SarahBeenySpringIssue2017 - 125
ROOM BY ROOM
WORDS: OLIVER BRAMLEY, IMAGES: GETTY IMAGES
There are many benefits to
LED bulbs. To start with,
they're highly efficient.
In conventional light bulbs,
only around 20% of the
electric current is used for
production of light. The rest
is wasted as heat.
LEDs use 80-90% of the
energy produced for light.
This means reduced energy
consumption and cheaper
bills and, most importantly,
a reduced carbon footprint
that, in these days of global
warming and climate change,
is better for the environment.
LED bulbs also last longer.
Their lifespan of about 50,000
hours is 50 times more than
This equates to about 10
years - and they're well-built
and not prone to breaking.
Finally, they're available in
a variety of colours including
white, blue, yellow, orange,
amber and red, all of which
can really enhance your décor.
Some homes seem dark inside, even
in broad daylight, due to the lack of
windows facing outdoors. While it may
not be practical to add more windows,
you can always increase the amount of
sunlight you have indoors by the clever
placement of mirrors.
One of the most direct ways to use
mirrors to increase sunlight in a room
is to place them on walls opposite the
window. If there is no wall directly
opposite, place a mirror on an adjacent
wall far enough away that you can see
the window reflected in the glass.
If there are areas which seem extremely
dark during the day, place a mirror at an
angle to a nearby window so the light
bounces into the darker area. A movable
mirror, like the tall mirrors on stands seen
in dressing areas, is suitable for this.
You can also buy mirrors with inbuilt
lights, either bulbs around the frame, as
seen in a Hollywood star's dressing room,
or an LED frame, some as thin as 30mm.
You can even get them with shaver power
sockets and in a variety of light colours,
which can give an atmospheric glow if
fixed over, for example, a wash basin.
HALLWAY This busy area needs to be both
well-lit and welcoming. A combination of wall
and ceiling lights works well, with wall lights
illuminating a dark corridor and showing the
way to the stairs.
LIVING ROOM A mix of ambient, task and
accent lighting is ideal, as living rooms serve
many purposes. Try different bulbs and fit
dimmer switches so you can lower the light
when required, to create a more relaxing space.
BEDROOM This is one zone where you
can go to town - there are even bedheads
with integral lighting. But bear in mind the
bedroom is a place for relaxation and sleep,
so avoid too much glare. Instead, go for layers
of light, highlighting alcoves, backlighting
sandblasted glass wardrobes or washing light
on to a feature wall away from the bed.
You need focused task lighting at a dressing
table, so ensure this is on a separate switch. A
dimmer switch is crucial for mood lighting.
BATHROOM You need two kinds of lighting
here: bright focused light near mirrors and a
gentle, relaxed light for bathing. Fibre optics
are practical and safe around water and can
look striking sunk into flooring. Safety is the
primary issue - all electric fittings need to
be double insulated and encased with light
switches outside or on a pull cord.
KITCHEN You need bright light, especially
around work surfaces, sinks, ovens and hobs.
Build in as many integral lights as possible,
into cooker hoods and under wall cupboard
units for example. Mini-fluorescent strips
don't get hot and send a diffuse, warm glow
on to surfaces below, but make sure it's below
eye level to avoid glare.
www.athomemagazine.co.uk MAY 2017 | 125