Planning the Perfect Bedroom Lighting Makeover
You may spend most of your time in your bedroom sleeping, but aren't you worthy of the best interior design? Bad decor can contribute to significant stress, and lighting is a prime candidate for top-to-bottom improvements. Here's how to ensure that your bedroom lighting makeover goes flawlessly.
Why Is Bedroom Lighting So Important?
The quality of your lighting isn't the only thing that impacts your sleep or how rested you feel in the morning. Different kinds of lighting sources can also contribute to or detract from your intimate spaces.
For instance, the American Psychological Association recommends eliminating distractions like glowing TV and computer screens from the bedroom. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's Lighting Research Center even conducted a study that found that blue light exposure during the day could help promote beneficial sleep patterns. At night, however, artificial lighting may contribute to health problems like obesity, heart disease and diabetes.
Key Bedroom Lighting Principles for Improved Comfort
Like many people, you may be in need of a total lighting makeover. Focus on
- Regulating the intensity of your bedroom lighting through the use of dimmers, shades and fixture placement,
- Using as much natural lighting as possible and subjecting yourself to bright illumination during the day,
- Creating evenly lit arrangements so that you don't have to huddle close to brighter light sources to see properly, and
- Switching sources that emit blue light, such as white LEDs and fluorescent bulbs, for dimmer red nighttime lighting.
Now that you understand the philosophies behind a healthy bedroom lighting makeover, what should your first move be? It's not just about sleep quality or utilitarian functionality.
Style is also an important factor that can boost or sink your mood. Here are some ideas.
Let Your Major Fixtures Set the Tone
Larger lighting pieces, such as pendant and chandelier lights, naturally attract the eye. Even if you're not actively thinking about it, you'll subconsciously judge your arrangement in the context of its biggest elements.
Although you don't have to stick to one style or theme, you should always begin with the most prominent fixtures and design around those. For instance, if you like industrial pendants that use brushed metal to create a sleek sensibility, then you can replicate some aspect of these fixtures in your sconces or nightstand lighting. Adhering to this ground rule is crucial to tying everything together.
Don't Crowd Yourself
Sizing hierarchy isn't the only important characteristic of lighting design. Failing to think about placement can result in arrangements that appear overly busy, and this ruins the sense of harmony you crave in your bedroom.
For instance, placing two wall-mounted lights right next to each other may provide ample illumination, but they'll make the wall look cluttered. Poor positioning also creates an off-balanced effect that throws everything else in the room out of alignment. In bedrooms, these kinds of bad choices can truly ruffle your feathers.
Finding the Ideal Spacing
If you're familiar with the science of design, then you may have heard of Gestalt laws. These principles describe how humans perceive distinct objects as being organized. One critical Gestalt concept is that people tend to group items based on their proximity to each other.
Apply this idea to your bedroom makeover by maintaining even, regular spacing between lighting elements that are visually similar. One good trick is to take a picture of your room and use a program like Photoshop to see how a proposed arrangement will look. Some lighting providers and furniture companies have augmented reality apps that let you use your phone's camera in real time to achieve similar ends.
Remember That Color Isn't Just for Bulbs
The color of your lighting fixtures goes a surprisingly long way. For instance, if you're highly sensitive to light, then polished or mirrored surfaces might make it harder for you to close your eyes and get to sleep.
Fixture materials and colors can also determine how you feel when you wake up. For instance, many people love the simplicity of unadorned metal textures because they're conducive to starting the day with a clean, organized feeling. If you think metal is too cold, then softer options, like wood, fabric and acrylic, can let you experiment with warmer hues and colors that might be more to your liking.
You can also choose a variety of materials for your light shades and diffusers. In addition to changing the fundamental aesthetic of fixtures, these components determine how they spread light and block out certain colors. Modifying stock lighting elements by making small tweaks is also a clever way to establish your unique personality.
Match or Complement Your Other Furniture
Ideally, bedroom lights shouldn't stand out from their surroundings. If you want to ensure that yours meshes seamlessly with the rest of your decor, you'll think about matching your lighting's materials and colors to your bed, carpet, wardrobes and other passive elements.
Unified Lighting Elements
Those who want to take their design practices to the next level always consider standalone lighting fixtures. Sure, you may be totally attached to a classic Chinese porcelain lamp or some kitschy thrift store find, but these elements also deserve upgrades.
You don't have to discard your favorites to create a refreshing new effect. Changing out parts, like lamp shades, bases and bulbs, is an excellent means of ensuring that your makeover leaves no stone unturned. If you're struggling to find a place for something unique, pairing an odd piece with an identical or similar fixture is usually a smart start.
Make Your Bedroom Lighting Makeover More Successful
The key to a rewarding lighting overhaul is having fun with it. You should enjoy the process just as much as you love the results, so expand your horizons by taking in new design inspirations. To get started off right, chat with one of our interior design consultants.