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How to Light Your Room

Lighting is an essential element to room design. Use a mix of lighting sources in combination with the room's natural light to maximize function, eliminate dark corners and set a mood.

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Layer Your Lighting

Start With Primary Lighting

Think of this as the first light you turn on when you walk into a room. It's the primary source of light and provides overall brightness for the space.

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Add Accent Lighting

Accent lighting creates an inviting ambience while brightening dark corners. It can also be used to highlight artwork or architectural features.

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Include Task Lighting

Often associated with desk lamps, task lighting is also found in many pendants, sconces and floor lamps that provide direct, focused illumination.

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Lighting Tips by Room

Considerations for Every Room

  • Think about other light sources in your room, including overhead or recessed lights and natural light from windows or skylights, and how the light changes throughout the day.
  • Lighting with a three-way socket or dimmer switch allows you to adjust the light level, making it more versatile.
  • Use lightbulbs with the same color temperature throughout a room for consistency.

Living Room Lighting Ideas

  • Position table lamps or floor lamps so the bottom of the lampshade is just below eye level when you're seated. This will help you avoid looking directly into the lightbulb.
  • Any pendant you might walk beneath should be a minimum of seven feet from the floor, or a foot taller than the tallest person in your home.

Additional tips

  • Place task lighting next to areas where you often read or do similar work.
  • Flushmount or semi-flushmount fixtures are a smart solution in rooms with lower ceilings.
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Dining Room and Kitchen Lighting Ideas

  • The diameter of your light fixtures should be about 12" less than the width of your table or island for the best use of space.
  • When hanging pendants over a dining table or kitchen island, leave 28"-34" between the tabletop and the bottom of the fixture for a clear view under the pendants and to avoid staring directly into a bright bulb.
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Bedroom Lighting Ideas

  • Task lighting is great for reading in bed. When using a desk or table lamp, remember to place it so you're not looking right into the bulb when lying down.
  • Free up valuable nightstand space by using wall sconces or pendants next to your bed.

Additional tips

  • Flushmount or semi-flushmount fixtures are a smart choice in bedrooms with lower ceilings.
  • Using a pendant with a diffuser or a fixture that directs light upward will keep the light from shining directly into your eyes.
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Office Lighting Ideas

  • Position desk lamps to minimize glare or hot spots on your computer monitor and work surfaces.
  • Home offices tend to be multi-use rooms. Add primary lighting for even illumination that supports a variety of activities.

Additional tips

  • Smaller desks require lamps with a small footprint while larger workspaces benefit from a single lamp with an adjustable arm or multiple lamps.
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Space-saving Lighting Ideas

  • Hang a pendant to provide soft, all-over lighting in smaller spaces. It provides the same type of light as a floor lamp without taking up the square footage.
  • Wall sconces are perfect in pairs or on their own as additional light sources. Many of our sconces have sleek silhouettes to save wall space.

Additional tips

  • Tandem wall and ceiling mounts make it easy to hang pendants without having to hardwire. Simply run your pendant into the Tandem mount and attach it to the wall.

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Get Inspired

View more ideas for lighting every room with quick links for easy shopping.

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