10 Ways to Use Lighting to Create a More Inviting Living Room

Lighting is the key to creating a functional, inviting, and cozy living space. Here are ten ways to do it.

Living rooms are the focal point of Colorado homes. It’s where we relax after a long workday, and where families gather to watch movies and entertain friends. That’s why it’s essential to create an inviting and comfortable living room!

 

Not to mention that a cozy living room enhances the richness and quality of daily life, making you and your family feel happier and safer as you rest and unwind in your sanctuary. 

 

We encourage customers to use lighting in ways to create inspiring and comfortable homes, homes that fulfill your vision of what’s beautiful. Because, adding personality, style, and function to your living room with layers of elegant lighting enhances your experience of home and improves your quality of life. 

 

Here are ten ways to use lighting to make your living room more inviting and serene. 

1. Create a feeling of warmth with ambient lighting.

 

Ambient lighting ricochets indirect light off the ceiling, giving your living room subtle warmth that makes people feel comfortable and relaxed. 

 

There are different ways to create ambient light in your living room. You can install cove lighting or a cantilever detail with LED lighting inconspicuously tucked inside, or, you can place linear LED lighting atop lofty furniture pieces, like bookcases or cabinets. Many designers also install wall sconces to project upward light to achieve a comforting, warm, inviting, and serene living room.

2. Set the mood with three levels of lighting: high, medium, and low.

 

It’s essential to have three levels of lighting: high, particularly if your living room has unique materials like plaster or wood, or if the ceiling is vaulted; medium, which includes wall lighting; and low, including floor and table lamps. 

 

We like to use living room up-lights to create an overall glow that acts as mood lighting. Our team also often uses recessed lights to illuminate table surfaces, art, and fireplaces.

 

In the mid-level area, wall sconces add a jewelry-like effect to living rooms and are your opportunity to introduce another material, like glass, metal, or fabric. 

 

*Pro-tip: designers also frequently use wall-mounted lights in bronze or brass to create a glamorous sparkle.

3. Use table lamps and floor lamps for form and function.

 

Floor lamps and table lamps create layers of illumination around seating areas, like little islands of serene light in your living room. They add form and function to the room, and, from a design perspective, floor lamps and table lamps enhance visual character by allowing you to play with scale, contrast, materials, and color.

4. Create a central focal point with a sculptural pendant lamp or chandelier.

 

Attention-grabbing pendants and chandeliers are a perfect launching point for your comfortable and well-designed living room. Place either fixture style in the center of your space to establish a central focal point from which to design the rest of the room. 

 

Why? Because starting with statement pieces like a chandelier or pendant lamp makes it easy to select the rest of the rooms’ lighting and furnishings. Designers use a similar approach when they pick a statement rug as the foundation of the overall room design.

5. Take control with dimmers.

 

Dimmers are a worthwhile investment. They allow you to set the mood for entertaining and daily life, and you can adjust light levels as day turns to night. If you are using LED’s (and you should), it’s crucial to select dimmers compatible with your selected light sources (don’t worry, we can help). Most lighting manufacturers list compatible dimmers on spec sheets and websites. And with the proliferation of smart technologies, in many instances, you can control light levels with your phone.

6. Get strategic with lamp and fixture placement.

 

You don’t want to blast the top of someone’s head with light, or worse, blind comfortably seated visitors with an errant bulb. Light the coffee table instead of sofas and chairs, and place sconces in areas outside of natural traffic patterns. For example, flanking the fireplace mantel or on walls where people have plenty of room to move around them. 

Also, lighting should trace the perimeter of your living room. Use sconces or a continuous light strip at the ceiling’s edge to trace and anchor the room with inviting illumination.

7. Your living room lighting mantra is texture, scale, color, and shape.

 

Like all things interior design-related, when it comes to living room lighting, you’ll want to play around with texture, color, scale, and shape. 

 

As we mentioned in point four, a large and dramatic pendant lamp or chandelier is the jumping-off point for the rest of the room’s lamps and fixtures. Use a large and dramatic fixture as the foundation for the remaining layers (more on layered lighting below), and play with various sizes, contrasting materials like metal, fabric, wood, and glass, and don’t overlook the importance of color. 

8. It’s all about layers.

 

Layers of light are crucial for creating an inviting, comfortable, and functional living room, and there’s no single lamp or fixture that’s going to give you everything that’s needed to get the job done. The proper layers of ambient, accent, and task lighting brings your room to life.

