the day? These factors will contribute to the kind of lighting and bulbs you choose (I will discuss bulbs in another post). For example having a dark shade vs. a opaque shade, a chandelier with coloured glass vs. clear.


So there you have it, a few tips to get you started on lighting your home. I hope you found them helpful. If you have any questions please feel free to let me know.

If you are looking for more information on Lighting I wrote a guide with more information and it is yours for FREE. Just simply join my email list!

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