Does Your Lighting Do Anything For You?

Three design elements to consider when lighting a room.
By Megan McClelland

The Junsei House

Silent yet powerful, lighting filters our living spaces and how we relate to them in our day to day lives. It affects what we see and feel, which ultimately influences our mindset and moods whether we are consciously aware of it or not. That’s why it’s critical to cultivate the ambiance we desire in our living spaces - not just with furniture design or wall coloring. Luckily, there are plenty of options to explore while finding optimal lighting, whether we’re looking for general lighting, specific lighting, accent lighting, or a combination of the three. To start with the basics of creating optimal lighting in your living space, we’re going to look at the three foundational elements of lighting design layouts, as each of the factors affects the other.

Directional lighting

1. Natural vs. Artificial Lighting

Natural light is something we take for granted, as it’s always in the background of our lives. However, it plays a crucial role in lighting our rooms and is often considered to be the most desirable light for its warmth, tones, and movement throughout the spaces it is cast. Options for implementing natural light into your room include skylights, windows, glass sliding doors, and glass walls. Depending on where the room is situated in the house, you might need to tint the windows or put a physical barrier between you and them to protect yourself from harsh sun rays at points of the day. Keeping the windows sparkling clean to let in as much light as possible throughout the day is key to having natural light. 

And in the evening, use artificial lighting to keep the room well lit, adding a dimming tool to adjust how high you want the brightness. If your room is large, consider adding multiple lights to your ceiling instead of one. And if you can’t let natural light into your room, then explore faux natural lighting bulbs at specific retailers - the choice is up to you.

noguchi light fixture

2. Directional Lighting

Lighting fixtures can help you achieve numerosity of goals within your house. Whether you’re looking to create a focal point in your room with a low-hanging lamp, highlight the significance of a particular piece of artwork with sconces, or manipulate the room’s hues with the coloring of a lampshade. Directional lighting can help you set the mood of a room by casting tonal changes around furniture with glowing or neon lights as well as dimmers.

Adding candles to your room, at a safe distance from anything flammable, is a simple way to cultivate an ambiance that is warm and soothing. You can also signify the function of a room or area with the types of lights you use. For example, putting an oversized chandelier in an entryway as a grand greeting to your guests or a mushroom lamp on a writing desk to pull focus toward what the work your light is cast.

low hanging lamps

3. Sculptural Lighting 

Not only is your lighting capable of highlighting artwork within your household, but it can function as the artwork too. Using sculptural lighting is a great way to achieve this goal, as lighting fixtures come in all shapes and sizes. Opting for oversized ceiling lights or pairs of uniquely shaped scones can add an element of playfulness and originality to your room, in addition to the color it casts throughout it. You can also gear your focus to the lighting fixture’s actual coloring, as it can be used as an unexpected pop of color in your living space.


mushroom lamps

If you like the idea of sculptural lighting, but don’t know where to begin, then start small with Interia Hysteria’s mushroom lamps. And don’t be afraid to mix in different lighting types into one room, as the layering effect can create an intriguing visual element to the space that resembles a gallery.

Whichever way you want to style your rooms, be sure to consider how you’re going to incorporate lighting design into them. Your lighting layout is the foundational element and filter for your living spaces that act as a key to achieving your desired ambiance. For more inspiration on lighting, explore @interiahysteria_ on Instagram, and discover the Mini Mushroom Lamp in homeware.