One of the most neglected areas in planning a home is the correct use of lighting. Most Architects and Builders (sorry) are high hat happy! Don’t even let me get started on where they place the switches and outlets, not to mention how many!!! I LOVE when I start a project at the onset so we can immediately address and avoid these issues. Here are my top ten tips!
First~there is not a single light fixture that can satisfy all the lighting needs of a room. Light layering is a design method in which several light sources are blended together to create a successful design. Take the picture above, there is the use of high hats, a chandelier, lamps and candles!
Second~A furniture layout/design is a must before attempting to create a lighting system. The lighting should relate to the way each room is going to be used.
Third~Try to get all parties involved in the project (homeowner, architect, builder, interior designer, landscape designer, etc) together. This team approach to design will result in a cohesive design where all the elements work with each other.
Fourth~As pictured above, a decorative wall plate/switch shows people you pay attention to detail and it finishes part of the room. Please check all door swings in the house. Switches often end up behind the door making it a real nuisance!
Fifth~Choose an adjustable recessed fixture that can serve as a downlight, accent light or wall washer for use in areas that you want to access or need that task lighting.
Sixth~Put interior lights on dimmers whenever possible. This allows an unlimited number of light levels for that room. Creating just the feel you want to capture.
Seventh~Please always try to include some exterior lighting in the overall design. It keeps windows from becoming “black mirrors” at night. It also visually expands the interior spaces!
Eighth~Outdoor lighting should not be put on dimmers. Standard incandescent light, when dimmed, becomes amber in color. This causes your green landscaping to look yellow. If you want low or dim light when approaching the home, try lanterns with candles.
Ninth~A panic switch in the master bedroom is perfect for security reasons. It is no fun running to the front or back door in the middle of the night to turn on the outside lights when you think there might be an intruder!
Tenth~Light Switches for the Main Rooms, Entry Foyer and Landscaping should not just be located by the front door! So many people enter their home through the garage or from the back door. This is where a second set of switches should be located. Make life just a little easier for yourself or your client.
I hope these lighting tips helped. If I have failed to mention one that you think is important, I would love to hear it! As always, thanks for reading! Stay well 🙂