 

Layered lighting is the key to making your living room more inviting. But getting it right isn’t as easy as placing a lamp in each corner of the room. We could write a book covering the details of layered lighting, but you’d be better of dropping by and working with our expert lighting consultants.

9. Use light to accentuate architectural features and art

 

Framed photos, art, and interesting architectural details add visual character to your living room and make the space uniquely yours. You should accentuate them!

 

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to lighting architectural features and art, but there are a few things to consider. Do you want to illuminate the art or feature directly, or have pieces live in a well-lit room? Whatever route you choose, it’s best to avoid natural light. Direct sunlight exposes paintings and photographs to UV and infrared light and causes them to fade. Position pieces away from sources of bright natural light to avoid damage.

10. More lighting isn’t’ always better.

 

Over-lighting is one of the most common lighting mistakes customers make in their living rooms. People gravitate toward bright spaces like moths to a flame, but in living rooms, where you want family and guests to feel comfortable and at ease, too much light is a mood killer. Be intentional in lighting your living room, and rely on a central chandelier or pendant, a few sconces, and table and floor lamps to illuminate the room.

 

*Pro-tip: a pendant or chandelier in the middle of a room makes a big impression; start with a remarkable fixture to design the living room around.

Colorado homeowners spend hours agonizing over the perfect seating, and days pondering the ideal shade of paint, but often overlook proper lighting. And in a room where you relax, watch television, entertain guests, and read, light serves a crucial purpose in both the style and function of the space. 

 

Whether you realize it or not, lighting is the subtle element that changes your experience of home. The ten tips in this blog will set you on the path to creating a comfortable, beautiful, and serene living room.

Need help in creating a comfortable and inviting living room? Drop by one of our two locations and chat with a lighting specialist.


A Colorado Renter’s Guide to Lighting

Too many people think that great lighting is only for homeowners. Renters also deserve exceptional illumination, and they can have it with our simple guide to light for Colorado renters.

Colorado’s rental market is hot. The rest of the nation finally figured out that Colorado is an excellent place to live, and thousands of people rushed into our state, filling every available apartment and rental home. Fortunately, a decade-long price escalation in Colorado’s rental market leveled off toward the end of 2019. And while today’s rents aren’t exactly cheap, because of expanded apartment construction in city-close areas that were once un-trendy, there are more options and better deals. 

 

“There are some new light-rail stations that make a case for super-easy access to downtown Denver – things that are little cheaper than what you would find in LoDo but are still in up-and-coming areas.” – David Pierce, CoStar Group 

 

Colorado’s explosion of rental properties (and people) brings renter-specific challenges.

The lighting struggle is real for Colorado renters. 

Homeowners can take advantage of every trick in the book when it comes to lighting their homes, but renters run into unique challenges. Rental properties aren’t known for statement lighting, and rental agreements don’t often allow renters to make light fixture changes or put large holes in the walls. This means that renters nearly always get apartments with uninspired and less-than-flattering light, with shadows that make even the well-rested look desperate for a nap. 

 

Renters don’t have to settle for uninspired lighting. You can improve your rental home lighting with our Colorado renter’s guide to illumination.

1. Make the Most of table lamps and floor lamps.

 

Floor and table lamps are the easiest way to transform your space without worrying about losing a security deposit. And since style, color, and shade options are virtually endless, table lamps and floor lamps let you flex your design muscles. 

 

Use a mixture of lamps in contrasting shapes, styles, colors, and materials to add visual appeal and functionality to your space. For example, place a floor lamp on one side of your sofa, and a table lamp on the opposite side (atop an end table), to amplify the functionality, comfort, and visual appeal of your room. For even more impact, we like putting lamps in unexpected places, like a kitchen or bathroom. Don’t be afraid to experiment. 

2. Variety is the spice of life (and lighting).

 

The best living spaces feature a variety of light sources dispersed in a triangular pattern throughout the room and at different heights. We suggest that you use an array of table lamps, floor lamps, and ceiling fixtures to make your room feel more comfortable, eye-catching, and functional. And again, don’t be afraid to experiment! Beautifully designed spaces often use lighting in unexpected ways or exciting shapes and contrasting materials/finishes, to give a room that extra bit of elegance and flair. 

3. Adjust track lighting.

 

Renters often move into a new home or apartment and leave their track lighting positioned as-is. But the easiest thing you can do to improve rental home lighting is to adjust the tracks when you move in. Aim track heads to wash walls with light or illuminate work surfaces like kitchen counters, and don’t blind your family or guests with spots awkwardly directed at seating arrangements.

