Lighting is what makes a simple space look beautiful and a beautiful space innocuous. Therefore, when planning your home you need to plan the brightness aspect to ensure your home is cozy and your artwork and furnishings are highlighted in all its beauty. There are two aspects to home lighting – sunlight and lamplight.
You need to ensure that you can use sunlight in the best possible manner with regards to your home lighting. Some suggestions to effectively use sunlight are:
1. Your windows are great sources of sunlight. So you need to ensure that this light is not blocked by secondary glazing, heavy curtains, etc. Instead opt for blinds, light drapes, or shutters.
2. You can use a mirror to effectively brighten up your room by placing it opposite or near to the window.
3. Flooring is another significant factor. Carpets absorb light, whereas marbles and painted floors reflect it.
4. The colors of the floor and walls also make a great impact with regards to the space perception and lighting of a room. White and lighter shades make the room bigger and brighter, while dark shades have the reverse effect.
The next vital element in home lighting is lamplight. This includes the following:
1. Ambience lighting refers to the general lighting of your home. Florescent lights help to brighten up large areas whereas white lights are considered to be dull and are no longer preferred. Halogen lights are more commonly used to give a soft, flattering glow.
2. Accent lights are used to highlight artworks, hobby collections, designer furniture, etc.
3. Decorative lighting as its name suggests is used for decoration. It includes chandeliers, colorful lanterns, etc that are used as part enhancing the interior décor.
4. Task lighting is another significant aspect of home lighting and is used in task areas such as reading, cooking, sewing, studying, etc and is intended to reduce eye strain.
A handful of basic home lighting elements that are crucial to creating a quality living environment include proper lighting dimensions, dimmable lights, and natural lighting.
For starters, natural lighting should be utilized as much as possible. Not only does it create a more welcoming, comfortable room, but it also reduces electricity costs caused by lighting. A few areas in the home that can be lit up easily using natural resources include sunrooms, which are often areas where people gather in the home. Also, the living room can be lit with a warming glow by using the fireplace if it is available. In addition to the savings from using less electricity, the fireplace will decrease the cost of heating the home.
Another source of natural sunlight is a skylight. These can come in the more prevalent flat, window-like models, as well as newer styles. Some of the newer skylights come as tubes, which look much like recessed light. This style of recessed, natural light is especially suitable for kitchens and bathrooms; it is less conspicuous and there is also a lower amount of maintenance in comparison to the traditional styles of skylights.
Lighting in levels corresponding to the dimensions of the room is also very important. Spaces such as the kitchen require very high levels of light in order for the jobs that are being performed there to be done safely. Living rooms, dens, and bedrooms often call for lower levels of lighting; these areas typically avoid overhead lighting, but instead make use of floor and table lamps. The warmer light created by these lamps creates much less ambient light; the ambient light that is common of overhead lighting is usually what is responsible for the glare on televisions or computer monitors.
After the primary lighting plan has been implemented, the easiest way to create a warm environment is by installing dimmers on the light fixtures. This limits the amount of light to the level you desire, thus decreasing electricity expenses and creating a softer light. Anytime an overhead light fixture is installed, it should ideally have a dimmer attached so that it can be adjusted to the desired level.
Deciding what type of home lighting you need to buy can be tough if you don’t have a rudimentary understanding of the three basic lighting categories in the home. Even though there are thousands of different light fixtures available they fall into one of the three task, accent, or ambient.
The first is task lighting. These fixtures are usually single lights that are directed at the work surface. You’ll find this type of light best used in the kitchen or anywhere you need a specific type of light that illuminates your work. It also works great for reading purposes.
The second category is accent lighting. These types of light fixtures are primarily used to focus attention on a specific piece of art work, painting, or picture.
The third category is ambient lighting. This type of light fixture provides a general type of light that illuminates the whole room.
It is advised that choosing your bulb is often better done before you choose a light fixture. The type of light you choose is more a personal taste than a scientific one. You may want to consider trying to find something that is energy efficient. There are a lot of different types of bulbs to choose from. Some of them are more energy efficient than others. I suggest you do some research on bulbs before you decide to purchase any.
Lighting fixtures range from surface mounted to recess lights. You can even get ones that are suspended from a chain or cord. Task lights are usually not hard wired, but come with a cord you plug into a receptacle. You should find all the necessary hardware with your chosen fixture to be able mount it to any standard box. Though I would recommend adding a tougher attachment if your particular light fixture is too heavy.
