5 common lighting mistakes (and how to fix them)

Have you ever heard someone say that lighting can make or break a space? We absolutely believe that is true! When we are going to look at a new project, whether it’s a remodel of an older home, new construction or cosmetic upgrades, we find some common lighting mistakes. So if you are considering a home project in 2021, here are the 5 most common lighting mistakes we encounter and how to fix them!

Having a single light source

Can lights are great (we use them all the time) but they are not a one stop shop. It’s all about layering! Your lighting needs aren’t the same all day long and therefore you should not be limited to one lighting source. Rather, we recommend having a main lighting source (such as can lights) but also accent lighting like pendants in a kitchen, undercabinet lighting, sconces and/or smaller cans to accent different areas of a room.

Lighting the floor but not the workspaces

Oftentimes, we see that a room is well lit…if your goal is to illuminate the floor. This is great for mopping but what about the rest of the time? Just as important as layering your lighting is considering what your lights are illuminating. This is especially important in kitchens, bathrooms and offices. We always recommend undercabinet lights in a kitchen because the number one thing you should be illuminating is your countertops not your floor. The same thing goes for a bathroom vanity. You don’t just want lights shining down on you but around you for when you are doing things like putting on your makeup. It is equally important to think about what is being illuminated as it is to layer your lighting.

Skipping the dimmer

In addition to layering your lighting, making your lights dimmable will allow greater versatility. The amount of daylight changes constantly and so does your indoor lighting needs. Having the option to control the brightness of your lighting, not only saves energy but it also allows you the option to have a nightlight or change the scene based on the event/mood/time of day (dinner party, movie night, etc.). There is no need for your only choices to be on or off.

Not getting specific

We think it’s very important to get specific. Do you have a fireplace you’d like to highlight? A gallery wall? Bookshelves? A piece of art? A cove or shelf where you will change decorations seasonally? If there are any unique accents in your home, consider adding lighting to highlight them. It is always easier to add lighting during the project then realizing it after so think and plan ahead! Even if you know you want something but aren’t sure what, you can always ask your electrician to run the wires for when you do decide.

Overlooking your switches

This last one focuses on the switches that control your lights. Most people don’t give a second thought to where their switches will go. But if you are always entering a room through one doorway and the switches for that room are next to the doorway across the room, you will notice once you’ve moved in. If you aren’t interested in mapping out your switches, then make sure your electrician understands the importance of switch locations. In addition, how many times have you went into a home and seen 5 or 6 individual light switches all in a row? Not only does this look bad but it can create confusion on which switch controls which lights (especially for guests). Instead, talk with your electrician about adding a smart lighting system where you can add keypads that can condense 6 individual light switches into only one!

If you have any questions or comments, contact Sasha at sasha@inthelitellc.com. As always, we hope we’ve made your day brighter!

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