Did you know there are many different styles and configurations of home lighting that are used to accomplish different ends? Consider task, mood, and accent lighting.
Task lighting - either in the form of overhead lighting or a bright LED floor lamp for a living room - provides ambient light by which you can read, work, or perform other “tasks.”
Accent lighting is specifically reserved for calling attention to, or “accenting” different elements of your home design, such as decorative fixtures.
Then you have mood lighting, which is used to help set the atmosphere of an indoor setting, establishing a spirit of “place.”
Here are some ways to create effective mood lighting, effortlessly.
Skip the Overhead Lighting
Overhead lighting is great for task lighting, but it generally tends to minimize shadows and “fill” a space with light.
Typically, you want mood lighting to throw long shadows and emphasize the contrast between light and dark spaces.
Also, overhead lighting tends to use high-wattage bulbs, which are just too bright. Gentler is better with mood lighting.
Use Multiple Light Sources
Creating an interplay between light and dark areas is easiest to accomplish when you use more than one point of light.
For instance, if you get an LED floor lamp for your living room, consider getting a pair. Or, instead, you can use a floor lamp and table lamp combo.
You can also hang string lights or mount them to the walls around the molding. Edison bulb string lights are effective at setting a warm, almost industrial mood that feels comfortable and inviting.
Use Warm Color Temperature Light Bulbs
Unless you’re trying to make the interior of your home feel like a clinic, skip the cool, white bulbs. They may be great for wide-area illumination, but they feel stark, cold, and uninviting.
The majority of the time, the warmer the color temperature, the better. Warm color temperature is easier on the eyes, feels more welcoming and cozier, and is reminiscent of firelight.
An easy thing you can do is, whenever you find a lamp that comes with a cool white LED, just swap out the bulb. Filament lamps are cheap and great for setting the mood, not to mention that many of them are compatible with dimmer switches.
Dimmers for the Win
If you have a lamp with a high-wattage bulb that’s just too bright, consider installing a dimmer switch into the circuit.
If you have a lamp for your living room that you truly love and don’t want to part with, just get a dimmer switch. You can get one easily online for like $10 and the lamp will typically plug right into it.
Or, better yet, just buy a lamp that has a dimmer switch installed in its design in the first place! The use of a dimmer can allow one light source to be used for two purposes - task lighting, at full brightness, and mood lighting, when dimmed.
Light Hack: Throw Some Candles in the Mix
Another great way to create mood lighting is to supplement your electric light source with natural light sources: namely, candles.
Candle flames have a naturally warm color temperature and very low lumen output (a candle flame typically throws about 10 lumens) which is great for mood lighting.
Plus, candle flames, especially those of jar candles, tend to flicker and dance, throwing long shadows over an interior - also perfect for mood lighting.
As if that weren’t good enough, candles can physically warm a room and often throw a pleasant scent. You can kill several birds with one stone on that one, no need to thank us.
Now Get to It!
Armed with these tips for how to create better mood lighting, mull them over before you buy that next LED floor lamp for your living room. The power to create a cozier setting is yours!