Most recessed lighting comes pre-wired and grounded to its housing box. Make sure it has enough clearance above the ceiling to be able to easily install it. These types of fixtures work great if you are installing them below an attic.
When installing down lights be warned that they produce an exceptional amount of heat and need to be kept away from flammable material. You can find some that are rated for direct contact with the surrounding material. Shop around if you’d feel safer with these types, though you may need to pay more for them.
There are people make their living by helping homeowners design their home lighting scheme. Unfortunately, not all of us have the money to hire someone, so we have compiled a list of useful tips for you to employ when designing your own home lighting plan.
First of all, always consider the purpose of the lighting. A chandelier would not be hung in the garage because it simply does not fit the purpose of the area. Remember that the light fixtures placed in the room are there to coordinate with the purpose of the space. For entertainment rooms, lights that can be dimmed are an excellent choice; they compliment the purpose of the room, which is usually to entertain guests or to watch television or movies. Dimming light fixtures give the room the feel of a theater and soften the edges in the room, making it more welcoming. However, if you have a living room that is primarily used for reading, track lighting or well-placed lamps are important to relieve stress on the eyes. The purpose of the room and the purpose of the lighting fixture always go hand-in-hand.
The light fixtures that really help to bring the personal touch to a home are usually those that are placed for accent. Accent lights are well-placed fixtures, usually wall sconces, table lamps, under-cabinet lights, or pendants, which illuminate the special characteristics of your home. Under-cabinet lights are often used in kitchens over the counter-tops where food is prepared, which enable the fixtures to both illuminate the work area and also add ambient light to the room. Wall sconces are some of the most flexible light fixtures when placing for accent; these fixtures come in a number of different styles, from the simple contemporary to the elegant stained glass. Wall sconces also provide up-light, which is easier on the eye. Also, these lights supply decoration on simple walls by using either plain or colored light, depending on the style of fixture chosen.
Investigating features that can be added onto your existing light fixtures is also a great choice when re-inventing your home lighting scheme. For example, if you have sconces placed in your home which shine plain white light, a quick, cheap solution would be to invest in bulbs that mimic the light of candles. The flicker produced by these bulbs and the softer nature of the light can easily make a room more welcoming. Accenting features already present in your home is another important point to remember. Mantles, pictures, or interesting architecture can be accented with a few simple lights. Track lighting is a valuable tool – it works well in lighting artwork as well as softly lighting a mantle. The ease of installation is also an attraction for track lighting.
A properly lit home is necessary for many reasons. It not only makes the home seem alive, but it also brightens up the home. It can emphasize the good points of the room and take attention away from areas you don’t like. But lighting goes beyond that, it can bring a good energy into the home. Here are a few home lighting tips with feng shui that can help you utilize that energy.
The theory behind lighting and feng shui is about chi energy. Light is important in balancing the chi energy in a home, the yin and yang. Windows are a big help in bringing in light, but sometimes there are not enough windows or enough light entering the windows and this is why it is important to add extra lighting to the home. With lamps you are able to place them in powering places to help the chi energy keep balanced and flow.
Where lights are placed in a house or in an area are very important. Every direction from north to south plays a role in the balance of energy and lights placed in specific areas add energy not only to the home but to a person’s life. Feng shui helps to activate or add energy into areas of life when used correctly, and lighting is one way to enhance the energies of specific areas of life.
If a bright light is situated at the south side of a room, especially if it illuminates a specific spot that highlights something to do with your goals or a symbol of your goals, it brings fame and recognition. In the southeast, a vertical rectangular light will represent upward growth when it comes to wealth. The southwest area is good for relationships and a decorative lamp with pinks or greens to represent love and growth should be placed in a living room or bedroom.
A lamp located at the northwest can activate energy on career. This should be a medium light that is not overpowering with a blue lightshade or even a blue light. When travel and people need attention, a globe lamp or spotlight on a globe on the northwest side will keep the energy flowing in the northwest area. A small lamp that can be easily moved, like a desk lamp, in the northeast can activate knowledge energy.
Family is an important part of balance; a balanced family creates a balanced home. To help promote the warmth and closeness in a family a light on the east side of a room should be used. The family room is the ideal place for this and even a fireplace can be the source of that energy and light as it promotes warmth and energy with Feng Shui.
Children and creativity can go hand in hand and in those cases, unique lighting should be used from the west. This can be in a family room or a child’s bedroom and it should be a fun light, even silly. Medium light is best so that the area is not over activated, which can cause kids to be over activated also.