Most homes come with some lighting fixtures already installed, mostly of the overly bright, overhead variety. And this is just as it should be. It is the builder’s job to ensure that your home is a functional space, and that includes providing practical elements like basic lighting fixtures. It’s your job to decorate, and that includes the lighting design. You wouldn’t necessarily want an expert electrician or contractor choosing your accent lights for you. Unfortunately, not too many of us have the knowledge, skill, or experience necessary to get the effect we want with our lighting design, or even to know what we prefer in the first place when it comes to accent lighting. So here are just a few tips and tricks that should help to ensure the lighting you add to your space creates the style, aesthetic, and illumination you crave.
- Diversify. Sure, it’s easy enough to plug in a couple of matching table lamps and call it a day, but if you want your accent lights to play an integral role in your decorations and your lighting design for every room, you need to consider the many options available to you, and think about how they can change the look of your home. For example, torch lamps can offer soft, ambient light, track lighting can allow for flexibility in what is illuminated, and wall sconces can add an architectural element. You can also get variety through the wattage of bulbs or even through colored light bulbs, especially with options that you can now control remotely through apps on your smartphone. The point is that you should definitely take the time to see what’s out there before you simply purchase a run-of-the-mill table lamp.
- Highlight. When you design your lighting, it’s important to keep in mind that accent lights illuminate small areas. If you’re not paying attention where you place them, though, you may end up shining a spotlight on features you’d rather not point out. A table lamp, for example, can certainly give you the light you need to read a book, but it can also call attention to the cracks on your ceiling or the collection of cobwebs in a window frame. So take the time to look at where all of your accent lights are pointing so that you highlight exactly what you mean to.
- Set the mood. The stark, overhead lights in a room can make your space feel sterile or washed out, which is one of the reasons you’re adding accent lighting in the first place. So you want to consider how every lamp or lighting fixture contributes to the mood, whether you’re looking to create an environment that is warm and inviting, dim it down for relaxation, or add a bit of color to spark your creativity or get romantic.
- Go green. Any time you add new lighting, there are a couple of practical aspects to consider, and cost is one of them. So you might want to look into CFL or LED options before you reach for those energy-sucking incandescent bulbs.
- Hire help. While everyone wants to live in a space that reflects their personal style and creates a welcoming aesthetic for family and friends, we aren’t all equipped with the design sensibilities needed to turn our homes into the beautiful and inviting spaces we see in magazines and on TV. Luckily, there is no shortage of interior design firms to help you out here. And with home lighting resources like Interior Deluxe at your disposal, as well, you should be able to find the products and guidance you need to make a statement with the accent lighting you add to every room.