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Interior Design Uncategorized

Power on! Statement lighting

The textured metallic bowl of the Rodan from Crate and Barrel, glows from within its antique gold interior. crateandbarrel.com

It can be tricky business selecting the right light fixture for a room. Thousands of options make the process overwhelming. A plethora of styles and sizes in various metals, fabrics, bulb counts and glass—tinted, etched, frosted or clear—make you second guess yourself, sometimes even after the purchase has been made.

Is the one from the big box store good enough, or should you splurge on the special order creation that caught your eye?

While many of us would lean toward playing it safe, it appears that those who have the courage to power things up and make a statement with lighting are setting the stage for a show-stopping look. Like a great piece of art, a standout fixture can really draw the eye and set off a space.

We’ve collected some striking entries from past issues of Housetrends, as well as some of our favorite manufacturers. We hope they’ll help you narrow down the field when you are selecting your own finishing touch. And if you are hankering for even more choices, go to housetrends.com and search: statement lighting.

The Bubble fixture from PLC Lighting can be customized by adding or removing bubbles to fit the desired length. plclighting.com
This Urchin fixture by Varaluz is inspired by the simple, geometric-shape of sea urchins with their telltale barbs. varaluz.com
A three-light pendant with hand-applied gold and silver layered leaf finish and graceful glass beads surround a classic frame in the Chanelle. progress.lightingnewyork.com
This Larmes pendant features row upon row of clear oversized teardrops, mounted on an extended polished chrome base. et2lightinglights.com
This Laurelhurst light features a streamlined metal cage for a classic yet updated industrial-inspired design. rejuvenation.com
This Big Bang suspension lamp by Foscarini is an explosion of criss-crossing forms which create an architecture of surfaces, lights and shadows. foscarini.com
Vertigo, by Corbett Lighting, is an intertwining collage of circular handcrafted rings fused together to create a contemporary look. corbettlighting.hvlgroup.com
Custom designed chandeliers add a perfectly Tudor touch to this Columbus kitchen. bernard-electric.com
Stacked wood veneer strips form a billowy, cloud-like structure in Link from LZF Lamps. lzf-lamps.com
The Shayla collection by Kichler features cut crystals suspended on a polished chain bringing subtle sparkle to a space. kichler.com
This spectacular Glistening Landscape chandelier, from John-Richard, was inspired by Japanese white Wisteria. johnrichard.com

 

Posted by Karen Bradner on housetrends

Categories
Interior Design

How to Brighten a Dark Home

Dreading the end of Daylight Saving Time? Trick your way into a brighter space — even when the natural light prospects are dim.

Whether you live in a large home with a dark interior or a small apartment with only one window, follow these tips to bring in more sunshine — or at least make it look that way.

Paint it light and bright

Colors and values are nothing more than the light that reaches our eyes after bouncing off objects.

The amazing thing about white is that it reflects most of the light that hits its surface, creating the illusion of light. Case in point: that glowing ball in the sky we call the moon.

Paint colors that are saturated yet light in value create a similar effect, while lending their own distinctive personalities to a space.

Keep the contrast

A kitchen with white cabinets, countertops, walls and backsplashes is about as bright as it gets, yet the lack of variety can leave the overall effect a bit dull.

To keep things interesting, introduce contrast. Choose accessories, cookware and decorations in your favorite color, or even decide on an entire palette.

Sneak in some style and personality with a colorful mosaic backsplash, or add drama to the scene with dark furniture, picture frames or patterns.

Strategically place mirrors

Mirrors cannot make a room look brighter on their own, though there is some truth to the mirror myth, since they’re excellent at reflecting natural light in rooms that already receive it.

Don’t expect to get the same effect in dim hallways and bathrooms, though, since it does no good to duplicate a dim view. So, go ahead — replace those huge panels of mirrored glass in your bathroom with more attractive framed mirrors. You won’t miss out after all.

Install new windows

Yes, installing an entire window or two is the nuclear option, but if your home is so dim that you’re forced to keep the lights on all day, then it could be taking a toll on your utility bills — or even your mental well-being!

This isn’t a decision to take lightly (no pun intended), so talk to a contractor to discuss options and pricing before you break out that sledgehammer. You might be better off installing a skylight or light tubes.

Eliminate glare

Sometimes the problem isn’t the amount of light, but rather the quality. Overhead lights can brighten up a room, but the effect is harsh as high-noon sunlight.

Instead, you want the diffuse, indirect light of early morning. Place lights near the walls, and place LED strips under cabinets to cover the wall in a soft glow. Be sure to include task lighting wherever it’s needed most, such as the home office or wherever you need to read and work.

Rethink window treatments

If your curtains cover up too much of the window, replace them with something less obstructive. Sheer and semisheer window treatments let in plenty of light, without sacrificing privacy during the day.

If you’re tired of pulling up the Venetian blinds or plantation shutters every day, replace them with blackout window treatments you can open all the way during the day and close at night.

Brighten the view outside

Maybe you’re too busy focusing on the indoors to see the forest for the trees. But all those trees and overgrown foundation shrubs can block natural light from reaching the house, so cut those bushes and trim those tree limbs. If necessary, call an arborist.

Also, use plants with variegated or silver leaves in your landscape to reflect light indoors, and consider renovating your patio and paving it with something brighter.

 

Replace doors

Doors present a great opportunity to let in more light, improve the view from inside and make the entry more welcoming.

Since your front door is a reflection of your home’s personality, as well as your own, pick a style that’s appropriate to the architecture. If you’re concerned about privacy, choose one with stained glass or small windows at the top. Even a small amount of natural light will make a huge difference.

Clean windows

It ought to be obvious, but when was the last time you cleaned all your home’s windows, both inside and out?

To avoid streaks on outdoor surfaces, don’t bother with the window cleaner and paper towels. Wash the windows with a sponge and mildly soapy water (dish soap will do), wipe dry with a squeegee, and finish them off with a soft chamois.

 

Posted by Steve Asbell on Zillow