4. Use adapters.

 

You can convert unattractive track lighting and flush-mount fixtures into hanging pendants that match your style by using adapters. Most of the standard track lighting brands sell easy-to-use pendant adapters for this purpose. Keep in mind, you might have to wire a plug to the end of your pendant’s cord, and in some instances, swag the pendant a few inches (or more) from the track and drop the cable from a plant hook (it’s easier than it sounds). Pendants draw people’s eyes away from the track and to the fixtures themselves, and the best part? When you move out, you can take your pendants with you.

5. Sconces are still an option.

 

Your lease probably doesn’t allow you to hardwire a wall sconce. But, assuming that you can put a few holes in the wall (that you’ll patch later), wall sconces with a standard cord and plug that need no rewiring or drilling, are still an option. If you want to hide the cable, you can use wire mold painted to match your walls, or opt for an industrial look and leave the cord visible. Either way, you’ve taken your lighting from ho-hum to cool.

6. Don’t forget about form and function.

 

Function is crucial when selecting lights for your rental home or apartment, but don’t forget to tie everything together for a seamless look. Your lighting is no different than any other piece of furniture, and you can use different finishes and materials, like glass, wood, metal, or concrete, to tie your fixtures into the overall aesthetic of your rental property.

7. Use the right bulbs.

 

Once you have your rental home or apartment lighting fixtures sorted out, you need to make sure you’ve got the correct light bulbs. Opt for LED lights, and select bulbs with a color temperature of 2700k, to give your home a flattering warm glow (flattering to both your home and your guests).

Start your smart home journey! Visit one of our two convenient metro Denver locations to speak with a smart home lighting specialist.


Easy Smart Home Lighting Tips for Security, Convenience, and Comfort

Innovative smart home lighting keeps your family comfortable and safe.

With each year, home automation systems grow more innovative and affordable. But too many homeowners don’t know that today’s smart home devices can add comfort, convenience, and security to their lifestyles and homes. 

 

Smart home technology not only saves time and energy (both your physical strength and the power of your home), but home automation tools keep you and your loved ones safe and secure. 

 

Turning on all your outdoor lights in the evening isn’t what smart home lighting is about. Intelligent home lighting means using the latest in lighting-specific home automation tools to efficiently illuminate and protect your home and your most valuable asset – your family.  

 

Intelligent and automated lighting is the smart move for convenience and security.

 

Keep reading to learn five ways smart home lighting improves your home security and comfort.

Personal Safety

Smart home lighting prevents theft and also offers significant personal safety benefits. For example, your outdoor lights can automatically illuminate when you arrive home from work, helping you become more aware of your surroundings. And you won’t have to worry about tripping hazards on your path from the car to your door, or running over your kid’s bike left in the driveway.

Porch Pirates Beware

Smart home lighting prevents theft. Your home lighting control system lets you set rules to determine how your lighting functions. You can set a rule to ensure that the porch light not only stays on throughout the evening but that it also brightens as a person nears your front door. Responsive lighting deters trespassers from attempting a break-in or stealing an Amazon package from your front porch.

Convenience

Advancements in lighting technology make your life at home more comfortable. You can use your smartphone to control your smart lighting system while you’re away from home or resting on the sofa. Don’t feel like getting off the couch to adjust the lights before you Netflix and chill? No worries. With smart home lighting, you can set the mood without moving a muscle (aside from your fingers).

Interior Lighting

When it comes to home security, interior lighting is just as important as exterior lighting. When you’re traveling, automated smart home lighting lets you set your home’s lights to activate at specific times throughout the day to make it appear as though someone is always at home. It would be best if you didn’t have to worry about returning to a burglarized home after vacation. The only thing you should concern yourself with on vacation is what to eat. 

 

Also, smart home lighting allows you to control your home’s illumination from a mobile device. If you forgot to set your lighting schedule before leaving for vacation, there’s no need to worry.

Enhanced Intruder Protection

Responsive lighting keeps homeowners aware of potential intruders and is an effective deterrent. Most light and smart home systems include features that allow you to control the level of illumination. And, as we mentioned in point number two of this blog, home lighting automation gives homeowners control over brightness. As an intruder nears your front door, the light grows brighter, and since intruders work under cover of darkness, sufficient illumination makes your home an unattractive target. 

 

Smart home lighting makes managing your home’s light fixtures a snap. It also keeps you and your family safe. And opting for automated outdoor lighting adds to the curb appeal of your home and provides even more protection against unwelcomed intruders. And that’s a win for you and us.

