These light sources are the key to presenting your spaces. They're not merely decorative.
Light is as crucial a design element as any, so be sure to think about how it affects your other choices. Here are some suggestions to maximize its beautifying potential.According to ShelterPop, decorating isn't just about decor, it's about smart lighting choices. Here's how to set the mood and maximize natural light in your home. In other words, you might want to consider building your room around its lighting.
While few of us have rooms with oversized windows and a steady stream of natural light, we all do have rooms with different light "personalities." And you can maximize a room's natural light by making smart lighting choices.
Artificial lighting plays three roles in design: ambient light, task light and decorative lighting. The fourth -- and sometimes most important -- element is natural light.
Michael Ferzoco of Boston-based design firm Eleven Interiors said that when he begins working on a new room, he studies the light. He looks at the room's elements in natural light and revisits them again in artificial light in the evening. Only then does he get a sense of what kind of lighting a room needs.
To help you tackle the lighting needs of your room, Ferzoco suggests a few steps for improving the look and feel of your dim space. You can read more detailed suggestions on ShelterPop.
Devise a lighting strategy
Whether designing a blank canvas or working with an existing space, Ferzoco says it's important to think about how you use the space you're attempting to light. Are you working in the room? Reading there? Watching TV or entertaining? Where in the room do you plan to sit?
Design around natural light
Next, he always checks to see which direction the natural light is coming from. "Most people are away during the day and are more concerned with artificial light," he says. However, knowing if light comes in directly all day or only in the afternoon will help you figure out answers to a number of design questions.
Create mood and drama with lighting
Ferzoco says that "the brighter the light, the more serious the mood." Very bright lighting can be extremely important in certain spaces, such as work spaces or task-oriented spaces like kitchens. He suggests using bright halogen lighting and a dimmer switch so that the mood in your living space can change as needed.
Bottom line: A simple way to change the mood of your room is to change light bulbs and lampshades. The type of lampshade you choose has a considerable effect on mood. Choose something darker for a more relaxed mood or a bright white shade to make it feel a little more serious. Ferzoco always suggests that you opt for a dimmer or a three-way lamp so that you have the option to "turn up the volume" when needed.
To create drama with lighting, try adding sconces above a fireplace or a spotlight on a piece of artwork. Overhead lighting like chandeliers should be on a dimmer to create a romantic mood when low lit.
But watch out. There is such a thing as too much lighting, as ShelterPop notes.
Recessed lighting is meant to exude luxury, and when done right, it certainly does. Offering a clean, streamlined look in a home, recessed lighting can increase the amount of light in a room, highlight artwork and open up a space. When done wrong, however, it can make a million dollar home look like a planetarium.
When placing recessed lighting, it's important to light a focal point like a fireplace or artwork from two different angles. Two. Not twenty-two, unless of course, you're an airport runway. In that case, light away.
Otherwise, if you like a lot of lighting, apply for a job at Lamp's Plus. Don't create the Big Dipper on your ceiling. Capiche?