In recent years home lighting systems have become an integral part of interior design. Lighting is no longer a functional necessity but is now the perfect opportunity for homeowners to add a personal and creative touch to their interiors.

Achieving a flattering ambiance through lighting design has become a craft in itself and the general advice is to ensure that you create at least three layers of lighting to achieve the right balance and visual interest.

table lamp  copper lamp shade   bird desk lamp

The layers of lighting

The three layers of home lighting consist of ambient, task and accent. Ambient lighting is the most basic and comes from natural light sources as well as wall and ceiling fixtures and track lighting.

The second layer is task lighting which is provided by table lamps, desk lights and pendant lamps and which illuminate a specific area of the home.

The final layer is accent lighting which creates the atmosphere of a space as well as highlighting particular features or objects. It can also be used to divert the eye away from something the homeowner may not find attractive in their property, for example a DIY blunder or an antiquated boiler.

Our three favourite trends

The latest top three trends currently dominating the lighting industry all contribute to achieving these required layers and are statement lamps, suspending lighting systems and, of course, LED lighting which continues to dazzle consumers.

Statement lamps

Statement lamps come in all shapes and sizes and bring an instant modern feel to a home. Large installations can be bold and stylish offering a unique and distinctive touch that often becomes a feature in itself. Illumination is usually the secondary purpose to some of these highly sculpted pieces of art.

The warehouse industrial look is still a big winner and even the humble light bulb has undergone its own renaissance and now features as a decorative piece in its own right.

Copper remains a favourite choice of material and most lighting manufacturers are incorporating it into their collections. It’s a versatile metal which complements both modern and traditional interiors.

Suspending lighting

Suspending lighting has become more and more innovative with pendants remaining a popular choice. They are available in a wide variety of materials including wood and metal and one of the latest trends is to mix the finishes so that porcelain shades are matched with aged brass and completed with wooden details.

From minimalist designs to luxurious chandeliers, suspended lights offer a huge variety of design. They can be set singularly or in clusters to create a dramatic effect.

Artisan glass pendants continue to stand out and are particularly useful in providing a direct source of light for a task area whether it be over a desk or dining table.

The candlestick pendant is a new creation that is capturing the market and adding to the choices available.

It’s easy to have fun with suspended lighting as many designers are now using everyday objects for their products including jelly moulds, hats and jars. They’re also pairing the daring designs with a variety of cords ranging from wire to knotted rope which gives a rustic feel as well as the use of repurposed frames giving a shabby chic affect.

Modern LED lights

The technological advances made in LED lighting has made it an exciting option for developers and designers who are seeking to create a modern look.

They are not only energy-efficient but when used cleverly they can add visual interest to any room and they are a particularly popular solution for kitchens and bathrooms.

LED lighting comes in a wide range of formats including slim, energy-efficient fluorescents, miniature track lights and even low voltage linear systems.

Flexible LED tape is the latest addition and is ideal for providing lighting under kitchen cabinets. It’s made up of LED diodes on a clear tape which can be easily installed anywhere in the home.

LED lighting is a practical and affordable solution and its popularity has grown significantly.

Outdoor LED lighting is also on the increase with many consumers choosing to give their gardens an immediate uplift with additional lighting solutions.

With so many innovative options available, lighting solutions have become a major part of home décor and with some careful thought about design it can make a real difference to any space.

21st October 2015

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