Light It RIght! The Art Of Lighting Made Easy With Our Essential Guide

. August 02, 2016 .

A well-lit home is a thing of beauty. Done right, lighting sets the mood and heightens our enjoyment of space, furniture, art and decor. Good lighting strikes that pitch-perfect note between functional and feel-good, and doesn’t draw too much attention to itself. On the flipside, bad lighting is the visual equivalent of a rude jolt – impossible to ignore and an instant buzzkill.

Think layers, not wattage

A novice mistake we make with lights: assuming that a room needs to be lit evenly, and that one source is adequate. Truth is: good lighting is layered, and comes from multiple sources. The art of layering involves mixing various types of light. Blending different zones of light within a single space, creates a balanced flow.Layered Shades


Use the rule of three

Apart from natural light, there are three basic types of light. Combine them in varying degrees for best results. 

Ambient light is general, background illumination which floods the entire room. This includes overhead lighting in the form of pendant lamps, built-in ceiling lights and floor lamps. But this kind of light can look flat and undefined.


Augment ambient lighting with task lights like wall and table lamps. They help you get work done by throwing a concentrated and focused pool of light on key areas, like kitchen counters and desks.


Accent lights (like wall-mounted sconces and uplights) add texture and mood. They create zones of visual interest by spotlighting art, bookshelves or plants.


Craft a light vibe

What do you typically do in a room? Set up the lights accordingly. Use a combination of floor lamps, pendant lights, and table lamps to create the vibe you want – cosy, warm, contemporary, etc. General rule of thumb: make sure no room is inadequately lit or harshly lit.

Living room: For ambient light, use overhead lights (pendant lamps, sconces placed high on the wall). Place reading lamps next to the couch or chair, if you curl up to read there. Include dimmers to tone down the levels of light. Floor lamps are ideal for brightening under-lit portions and corners. To create visual drama, get a statement piece like a chandelier, a cluster of pendant lights or a sculptural light.

Layered Lighting

Bedroom: This is a place to wind down, so opt for lower wattage bulbs. For a warm, soft glow, choose recessed lights. Table or wall lamps on either side of the bed work perfectly for reading and working on your laptop. A wall lamp or sconce can be used to highlight the dresser.

Kitchen: Lights need to address the kitchen’s dual functions – as a utilitarian space and a hang-out area. Complement a pendant light with recessed lights, under-cabinet lights, and lights over the kitchen island and sink.

Dining room: Place a chandelier or pendant lamp over the table. Dress up the walls with accent lights (like sconces) or use a floor lamp to spruce up the ambience.

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