Start your smart home journey! Visit one of our two convenient metro Denver locations to speak with a smart home lighting specialist.


The Elements of Great Lighting, Simplified

People are intimidated by the process of selecting lighting for their homes, but they don’t need to be. Here are some easy ways to simplify things.

Experienced designers know that lighting is an essential ingredient for a well-appointed room and not the afterthought many people consider it. And homeowners tempted to spend their time agonizing over floorplans and furnishings, need to remember that lighting transforms a space – not just by brightening up dark corners but also by setting the mood. 

 

Light is powerful. The right light lifts spirits, inspires tranquility, and influences productivity. In our homes, the light brightens simple moments like our morning routines or the time we spend with family and friends

 

In contrast to many other lighting fixtures, wall sconces are appropriate in nearly every room in your home. From the patio to the bedroom, the entryway to the laundry room, wall-mounted workhorses elevate the style and beauty of a space. 

It’s all about layers.

The consensus among designers (our team included) is that you need multiple light sources in a room. Layered illumination is essential: each room needs a mixture of lighting, including accent, task, and overhead lights. 

 

In the living room, start by hanging a decorative ceiling fixture like a pendant or chandelier near the room’s center. From there, look to the outer edges for downlighting to gently wash walls, art, and window treatments with warm and functional illumination. You can achieve this through valance lighting, soffits, or even floor lamps that bounce light off the ceiling. 

 

And, depending on your room’s layout, accent light can be used to accentuate artwork, with table lamps placed beside seating for an additional layer of light. The goal is to create a contrast between light at the room’s center and the perimeter and brighten the dark spaces in between. The subtle interplay between dark and light creates appeal in your living spaces.

Don’t hold back in the kitchen. 

Forget ambiance; in the kitchen, it’s all about bright light. 

 

Install recessed lights or high-hats along the edge of your kitchen ceiling to flood the space with light. And hang pendants over the island for comfortable illumination that doesn’t take up counter space. You’ll see guests without looking around a hanging fixture as long as you don’t position them too low. 

 

Don’t forget under-cabinet lighting. Run LED light strips beneath your upper cabinets to create an evenly lighted counter space for cooking and food preparation.

Think about the orientation of your room. 

North-facing rooms without direct sunlight require more thought. Spread horizontal light throughout the space by installing recessed fixtures at the perimeter of a north-facing living room with a decorative pendant at the room’s center. From there, use table lamps to illuminate dark corners and wall sconces to highlight the art or architectural features. 

 

Use a similar strategy in dark bedrooms, combining a central hanging pendant or chandelier with subtle up-lights in the room’s corners, bedside lamps for reading, and wall sconces where it makes sense for extra style and illumination.

Get rid of lousy bathroom lighting. 

Too many bathrooms use recessed fixtures over the sink that cast unflattering shadows. Instead, choose wall-mounted sconces to cast even illumination across your face in the mirror. 

 

And create a sense of spa-like luxury and intimacy with a sculptural pendant lamp over the tub. Also, consider using LED strip lighting beneath floating shelves to cast a warm glow over your bathroom floor.

Brighten up the corners. 

It’s easy to use an oversized floor lamp to brighten up an empty and dark corner. The trick, however, is finding a lamp in a finish and material that complements the surrounding space, turning your lonely corner into a polished and intentional part of the overall room design.

Go light on the overheads. 

Excessive overhead lighting generates spots and undesirable shadows – use this style of lighting sparingly. Instead, hang a large chandelier or pendant in common areas, and in the kitchen use globe fixtures for even lighting that leaves countertops open. Try floor lamps and wall sconces in living rooms, and hang a sculptural centerpiece above the table to create functionality and depth in a dining room.

Use ambiance to your advantage. 

A simple way to adjust the light in a room throughout the day is by using a dimmer on each fixture as opposed to replacing wall switches with a dimmer to change every light at once. And in the bedroom, use a bedside light with both a dimmer and movable shade for extra flexibility.

Choose your bulbs wisely. 

For inviting and warm light, choose your bulbs carefully. Stick with a range of 2,700 to 3,000 kelvin, usually advertised as “warm white.” As you approach the upper reaches of the color-temperature range, more blue is introduced, giving your home the harsh look of a warehouse. Use bulbs advertised as “daylight” in utilitarian spaces like your garage. 

 

Click here to shop our assortment of high-quality lighting!


How to Use Wall Sconce Lighting to Beautify Your Home

Add a touch of elegance, romance, beauty, and style to your home with the perfect wall sconce lighting.

