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The Look for Your Home: Lighting from Standard to Statement

Dec 28, 2017 09:00AM ● By Becca Newell

Photography by Erica George Dines, Styling by Thea Beasley, Courtesy of Currey & Company

By Becca Newell

From practical to decorative, lighting is an important element of interior (and exterior!) design. Whether your goal is to create a focal point with a statement chandelier or add interest to a space with an accent floor lamp, lighting enhances the functionality of a room while simultaneously shaping its aesthetics. And these four lighting trends will undoubtedly improve even the brightest room in your home!

Types of Lighting

A good lighting plan incorporates the three main types of lighting into one space, according to the American Lighting Association.

Photography by Erica George Dines, Styling by Thea Beasley, Courtesy of Currey & Company


General Lighting

This provides the fundamental illumination in a room. The key is to have general lighting, also known as ambient lighting, located from a central source, like a ceiling fixture or track lights.

Task Lighting

This illuminates a specified area of a room, usually for a particular purpose—for example, a table lamp is often used for reading. Also known as work lighting, it’s typically brighter than ambient lighting.

Accent Lighting

Often known as highlighting, this emphasizes a piece of décor within a room, like a painting, or accents an exterior element, like window treatments. It is also used for design purposes to create visual interest within an interior or façade. Halogen lightbulbs are most frequently recommended for this type of lighting.

1. Soft Gold

Photo courtesy of Lucas + McKearn
Forget shiny metallic and opt for a softer finish that’s just as luxe as its brassier counterpart. From lighting fixtures that are covered in the subtle sheen to those with abstract accents, this subdued metal hue makes for an eye-catching accessory.

2. Edison Bulbs

Photo courtesy of Adesso
Having made a major comeback over the last few years, these retro lightbulbs are particularly prominent in industrial and modern lighting. They emit a warm glow suitable for accent lighting, specifically fixtures that appropriately display their intricate filament.

3. Mid-Century Modern

Photography by Erica George Dines, Styling by Thea Beasley, Courtesy of Currey & Company
Unique design and functional form are equally important in Mid-Century Modern—and, similarly, Contemporary—lighting designs. With clean lines and minimalist shapes, these striking fixtures make for the perfect ceiling centerpiece.

4. Industrial

Photo courtesy of A.R.T. Furniture
Whether it’s a rounded shade pendant or a geometric cage chandelier, Industrial lighting has a heavy metal emphasis that makes it rugged and understated—yet, surprisingly elegant. A perfect fit for those modern-farmhouse inspired interiors!