Decorate Like a Pro: Experts Share Insight on How To Light Your Home

Beautiful lighting is as essential a part of your design plan as your wallpaper or flooring. When it’s done right, it feels like an integral, organic part of a space. Done wrong, and it’s all too noticeable—in the worst way. Here are a few pro tips for lighting your space.

Consider Each Space: To determine the best light, first decide what you’ll be doing in each room. Workspaces like kitchens benefit from direct lighting (think pendants over counters, LED lights under counters) while spaces meant for relaxing (that cozy bedroom) will do better with ambient, soft, and dimmable lighting.

Opt for Variety: Choose different types of light sources in varied locations—sconces, pendants, direct lighting, accent lights, and a mixture of up- and downlighting will illuminate rooms without lending to eyestrain or “fatigue.”

Light the Whole Room: A room that’s not lit to the ceiling will have a cave-like feel that’s the opposite of cozy. Choose lights—or a combination or light sources—that illuminate all the way up. To that point, lighting large surfaces (like walls) will add to the overall brightness of a room.

Be Direct: Use direct light in task areas where you need it—such as the space over a kitchen counter or in the bathroom.

Utilize What You Have: Accentuate natural light by choosing window treatments that don’t obstruct it. A few well-placed mirrors will boost light that comes in from the outside.

Light What You Love: Spotlights on art work, accent lights illuminating frames—the best way to draw attention to the décor you love in your space is to light it right.

Do Right by Dimmers: Dimmer switches are easy, affordable ways to personalize your light output based on need and desire.

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