Illuminating Interiors: 7 Lighting Tricks Used By Interior Designers

Are you looking for new ways to brighten up your home interior? Décor and home furnishings aren’t the only essentials for creating a beautiful home. Believe it or not, lighting can play a surprisingly effective role in making your home stand out from the crowd.

Lighting in the home isn’t just a practical necessity. It can be used in ingenious ways to make your home interior look charming, feel more inviting, and add warmth and depth to any room. Lighting can be used in so many ways. Well selected lighting can highlight special features, create stylish shadows, or add quirky fun to any room.

Read on to steal 7 great lighting ideas used by interior designers. It’s an easy and cost-effective way to bring balance, interest and wow-factor to your home.

1. Theatrical Lighting: plants take centre stage

Plants often get added as an after-thought in home makeovers, but making a feature of a plant with lighting is a fabulous way of adding another creative layer to any room. A beautifully lit plant can be as aesthetically effective in the home as a painting, a print, a sculpture or an ornamental rug.

Hanging plants arranged with pendant lights is a really creative idea and can make an amazing feature. Lighting a plant breathes life into any room in more ways than one. Plants do valuable work. They release oxygen, filter out pollutants, release phytochemicals, which help to control mould spores and bacteria, and they add humidity (a welcome input to dry centrally-heated homes).

2. Multiple layers for a textural glow

Every room should have multiple kinds of light, from spectacular ceiling fixtures, to table lamps for tasks, and candle lights for a cosy ambience. Layered lighting is a much under-estimated tool in home interior design. It gives a room interest and enables you to manipulate a space into the right ambience. Bright lights are appropriate in kitchen spaces when you are preparing food, but you’ll want to be able to switch to a softer lighting theme when you want to simply relax with a glass of wine.

Different lighting levels will also highlight different textures and features of the room. A room can look completely different just by changing the styles and layers of lighting, so when you feel a room needs updating, you may be able to save yourself the costs of a complete makeover by considering your lighting tricks first.

3. Clever tricks to wow

Picture lighting, spot lights on fireplaces, floodlights behind sofas, and using uplights in small recessed spaces, are just some of the ways you can cleverly use light to add interest to the home and draw the eye to a particular space or feature. Do your research and consult an indoor home lighting specialist if you don’t feel confident in your ability to make the right choices. Badly done, lighting can have the opposite effect you were hoping for.

Diffusers on lampshades are a clever way of preventing shadows being cast on the ceiling, and help to create a mellow ambience. Using coloured shades in warm ochres can also soften the light and bring a more relaxing feel to living spaces. Get your lighting tricks right, and you’ll create the aesthetic and atmosphere you are hoping for.

4. Candles for ambience and scent

Candles seemed to go out of fashion for a while, but a beautiful collection of differently sized candles, including one or two with your favourite scent (we love a Diptyque candle!), can make a room feel so much more sumptuous, and will smell divine too.

5. Decorative wires and nude bulbs

It may seem like madness, but ugly lamp wires are a thing of the past. Decorative wires in funky colours have become a modernist statement when it comes to interior lighting. Coloured flexes running down walls are bang on trend and make an interesting and cool lighting feature. In fact, pared back lighting shades, or exposed bulbs are popping up everywhere in all manner of modern interiors from contemporary homes, to modern restaurants and boutique hotels.

Oversized, Edison-style filament bulbs on flexes, hung simply without shades, make a surprisingly effective statement in the right setting. Clusters of bulbs are the new modern alternative to the chandelier. It’s a simplicity in lighting design that works incredibly well. One solo, low slung bulb on a brightly coloured flex can add fabulous interest to a once boring nook.

Forget about strips of fancy fairy lights – festoon lights are the new fashionable way to champion string lighting.

6. Impress your guests with wireless lighting

Control and dim your lighting with ease using Smart technology from your phone or tablet. With personal wireless lighting, you can programme lights to come on when you are away, or light up your interiors just before you arrive home. Movement sensors to turn on low level lighting are an impressive addition to the home. You can even set your lighting to wake you up slowly and ease yourself into the day. Wireless lighting is an impressive addition to any modern home.

7. Make the most of natural daylight

With all this talk about lighting, it’s easy to forget about natural daylight. Be sure to pick appropriate window dressings to keep sunlight out when stark light isn’t what you need. However, be sure heavy drapes don’t block sunlight out when your room is crying out for natural daylight. A beautiful room with a stream of sunlight can match even the cleverest lighting solutions.

Charlotte Giver

Charlotte is the founder and editor-in-chief at Your Coffee Break magazine. With a background in PR working in Los Angeles and Barcelona, Charlotte has been running Your Coffee Break from the YCB HQ in London’s Covent Garden for the past 8 years. She is a mother, an avid reader, runner and puts a little too much time into her morning brew.

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