Navigating the world of interior lighting can be both exciting and overwhelming, especially when tailoring your choices to specific rooms. The right lighting has the power to transform each space, enhancing its functionality, mood, and overall aesthetic. In this guide, "How to Choose the Right Lights by Room," we embark on a journey through various areas of your home, uncovering the secrets to illuminating them perfectly. From the welcoming foyer to the serene bedroom, the bustling kitchen to the focused office, join us as we unravel the nuances of lighting that turn every room into a well-lit masterpiece.
The foyer creates the first impression of your home, so you’ll want ambient light with a couple of accent light sources. You can’t go wrong with a flush mount light or a semi-flush mount light. A small track lighting fixture can work well also. If your foyer has a vaulted ceiling, go bold with a chandelier or pendant lantern for a more dramatic entrance. If you have a side table, a table lamp can provide a secondary light source.
The living room is the place for hanging out, relaxing, cozying up with a book or watching a movie. Lots of daily activity occurs here. That means you’ll need a variety of lighting. If your living room has areas with no light or the current light casts shadows, you’ll need more ambient and accent lighting. If you have a focal point in the room, like a mantel, add wall sconces to either side for additional accent lighting.
Other ambient lighting options are ceiling fans, chandeliers, pendant lights with a drum shade and torchiere floor lamps. A torchiere floods the ceiling with light. These lamps work well if you’re not in the market to install permanent lighting or if you need to light a small space like a loft or apartment. Some ceiling fans can also offer perfect LED lights for home spaces like the living room.
Pendant lights and chandeliers should have a size that complements the room's scale and furnishings.
Layer lighting in the kitchen with recessed lights for ambient illumination. Use island pendants, mini pendant lights, or track lighting with mini pendants for task and accent lighting. Under cabinet lighting is great for tasks and holidays. Hang a pendant or chandelier for a cozy breakfast nook.
Under cabinet lighting provides additional task lighting and takes up little space. It’s also helpful for the holidays when you have lots of chefs in the kitchen. To light a breakfast nook, a pendant or a chandelier works perfectly.
Besides mealtime, the dining room can be a place for arts and crafts or family game night, and it needs to be lit accordingly. Chandeliers are still a classic option and serve as a good ambient light source. Try placing table lamps on a server or framing the server with wall sconces for extra ambient and accent lighting.
While a vanity light above the bedroom mirror is still a traditional option, many homeowners are installing chandeliers for a more glamorous, spa-like feel. A bathroom fan with light provides ventilation and overhead light. Enhance the functionality and aesthetics with properly sized wall sconces or pendant lights placed beside mirrors, providing both ambient and task lighting.
Wall sconces or pendant lights on either side of the bathroom mirror paired with a vanity light above create the perfect ambient and task light combo. The sconces provide cross illumination, making activities like applying makeup, shaving or flossing easier. Recessed lighting works well to light a shower or water closet.
Recommended size: When selecting a chandelier, ensure it harmonizes with the bedroom's proportions, typically ranging from 20 to 24 inches in diameter for a standard bedroom. Wall sconces or pendant lights beside mirrors should be proportionate to the mirror's size, typically around one-third to half of the mirror's width.
In an office, you need to be able to focus. If you’re squinting to see your computer but you don’t need glasses, you may need more light. Invest in an adjustable desk lamp so you have plenty of task lighting. Recessed lighting or LED track lighting can provide ambient lighting for the whole room and can be put on a dimmer switch. A pendant light or a ceiling fan are other overhead lighting options. If your desk is positioned against a wall, mount wall sconces on either side to help illuminate your workspace.