Have fun with accent lighting. Finding just the right lighting is one of the most difficult things for me as an interior designer, but when it happens it is magic. I think of the room as the perfect little black dress with the perfect cut, the one that dresses up or down according to the occasion, and the perfect lighting fixture is the jewelry that finishes off and compliments the little black dress.
I have written an article for West Coast Homes and Design, a supplement in the Vancouver Sun Newspaper,on how the right lighting is one of the most important aspects in achieving atmosphere in a home. Lighting is a discipline all to itself and often is one of the most important parts of an interior. Bad lighting can ruin a good interior: good lighting can almost salvage a bad one. For example….. (more)
In kitchens it is particularly important to get the lighting right as food preparation along with the eating and social aspects that go on in this room are a vital part of our lives and involve all of our senses. Kitchens need to be well lit with good overall ambient lighting and task lighting over islands and countertops. Add a little fun and pizazz with accent lighting as I did over this island.
Lighting in a bathroom and bedroom needs to make you feel refreshed and energetic in the morning, ready to face the challenges of the day ahead, but at night should engender a feeling of relaxation and harmony. In a bathroom, good lighting for putting on make-up should come evenly from either side of the mirror so shadows are not cast on the face. The rest of the room needs to be lit evenly from overhead, but be careful of placing recessed pot lights that are directly over your head when standing in front of a mirror or else you will have shadows under your eyes. I put the lights for the make-up lights and the overhead lights on different switches to further enhance the options to create different moods.
Left: Wall mounted LED swing-arm lamps were used in this bedroom for task light.
Right: Candles can add to the mood and ambience in a room and make a dramatic statement.
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