The hallway is where you create a good first impression to your visitors. Lighting should be warm and welcoming. Soft lighting is ideal for this space, so a chandelier, one or more ceiling pendants, wall sconces, and lanterns would be appropriate light fixtures to install here. Having the right combination of lighting in your hallway, along with large mirrors that accentuate the effects of the light, presents your hallway as a spacious area that is bright and inviting.
This is the room where most of us spend our leisure time. Lighting should be easily controllable and functional, taking into consideration natural daylight, the placement of furniture, TVs, etc. The best mix would be a blend of ceiling pendant or track lighting with strategically placed floor-standing uplighters that can be independently switched on and off as needs dictate. You may opt to use a lighting fixture that would blend with the walls or choose one that would stand out in the room such as the bright blue large ceiling pendant here. Dimmer switches are recommended for living rooms where TV screen glare might be an issue.
The dining room is a place where friends and family gather for meals or celebrate special moments, so this space should have a relaxing and warm ambiance. There should be adequate lighting above the dining table. A strategically placed chandelier, track light, ceiling pendant, or a group of mini pendants mounted directly above the table will ensure that everyone at the table can see each other as well as their food as they enjoy their meal. As coffee is served, the attention is then shifted to conversations, so softer wall or floor-standing uplighters are best to take the light away from the table and throw it around the room for a cozy feel.
Lighting for kitchens should always be about task lighting. There needs to be adequate under-cabinet lights focused downward on work surfaces as well as recessed ceiling spotlights to provide a bright, clean effect in the kitchen. Most kitchens are also used as a social space, so you may want to consider a dimmer option to allow lighting to be adjusted. Sonneman lighting atop kitchen islands are perfect for task lighting and decorative purposes.
Bathrooms need more than ambient lighting. Ideally, there should be a mix of ambient, task, and decorative lighting to suit your mood and complement the layout of the room. Halogen spots provide bright, clean white light which is ideal within the shower area. Wall sconces and pendant lights are perfect for bath vanity, soft task lighting that allows you to see clearly while at the same time preventing shadows to make personal grooming an easy task any time of the day. Flush mount lighting is perfect for general or ambient lighting, while a chandelier can be added for decorative purposes.
The bedroom is your personal sanctuary and it needs lighting that will help you unwind and relax. Bedside lamps or wall lights that can be individually switched on and off for reading are essential. Pendant lighting may be added for task lighting when performing personal grooming routine. Flush and semi-flush mounts provide overall lighting when necessary.
Keep these tips in mind to have a well-lit home that provides more than illumination, but the appropriate atmosphere at any time of day, for any occasion.
Joan Silver is a known lighting expert from Capitol Lighting (1800lighting.com) and a fan of all things “lighting”. She currently provides customers and designers with robust information on their lighting needs.