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How to Light Up a Room

Inception Dome Ceiling Lamp from The RoomPlace
Featured Image: Inception Dome Ceiling Lamp from The RoomPlace

Now that you have your new furniture, it’s time to show it off with the perfect lighting. The right lighting can be the seamless way to enhance a focal piece, open up a smaller room, add coziness, define certain spaces and light up a work area. When it comes to choosing that special lighting for your home, the options are endless.

Whether you’re looking to light up your living room, dining room, bedroom, kitchen or more, we can help you decide on lighting that is both stylish and functional, and of course, shows off your new furniture. There are three basic types of lighting options:

  • Ambient lighting, most often this is a recessed ceiling light designed to replace daylight. Ambient lighting creates a bland, flat effect. Combined with other lighting, it will serve and accomplish all purposes.
  • Accent lighting: adds texture, depth, focus and shade near focal pieces and in corners, beautifully complements ambient lighting.
  • Task lighting: used to illuminate a work area. Task lighting provides a narrower stream of light that focuses exclusively on one area.

Take a look at the following lighting ideas for your home:

Destin Table Lamp from The RoomPlace
Image: Destin Table Lamp from The RoomPlace

Living Room Lighting

Your living room is special. It’s the space in your home where everyone gathers to spend time together. Therefore, you’ll want to mix it up a little. Mixing and matching different types of lighting is essential for creating an inviting atmosphere. Overhead ambient lighting will brighten the entire space and for your living room, you’ll want it in two ways: recessed lighting across the ceiling for overall lighting and a transitional hanging pendant over the center of the room. When you want to add more warmth to your living room, table lamps and floor lamps work beautifully to add coziness and intimacy.

Ranald Ceiling Lamp from The RoomPlace
Image: Ranald Ceiling Lamp from The RoomPlace

It’s important to get the lighting perfect for your dining room. Pendant lights, flush mounts, chandeliers and wall sconces are lovely and functional ideas for lighting up a dining room. However you do it, the most important thing is to focus your lighting around the dining room table. There will be times when you don’t want the room completely illuminated, so make sure to use dimmer lighting to set the mood.

Nicki Table from The RoomPlace
Image: Nicki Table from The RoomPlace

Lighting tip: both ambient and task lighting in your dining room should be at 3,000-6,000 Lumens.

Kitchen Lighting

Kitchens aren’t just for cooking; if your home is like most others, your kitchen is also the space where everyone gathers to hang out and catch up on their day. Therefore, choosing lighting for your kitchen should be determined by the activities – whether you’re looking to illuminate a cooking area or you want to create an entertaining space for friends and family, choose your lighting accordingly.

Chelsea 5 Piece Dinette from The RoomPlace
Image: Chelsea 5 Piece Dinette from The RoomPlace

It’s important to use three different types of lighting for your kitchen: recessed lights, pendant lights, and the must-have under-cabinet strip lights. Recessed lighting is best to illuminate the entire kitchen, hanging pendant lights work well over an island or kitchen table, and under cabinet lighting is perfect for counter tasks.

Lighting tip: kitchen ambient lighting should be 5,000-10,000 Lumens; task lighting around the counters, sink and stove should be a minimum of 450 Lumens.

Bedroom Lighting

You want your bedroom to be a warm and cozy space. Before you choose bedroom lighting, you will want to have a furniture placement plan. The key to creating the perfect lighting for your bedroom is flexibility. The capacity to control light levels is important – if one person wants to sleep and another wants to read, you want to have those options.

Lighting tip: bedroom ambient lighting should be 1,500-3,000 Lumens, while task lighting should be a minimum of 400 Lumens.

Floor and Table Lamps: Floor and table lamps are versatile and can be used anywhere in your home. They come in a wide variety of styles, colors, lengths and are perfect options to enhance the appeal of any room’s décor. Popular lamp finishes include antique bronze, oil-rubbed bronze, brushed nickel and satin nickel. If you’re planning on using your new lamp as accent lighting, go for more decorative or extravagance to add style and elegance to your space. You can mix and match, too, with different bases, finishes, lamp shades and even the light bulbs you choose.

Dimmer Lighting: The lighting in your home is something you use every single day. As such, it should be adaptable for its intended use – using lighting dimmer controls allows you to set the mood in any room. Whether for entertainment purposes, reading, area nightlights or more, dimmers provide economical, safe and comfortable home environments.

Warm and Cool Lighting: Warm lighting is a natural, calming light that has a reddish tone to the eye, while cool lighting is brighter and looks bluer to the eye. The perfect time to use warm lighting is when you need to relax, wind down from the day and before you go to bed. The time to choose cool lighting is when we need a little energy and alertness – perfect for focus, performing tasks – best during the morning and afternoon.

Choosing Light Bulbs: The two most popular light bulb options are Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFLs) and Light-Emitting Diodes (LEDs). The major difference between the two is how much energy it takes to use them over time. CFLs use about 70 percent less energy than LEDs and last years longer; they cost about a dollar more per light bulb. Two drawbacks to CFLs: they take a while to warm up and reach full illumination; they contain trace amounts of mercury – harmful to your health and the environment. So, don’t break them and don’t throw away in your home trash bin – recycle them.

The right lighting is essential for every room in your home. When choosing lighting, look for unique fixtures that will draw attention to your new furniture, a piece of art that you love, or around a work area. Once your lighting is complete, all you’ll need to do is flip the switch.

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