Guide to Creating Functional Interior Lighting
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Guide to Creating Functional Interior Lighting


Kitchen interior design

Being able to enjoy a reliable lighting scheme within the home is an important part of living well. Choosing lighting that serves a specific function, as well as fitting in with the room's particular style, can be a daunting task. After all, there are so many options! But fear not, because essentially, as with many things in life, it all comes down to making a plan. Here are the key thing to think about when creating functional interior lighting.

Kitchen Lighting Modern

What are you using the room for?

In order to equip each room of the house with the right lighting specifications, you need to identify exactly what each room is being used for. This will then have an effect on what kind of lighting it will require. The type of activities going on in a space will have a bearing on the best kind of lights to use within that room.

Accent, ambient or task?

The role of interior lights can generally be broken down into three distinct types; accent, ambient and task lighting. Of the three, it is often useful to begin with task lighting, because as the name implies, this is lighting suited to a specific task. This might also influence which room it is best suited to.

For example, lights behind or above a bathroom mirror to aid with grooming and make up are carrying out the function of task lighting. A reading light or a pendant ceiling lights above a kitchen bench also fall into this category.

Ambient lighting fulfils a less specific role, instead contributing to the overall lighting effect of the interior. Think about creating a relaxing feel, with wall lights giving out a softer illumination, rather than focusing on ceiling downlights.

Accent lighting is focused on particular aspects or items in the room. Picture lights drawing attention to a piece of art or a coloured light effect on a part of the room are examples of accent lighting.

Indoor Lantern

Colour and Warmth

When you know what function your lights are going to serve in what room, you can start to think about the overall effect. The colour of the light and will have an effect on the warmth and cosiness given out by the light. Interestingly, lights which are dimmer in power actually create a warmer feel, with red, yellow and orange coloured lights the best at bring a warm light into the home.

Style and Function

Ideally, function can be attuned to style when installing your lighting scheme. Always remember what the room is being used for and the general layout of the space before installing the lights. After that you will be able to balance the furniture with the lighting balance, taking care to pay attention to the natural light levels offered by windows, doors and skylights.

By considering exactly what you want to achieve with your lights, you can enjoy a scheme that is both functional and suitable to the particular needs of your home.