Lighting is such an important part of how you experience a space. Yet, we find that many of our clients aren’t sure how to choose the best lighting solutions, especially in challenging spaces. At Grace Thomas Designs, we approach lighting just like we do everything else, by concentrating on both form and function. We want the lighting to not only express your style, but also to accomplish your goals. Creating fabulous and functional lighting solutions is one of our favorite jobs!
Make it Fun
We always say that lighting is the jewelry for your room. It’s a great way to add a little bling, even if you’re more conservative in your style. Your room’s lighting can be quite decorative, but still functional, so that you can actually see while in the space.
Make it Functional
We start every “light” conversation by asking you what you need the room to do, and what you need the light to do. What is the function and use of the light? Do you need reading/task lighting? Are you more interested in creating a specific ambience? Or, is the lighting more of a statement fixture that won’t really be used? As we age, we also need more lighting at night. Are there older people in your home? Taking your answers to these types of questions into account, we then search for the perfect solution that will fit your needs and enhance your design.
When Lighting can Make or Break your Design
When selecting lighting fixtures, it’s hugely important to consider the scale. We see lighting solutions that are off scale all the time. There is a formula for picking out the right lighting size, but if you’re not experienced in design principles, it’s easy to get it wrong.
The way you hang your lighting is also a critical design element. The height of chandeliers and placement of lights has such a big impact, but it is often not done properly. That’s when using a professional to help you select and hang your lighting can be extremely valuable.
Just Say NO to Matchy Matchy
We hear from clients all the time that they think everything has to match. For instance, the lighting should match their furniture or wall coverings. If they have silver in their wallpaper, they worry that they then need silver hardware on that room’s lighting fixture. Or, if they have brass pulls on the cabinets, they wonder if they should also choose brass lighting fixtures. We don’t believe that everything needs to match. In fact, we love to mix metals and other materials and have fun. Lighting can really make a space visually interesting. You can also mix fixtures with recessed lighting to create a lot of light, but still have a focal point. And, even if you have an open floor plan, all the rooms still don’t need to match!
Fabulous and Functional Lighting Solutions
We recently completed a homework room project for a busy professional couple with four children. We selected a rustic chic style to coordinate with the rest of the home but designed this space specifically with the children in mind. The centerpiece of the room is a large “homework” table we had custom built for them out of wood reclaimed from barns on local farms. The children need a lot of light to do their school work at this beautiful table, but the room never gets enough natural light. The challenge was in finding a lighting solution that created a lot of light, yet maintained the rustic chic style of the room. Our solution? First, we installed a large reclaimed wood-look chandelier with vintage bulbs centered over the custom table. Then, we added recessed lights around the perimeter of the room. The size and look of the central lighting fixture draws you in and helps consolidate the design, while the recessed lights provide ample brightness.
A premier lighting company, Feiss, has featured some of our design work on their website. These projects were beautifully captured for us by our partners at David Meaux Photography. See how we solved a lighting challenge in this home office and this client’s basement Irish pub.
For more information on how Grace Thomas Designs can help you tackle your lighting challenges, visit us online today!