THE RIGHT LIGHTS FOR YOUR SPACE
Lighting literally has the power to make a big impact in your space. Design-wise, it sets the mood of a room and lets you illuminate your style – often on a relatively small budget. It can also up your home’s energy efficiency stakes, provided you choose the right lights. We’ve got some handy tips to help you decide which lights best fit each room in your home.
The right lighting can transform areas in your home by increasing safety, comfort and even productivity level. But they can also do the opposite – we all know that soft, dull lights are a bad recipe when mixed with sharp knives.
To help you make the best choice, think carefully about your room’s primary purpose. Then decide what you want from your lighting:
- Ambient: illuminates the whole room (such as a central ceiling fixture)
- Task-related: helps you see the detail of what you’re doing (i.e. downlights over kitchen benches for dinner prep, or a lamp for reading)
- For accenting: to highlight standout features such as art or photographs
Once you’ve got this sorted, turn your attention to what’s inside your light – the globe.
Types of globes
Here’s the lowdown on globes to help you get the right glow for your needs:
- Emits a beautiful warm glow
- Suitable for use with any dimmer
- Uses around 25% less energy than incandescent globes
- The Australian Government is in the process of phasing-out inefficient lamps like halogen lights, so opting for LED’s may be a smarter choice
- CFL (Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs)
- Colour is not as rich/warm as halogen globes
- Requires time to warm up
- Dimming is limited and not as effective as other technologies (purchase ‘dimmable’ CFLs if you want this feature)
- Uses about 65% less energy than incandescent globes
- LED (Light Emitting Diode)
- Ideal for movement sensors
- Can be used with a dimmer (purchase ‘dimmable’ LEDs for this feature)
- Most energy efficient – can use more than 90% less energy than incandescent globes
As LED’s are the most energy efficient choice, it’s handy to know they come in different light colours; softer and cooler, which is called Colour Temperature. Colour Temperature is measured in degrees Kelvin (K):
- For softer, warmer light – opt for a Colour Temperature of 2700-3000K, which is best suited to:
- A cooler climate
- Bedroom, living room, bathroom and kitchen areas
- For cool white or neutral light – choose a Colour Temperature of around 4000K, which is best suited to:
- A warmer, tropical climate and task lighting areas
- Laundry, garage, study, bathroom and kitchen areas
Putting it together
Using what you’ve learnt about globes and your room’s primary purpose – let’s work out which lights are best for your room:
- Rooms that require task lighting, style and a touch of ambience:
- High use rooms like the kitchen, bathroom and living/dining areas, need focused lighting for specific tasks but should also evoke a warm and inviting mood. To achieve this, consider a mix of LED downlights and LED pendant lights.
- LED downlights are your task lighting superstars, also offering you an energy-saving alternative to traditional halogen downlights. Choose from a variety of sizes and brightness to suit your space and budget.
- Pendant lights complement the focused nature of downlights with a warm white glow to create a relaxed ambience. The vast array of styles currently on the market means you can add a little wow-factor where you see fit.
- Rooms with features to showcase:
- Consider some of the most amazing rooms and spaces; the ones that make you say ‘ahhh’ when you step inside. There’s one thing these spaces all have in common: wall lighting.
- Wall lights add instant intrigue and atmosphere. Some cast mesmerising light patterns across walls, while others perfectly highlight a point of focus, such as a photo or work of art. The right combination of wall lights with soft/warm globes does wonders for the feel of your living room, stairway or hallway.
That’s just a few things to consider when choosing the right lighting for your home or next building project. Once you’ve got your head around the indoors, don’t forget to light your outdoor spaces too with our wide range of outdoor lighting products. Should you need extra advice, feel free to contact us. We’re happy to offer our experience and assist you with your lighting design.