Chances are your house is likely a buzz of activity, with family members doing a number of things in different rooms. Lighting is essential to your home, but that doesn’t mean it has to be boring. A combination of lighting techniques in each room will set the mood, whether it be to illuminate a productive home office, encourage relaxation, highlight artwork, enhance family gatherings at mealtimes or provide a romantic backdrop for a quiet evening.
Proper lighting helps you perform tasks more easily, and makes you feel safer and more comfortable. Creating the proper lighting in your home begins with a plan. First, consider the activities that take place in each room and envision the look you are trying to achieve.
Consider these four types of lighting:
Ambient lighting is a general type of light that illuminates an entire space. This type of lighting typically emanates from an overhead fixture or recessed cans, and provides enough illumination that occupants can easily perform tasks and move about. Adding a dimmer switch to these lights will easily adjust to change the mood of the room.
Task lighting focuses on one particular area to allow room occupants to more easily perform activities. Task lighting can include such things as: desk lamps, under cabinet lighting, pendant lights and reading lamps. We often use this type of lighting in home offices, kitchens, playrooms and craft or sewing areas. Task lighting can also be used in conjunction with ambient lighting particularly in a craft room or a home office allowing for extra light helping to avoid eye strain.
Accent lighting is used to draw attention to a design element in a space; for example, artwork, reading areas or fireplace mantels. Wall-mounted picture lights that project light downward are a modern type of accent lighting and provide three times the amount of illumination of the surrounding light. In addition to using accent lighting indoors, home accent lighting is also often used outdoors to define walkways or illuminate creative landscaping.
Natural light is provided by the sun and streams into a space through windows, skylights and doorways. Rooms bathed in natural light are typically brighter and evoke happy, upbeat emotions. Decorators take best advantage of natural light in sunrooms and enclosed porches and in rooms that feature walls of windows or skylights.
Each type of lighting offers a myriad of choices in finishes, styles and colors and should be taken into consideration with the overall styles of textures, furniture and colors within your home. Rooms can be enhanced and redecorated by changing the lighting fixtures without breaking the bank. Need some guidance? Give us a call at 412-638-2696.
About the author: Catherine Montague is the president of Green Design Innovation and recipient of the 2014 Best of Houzz Award. Green Design Innovation is a full service design firm and providing an International Approach to Interior Design offering an array of residential and commercial interior design services. Core areas of services include: Interior Design, Real Estate Staging & Move-in services, Color Consultation and International Shopping. We are located in Sewickley near Pittsburgh serving our clients in Naples, FL and Paris or wherever they are.