Most [city] homeowners who want to breathe new life into their homes tend to spend thousands of dollars on furniture and décor but forget a critical detail in their interior design—lighting. Great lighting can turn even the simplest of rooms into something that looks straight out of a home improvement magazine.
Fortunately, the trick to great lighting isn’t really a big secret—you just need to understand the fundamentals of home lighting.
Layer Your Lighting
Many homeowners make the mistake of having just one source of light in an area like the living room or bedroom. But a few light bulbs in the ceiling just isn’t enough to make a room look beautiful.
What you need are multiple layers of light:
- General lighting – Usually overhead lights, track lights, and pendant lights installed in the ceiling
- Task lighting – Examples include table lamps and floor lamps
- Ambient lighting – These are lights that generate a soft glow, such as wall sconces and fairy lights among others
Layering your lights lets you create different lighting effects and use specific light sources for common activities, whether it’s entertaining guests, reading, or lounging in front of the TV.
Use Large Fixtures Wisely
While placing a few table lamps here and there is a great way to have multiple light sources in a room, it’s also a good idea to install an oversized pendant, such as a large sculptural floor lamp or even a big and colorful lantern somewhere in the area. These fixtures not only serve as a primary light source, they also double as a focal point in the room.
A dimmer or dimming controller lets you instantly change the look of a room without having to rearrange or change anything about your lighting. As the name suggests, these devices dim and brighten the light generated by your lighting fixtures. Dimmers, however, only work with incandescent bulbs and more energy-efficient LEDs, so be sure to check what kind of lights you have in your home before buying one.
Add LED Candles for Ambient Lighting
Battery-powered LED candles look amazing in a dimly-lit room, creating the ideal atmosphere for long soaks in the tub or having dinners with your significant other. Many battery-powered LED candles look just like the real thing, complete with flickering features and even unique scents.
Shed Light on Corners and Enclosed Spaces
Cupboards, cabinets, shelves, kitchen counters, and closets are areas that tend to get neglected when it comes to lighting. Placing lights in these areas not only makes the entire room look brighter, it creates new functional spaces. For example, you can install LED strips inside drawers and under cupboards to make these areas more usable, not to mention safer.
Add Reflective Surfaces
Glossy floors, metallic finishes, and mirrors are a great way to bounce light in rooms with limited access to natural sunlight. Reflective surfaces also create the illusion of space, perfect for micro-apartments, tiny rooms in your home, or the basement.
This brings us to one final tip: use as much natural light as you can. Keep your window blinds open and tie back your curtains. Natural lighting is the most flattering type of light and it’s free. Keep these lighting fundamentals in mind the next time you want to have a makeover in your home.