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Lighting interior design is one of the most important elements in styling your home. It defines both the luminescence and shadow in a room, creates ambience and generates warmth or dramatic effect.
Our comprehensive guide to modern lighting introduces you to different types of lights and gives you guidelines on how to use them to their fullest potential.
Different types of light
There are two types of indoor lighting: natural and artificial.
Natural lighting is the concept of bringing daylight into your space through windows, skylights and the way you decorate the room. It's dependent on climate, time of day and room orientation.
Artificial lighting is man-made and is easily directed and controlled. There are 5 types that should be considered when planning the décor of your home:
1. General lighting is uniform and functional, brightening the whole room. It's usually generated by a central pendant and emits flat and nondescript light.
2. Ambient lighting is generally used to create drama. It produces soft, indirect light in the form of wall sconces, coffer lighting, spotlights or backlit panelling.
3. Task lighting is used for focussed work like reading. It has a higher wattage than other light sources, so should be combined with soft ambient lighting.
4. Mood lighting is used to create inviting pools of light that counterbalance the shadows in a room. Table and floor lamps are perfect examples.
5. Accent lighting is used to highlight a room feature like artwork or a cabinet so that they stand out and are noticed.
Room-by-room interior lighting guide
Lighting is a dynamic way to add dimension to your home. Consult with one of our design experts to help handle all the technicalities like positioning, wattage, concealed wiring, adequate outlets, light fittings and a dimmer system. Also, consider these key aspects....
- The purpose of your room, its furniture and what needs to be highlighted.
- Lighting transitions - avoid walking from a dark room into blinding light.
Kitchens are multi-functional spaces that require carefully focussed layers of lighting.
- The primary source of light should be ambient and as bright as possible. Use chandeliers, recessed lighting flush-mounts or pendants.
- Feature task lighting in areas where you’ll be doing focussed work.
- Use accent lights to highlight cabinetry, recessed lights to emphasise shelving and toe-kick lights to define floorspace.
The right lighting in your dining space is critical, perhaps more than any other room in the house, as it creates atmosphere for the most unifying event in your home - sharing a meal.
- Hang a beautiful pendant or chandelier 36 inches above the top of your dining table to create an even light fall.
- Add a dimmer switch for intimacy.
- Include table lamps and wall sconces to create warmth.
Living rooms are social spaces that are used for multiple activities; therefore they need lighting options that will accommodate the various pursuits.
- Employ ambient lighting to cast diffused light throughout the room, and task lighting for areas of focussed activity.
- Use accent lighting to counterbalance harshness and highlight your art pieces.
- Hanging a modern fixture in the middle of the room will create a focal point.
With many people now working from home, this space holds new importance. Remember that anything too dim will make you feel sleepy and unproductive.
- Diffuse light throughout the room by hanging a pendant lamp.
- Highlight some bold artwork with accent lighting along wall perimeters.
- For work zones, install a modern desk lamp or position a floor lamp next to a chair.
A place for deep relaxation, contemporary bedroom lighting should accommodate all times of the day.
- Layering your lighting will create mood. Use pendant lights, flush mounts or floor lamps and include dimmers to help you transition between wakefulness and sleep.
- Add task lights for reading. Bedside table lamps, sconces or wall-mounted lights are great options.
- Accent lights will add cosiness and a warm glow.
Create well-lit ceiling and vanity areas and aim for a relaxed, spa-like atmosphere.
- Decide between recessed or flush mount lighting and choose bright task lights for your vanity. Position them above the mirror or use side sconces. Avoid lights that hang directly over your head as they are unflattering.
- Consider LEDs. They are energy-saving and ooze modernity and warmth.
- For safety, use wet-rated lighting in areas that are subjected to moisture.
Contemporary light fittings and designs
Explore FCI’s range of designer light fittings and find feature lights, contemporary ceiling lights and just about everything you’ll need to illuminate your home. Here are our 6 hot favourites.
1. This Romeo Soft Floor Lamp by Flos provides a gentle, diffused light regulated by a built-in dimmer. Its beautiful Plissé cloth shade and painted steel stem bring elegance to any room.
2. Heathfield has designed this ultra-cool Delius Brass Desk Table Lamp, ideal for when you’re focussed on reading or work. It’s practical, contemporary and epitomises Italian refinement.
3. Available in black, white or red, this Tress Wall Lamp by Foscarini is crafted to look like a basket. Its construction from glass and compound material allows it to stream light through and around it.
4. Inspired by water droplets, this beautiful chandelier is part of the Aqua Collection by Serip. The bronze structure, reminiscent of tangled branches, supports exquisitely delicate floating glass pieces.
5. The Lucciola Series by Vistosi is one of their most versatile collections. Featuring a mouth-blown, oval satin glass shade available in different sizes and formats, it brings design synergy to your home.
6. This versatile Abacus 5 Suspension Lamp by Terzani emits a soft, uniform light. Custom-designed in strands of hand-blown opal glass, you can choosing the perfect configuration for your space.
Interior lighting brands
We are proud to stock some unbelievable interior lighting brands and we love sharing with you just what makes them so special. Here are some of our top picks.
Terzani is renowned for creating shimmering pieces made from crystal and glass. Their legendary “fairy-tale” chandeliers are embodiments of abundance and luxury.
Flos Lighting creates modern lighting inspired by geometric form. They are driven by functionality and believe in the importance of environmental sustainability.
Foscarini is famous for their Murano glass lighting and strive to use their exquisite creations to transform space into tangible masterpieces.
Heathfield produces an incredible range of striking, decorative light pieces that are made to be timelessly cherished and appreciated.
Vistosi gets their inspiration from all things flamboyant. Their famous designers are obsessed with producing eye-catching pieces of the finest quality.
Serip adores objects of beauty and has a flair for creating the extraordinary. They seamlessly blend furniture and lighting together in bespoke creations.
Book a consultation with our bespoke interior designers
At FCI London, our enthusiastic team will be able to help you discover some fabulous indoor lighting ideas. Call us now or book an appointment with one of our interior designers.