How to light your room effortlessly

Written by Staff Writer

In contrast to what you might think, your television is actually a major contributor to your wee pile of clothes and floor space. You have to clear it out of the way at some point anyway, after all. And it’s not a stretch to imagine that the time-consuming task takes a mental and literal toll on the house.

Better to spend the time tidying up a more mindful space. For this, look no further than the San Francisco-based Munk Lighting and Design which hosts monthly New York City workshops designed to revitalize any already bright or glowing room. Here’s how to look more luminous without toning down your style.

1. Find your chandelier’s ideal color.

That bright a color might not be the best color for your light fixture. Chandeliers should be accenting the room’s light and color, so it makes sense that it’s ideal for a color that accentuates lighting — whether it’s daylight or fluorescent.

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2. Research your lampshades.

Choose a shade with sufficient color properties. If your lampshade has a lot of blue or green coloring, it is incompatible with many light-control models, which are designed to balance lighting characteristics. If you want a complementary shade, go for a shade in the opposite color.

“There is no right or wrong shade,” architect Shailesh Vasudevan said in a previous interview with Business Insider. “You have to find out which shade feels right for your room and room needs.”

3. Know your wall finish.

Adjust your wall coverings to match.

You don’t need to overlap your light fixture with your finish wall, but try to keep the finish and lighting placement to the same plane.

4. Hang it where it shines.

Because most shaded light sources’ beams travel upward, they tend to reflect sunlight more into the room. This creates a cool, depressing effect that never really works out.

When it comes to outdoor lighting, however, be sure you attach those down lights in a good position — ideally on a trellis, a tree branch or one’s own deck, pole or awning. Lighting simply sitting on a wall looks outdated and uninspiring.

5. Use mood lighting sparingly.

You might think that light sources should drive your mood, but the facts say otherwise. Sure, they should harmonize with moody photos or music — but they are best used sparingly.

Use the instant wake-up light to wake you up, but avoid its power during the day. After-sunlight hits your skin like a portable puffer jacket, so don’t use it in late afternoon or early evening. And the lounging-in-the-cool-dark light goes unnoticed, so pass it off as a window shade. For reading and research sessions, it’s fine, but not for sitting on the couch.

6. Choose a timeless lamp.

Get something you’ll use regularly — such as recessed lighting — and not feel like you need to change the look every six months. Over the long haul, keep this in mind.

“I spend a lot of time searching for quality product in shades that I know I will use again and again,” lighting designer Salva Venning said in a previous interview with Business Insider. “I also try to build in transitional options that are easy to update, no matter the time of day.”

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