Lighting plays a very important role in your home: it creates atmosphere, illuminates your house and enables you to really enjoy your surroundings.
Think about the harshness of your standard “big light” compared to the more subtle and relaxing dimmer enabled table lamps. Immediately you can see the difference between the two, and how lighting helps you enjoy, or not, the various rooms in your home.
In this article, I will be covering some of the different types of lighting available to consumers, and providing tips on how to exploit these options to maximise their potential in your home.
Dim the Big Light!
Most people avoid watching television or relaxing in their living room with the main (big) light as the only form of illumination; it’s much too harsh and certainly doesn’t provide a relaxing atmosphere.
Instead, we use table lamps, wall lamps or, if we really must use the main light, we fit a dimmer switch so we can set it at a more suitable brightness.
Different types of lighting
In a home, we generally use two types of lighting: accent or decorative, which is used for highlighting certain areas or aspects of a room (corners, pictures, furniture) and ambient (or overall).
As well as providing the correct type of lighting for the occasion, the lighting systems we choose should fit with the décor and styling of our home. This doesn’t mean the colour schemes have to be a perfect match, but they should certainly complement each other.
Size matters too; a small lamp in a large room may not provide enough light to do the job you want it to, and a large lamp in a small room tends to draw the eye and look out of place. In a small room, a ceiling light is the best option, but remember; add a dimmer switch so you have more control over its output, and turn it down when the mood dictates.
Recessed lights have become very popular in the UK over the past few years. They are very versatile and can be used in just about any room of your house (including the bathroom). They can be tricky to fit, depending upon the level of your DIY skillset, but they provide an elegant light source and come in many different styles.
You will usually find recessed downlights in kitchens, bathrooms and bedrooms. They are always evenly spaced across the area you want to illuminate to ensure a balanced and even light distribution. They come in a range of trims including: open, baffle, eyeball, gimball, lenses, diffusers, decorative and shower.
If you don’t fancy crawling around your loft to fit recessed lights in your ceiling, look for a local electrician to do the job for you.
Undoubtedly, the most versatile of all lighting is the good old-fashioned lamp. It comes in many varieties and has tons of uses. Table lamps, floor lamps, desk lamps – you can get an uplighter, lamps with a bendy gooseneck and even lamps you can clip on to headboards or shelves.
When it comes to making changes to the typical house to providing a better lighting solution, it’s the lamp that many of us first turn to; they’re cheap, they’re readily available and you can swop shades and bulbs when you are ready for a change.
Lighting is important. It can make or break your home. So, go out there, experiment with what’s on offer and find the best solution for you!
Photo: Cha già José