Lighting is an intimidating aspect to building or renovating a home, and it is crucial to go into the process with a well thought-out and concise plan. Before we jump into the seven steps to consider when lighting your home, it is important to first start the process by asking yourself questions relating to the function of the room or space that you’re trying to light up.
- Does your living area double as a study or a work space or is it mainly used for watching TV?
- Is there artwork you want to highlight with accent lighting?
- What time of day is your space mostly used and is there natural light?
These are all questions you must first ask yourself before starting your lighting plan! Once you have nailed down the function of the room, you can then start following these seven steps that will make the lighting process go from stressful to stress-free.
Step 1: Draft Your Floor Plan
Begin by measuring your room, rescaling in size when drawing the interior on graph paper.
Please Note: Use a scale of 1/4” = 1 foot. This means that every 1/4 inch of your floor plan counts for 1 foot in reality.
Step 2: Mark Fixed Furnishings and Objects
Once you have sketched your floor plan to the correct scale, it is time to make note of fixed furnishings and objects in your space that cannot be moved easily such as fireplaces, doors, windows, etc and draw these on your plan.
Step 3: Draw your Furniture
After adding the fixed furnishings to your floor plan, it is now time to draw the furniture that you are planning to place in your room. We recommend sketching the size and shape of the furniture as best as possible to make your floor plan as realistic and easy to visualize.
Step 4: Note the Room’s Functions
Take note of all the possible functions of the room and add them into your plan. Whether the function is watching TV, reading, studying, exercising, etc., adding arrows to represent what direction you will be facing in the room during each activity can help identify the placement of light fixtures.
Step 5: Choose Locations for Light Sources
Mark your plan in places where you want to bring in light to steer clear of any dark spots. Try to avoid the overlapping of fixtures and make sure light is spread evenly throughout the room.
Step 6: Sockets and Circuits
Take time to think about where you would like to have light switches placed in your space. Think about the entry and exit points and where the most convenient placement would be, no matter the time of day or situation. If you are up in the middle of the night, you don’t want to be in the dark feeling around for a switch! If you are renovating a home, it is important to take note of all existing sockets in your space beforehand to avoid a dangerous overloading of plugs.
Please Note: Consider adding dimmer switches. The ability to adjust the mood and atmosphere is easy and very practical, transforming interiors for all occasions.
Step 7: Recessed Lighting
If you want to achieve a clean, bright, and evenly lit projection throughout your space, then adding recessed lighting to your plan is the way to go. Recessed lighting increases the amount of light in a room, helping the space feel larger! This type of lighting is most commonly used in open plan living areas.
To determine how far apart to space your recessed lights, divide the height of the ceiling by two. For example, if a room has a 12ft. ceiling, you should space your recessed lights approximately 6ft. apart. You should also make sure to place recessed lights at least 3ft. away from walls to avoid dark shadows in corners.
We hope these seven steps make your life a little easier when creating a lighting plan. For further assistance, please call our
Murrells Inlet location at 843-357-1700 or our Mount Pleasant location at 843-571-2446 as we are happy to help with all your lighting needs!
Good luck and happy lighting!