Lighting is integral to creating a warm and inviting yet practical home. Drawing up a lighting plan is the best way to ensure all your lighting needs are covered, from cooking up a storm to chilling out.
Types of Lighting
These hanging lights are designed to make a statement, as well as illuminate, so are ideal for lighting your entryway, kitchen island or dining table.
These versatile lights are the future due to their high energy efficiency. LED strips can be mounted almost anywhere and make great downlights in kitchens, bathrooms and hallways. LED lights are also often colour-changing so you can customise the tone of light in a room (warm or cool) or switch to full-on disco mode.
Small lights inset into your ceiling are wonderful for low-profile illumination that won’t disrupt the flow of your space. These types of lights are often the foundation of a lighting plan and can be combined with spotlights, pendants and task lighting to provide all the different types of light you’ll need in your home.
Wall-mounted lights may not be as modern as LEDs or come in as many different types as pendants but this more traditional form of lighting still has its place in the modern home. Wall lights combined with dimmer switches are great for creating a more moody feel – think dimming the lights for a movie night or special dinner for two.
Other types of Lighting fixtures
These lights offer general illumination and will be required all over the home, but especially in areas that need good visibility, such as the kitchen and bathroom.
Desk & Table
Lamps for reading, studying or hobby work are always handy and can be swapped out when you need a style update.
Ideal for spotlights that will illuminate task work in zones such as the dining table and laundry.
Standing lamps are super versatile and can create a real statement. Choose a secondhand lamp or curvy brass lamp for a vintage feel.
Lighting your garden and entry areas well will make your home more secure, as well as more stylish. Consult a specialist for ideas on lighting your home’s exterior.
ENERGY SAVING TIPS
Here are a few easy ways to choose lighting that will lead to lower energy costs and a happier planet:
- Recessed downlights have a narrow beam so you’ll need a large number to provide even light, resulting in higher energy consumption. These lights can also compromise your home’s ceiling insulation and thermal comfort, resulting in higher heating bills. To mitigate these drawbacks, choose modern LED downlights that are rated IC, IC-F or IC-4. They can have compatible insulation fitted over them to keep the heat in and offer lower lighting costs.
- The ‘flood’ effect of surface-mounted ceiling and pendant lights means they light large spaces easily, so you won’t need many. Fit them with energy-efficient LED bulbs for low lighting costs.
- Dimming your lights can help cut down your electricity bill and increase the life of your bulbs. If you dim a bulb by 50 percent, you can make 50 percent energy savings.
- Pale-coloured walls and furnishings help to maximise natural light by providing a reflective surface. Skylights and solar-tube-type fittings increase natural light and therefore reduce lighting costs.
For more energy saving tips visit energywise.govt.nz
This article was originally published in Signature Style Magazine, Issue 4. Click here to order your free copy.