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Good lighting can dramatically transform your home, especially during the darkest months of the year. Discover the best way to light every room with our handy guide


Choosing the correct lighting
for your home

The spaces in your home all have very different functions so it’s important to have the correct lighting in each room. There are three main types; ambient, task and accent, all with contrasting ways of illuminating your home.

Ambient lighting: the closest to mimicking natural light, so ideal for lighting areas you spend a lot of time in, such as kitchens and living rooms.

Task lighting: perfect for when you need to illuminate an area for a specific activity like reading, food prep or close-up work. ​

Accent lighting: brings the best features of your home to life enabling them to take centre stage. It also creates ambience with multiple layers of lighting, using lights as decorative objects to enhance a room’s aesthetic.

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Lighting for your living room

Living rooms are used for a range of activities, so need a combination of lighting sources. Start with ceiling lights, such as pendants or chandeliers, which will disperse light around the whole room.​ ​

You can then use table lamps and floor lighting to create a relaxed atmosphere for lounging. ​If you want to create more impact and draw the eye to a particular focal point in the room, accent lighting is the way to go. Highlight artwork, bookcases, feature walls or unique decorations with carefully placed spotlights, table lamps or floor lamps. ​

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Lighting for your bedroom

A bedroom should be your cosy retreat from everyday life, so deserves  special attention. ​

A ceiling light is ideal for brightening the whole room on darker mornings, but you shouldn’t just rely on ambient lighting. Table lamps are perfect for late-night reading but get the size right – look for a lamp that’s around half the width of your bedside table.​

Choose dimmable lighting so you can adjust the brightness to suit your needs. Use lightbulbs with a warm or soft glow, as cooler colours can make a room feel cold or clinical. ​

Accent lighting brings the best features of your home to life enabling them to take centre stage. It also creates ambience with multiple layers of lighting, using lights as decorative objects to enhance a room’s aesthetic.

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Lighting for your dining room

You can create a warm and inviting atmosphere in the dining room by incorporating a combination of ambient, task and accent lighting. Start with a statement chandelier or pendant light, hanging it above the dining table for a stunning focal point. You can create a more intimate feel by using a lower hanging pendant light, whilst lights hung in a cluster, or a chandelier fitting can also make an impact. ​

Wall lights or floor lamps are useful for adding softer ambient lighting around the room, creating a dining space that is not only well-lit but visually appealing.

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Lighting for your home office

Proper lighting is essential for a productive home office. Start with abundant natural light if possible, positioning your desk near a window to reduce eye strain. Supplement with layered artificial lighting, including a desk lamp with adjustable brightness to provide focused illumination.

Consider adding ambient lighting with a ceiling or pendant light to evenly brighten the room, using specific lighting for bookshelves or cabinets. And most important of all: make sure that your lighting minimises screen glare for a comfortable working environment.​

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Lighting for your bathroom

Effective lighting in your bathroom will transform your bathroom into an inviting and practical space. Start by installing bright lights overhead to ensure the entire space is well-lit.  ​Task lighting is crucial around a mirror, use fixtures on either side or above to provide even, shadow-free illumination. Use accent lighting, like wall sconces or under-cabinet lighting, to add a touch of elegance and create a warm, spa-like atmosphere.

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Words: Richard.A.Smith and Sarah Lafarge

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