The World of Lighting & Rugs
With so many lighting options on the market today why settle for a boring old pendant light? Why not have fun with your lighting choices and create something truly spectacular? Short of redecorating once a fortnight, the most visually impacting and cost effective way of transforming the rooms in your home is with strategic use of lighting.
A centrally placed pendant which gives only the option of solar flare bright or pitch black night, no longer meets the needs of the modern homeowner. A far more dynamic option is to install spot lights over the main areas of a room or where specific tasks are undertaken (e.g. kitchen work surfaces, breakfast bar, settees, paintings or doorways). The spotlights should be fitted with the ability to be switched on or off independently and a dimmer switch should be used in place of traditional one.
Not only will spotlights lead the eye around the room, dramatically drawing attention to pieces of furniture, window dressings or artwork, but they will help define separate areas without the need for walls (much like a rug) therefore making your room appear larger. The dimmer switches will allow complete control over the mood of your home meaning the same light can provide a reading light, an ambient mood or a romantic setting.
Turning lighting on its head with floor set up-lighting is also a really fun yet functional way to illuminate your home. Up-lighters are basically spotlights upside down, they create much more of a bar vibe and transform a room by lighting it from an unusual position, creating reversed shadows and strange effects- especially when used with coloured bulbs. Again the effect is much less overpowering than ceiling lighting and when placed along the perimeter of a room, they allow you to navigate your way around without spoiling nights in with a movie!
Probably the simplest way to add some individuality to a room through lighting is with a table lamp. Sure that may not sound like the height of wackiness but table lamps are available in so many weird and wonderful styles that you can almost guarantee that you will be able to find something that sets your décor apart from the neighbours. Clowns, lighthouses, flowers, Daleks and Starship Enterprise are amongst the more original lamps that I’ve come across. Table lamps are much less formal and intrusive than conventional ceiling lighting and help create intimacy by effectively lowering the height of a room.
Remember, it is not solely during evening hours that the lighting you choose will have an effect on the look of your home. Even when switched off, a well chosen floor lamp can add style and interest to an otherwise minimal space. For example, an original or modern remake of a design classic such as the Arco lamp by iconic 1960’s designer Verner Panton, immediately creates an air of retro cool and provides a striking focal point for a room. Alternatively, a chandelier (for those lucky enough to have high ceilings) placed over a dining area adds decadence and a sense of occasion to any dinner party whilst also effectively lowering the ceiling to help rid your room of that cavernous echo.