Lighting tips your living room will love
23 April 2019
Of all the rooms in the house, your living room is one of the busiest – especially during the colder, winter months. After all, this is where most of the living actually happens; watching TV, hanging out with friends and family, curling up with a book or catnapping on the couch.
With so many different activities going on, it’s important that your living room lighting arrangement is flexible enough to create the right atmosphere for every occasion.
When thinking about your lighting plan, avoid over lighting your ceiling full of downlights in a grid like pattern. Instead, consider the combination of ambient, task and accent lighting to create a warm, inviting room that can accommodate a variety of situations. Two important questions to ask yourself are, what can you see and what do you do in this space? Do you have artwork or an architectural feature? Do you have a reading nook? By layering table lamps, floor lamps, wall lights and filling the gaps with downlights, your living room will be properly illuminated to meet any need.
Ambient lighting is an even layer of illumination that fills the whole room and usually starts with your choice of ceiling lights. As your main source of light, choose dimmable options wherever possible so that you can easily change the mood from bright and light for social gatherings to low, subtle light for relaxing and watching TV.
For this layer, choose recessed downlights, a flush mount centred in the room that will cast diffused light evenly throughout the space, or if you want to create a design feature, consider installing a statement chandelier or pendant.
Task lighting is meant to be brighter, more directional light used for activities such as reading or studying. While you might think ambient light is bright enough, strategically placed table or floor lamps help ease strain on the eyes.
Image courtesy to Selling Houses Australia.
For more versatility, look for table lamps or floor lamps with an adjustable head so that you can position the light where you need it. A reading table lamp should be positioned next to a sofa or lounge chair to cast light directly on whatever is being read or worked on. Due to their larger size, a reading floor lamp can be positioned behind seating with the same effect. Need to save floor or table space? An adjustable wall sconce will provide the same function and is perfect for smaller spaces.
This is the final layer of light needed in a living room and is a great way to add drama, visual interest and a decorative touch to your space while diffusing any harsh brightness from task lighting. Use accent lights such as wall spots to highlight your favourite artwork or pictures on walls, draw attention to any architectural details or a fireplace or create a decorative vignette on a side table. This layering effect helps make the room feel larger by illuminating any dark corners and areas and creating depth and warmth to keep the vibe relaxed and comfortable – just how you want it.
For small living rooms where floor space is limited, you can also add accent light to any dark spots with track lighting. These can be placed along the perimeter of the room with their direct light specifically focused on hard-to-light areas.
Track lighting is also the most practical way to highlight fireplaces and other details of the room due to each track head being able to be positioned individually.