How to illuminate the living room

Published: Friday 12 February 2021-
The living room, unlike all other rooms in the house, hosts a wide range of activities, unique to each person. It could be the place where we entertain our friends and family, stretch out on the sofa to rest, read a good book, binge on our favourite programmes or even have the occasional snack.
This multi-use space needs carefully designed lighting for everyday life. The lights should highlight the family photos and artwork on the walls, be functional when the children are doing their homework, and be subdued when tiredness demands it.
What to consider when lighting the living room
The first and most important step in lighting a living room is to understand how you use the space. From reading to relaxing, the lighting needs to be set up along a precise path: what's going on in your living room? Televisions, for example, emit their own light, so it's important that your lighting doesn't conflict with this and doesn't disturb the view. Polarised lighting is a clever way to avoid glare on the TV screen and reduce eyestrain caused by long exposure to TV screens in dark rooms: it involves placing lighting behind a TV to increase visibility around the screen, without aiming it directly into the viewer's eyes.
When it comes to reading lights, desk or floor lamps are the best option: their bright, focused light reduces eye fatigue by highlighting the words on the page rather than the space around you. If you're looking for a more versatile option, consider a floor lamp that swivels.
If you're building a living room from scratch, bear in mind that adjustable recessed lighting offers a variety of interesting solutions. Whereas, on walls, wall lights are lovely and create a wonderful atmosphere. Do you need to create a corner where lighting will highlight a design piece? Consider spotlights, uplights or recessed lights in the floor.
For all other corners that are a bit shady, the advice is to add floor and table lamps, together with recessed downlights for complete lighting. Lamps offer special lighting spaces, create an intimate and relaxed social atmosphere. And they know how to awaken emotions.

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