There’s nothing like great lighting to spruce up a dull (or dreary) room. Lighting, often overlooked by homeowners and newbie designers, is a defining factor that can make or break your home’s interior. While the ever-popular pendant lamp (we mean no disrespect to pendant lamps – they are popular for a reason) gets most of the attention these days, the oft-overlooked wall sconce offers a delicate balance between form and function and demands very little. 

 

In contrast to many other lighting fixtures, wall sconces are appropriate in nearly every room in your home. From the patio to the bedroom, the entryway to the laundry room, wall-mounted workhorses elevate the style and beauty of a space. 

Here are a few simple tips to help you revitalize the interior of your home with wall sconce lighting.

1. Upgrade the ambiance.

Using layers of illumination in the right way is the secret to perfect lighting. Flooding a space with too much light kills the warm and inviting vibe of a room, and too little light is dull, uninspired, and inefficient. Wall sconces used alongside recessed lights and pendant lamps, provide the perfect balance of luminosity. And wall sconce lighting used as a source of ambient light is ideal for sprawling corridors and high-ceilinged living spaces.  

2. Smart accent lighting. 

Medieval and tiki torches informed the design of the original wall sconces. While modern wall sconce lighting has evolved from its primitive origins, there’s still a hint of their former function in today’s fixtures. Wall sconces used as accent lighting to highlight artwork or architectural features, get the task of accent lighting done with effortless grace and style – not unlike the warm glow of a tiki torch or the lazy flicker of an oil lamp.

3. Easy task lighting. 

Wall sconces do as good a job of providing task light as any other fixture. But the placement has to be spot-on to get the job done right. For example, to create a comfortable reading nook, your wall sconce, and the area you want to be illuminated have to be in alignment to avoid shadows or dullness. Most modern wall sconces have flexible hands that move, making them ideal for task lighting and easing the burden of perfect placement.

4. Save Space. 

Wall sconce lighting maximizes floor space, making them an attractive solution for smaller rooms. Wall sconces simply stay out of the way. While floor or pendant lighting and even bedside table lamps take up a lot of space, wall-mounted lighting frees-up room for other tasks. It’s easy to understand why wall sconce lighting is a popular solution in the bedroom, but wall lighting also works in home offices where they help to keep your desktop free from clutter, leaving you to do your best work.

5. There are many shapes, sizes, and styles from which to choose. 

There’s no shortage of options when it comes to wall sconce lighting. The shapes, sizes, and styles are endless, ranging from mid-century and contemporary to traditional and unconventional. Before you make a purchase, however, you must consider the size, style (of course), and placement of the sconce. While larger wall sconces are great for accent lighting, task and ambient applications require more simple and focused illumination. 

6. Shadowplay. 

When it comes to wall sconce lighting, shadows make as much of a difference as the quality of light and the style of the fixture. Make sure the direction of light and pattern is appropriate for the application in your space. Many sconces offer exciting and dramatic shapes and shadows that have an exaggerated impact on the overall appearance and feel of the room.

7. Make an entrance. 

There are a handful of places in your home that could benefit from a wall sconce as a strictly decorative feature. An entryway is one of them. Most homes with a dedicated entryway also have a good primary light source nearby. Adding a wall sconce to one of the entryway walls creates a warm entry and is a perfect way to welcome guests into your home.

Wall sconce lighting is a versatile solution for every home. 

Three primary lighting styles work in concert to create balance and functionality in a room: task, ambient, and accent. Depending on where they are placed, wall sconce lighting can fit into all three categories. Visit one of our two convenient metro Denver showrooms to learn more about how these versatile fixtures can make your home sparkle! 

 

Get in touch with the experts at Galleria Lighting and beautify your space with wall sconce lighting.


The Top 10 Lighting Trends for 2020

Great lighting is always in style, but every year there are new trends worth exploring. Here are our picks for the top ten lighting trends of 2020. 

 

The world of lighting, much like the world of home furnishings, is ever-changing. There are classics, of course – lighting staples that transcend trends, like your favorite mid-century modern floor lamp, or a vintage table lamp that adds an eclectic touch to your transitional interior. And there are yearly trends, some with longevity. 

 

We hesitate to jump on fads, but each year, there are a handful of trends worth knowing. These are our top 10 lighting trends for 2020. 

 

Architectural Floor Lamps

Floor lamps are excellent for providing subtle accent light or extra illumination to a dim room. Architectural floor lamps with tripod legs, or an unexpected angle, grew in popularity this year, and we expect demand to increase in 2020. Architectural floor lamps command attention and enhance the style of every room, and since lighting is becoming more decorative, architectural fixtures and lamps can be the statement pieces in your room’s overall design.

