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SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Lighting plays an important role in interior design. Often neglected, it has the power to transform your interiors, creating the required ambience, enhancing colours and textures and highlighting certain architectural features. In this blog, we will explore different types of lighting and how to choose the right light for different spaces of your home. Let’s explore types of  lighting in interior design.

Role of Lighting in Interior Design

Lighting is not just the flick of a switch; it requires careful consideration and planning to ensure that the right fixtures and light sources are chosen to maintain the required lighting levels in different spaces according to their purpose and design style. The lighting design should complement the interior design and focus on the right elements to set the overall mood of the space, making it feel spacious and inviting. 

Lighting can affect our mood and behaviour as well- bright and cool-toned lights increase focus and concentration, while dimmer and warm lighting induces a feeling of calm and relaxation. This creates different atmospheres in different spaces- for example, energising white and focussed light is required for a study room, while warm diffused lighting is preferred for living rooms. 

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Using the Right Lighting in Interior Design

The use of correct lighting can transform a room from feeling flat and inviting to welcoming and fresh. By controlling the light intensity, direction and colour, specific areas can be highlighted creating a sense of drama and visual interest in a space. It is all about balance of light and shade and drawing attention to desirable areas of the design. That is the skill of interior designers- to artfully combine downlights, uplights, wall lights, floor lights, hidden lights, feature lights, pendant lighting and lamps, to create interest and depth in a room and illuminate required features. 

A successful lighting plan will always have a mix of decorative lighting and architectural lighting- different layers that make a space multi-functional. A good mix of ambient, accent and task lighting makes for a good lighting plan. Decorative lights refers to lighting as a dramatic pendant, interesting wall light or a feature lamp to attract our eye to the artistic fixtures or the feature it is accentuating. For example, a large chandelier instantly draws our attention in a room. Similarly, a hidden track light in a false ceiling summons us to look at the false ceiling. 

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Downlighting

Downlighting is the most popular form of lighting in interiors that includes luminaires that throw light in the downward direction as indicated in the name. They are usually fixed into the ceiling so you see only a small part of the fitting below the ceiling. Since the light falls on objects from above, shadows are unavoidable, so downlighting needs to be balanced with adequate ambient lighting.   

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Uplighting

Uplighting is a softer alternative to downlighting, created by strategically placing lighting fixtures on the floor and pointing them upwards. It is usually used for improving the ambience of a space as a support to downlighting. Uplighting utilises the property of reflection of light to indirectly light a space.  

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Wall Washing

Wall washing is a lighting method used to illuminate a vertical surface in a soft way. It utilises vertical, indirect lighting placed at a certain distance and angle from a wall to create a smooth washed effect, that hides rough imperfections, eliminates shadows and uniformly lights up the wall. 

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Wall Grazing

Wall grazing is the opposite of wall washing, where the light source is intentionally placed close to the surface of the wall to illuminate the area while highlighting the texture of the wall. 

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Spotlighting

Spotlighting is a method of using focussed light to highlight a particular feature of a room. It is frequently used in task lighting and accent lighting, to concentrate light on a specific area or activity in a room or to accentuate an architectural or decor feature.  

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Perimeter Lighting

This type of lighting is used to accentuate a room to expand its apparent size. It is often used in corridors and narrow spaces in interiors to give an illusion of a wider or larger space. 

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

How to Choose the Right Lighting Fixture?

To create a cohesive and harmonious interior design, choosing the right luminaires and deciding their placement is important. This involves selecting the appropriate style, considering the fixture size, and the intensity of light required. You could also explore energy-efficient options for your lighting design.  

Selecting the Style of Fixture

The lighting plan should be created based on the style of the room- modern, traditional, eclectic, etc. Style of a fixture refers to its material, colour, shape and quality of light. For example, an industrial-style pendant light would not blend in a classic interior. Similarly a brass coated light or lamp would be out of place in an eclectic design. 

Fixture Size and Placement

The light chosen has to be proportional to the room to provide the desired illumination required for the room. For example, the size of a chandelier for a living or dining room will be based on the furniture in the room. The placement of the fixtures will determine the mood of the space. Pleasant lighting creates a welcoming atmosphere as opposed to harsh, bright lighting. 

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Lighting for luxurious interiors

Pendant lights

Pendant lights are a great type of accent lighting that comes in different forms for direct lighting and indirect lighting. In case of direct lighting, pendants are used for uplighting and downlighting, where general lighting is required along with task lighting. Indirect lighting plans employ lights that are suspended from the ceiling using cables- the lamp is completely hidden from below and a reflector directs all of the light up towards the ceiling. 

Pendant lighting can be used in any design style and any space- it can be used over a kitchen island or dining table, in your living rooms, as well as in bedrooms. Used for practical and decorative purposes, they work in conjunction with other lights to give your space an elegant feel.

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Chandeliers

Chandeliers are a type of downlighting utilising a large number of small lights to give a soft radiance to the space where it is used. It gives a more artistic and elegant vibe to the interiors and is a great choice of lighting if you want to captivate viewers attention!

