Our homes are odd things. They are the little portion of space that’s really ours – that we have total control over, and that reflects who we are as people. Conversely, homes are also where we entertain, making them the stages of our social lives as well as our private ones.
That said, it’s no surprise that the typical person’s relationship with their home is complicated. They want what’s practical, and economical, as do we all. But we also all want that social and private stage to be set for story we wish our lives to be.
Here we examine mood lighting, as it were – which is a more accurate phrase than you might first assume. These are our three top tips for brightening up a dark home.
Adding windows, roof lanterns or extensions
By far the most costly item on this list, the addition of portals through which light may enter has the advantage of naturalness over other home-brightening methods. Sunlight is linked to many psychological benefits, and depending on your home’s character, may be the most complimentary light source.
In top-storey rooms, skylights and roof lanterns are a safe bet, generally not requiring planning permission. Ground floor rooms, in which you will typically be doing most of your entertaining and relaxing, pose more of a problem. Brickwork can be cut to accommodate new windows, but there are often practical cconstraints, and the project may be costly.
Adding interior lighting
This may seem an obvious method, but there is a lot more on offer these days than the humble desk lamp. LED lounge lighting offers a lot more than standard bulbs, both in terms of modern aesthetics and financial economy. You can browse a whole host of options at light.co.uk, one of the UK’s premier lighting retailers.
Interior lighting can also be set to the colour of your choice, allowing you to experiment and accentuate in a way that’ll appeal to interior design devotees. Just so, the amazing variety of stand, fitting, and shade designs opens up a whole new avenue in which to express yourself and your home’s character.
In one sense, this is a supplementary tactic, as we wouldn’t recommend it except in conjunction with new lighting or glazed apertures. But the fact is, a new light source means a new input into a room’s visual feng shui, and a necessary recalibration.
Darker rooms tend to attract darker fabrics, sombre woods, and the kind of decor extras that look good in shadow. When you open up your room to sunlight or a brighter lighting set-up, the room’s contents need to follow suit.
For sunny rooms, light white cotton-y materials always look the part, as do mid-tone ceramics and lightly coloured woods. The image of a chair with hazel-shaded wicker arms and trim and cream-coloured cushioning springs to my mind when I think of sunny conservatories.
Of course, the range of shade and light qualities at your disposal with electric lighting renders any specific advice somewhat mute. We’d just say be mindful of the way the change in lighting is going alter the room.