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How To Choose The Right Lighting For The Right Room

Author: Sarah Wigmore
Published: November 11, 2014

Every room in your home will have different lighting requirements. The secret to a great lighting scheme is achieving the balance between style and functionality for each individual room. What works in one room won’t necessarily work in the next. You do however want a scheme that flows from room to room so you are not moving from a brightly lit space to a completely contrasting one.

An over-lit room never works so stick to the rules of good lighting and layer with ambient (overhead), task and accent lighting. Let’s take a look at 4 different areas of the house; living room, bathroom, bedroom and kitchen/diner.

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Living Room

Most living rooms are multi-functional. It’s a place where you may read, enjoy wine with friends, curl up on the sofa to watch a film or play board games with the children. However you use the space it needs a good mix of lighting. Combine downlights or a central pendant light with table lamps for a warm and inviting ambience. Add a smart floor lamp next to your sofa with a directional head for task lighting when reading your favourite novel. Remember that the slightly older generation will require a brighter light for reading than younger family members.

Style & Room Size

Think about style too. Do you want a modern or traditional look for your décor? Choose fittings in a material to suit your choice. Don’t forget to consider the size, shape and layout of your room too. Avoid hanging pendant lights if you have a lower ceiling.

Accent

Use accent lighting to highlight interesting features in the room such as an attractive fireplace, alcove or textured wall. Choose a stylish picture light to illuminate your favourite artwork.

An Illusion

To make a smaller living room appear larger, why not try a few lighting tricks. Use uplighters to bounce light onto the ceiling and walls and light all four corners of the room to expand the space.

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Bathroom

Lighting your bathroom comes with its own set of rules. A bathroom is broken down into zones to distinguish which areas are exposed to water. Choose a fitting with a zone appropriate IP rating. It is recommended that when installing bathroom fittings it is carried out by a qualified electrician.

Flush fittings and downlights work well in the bathroom if you want a clean look. Avoid positioning downlights directly above a bathroom mirror as this will create shadows. Wall lights positioned either side of the mirror will offer shadow free illumination for your face.

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Master Bedroom

Whether you prefer a pure white décor or a more vibrant interior, the same rule of thumb applies for layering of light. Choose dimmable overhead lighting for your general lighting that can be fully illuminated when choosing clothes from your wardrobe and dimmed for a more relaxed ambience. Create pools of light with eye level table lamps and choose a bright task light for your bedtime reading. If space is limited select a compact fold-away option such as the Fuse LED Reading Light – Aluminium.

Kitchen/Diner

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Task Lighting

The kitchen is the hub of any home and is used from morning through to night. Recessed downlights, as they are protected from grease and dirt, can work well for your general lighting. Task lighting needs to be spot on in the kitchen. To avoid chopping fingers as well as the vegetables, sharp focused illumination needs to be angled at work surfaces. Spotlights on a track system are a good choice as are under cabinet lights directed onto your counter tops.

Dining

As the kitchen often houses a table, choose a rise and fall pendant light which can be lowered and raised as required. Alternatively choose wall mounted lights at eye level for a cosier setting.

New lighting offers an affordable and simple way to update your décor. Plan your lighting room by room and don’t be afraid to mix and match your styles.

For more inspiration visit our Lighting Ideas section.