One of the most common things I hear from people when they are looking for a home is they want something ‘light and bright.’ As we all know, lighting plays a huge role on how we feel. Having a home with plenty of light helps us feel alert and awake, it helps us feel ready to conquer the day. When we have a room with softer light or one that’s less lit, it tends to make us feel more relaxed, tired, and ready to wind down.
According to Emma Louise Pritchard, in Country Living, “up lighting makes a room feel larger, low hung pendants create an illusion of height and clusters of lighting make large rooms seem cozier.” Whether you’re looking to light up an entry way, a specific bedroom, the kitchen, or hallway, there’s several methods you could employ to capture the (b)right effect.
When thinking about how you want to light your home, there are a couple things to keep in mind. First off, you should know what the type of lighting is and what it does. Secondly, what is your room being used for and how much light is needed? Last and arguably most importantly is layer, layer, and layer.
The most common types of lighting includes ambient lighting, task lighting, accent lighting, and natural lighting. Here’s a brief overview of what each of those are:
Ambient lighting is more of the general lighting used to light up a room. It helps illuminate the room and is considered the room’s ‘natural light’. This type of lighting includes recessed lights, soffit lights, sconces, chandeliers, and even pendants.
Task lighting is used for things like food prep and cooking, school work, office work, or even reading and chilling. For this think of lights such as table lamp, pendant lights, or under cabinet lighting.
Accent lighting is used for highlighting objects or an area to draw attention to a feature such as artwork, architectural details and turning them into focal points. These lights tend to be 3 times brighter than ambient lights. When thinking about this, you may want to use wall lights, recessed lights, spot lights, track lighting and even wall mounted picture lights.
Natural lighting is exactly what it sounds like, originating from windows, doors with glass, and even skylights. Because this is natural lighting, this will vary in ‘brightness’ depending on many factors.
A final piece of wisdom: a general tip to calculate how much light you need in a room would be: room length x room width x 1.5 = amount of wattage needed to light a room.