There are three types of lighting. In the order we think of them there is ambient lighting, task lighting, and accent lighting. Ambient lighting is of course the primary light source in the room that’s intended to light the whole room. Certain areas in the home, like above the kitchen sink or the stove top will probably have lights that are specific to those areas and are only used for those tasks. But accent lighting is the most dramatic and underused type of lighting. Why is it underused? Here are three reasons:
* It’s not tangible. When we invest money into our homes, we want to invest in things we can touch and see. Light isn’t tangible, you can see it, in a sense, but you’re really seeing through it.
* Homeowners think it’s reserved for museums or five-star hotels. Most people assume it’s too expensive and unattainable.
* Accent lighting is a finishing touch and homeowners are never truly finished with their homes.
Accent lighting is critical, it can make or break a piece of art on display in your home and yet it’s so underused. Here are seven tips for using accent lighting in your home.
1. Choose your spots. Think about the areas in your home that could benefit from some accent lighting. Nice artwork is a given but accent lighting can also emphasize architectural features like archways, fireplaces, and art niches.
2. Be selective. Most homeowner’s commit the error of not having enough accent lighting (none, in most cases), but some homeowners commit the opposite error of having too much. Think of accent lighting like perfume. A little goes a long way and you definitely don’t want to overdo it. You can’t emphasize something if you’re trying to emphasize everything.
3. Choose your fixture. Decide whether you want something portable or something more permanent. If you’re the type of person that likes to play around with arrangement and move art to different places throughout your home, something portable is probably the better option. Try to avoid accent lighting that will have cords hanging down on the wall as that ruins the look. Some accent lighting is battery powered and some lighting can be controlled with a remote so consider all your options.
4. Track lighting. The most permanent accent lighting solution is track lighting. Adjustable lamps are attached to tracks on the ceiling and can really highlight a piece of art in your home.
5. Think about flexibility. Choose accent lighting that is adjustable and dimmable so that you can be flexible about how use it. Adjustable, dimmable accent lighting is perfect for any scenario.
6. Determine bulb type. Whatever you do don’t choose bulbs that have a high heat output and emit UV rays as these can cause artwork to fade. Incandescent lights emit a warm light that seems to go well with reds, browns, and yellows. Halogens put out a very bright, white light. LED bulbs are energy efficient and will last an extremely long time plus they come in a variety of color temperatures.
7. Adjust for aim and spread. You don’t want to get the accent lighting too close to the subject you’re trying to illuminate or it looks like a laser shining on it. Too far away and you lose the effect. Aim to cast a light that fully illuminates the subject and nothing more.
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Source: nola .com/homegarden/index.ssf/2016/06/7_essential_tips_for_adding_ar.html