Home lighting choices can affect the mood of a room, so it’s important to pick your sources deliberately and wisely. A well-placed lamp can illuminate a dark room, while a poor design choice may leave a space feeling cold. If you’re about to alter your apartment’s lighting layout, check out these tips:

Harness Natural Light

The sun’s rays create a soft glow that add cheer to any room. Whether you get too much or not enough natural light in a specific space, you can manipulate your apartment to get the perfect amount of sunlight.

Too Much Natural Light

Your windows might face east or west, meaning they get direct sunlight once a day. This can be harsh or blinding, but you can fix the problem. Buy curtains made of sheer or cotton fabrics to help diffuse the light. Your decor should be a medium tone (not light or dark) so that it absorbs some of the sunlight, but not all of it.

Not Enough Natural Light

A dark room can feel unpleasant because it doesn’t get sunlight, but that ambiance can be remedied easily. Hang a large mirror or several small mirrors on the wall directly across from a window. They will reflect the light to other parts of the room, creating a brightening effect.

Choose furniture in a light color, such as cream, so that it will also reflect light.

Create Dimension

A ceiling light may do it’s job by illuminating a room, but your home lighting will appear flat. Filmmakers use key light (your ceiling light) to fill in the scene, but they don’t stop there. They also use a fill and back light to add dimension.

Take a hint from Hollywood and employ the three-point system. You can do this by placing a couple lamps or a wall-mounted lighting sources in the room. For example, you may use the overhead light in conjunction with a corner lamp and a decorative wall lamp. Having three or more lighting sources give your room’s illumination flexibility and dimension.

Accent Lighting

Accent lights add texture or highlight a specific feature in your home. For example, you may use a gallery lamp to illuminate a favorite painting, add a display of candles, or place a rope light beneath a fireplace mantle. Play around with accenting different decor pieces in your home or apartment, such as plants and bookshelves. Even a fireplace can act as an accent (when it’s lit, of course)!

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Illuminate Task Areas

The work spaces in your apartment need to be well lit so you don’t strain your eyes or make a mistake. Try placing track lighting beneath your cabinets so your counters are illuminated while you prepare dinner. Place a table lamp on a desk to use while you write, fill out paperwork or go on your computer. These fixtures should be focused, meaning the light is channeled toward your task area.

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