The Fundamentals of Lighting in Interior Design
LIGHT UP YOUR HOME
Whether you are building a new home or planning to purchase a light for your home there are many factors involved in choosing the correct fixture including ensuring that the fixture is correctly placed and also the scale and proportion in the room. Here are some helpful tips for you to remember when choosing lighting for your home.
While interior design does focus on the color of the walls, the color of the furniture and the basic design of a room, lighting is what brings it all together. Interior designers find ways to use light to heighten a room’s overall theme, pull elements together and create a mood.
Main lighting types:
When using lighting in interior design, there are three main types of lighting: ambient or general lighting, task lighting and accent lighting. These three types work together to help bring the overall mood of a room.
Ambient lighting is the lighting that is actually used so you can see and it can be dim or bright, yellowish or white, done by a single lamp or dozens, it doesn’t matter.
Task lighting is extra lighting used in a specific place where tasks need to be done, such as a workbench or over a desk, in the kitchen over your food prep area, so you can see more clearly.
Accent lighting are lights used in a decorative manner, in order to highlight specific objects. While most rooms definitely need the first two, interior designers find ways to place accent lighting so it will help bring everything together.
Tip#1 I consider light fixtures to be the jewelry of your home, they are a great way to show your style and personality. Choosing the right chandelier can be daunting for some, when in doubt stick with the architectural style of your home. Allow at least 30" - 36" between the bottom of your ceiling fixture and the top of your dining table for maximum impact. Chandeliers look best when they are 1/2 to 3/4 of the width of the table they are hanging above. For a round table, it would be ideal to choose a fixture measuring 1/2 to 3/4 in width the diameter of the table. Always important to remember when determining what size fixture to order, you’ll need to have the measurements of your table along with measurements of your room.
Tip #2 In a kitchen, over a counter or bar area, allow 30" - 36" between the bottom of the light fixture to the top of your counter or bar top. When installing multiple pendants, make sure the widest parts of the fixture are spread a minimum of 30" apart.
Tip #3 For Linear Fixtures it is important to consider proportion when placing an elongated fixture over a surface. Ideally, a fixture should measure no more than 2/3 the length of the surface under it. You can pair them when the counter or table is oversized. Allow 30" - 36" between the bottom of your ceiling fixture to the surface of your counter. Shape matters most when dealing with a table that is 6′ in length or more. If your table is that long you may want to consider a linear fixture like the one pictured below.
Tip #4 To add ambiance to any living space, it is ideal incorporating dimmer switches to your lights. This is important for controlling the amount of light you would like at certain parts of the day and depending on what you are doing in the space.
Tip # 5 Typically you should leave at least 6″ from the edge of the table, to avoid hitting the fixture. The scale of your light fixture depends on the size of your space, if your room is small ( eg. 10’x10′) you’ll want to stay under 20″ in diameter with your light fixture. A fixture that is too large can overwhelm your space.
Tip #6 If pendants are used in the bedroom on either side of the bed instead of table lamps hang 20" - 30" above nightstand to allow for bedside styling. (One of my favorite looks)!
Tip # 7 Chandeliers add a touch of glamor and romance to a space, so what better place to hang a chandelier than over a bed. For the best look, measure your length and width of your room and add the two together to determine the size of your fixture. The bottom of the fixture of had should have had hang 7' above the floor. Placement helps define impact.. either centre the fixture in the middle of the room, over the bed or towards the head, whichever you prefer. Oh, and lets not forget that fireplace in the bedroom for that focal point creating a cozy ambiance ~ Love ~
MORE TO COME ~ STAY CONNECTED