The right lighting can make your home magical. When you choose the right type of lighting, light fittings and switches for the room you are renovating, it adds a touch of style and class to your final product.
Before you run off to buy light fittings, there are some terms you need to be familiar with so that you can make the best lighting choices for your renovation project.
- Kelvin is the measure of the warmth the light provides. It refers to the colour temperature. 2700 Kelvin will give you a warm, cosy feel to your room. 6500 Kelvin will give a room a bright, cool feel.
- Colour Rendering Index (CRI) This tells you how true the colours of objects appear when the light shines on them. You are aiming for a CRI value greater than 80. The higher the CRI value, the more true colours will appear.
- Wattage is an indication of how much energy the light bulb will consume. The higher the wattage of your bulbs, the more energy they use and the higher your power bills will be.
- Lumen represents the brightness of the light. Lumen is a measure of how much light you’re getting from a bulb. The more lumens a bulb gives, the brighter it will shine. For reference, a 100-watt bulb provides around 1600 lumen.
The Best Light Choices For Each Room
Now that you are familiar with the technical jargon, what type of lighting are you going to use in each room of the house?
Cool, white light is typically used in the kitchen and the bathroom. They are more clinically cool rooms. They need to appear clean and the lighting needs to be bright enough to be able to see well.
A warmer, cosier light is more fitting for the living room and the bedrooms. It makes a room feel more inviting and relaxing.
Be consistent with your lighting choices. If your living room opens into your kitchen, ideally you should use the same kind of lighting in both rooms. The colour and type of light fitting must be consistent as well. Don’t be tempted to mix and match.
The Three Types Of Lighting To Consider When Renovating A Home
Lighting can take a home renovation from good to magical. There are three types of lighting, that when used in the right space, can create the look and feel you are going for.
Lighting Type #1: General Or Ambient Lighting
General, ambient lighting covers most of your home. A lot of renovators use downlights for this purpose, but they can put a big dent in your budget. Pendant lights are a great alternative, but make sure not to hang them too high. Concrete ceilings also require an alternative option. I find track lights to be the best choice in this instance.
Lighting Type #2: Task Lighting
Downlights and directional lights are perfect for areas that are used to perform specific tasks such as cooking, putting on your makeup or reading a book. They provide a brighter, more targeted light than ambient lighting.
Lighting Type #3: Accent Lighting
There are many ways to add more style to your home using lights:
- Use play lights on top of cabinets to highlight ornate ceilings.
- Direct light over a wall can draw attention to a beautiful piece of artwork.
- Play with the angle of the light to create a different look and feel.
- LED strip lights can be added under cabinets or stair treads as an interesting feature.
Dimmer Switches And Smart Lighting
Dimmer switches are great to use in rooms used for many functions. They allow you to adjust the brightness of the light. If you are having a cosy, intimate get-together in your living room, you might enjoy a softer light. If you are sitting down in your favourite chair to read a book, a brighter light will be better.
It is not only our cell phones that are getting smarter, our home lighting is too! To conserve energy, you can replace high wattage bulbs with smart LED alternatives.
They are so smart you can connect them to your wifi network and control them via an app on your phone. They allow you to adjust the brightness and the colour. Smart lighting can also be automated.
Make The Most Of Your Lighting Options When Renovating A Home
There are so many wonderful lighting options to choose from. Pay attention to the details. Bright clinical lights, warm cosy lights, smart lights and accent lights all add to your renovation’s style, design and appeal.