By Tina Jepson
Have you ever moved into a new home or apartment, only to realize the light fixtures weren’t up-to-par? Or worse, there weren’t any overhead lights to begin with? Eek!
Recently, after moving into an older home, I quickly realized that overhead lights were nowhere to be found. That meant I needed to find all the table and floor lamps I had boxed up, as well as purchase a few extras- stat!
I never gave much thought to light fixtures until this instance, but now, I’m obsessed. Light fixtures make a wonderful addition to any room. The best part about purchasing new (or new to you) light fixtures is that you can take the time to find the right pieces that serve both functional and aesthetic purposes.
What interesting light fixtures are available for your home? Oh boy, where do I start? There are so many, but here are a few of my favorites ideas, as well as some light fixture considerations before you take the plunge and make a purchase.
Cool light fixtures for bedrooms should match your room’s décor as well as the space you need to fill.
Do you follow a modern motif? Then go ahead and look for fixtures with clean lines and geometric accents. Are you a fan of traditional décor? Then a homemade lamp or natural liber shade may be just what you’re looking for.
Since there are no overhead lights in my master bedroom, I chose to use a variety of traditional and historic-looking floor and table lamps to provide enough light where I need it.
Another option is to look for lights for your bedroom wall and mount them beside your bed on one or both sides.
If you’re looking for bedroom ceiling light fixtures, consider a ceiling fan with a lighted globe. That way, your light fixture will play double duty by adding just the right amount of subdued light from above while also helping to circulate air any time of the year.
Most living areas are used for lounging, gathering, and possibly even watching the big game on Sundays. Because living areas are for relaxation and rejuvenation, the lighting shouldn’t be overwhelming or overpowering.
If you already have lighting in your living room, such as overhead lights, consider adding a dimmer switch and compatible bulbs.
Floor lamps with interesting shades or patterns are ideal for living areas, especially because it’s nice to keep much of the light at or slightly above eye level. My favorite floor lamps were actually a spur of the moment purchase from Ikea and, to this day, I haven’t found a more versatile, modern lamp on the market.
Regardless of whether you eat your meals at a formal dining table, a kitchen nook, or at your kitchen bar, it’s important to have the right light to gather and dine.
Overhead lights work best in these cases, so look for chandeliers, pendant lights, or another type of fixture that hangs from the ceiling centered directly above the eating area. Thankfully, hanging lights come in a plethora of designs. Are you looking to go bold? Try a mirrored chandelier. Since I’m more of a traditionalist, I used an antique brass fixture with floral accents over my dining room table.
Just like in the living areas, it’s nice to have a dimmer option available in the dining room or kitchen.
The light fixture itself is just one piece of the lighting puzzle for your home. Light bulbs are another consideration.
While there’s no one-size-fits-all approach, many homeowners feel very passionate one way or the other when debating cool lights vs. warm lights. Truth be told, whether you choose to purchase cool light bulbs or warm ones is completely up to you and the look you’re going for.
A good rule of thumb to remember is that warm lights produce a yellowish, cozy hue perfect for living areas, bedrooms, or anywhere you want to relax. On the other hand, cool lights are great in rooms you want to increase energy and production, such as in bathrooms, your study, and the kitchen.
Electricity is another concern. You may have the need for light, but it’s possible your electrical outlets aren’t in the right place or, if you live in an older home, you may not have enough outlets to accommodate all the necessary light fixtures. So go ahead and invest in some extension cords and surge protectors to ensure you have enough light in the right places throughout your home.
Do you worry about having wires crisscrossing throughout your home? Cover unsightly wires with a cord channel. Easy peasy!
Whether you want to add modern light fixtures or something completely different and out of the box to your whole home, remember that light fixtures are one of the easiest and effective ways to add life and an interesting twist to an otherwise standard home.
Don’t be afraid to try something new. You may be surprised by how much you and your guests love it.
Images used with permission, courtesy of Tina Jepson