Connecticut Homebuilding and Remodeling: Let There Be Light!
There is a part of your home—whether it’s a new custom home or a renovation of an existing home—that homeowners tend to overlook. And yet, this one component has a huge impact on the overall look and feel of your home: Lighting.
However, there’s a lot more to creating a great lighting plan for your home than simply running down to your local home improvement store to see what they have in stock. Even though you may pick up some exhilarating ideas, it can be exhausting, overwhelming, and, not much help. What you really need is an overall plan that will help you decide which lights are right for your home.
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The rooms in your home aren’t all the same—in look or in function. Your lighting schemes should reflect that. And when it comes to illuminating these different rooms you’ll want to balance form (how it looks) and function (how it provides the benefit you’re after). Here’s a quick look at the various lighting needs you may face in four distinctly different areas of your home.
Your kitchen can be a big challenge because it’s both a social space and a workspace. You’ll probably want a variety of lighting options that contribute to ambiance and to functionality. You can use recessed spotlights in your kitchen ceiling or you can opt for track lighting. But as you plan things out, you’ll want to make sure you include specific task lighting for areas where you’ll do a lot of work (such as meal prep, sinks, etc.). And don’t forget lighting for your island! You can create a beautiful soft glow in glass-front with hidden LED lights that will add warmth. And concealing plinth along the bottom panel of your cupboards can make your kitchen feel larger. You’ll also want to add over-counter task lighting for work areas that can be turned off when your work is done, leaving you to enjoy softer “social” light.
Your bathroom has zones as well. You may want an abundance of natural light for your shower area, but choose softer, more relaxing lights for a long soak in the tub. You’ll probably want lighting from above in your sink areas for things such as washing, brushing teeth, and applying makeup.
In large living spaces such as living rooms or great rooms you’ll want to install lighting that reflects how the rooms are used: Viewing television, or working on the computer. If you want to create conversation areas, you may want to think about lights that create intimate space (and avoid distracting glare when it comes to television and computer use).
When it comes to the bedroom, most designers recommend soft, ambient lighting that suggests intimacy. If you enjoy watching television or reading in bed, you could consider individually controlled, directional lighting that allows one person to have the light he or she needs without disturbing the other. And if you like having lights on in a different part of your bedroom, consider adding a separate switch or a remote control.
And don’t forget outdoor lighting! Not only does it add security, but outdoor lights (everything from spotlights to solar-powered path lights) can add a warm and inviting touch to your yard.