When remodeling and decorating, we usually look for furniture, paint, carpets and decorative items as pictures. However, the lighting can have a big impact on the overall look of a room. The lighting design is responsible for setting the mood or ambiance of a space. With careful design and planning for the type, color and hue of the lighting, the room can be given a different ambiance. The right lighting can set a mood, improve productivity and contribute to people’s sense of well-being. It can transform unappealing spaces into desirable ones. Bright rooms give a positive and optimistic feeling, while darker rooms are more intimate and romantic. Research had proven that light can make big difference in how we feel.

Good lighting design will not make you frustrated in the kitchen when you are not able to see what you are doing, and it will stop the arguments in the bedroom over whose turn it is to get up to switch out the light. Instead, you should be able to transform a room from a bright, vibrant living space to the setting for a romantic dinner for two.

Natural lighting is the light from the sun that comes through windows and doors. Direct sunlight is a healthy source of light, but the brightness and intensity is very variable. The time of the day, the season or the weather all influence natural sunlight. To control the quantity of natural light, different types of glass or curtains can be used. Diffusion and reflection are great ways to control this free light source. A good idea is to find the wall that received direct light form the sun and paint it in a bright color. The reflected light creates an ambiance in the room. The surface of the wall can control the diffusion of the light; rough surfaces have different effects than smooth surfaces.

Artificial lighting can be any kind of lamp. This light source can be controlled in every aspect; intensity, color, and the area of spreading. To get the desired effects in a room, the best idea is to use a combination of different types of artificial lighting. Ambience lighting is to lighten the whole room and give a certain ‘mood’ to the space. Accent lighting is used to illuminate certain aspects or details of the interior decoration, as sculptures, pictures or display shelves.

Lighting could be functional or aesthetic. Functionally, the lighting needs to be correct for the intended purpose. A great example of functional lighting is task lighting: lamps for reading, lights over the sink or over the mirror in the bathroom. Task lighting should always be glare free to make the task easier without straining the eyes. Aesthetically, the lighting gives an ambiance to the space. For creating an ambience, environment lights are used in ceiling corners or along the sides of the room. The intensity and color of the lights are important for the ambiance. For ‘mood’ lighting, it is very important that the source of the light is hidden.

With a few lighting design ideas, you can change the visible appearance of a room and make it look larger or smaller. Rooms with high ceilings can get a cozier radiance by using lighting that is lower than the ceiling. The light should not escape beyond the height of the source. Use a lampshade that directs the light downwards. The other way around, by using upwards lighting pointed at the ceiling, rooms appear to be higher.

Standing lamps and table lamps work great for specific purposes and lighten up only an area of the room. A lamp should be placed behind a reader’s shoulder. Lamps are also perfect to brighten up dark corners in rooms. And of course, decorative lampshades on corner end tables and bedside tables enhance the ambiance and bring attention to a specific area of the room. The style of the fixtures will add to your interior decoration, whether turned on or off.

Lighting is just as important in interior design as the colors or the style of furniture and accessories. Your entire work in decoration can be ruined at once by poor lighting. But carefully planned lighting will greatly enhance the best details in your design.


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