How to correctly light your home

Have you ever walked into a house and thought, wow?

If so, then I warrant that much of the impact was due to the way lighting had been used. Creative use of lighting can make a room seem light, airy and spacious, or alternatively, dark and depressing. Inevitably, the way a room is lit can affect your mood and general well-being. Below are a few tips to help you light your living space.

Make a plan and review it
If it’s make-over time, don’t just go out and shop for light fittings and shades you like. If you do you will probably end up disappointed because the things you have bought don’t help in terms of what you are striving to achieve. Personal preference is important, of course, but consider what you do in that room and the type of lighting that will support that function. Are you constrained in anyway, are there things that, for structural reasons or costs you can’t change? If so consider how you might mitigate the negative impacts of that. Dimmer switches are a must; they give you ultimate control and can sometimes mean you can dispense with supplementary lighting. has a great choice of lights and lighting accessories.

Follow basic principles and you won’t go wrong
I think it is common sense that a huge chandelier in a small room would look ridiculous. However you decide to light your home, make sure that your fittings are an appropriate size. It is important too to consider how the way you choose to light a room will blend with the colour scheme. Neutral shades are much easier to work with, you can personalise and add colour with the fittings and shades you install. Rooms painted in darker colours are more difficult to brighten up with lighting, and if it is a day room that will be used regularly, you might need to think about re-painting. You can keep the colour; just go for a lighter hue. Darker rooms can be lit to give a warm cosy feel and an impression of luxuriousness, particularly if lighting compliments the fabrics in the room. It’s important to position lighting the right distance from the surface being illuminated, Forbes Real Estate has some useful advice on this.

Layering, optimum lighting that suits all purposes
The best lighting effects are achieved when more than just the ceiling lights are available. This is where zoning can really enhance the ambience of your room. Use floor, desk and table lamps to light areas where the focus they provide is needed. Use carefully placed spotlights to highlight special features you want to draw attention to. Bulbs inside display cabinets can contribute to this, particularly if you are a collector and the cabinet contains an expensive display. In deciding where you put your light fittings beware that you don’t create shadows, single bulbs in overhead lighting can cause this. You don’t want shadows in a bathroom when you are shaving or on your kitchen worktop when you are chopping food. Up lighting works well too, particularly around kitchen units. Floor lights are another option, particularly at night in staircases and en route to the bathroom when glare from an overhead light would be most unwelcome.

I said it wasn’t rocket science. Just follow the steps above and take a look at Take advice when you need it and get great results that will delight you, your loved ones and visitors to your home.