4 Clever Lighting Hacks to Brighten Your Home

Light fixtures don’t have to be boring. If you’re looking to freshen up a room in your house that’s feeling a little stale, consider making one of these four changes to your lighting.

1. Color Matters  

Light bulbs come in all sorts of colors, from red to white to purple and everything in between. Knowing what colors work best in each area of your house will make every room feel intentional. Keep office spaces, kitchens and other work areas lit with bright, white bulbs. Use yellow or a softer white in rooms you’d prefer to relax in.   

2. Update that Fixture

The simplest way to freshen up a room is to swap out an old ceiling fixture or wall sconce with something new and modern. Grab something that catches your eye and will spread an adequate amount of light for your room’s requirements. If you’re not sure where to start, try looking for a large, chandelier-type fixture with multiple layers or explore fixtures that aren’t made from glass, but have elements of wood or cast iron. Just remember to keep the design and color scheme of your house in mind.

3. Add a Funky Pattern

Who says home lighting ideas have to stick to a mold? Instead of opting for the same plain beige lamp shade, pick one with a pattern that complements the design of the room. If you’re feeling adventurous, pick one with a contrasting design, but similar colors to your bedspread, couch or area rug. The right pattern can make a lamp pop and capture attention as a statement piece in your home

4. Put in Accent Lights

Light doesn’t need to serve a purely industrial purpose in your home. While it’s necessary to have ceiling lights in your office or kitchen that allow for easy reading and working, there are other places where an additional floor lamp can make a space cozy and relaxing. Choose a warm-colored lamp shade with a natural-looking stand (made of wood or dark metal) and put in a yellow bulb. Instantly, your bedroom or living room will become more peaceful and welcoming.                                                                                             

Design Tips for Outdoor Lighting

Outdoor lighting has a big impact on your home’s appeal after dark. It creates a soft, welcoming atmosphere for guest and provides additional safety for your home. Outdoor lighting is affordable, easy to install, and available in a variety of beautiful styles and finishes to complement the style and character of your home.

When choosing outdoor fixtures, it’s important to think about landscape structures and features like patios, arbors and pergolas, walkways and pathways, swimming pools and spas, outdoor ponds and fountains, as well as trees, shrubs and garden areas in the yard. Before you purchase your fixtures, think about the amount of light you need, as well as proper height and light spread.

Pathway and Step Lighting

Pathway and step lighting are important features in your landscape. They provide a safe foot path for you and guests after dark. Pathway fixtures along the driveway, front walkway, and back pathway to the pool or spa will prevent accidents and injuries. Here are some helpful tips for installation:

* When lighting a pathway, stagger the lights along each side of the walkway, rather than placing them all on one side.

* Space lights about three feet apart to avoid a “runway effect” that’s boring and uninviting.

* Lights that are too bright will detract from the beauty of hardscaped materials, as well as trees, shrubs and garden areas.

* Don’t use lights that shine upward along walkways and pathways. They will create glare for and minimize safety for anyone using the walkway.

*Step lights placed on stair risers should be bright enough to throw proper light on the steps for safety.

Deck and Patio Lighting

Lighting for your deck or patio should provide good, overall illumination for outdoor activities after dark. You should also consider areas where you need specific task lighting, such as near a grill or outdoor kitchen, dining areas, and seating areas.

* Handrails – If your deck or patio has handrails, place fixtures under the handrails to prevent glare and cast a soft, downward glow between the balusters.

* Post Caps – If you want to install lights under post caps, keep them out of eye level when you’re sitting down to prevent blinding glare and obstructed views of the landscape.

When installing outdoor lighting that is not solar, you may need to hire an electrician for wiring and outdoor outlets. For best results, find a contractor who is qualified in electrical work.

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