Here’s How: Lighting Tips for Your Home

Here’s How: Lighting Tips for Your Home

Because every space needs some artificial lighting, I’ve put together some lighting tips. We all love those bright, sunny days, but eventually the sun goes down. Sunset is 5:47 P.M. here – earlier than we’d like. And that means it’s time to turn on some lamps. So what’s the best way to light your home?

Lighting is used for a few purposes: to highlight something, for ambiance, or to provide light for work. Placement of a light is important so that you aren’t blinded by direct light from the bulb, so that the lighting doesn’t overwhelm the space, and so there is enough light to do what’s needed in the space.

Pay attention to where your need for light is greatest, and you’ll find that a lighting scheme will naturally fall into place. For instance, if  you sit in a particular place frequently, you’ll need a light near you. However, unless you like the dark, you’ll notice that the other side of the room has dark corners that could use a little friendly illumination. Try a sconce or floor lamp there, and you’ll be amazed how much warmer your room feels. You’ll definitely need a lamp by the sofa if you like to curl up with a book or e-reader.


Here’s a primer on all the light styles and how they’re used best.


Lighting Tips: Floor Lamps


Floor lamps are a great way to add lighting without taking up space on a table or desk. Many times, they’re able to serve as both ambient and reading lights; dual-purpose is better than single-purpose, especially in smaller spaces.

You can use the Gus Modern Lightbox for ambient lighting – and as a side table to display your Eames House Bird or a glass sculpture. The Cerno Silva Floor Lamp is ideal for reading or tasking of any kind because you can tilt the shade in the direction you need.

For a little personality, add a matching set of lamps like the Blu Dot Stilt Floor Lamp and Table Lamp. Matching lighting sets like that really bring your space together.


Lighting Tips: Table and Desk Lamps



Table lamps are an easy way to add ambient and task lighting – and some unique style – to a space. The Blu Dot Rook Table Lamp can definitely be a conversation piece in your living room, and it gets the job done with some great ambient illumination.

And again, focusing on dual-purpose lighting, the Pablo Clamp Lamp can be used as both a table lamp for reading, or a desk lamp to highlight your work. Get the most use out of every light you have in place.


Lighting Tips: Pendant Lights


Pendant lights are fantastic choices for all kinds of areas in your home.  A great pendant light won’t just provide light; it will also bring the eye up so you are really using all of the space in your area, even above eye level. The right pendant light can be used above your kitchen island, dining table, or even your craft table.

If you need light in a small space but don’t think you have the room, think again! You can use smaller pendants like the Bulb Pendant Light just about anywhere. You’ll need some overhead lighting over the kitchen island for making dinner; think about the FLY Hanging Lamp to provide a pop of color.


Lighting Tips: Wall Lamps and Sconces



Great for small spaces so they are out of the way but still useful, wall lights provide ambient or directional lighting. One of my favorites is the industrial Gus Modern Swing Arm Lamp. It adds a good dose of style and classy retro illumination.

Get wall lights for the bedroom to save space on your nightstand (especially if you don’t have room for a nightstand at all). Going with the dual purpose functionality again, the Cubo Wall Lamp is both an ambient and reading light – at the same time. That’s key for your bedroom to avoid eyestrain, especially if you’re only planning to use sconce lighting in the room. The Scantling Wall Mounted Light is also perfect for reading or tasking (and it also has floor and table versions if you’re pursuing a lighting set for a unified look).


Lighting Tips: Make a Plan

Now that we’ve gone through the house, it’s time to start planning.

When getting started on your new lighting project, take a moment to analyze your space. This list of “how” questions will help.

1. How much light do you get during the day?
2. How often do you use the space at night?
3. How do you use the space (read, watch TV, play games, work, etc.)?

Now lay out where you do these things, decide where you need more (or different) light, and you’ll be well on your way to a gorgeous lighting scheme!

Browse our Lighting Gallery for more inspiration and ideas for your home. If you are unsure where you fall on the spectrum of style, take our Smart Profile Quiz and you’ll receive reward points as well.

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Caroline Allen

I'm a transplant to Chattanooga from Indiana, an interior designer by training, and I'm willing to try (almost) anything once. I spend my days on the Sales Team at Smart Furniture helping customers find the best look for their needs - it's always fun to solve problems and be creative! In no particular order, I love cats, motorcycles, and color.