Home exteriors: classic Houses by Mark Hazeldine Photography

These home lighting blunders are easy to avoid

Amy Buxton Amy Buxton
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When it comes to home lighting you just plug some lamps in and you're done, right? Wrong! If this is how you think, you're almost certainly making some errors with your illuminations, but we're here to help you overcome them.

It's not just as simple as changing out bulbs any more, as any interior designer will tell you to think about your indoor and outdoor lighting in terms of security, ambience and wider décor. It all sounds a bit complicated, doesn't it? It really isn't and we've broken it all down for you, so if you think you might be fumbling in the dark, let us lead you to some brighter ideas!

Here are the top six mistakes you could be making…

1. Not using your exterior lighting for security

Yes, your home looks beautiful when it's all lit up but why not save your electricity bill a little and add an extra level of security to your home by installing a motion sensor? 

No burglar wants to be dazzled so they'll leave your property well alone and try their luck elsewhere.

2. Tricking your plants into thinking it's daytime

You have to be really careful with how you light your garden, as make the lights too bright and badly angled and your plants might think it's daytime and start trying to photosynthesise. 

Angle garden lights away from plants to prevent this from being an issue.

3. Not lighting your pathways enough

Party garden in Sevenoaks, Kent: modern Garden by Earth Designs
Earth Designs

Party garden in Sevenoaks, Kent

Earth Designs

Navigating your garden in the dark is a treacherous game, especially if the ground is slippery. 

Add some sunken lights to the edges of your paths and this problem will be a thing of the past. Go the extra mile and get solar-powered versions for a wallet and environmentally-friendly bonus!

4. Not having dimmer switches

Chalet Gstaad: rustic Bedroom by Ardesia Design
Ardesia Design

Chalet Gstaad

Ardesia Design

If you thought that dimmer switches went out with wet-look perms, you'd be wrong! 

Dimmers have become a steadfast addition to home lighting, especially in bedrooms, where a softer ambience is desirable. Add some dimmers to your home and you'll love the ease with which you can switch up the mood.

5. Forgetting to coordinate your paint and lighting

Flopster sofa: modern Living room by Loaf
Loaf

Flopster sofa

Loaf

If you have bright white walls in your living room, what lighting do you need? 

The answer is something softer and warmer, so warm white bulbs in side lamps to offer a cosy feel in the evening. See? It's all about balance. Similarly, you'll want bright lighting in a dark room!

6. Rejecting task or accent lighting altogether

minimalistic Kitchen by STUDIO ANDRE LENZA
STUDIO ANDRE LENZA

White + light + kitchen

STUDIO ANDRE LENZA

Main lights are great for generally illuminating a room, but to get to grips with more specialist tasks (such as cooking), you need some special lighting. 

Task lighting can be mounted under cabinets, in the ceiling, on the walls… anywhere, really, so make use of it where you need it. Finally, an excuse for that amazing desk lamp you found!

For more lighting inspiration, take a look at this Ideabook: 15 outdoor lighting ideas that'll make your home shine.

Have you been making any of these mistakes?
Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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