Around the Home

Simple Switches and Other Home Lighting Hacks

The lighting in your home can speak volumes about your space.  Whether you are looking to bring in a sense of warmth, or want to highlight certain features, using light strategically can take a room from okay to inspiring.  Here are some tips to make the most of your space with basic home lighting hacks.

Get the Mix Right
A well designed space has multiple light sources placed within the area and goes well beyond a single overhead fixture and windows.

Task lighting, light sources that are placed for specific functions, can quickly improve the look and function of a room.  Desk and table lamps can create a pleasant space to read or work.  Pendant lights can bring additional focus to kitchen islands or can be suspended to create an interesting focal point with a small display table in an underused corner.  Directional lighting and sconces can be used to highlight art and architectural features while floor lamps can cast light up onto an otherwise dark ceiling.

But before heading out, it’s better to create a list of lights that you will need. It’s also convenient to browse online for lighting inspirations. Stores like have their collections posted on their website just so you have an idea on what to expect in their showrooms.

Update the Lights You Already Have
If you have a lamp, but it isn’t quite right for your space, consider giving it an update instead of replacing it entirely.  A new lampshade can completely transform the look of table and floor lamps.  Replacing the blades in a ceiling fan can give it new life.  Painting an outdated fixture can bring it in-line with today’s design standards.

Increase Your Efficiency                                                      
The newest LED Energy Star light bulbs can shave between $30 and $80 in energy costs off of your bill over the life of the light bulb, and that’s just for one!  If you can’t afford to switch out all of your bulbs at once, consider making the switch as each current light bulb stops working, or begin by switching the bulbs in the light fixtures you use most to experience the savings more quickly.

Consider a Dimmer
Dimmer switches allow you just adjust the amount of light in a space based on the time of day or the desired mood.  Certain floor and table lamps also come with a feature referred to as three-way lighting.  This way, you can bring the levels of light up when you need to, and bring them down when you don’t, without having to completely remove the light from the space.  Certain fixtures will require light bulbs specifically designed to be dimmable, or provide three levels of light, but they are easily found at most large retailers and also come in energy efficient designs.

Let Mirrors Do the Work
Reflective surfaces can also help bring more light into a space.  If a room only has one window, and a blank wall directly across from it, consider adding a mirror to simulate a second window and help the light bounce back into the room.  Mirrors behind sconces can create a lovely effect and glossy counter or tabletops can help a room seem brighter.

If you want to increase the light in a space and create an interesting display, consider grouping mirrors in a manner similar to a photo collage.  Different shapes, sizes, and frames can feel very organic while harder edges and a more streamlined approach can create drama in a space, all while making the area feel brighter.

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