Interior Lighting Basics – Part 2: Room By Room

| Posted in Decorating, Design, Interior, Style
Lighting Ideas Room by Room

Lighting is an important element to decor just like color selection, theme, or furniture. But what is the best choice for a specific room? When you take into consideration the function and mood of each space in your home you can create the right feel. We’re going room by room, offering our lighting suggestions to help you put the finishing touches on your home decorating.

Living Room/Family Room

The Living Room or Family Room is most likely a shared space with many uses. From watching a movie together to curling up with a good book after the kids have gone to bed, your Living Room couldn’t have a more obvious name. This space needs to be just as versatile and welcoming as the activities it accommodates.

Function: Gathering, Reading, Watching

Mood: Comfort, Open, Bright, Welcoming

Solution: Set up table and floor lamps to light three corners of the room or other strategic places. Place table lamps around sitting areas to ease reading. Consider accent lighting on decor, such as unique objects and artwork. Sconces over a couch or the fireplace adds an elegant touch to the room.

Living Room Lighting

via Heather Garrett Design


Over the last century the Kitchen has become a focal point of American homes. Open concept is a buzz word among interior design and architecture, requiring that the Kitchen be more functional and entertaining than in the past. In other words, the Kitchen isn’t just for cooking anymore.

Function: Cooking, Conversation, Gathering

Mood: Safety, Open, Inviting

Solution: Recessed lighting and pendants for ambient overhead lighting is a common choice here. Focus the lighting over the prep areas and consider adding task lighting where appropriate to keep chefs and guests safe. Also consider lighting that will enhance work or study time if you have a desk in the kitchen.

Kitchen Lighting Solutions

via Drury Designs

Dining Room

We’re talking formal dining room here. Special occasions warrant big family gatherings and a setting to equal it. And making the Dining Room a showpiece of your home is a must.

Function: Eating, Conversation, Gathering

Mood: Inviting, Comforting

Make the table the brightest spot in the room with pendants or a chandelier. Make sure the wattage does not exceed 100. Use sconces to light other parts of the room, especially if there are nearby decorations. Candles on the table and dimmers for the lighting are a great way to add variety.


Dining Room Lighting Solution

via AM Dolce Vita


The Bedroom can also be a versatile space including an office space or creative space. But that doesn’t mean it can’t have all the comfort and charm of a traditional bedroom as a comfortable place to sleep.

Function: Sleeping, Relaxing

Mood: Calm, Relaxing

Solution: Dimmers are a must here to maximize the level of comfort from the lighting. Use an overhead light for the general lighting and desk lamps on night stands as task lights. Another option is to install track lighting, sidelights, or sconces shining against the wall, which can double as accents for artwork above the headboard and aid the desk lamps for task lighting.

Bedroom Lighting Ideas

via Apartment Therapy


In the Bathroom it really depends on what you want to get out of the space. Be it daily prep space or an in-home spa, lighting can make all the difference. Choose your path and go for it!

Function: Prepping or Relaxing

Mood: Efficient or Calming, Relaxing

Solution: Start with track lighting above the mirrors and overhead lighting to illuminate the rest of the room. Add modern side lighting if you’re creating a place to put on your face. You can trade the track lighting for sconces and candles for a more spa-like mood. Finally, use an overhead light near or above the shower as well, for safety and ease.

Bathroom Lighting Ideas


via Elements of Style

So there you have it: Room by room lighting inspiration. Need a refresher on key terms and lighting basics? Interior Lighting Basics – Part 1: Sources & Options gives you the background info you need to make the right lighting decisions. Check it out, then head back here for ideas to get that one room just right!

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Featured Image via HGTV’s Fixer Upper

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