Our bedroom must absolutely be the most comfortable room in the house. It is the first thing that greets us every morning and puts us to sleep each night. You might have never paid much attention to the lighting in your rooms, but I found that they are actually the main factor in setting the mood – and the mood is what being comfortable is all about. But how do we know what are the right things to do for our bedroom lighting and which lighting is the best choice to achieve the look we want? Here are a few things I considered when I was setting up the light in my new home:
The function of the room
Not all bedrooms are used just for sleeping. There are plenty also used as a study, playroom, living room and more. Each one deserves special attention. Let’s look at them one at a time and see what each of them requires.
Bedroom: Every bedroom, especially a child’s room, needs a night light, a source of natural lighting to allow them to sync up with the natural cycle of the day and an overhead light for getting ready for bed or spending time in the room past dark.
Study: If your bedroom is where you keep your desk and study or work, you will need a good desk lamp that will allow you to read at any time of the day without ruining your eyes, as well as good overhead lighting. Make sure that the overhead lighting isn’t too harsh or positioned in a way that casts a shadow over your desk, making it harder to work on. Also, pay attention to the positioning of the lamps if you have a computer screen because the reflection can make it simply impossible to see.
Living room: A living room simply has to have good overhead lighting, most often in a neutral, white light. But just as important, there need to be lamps, preferably with warm bulbs, around the room to make it look cosier and less sterile.
Closet: If your room is also where you keep all of your clothes and get dressed every day, you will want to have a light that is positioned well in coordination with your mirror. You want to make sure that it isn’t casting any unnatural shadows and hitting you in ways that aren’t common during the day.
Of course, most bedrooms are a mix of plenty of these so combine them in the way that best fits your needs.
What mood you want to create
If you have a minimalist style, and you want your bedroom to be the same way, lighting can help a lot with that. Adding several simple, white bulbs in strategic places will brighten up your room without causing too much of a fuss and subtracting from the feel. If you have a vintage bedroom, then you must use only warm bulbs, and you can actually skip the overhead lighting completely, and just stick to standing or table lamps. If you, however, have a unique taste and want to bring something whimsical in your room, hang up fairy lights on walls and bookshelves, or even put up neon signs for a more edgy look. Mixing styles can be a great way to express yourself, but be careful with mixing different colours of light, because your room might look different under different light.
Put safety first
When talking about lighting, especially installations, you should always take extra caution. When I moved into my new home, I had a recommended Sydney electrician install everything, just to make sure it’s done correctly and that there are no risks for me and my family. I also educated my kids about the basic safety rules, after my daughter once draped a scarf over a bulb to create pink lighting in her room: Never cover an exposed bulb, never leave the house with the lights on and never leave candles unattended. You should always stir away from doing your own installations and be mindful of your actions because sometimes just a moment of distraction can cause a disaster. When arranging your lamps, be careful with any that are placed near curtains, rugs or bed sheets, and make sure they never get hot enough to start a fire.
In the past, we only had natural light, and while today we have a whole array of choices concerning our lighting, we should still gravitate to use as much sunlight as we can, and do most of our work during that time. Not only does this cut down our electricity bills, but it also helps not to waste energy. Remember that you can always control the natural lighting with curtains and shades, but sunlight doesn’t only make our world brighter, it also makes us happier and more positive throughout the day.