Electricity lets us stay up after sundown without missing a beat. Unlike our ancestors, we have nearly unlimited options when it comes to how we spend our time after it gets dark outside—reading, cooking, hosting a party, you name it! And thank goodness, right?
But in order to enjoy every minute of nocturnal time, you need a living space with plenty of artificial lighting. Let’s face it: a lack of light is just downright depressing! After the last rays of natural daylight fade away, you need to know that you can still see what’s going on.
Here are three lighting ideas for brightening your home afterhours so you can seize the night!
Build Layers of Light
Layers are your friend when it comes to properly lighting your home. While it might be tempting to install some recessed ceiling lights or a large overhead fixture and call it a day, that will only wash out everything underneath. You also don’t want to find yourself huddled around a single floor or table lamp every night because it’s the only focused light source in the room.
As Oprah advises, no lighting scheme is complete without these three layers:
–Recessed or ambient lighting: General, top-down lighting that fills a room
–Task lighting: Focused lighting that makes it easier to complete specific activities
–Accent lighting: Adds visual interest by highlighting particular objects or areas
Mix Up Your Fixtures
Question: How do you achieve these well-lit layers? Answer: By switching up the size, shape and type of your lighting fixtures, of course! The key is to create a complementary system of lighting that keeps rooms bright and pleasant, even after dusk.
Ambient lighting can come from a chandelier, ceiling fixture, or recessed lights. Not only can these fixtures make a grand statement in the room, but they are the backbone of any illumination scheme.
Task lighting is good for all the detail-oriented things you may want to do at night, from writing a letter to studying or putting together a puzzle. You’ll want to include hanging pendant lights and portable lamps (both floor and desk) around your home to create stations perfect for tackling your favorite hobbies.
Accent lighting is the cherry on top, adding lots of pizazz to a room—and even capturing the class of your favorite art gallery or museum. When people are wondering where to look, accent lighting draws their attention. You may want to highlight family photos, a piece of art, your glassware collection or your favorite houseplant. Track lighting helps drum up visual interest and take your overall lighting scheme to the next level; just make sure that your focal point gets three times as much light as the general light around it for maximum contrast. As mentioned, accent lighting is perfect for art gallery lighting because it will produce a soft glow that will accent the work without skewing the color palette.
Don’t Forget the Dark Corners
Every home has a few corners that look innocent by day but turn into shadowy voids by night. If you find yourself scared to venture out into the dark in-between spaces of your home, it’s time to shine some light on the situation.
Put a chic vintage table lamp on that hallway dresser so you don’t return to a pitch-black home. Add a few tasteful nightlights on the way to the bathroom. Install under-cabinet lighting in your kitchen. Instead of merely avoiding these patches of darkness and staying in your warm little island of light, brighten them up with a few new fixtures for an overall boost of coziness.
Next time you’re burning the midnight oil you’ll be mighty glad you took the time to illuminate your living space. This way, you can appreciate the colors, textures, furniture and trinkets just as much by night as by day. If you are looking for stylish furniture collections, shop here!
The night is nothing to be afraid of; it’s a beautiful time if you embrace it with the right light fixtures.