Because of their timeless quality, they have been used for a long time to add elegance and sophistication in homes. Initially they were quite grand but now smaller and simpler versions are also available. Minimalistic chandeliers have become a common trend.

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Track Lighting for Interior Design

Track lights refer to sleek lighting fixtures generally on a metal track. They can be hidden for a more diffused effect, as is done with false ceilings, or can be kept visible as it allows to aim light in multiple directions. Track lights are commonly used in art galleries because of their ability to highlight the artwork present, and in kitchens as under-cabinet lights, to provide focussed light for kitchen tasks.  

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Flushed lights

As the name suggests, these lights are flushed into the ceiling such that only the light source is visible. Flushed lighting systems are a great addition to small rooms with lower ceilings where they help visually enlarge the space and pose minimum obstructions when compared to other lighting fixtures. Many interiors utilise flushed LED lights in their homes to create an inviting ambience as they complement the larger pendant lighting or chandeliers used, or the false ceiling design if any. 

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Cove or Recessed lighting

Cove or recessed lighting again utilises the reflective property of light. The light fixture is installed into an opening in the ceiling and reflected light is used to radiate the interiors. Sleek and hidden, they make a room appear larger than it really is. Recessed lighting is best used with false ceiling and behind fixtures and some artworks. They are also a great addition to hallways and bathrooms.

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Lighting for Different Spaces

Each space in our house has different requirements of lighting- from the size to the placement and aesthetics. The amount of light required in every space is also different. For example, the amount of light required in a study or home office cannot be the same as the amount of light required in a living space or bedroom. Let us explore lighting for different spaces to make each corner inviting and elegant.

Welcoming Living Rooms

Living rooms mostly require general lighting or ambient lighting to set the mood of the space and create a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The ambient lights can be supported by task lighting depending on the activities taking place in the living room. If you like to read in one spot of your living room, it is advisable to have a floor lamp or table lamp to focus on the activity of reading. If the living room is used for social gatherings or simply for watching television, just soft ambient lighting is sufficient. 

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Lively dining spaces

A statement pendant or chandelier that lights up the entire space is the best choice for a dining room. Warm golden light creates a welcoming atmosphere, enabling conversations over culinary delights. Layered lighting also works best for dining rooms, where you can control the amount of lighting at any given time. Adding accent lighting with table lamps and wall washing or wall grazing lights adds a dramatic effect making your dining space lively and energetic.

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Convenient kitchens

Kitchens require good task lighting without casting shadows on the work being performed. Ceiling lights accompanied by under-cabinet lights make a good lighting plan for kitchens. Uplight from top of the cabinets add a contemporary touch to the space. Accent lighting like recessed and adjustable fixtures can be added to crockery stands or glass front or lacquered cabinetry to illuminate your luxury collection of tableware or glassware.   

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Cosy Bedrooms

Bedrooms are never just used for relaxing or sleeping; they are multipurpose spaces- to binge watch series, to read, and sometimes even to work on pending office tasks. Using pendants, floor lamps and wall scones allow layered lighting pertaining to different activities requirements. Add recessed lights or hidden track lights to your ceiling or wardrobes to add a visual embellishment to your bedroom decor! Chandeliers can also be used in bedrooms depending on your tastes and preferences. 

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Polished Bathrooms

Bathrooms are tricky spaces to illuminate. While grooming areas require focussed light, bathing areas require dim light, perfect for relaxation. Cove lights, flushed lights and wall scones work best for bathrooms, with flushed lights providing the dimness required for luxurious baths and wall scones illuminating grooming corners and mirrors. The rest of the bathroom can use ambient lights or track lighting for a soothing effect. 

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

Focussed Study

The study room requires the highest level of illumination, to create less pressure on our eyes while reading. The best solution is natural light, supplemented by adjustable desk lamps or a wall-mounted light above the study table or workstation. Pendant lights add a sophisticated touch to study rooms.  

SJ DESIGN CONSULTANTS - NEW DELHI - Types of Lighting in Interior Design

There are unlimited options when it comes to choosing lighting for your homes. From impressive chandeliers to subtle flush lights, there is an option for every setup and style of interiors. Explore more lighting options with SJ Design Consultants and make your home into a haven or style and luxury!

 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Does every room require a separate lighting design?

  • The general lighting (ambient light) can be uniform throughout the house. But certain activities and spaces require more focussed light such as reading spaces, kitchens and study rooms. These spaces can be supplemented with additional task lights.
  • If you want to highlight certain features in your living space or any other room, you can make use of accent lighting as well.

 

Is energy-efficiency important in lighting?

  • Energy-efficiency is an important factor to consider for overall design, not just lighting. 
  • Consider lighting options to reduce energy usage and long-term costs such as LED lighting and smart lighting systems such as motion sensing systems and sound-based lighting systems. 
  • These ensure a positive impact on the environment and also utilise lesser resources. 

 

Are track lights always hidden?

  • When used in false ceilings, track lights are generally hidden to give a radiant effect to the space. 
  • In other cases such as under-cabinet lighting in kitchens, track lights are generally exposed for bright focussed light.

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