When decorating or renovating, don’t forget one of the most important aspects of every home!
There are some things during a renovation that get little or no attention. We often talk about decor and design but one of the most important items is regularly left off of the homeowner’s “To Do” list.
While designing our home it was our architect that filled in all of the details. While building the home it was our contractor. I, of course, selected everything from kitchen cabinets and floor stain to paint colours and appliances. But one of the key aspects of every room in the house was hardly ever discussed.
Our home is open concept so we built in a lot of interconnecting pot lights but until we started asking questions about how many lights and the location we hadn’t put much thought into them at all. Our home had been very dark before the renovation; classic wood paneling (even on some of the walls), hard wood floors, and every room was closed in with 4 walls. Being on the north side of the street we didn’t get a lot of natural sun light either. Therefore, when we planned our home we considered which walls would get removed (most) and built huge windows into the design. But we still put little thought into the interior lighting.
It wasn’t until I began talking to my client at Philips about lighting that I realized we had some decisions to make. We talked about how the lighting in each room will be used. In the kitchen? Functional with the option to dim. With an open concept home you don’t want the bright lights from your kitchen ruining your dinner party vibe. In the family room? Lots of light to provide options but the ability to select what was on, off or dimmed depending on what we were doing. A bright light on the TV when your trying to kick back and watch your favourite show can be distracting. I also wanted to create a feature light in the dining room. Something fun that stood out in our very minimalistic design. Plus, certain walls in the house will feature art. Whether it be something unique or a family photo, we wanted to be able to highlight the piece using lighting.
Once those decisions were made we were faced with about a zillion choices of light bulbs. WOW. Who knew there were so many varying options to illuminate a room?! Being environmentally conscious was definitely a priority with the new house. In addition, changing pot lights can be a huge hassle so we didn’t want to have to do that on a regular basis. What really surprised me was the massive difference in performance and price between different bulbs. With a little education we came to see why. The bulbs we ended up with, the Philips LED MR16 are a premium option for a reason. Not only do they save 80% on energy bills over regular bulbs but they last for – wait for it – nearly 23 years or 25,000 hours of use! SOLD.
With a little bit of forethought and education we were able to select the amount, location and bulb type for our lights to make sure we took advantage of the time and money we put into the design and decor. Without good lighting all of that work wouldn’t be able to shine through. What I have learned from this reno is that sometimes the “wow” factor is in the details and lighting should always be an important part of your planning.
This post is sponsored by Philips. All experiences and opinions are my own.
are those dimmable? we’ve blown so many fluorescents and halogens because of our dimmer switches.
Jen Maier, urbanmoms says
Yup. All dimmable!
Grumble Girl says
Oh, lighting can be totally tricky too… the shade of light that gets cast can change everything about a room. Your place looks amazing!!