Nov 16, 2012

Home Lighting

Lighting your spaces is one of the best ways to change the character of a room. The right light allows colors to shine, artwork to sizzle, and dramatizes or enhances details.  It's also the most easily misunderstood method.  The proper fixture, in the right position, with the correct lamping (bulb) is critical.

Investing in the right fixture is just the first step.  Layered lighting - paying attention to energy consumption - makes rooms better, and more functional. Try these tips for fabulous results:

1- Select the right size fixture. For dining and kitchen fixtures, keeping them approximately 2/3 the size of your table, and hanging 30-35" above the surface,  is proportional and sheds the best light.

2- Use LED or compact fluorescent bulbs to maximize light output and keep energy use low. Install dimmers at your existing switches to increase or decrease the light as you need it. 

3- Style matters. You should complement the style of your home's architecture as well as the furnishings within. That doesn't mean matching precisely, since a sleek contemporary fixture can work as well in a traditional home as a crystal chandelier can work in an ultra-modern space.

4- Accent pictures and  focal points for drama as well as ambiance.

5- Task lighting is key in kitchens and baths. Pay attention to where the beam of your fixture falls. Does it throw a shadow on the counter or your face? Wall sconces flanking the mirror are ideal for bathrooms, and under-cabinet lights can help shed light on counters when the overhead lighting is not installed in the right place.