WHEELING - Changing the lighting in a room can make a dramatic difference in an area's ambience and mood, which is why installing new lighting is an interesting, and sometimes, unexpected way to update the home for spring.
Barb Smith, lighting consultant at Cardello Electric Supply and Lighting in Wheeling, said the first thing to consider when updating the lighting in a room is the size of the area as well as the ceiling length. Smith said homeowners should keep in mind their personal style and how they use an area to determine the best way to light it.
"When people are looking for new lighting, we try to find out what areas they need the lighting for, what would be the best application and what they like for size and style," Smith said. "We try to blend their styles with functionality."
Lighting tastes can range from the extreme modern to the classic beauty of a chandelier. Taste and prices run the gamut for customers seeking to spruce up their homes with new lighting.
Photos by Sarah Harmon
Smith said it may be time for a lighting update if a certain fixture has been in place for many years or a room has too little light to cover the area.
To keep the project from being too overwhelming, a person can focus on just updating one area in the house for an easy spring makeover.
One way homeowners can update a room with little hassle is by looking at indirect and accent lighting to feature interesting areas in their homes.
Homeowners could try placing sconces or picture lights to feature beautiful art or meaningful decorations on the wall.
Another suggestion is to install accent lights in a glass cabinet to showcase a collection of plates or other knicknacks.
Smith said homeowners with new kitchens and bathrooms may have the most fun using indirect lighting underneath or on top of cabinets that shine on the ceiling to give the room an open feeling.
Landscape lighting also is an unexpected way to update a home's look.
Homeowners may try to coordinate the look of the lighting of the interior with the exterior of the house and many companies offer both indoor and outdoor fixtures in the same styles. Outdoor options include adding wall mounts on the exterior wall, deck and patio lights, chandeliers, path lights, coach-style lights, post lights and spotlights pointing to the house.
Smith said the most significant upgrades currently on the market are energy efficient lighting including CFLs or LED lighting for customers who like to go green.
She expects in the future, energy efficient lighting will dominate the market.
"There are so many styles out there and there's something for everybody," Smith said.
"If people are updating, they want something new and the styles change several times a year.
"There are lighting shows two times a year and almost all manufacturers will offer new merchandise. It's always changing, just like fashion."