Natural Materials

Natural materials like grasses, wood, burlap, glass, and metal are already common in lighting and interior design, and we predict that the popularity is going to grow next year. Lamps made with natural materials that include straight lines or geometric forms signify a return to nature, and work well with different design styles, from contemporary to traditional (for a surprising contrast). 

 

Geometric Designs

Geometric shapes give your lighting a casual and architectural feel, making these fixtures a great candidate for any room – especially the kitchen. You’re going to see more and more geometric shapes in the form of pendants and chandeliers throughout 2020. Mark our words. 

 

Brass or Gold Fixtures

Brass and gold fixtures are another 2020 lighting and design trend. Experts predict that brass and gold are the color of choice for accessories and lighting next year, and we’d have to agree. The trend picked up steam this year, and there are no signs that the design world’s gold fixation is going to end any time soon. Unlacquered brass and gold fixtures that age and patina over time are going to be particularly popular next year.  

 

Matte Black

Black is a favorite neutral for interior designers. It’s edgy, chic, and works with nearly every palette. It is for this reason that we think black, specifically matte black, is going to have a moment in 2020. Matte black lighting is luxurious, natural, and bold, and blends seamlessly with modern color schemes, or gives a dramatic contrast with white and grey Scandinavian-inspired interiors.

 

Clear Glass Pendants

Clear glass pendant lamps are a beautiful mash-up of industrial and rustic design— perfect for eclectic and mountain-inspired Colorado homes. We predict that next year, you’ll see a trend of clear glass pendants hung in clusters, and at different heights, with clean silhouettes and exposed Edison-style bulbs for a sophisticated look. 

 

Refined Industrial

We’ve noticed the influence of urban loft-inspired industrial lighting grow over the last decade. And while we still enjoy classic industrial lighting, tastes are shifting to a more refined industrial style. Lighting with industrial materials and shapes, but finished in brass (remember brass and gold are having a moment in 2020), matte black (another 2020 trend), or polished chrome are steadily gaining popularity, particularly in kitchen and dining room lighting fixtures. 

 

Wall Sconces

Wall sconces are an excellent choice for accent lighting. We hesitate to call them trendy, but the popularity of this fixture type is going to increase next year. Why? Because wall sconces can be hung to draw attention to artwork or to provide light for reading in bed, and, in an era where small fixtures and minimalist spaces are the trends, moving fixtures to the wall frees floor space for sleek furnishings and accent pieces. 

 

Wood Bead Fixtures

Bohemian-inspired and versatile, wood bead lighting is a unique way to add texture and natural materials (on-trend for 2020) to your room. Flush mount styles for the living room and chandelier or pendant styles for the dining room and kitchen are favorites of ours. 

 

LED Lighting

Lighting trends for 2020 aren’t limited to fixtures. Next year’s trends also apply to bulb types. LED lighting is already popular, but it’s going to gain steam in 2020. Why? Because LEDs are long-lasting, energy-efficient, free from harmful toxic materials, are excellent for smart homes and come in many shapes and sizes. 

 

There’s no shortage of inspiration for your 2020 lighting design projects in each of our two metro Denver showrooms. Add style and functionality to your home next year. Visit us!


10 Bathroom Lighting Ideas to Brighten Your Space

Are you suffering from a dim bathroom? We’ve got ten bathroom lighting ideas to help. 

 

Relaxing in the tub surrounded by candles and soft lighting sounds excellent, but aside from this scenario, a dim bathroom isn’t pleasant - nor is it functional. Inefficient bathroom lighting makes an ample space feel small and turns everyday tasks into a flirtation with danger (don’t shave or apply mascara in the dark). 


People spend hours selecting their living room lighting, dining and kitchen light fixtures, and bedroom lighting, but often overlook the importance of efficient (and attractive) bathroom lighting. 

 

Don’t neglect your bathroom lighting; after all, it’s where you start and end the day. 


And, compared with most bathroom renovations, lighting upgrades are a simple and budget-friendly way to revamp an outdated (or dark) space. Regardless of the style or size of your bathroom, there’s no shortage of sconces, flush-mounts, pendants, and even chandeliers from which you can choose. 

 

Make the most of your space (and stay safe and looking your best) with the ten bathroom lighting ideas below. 

 

 

1. Get in the zone.

 

You can solve common design problems by first analyzing the space. What are its properties? How is it used? Split your bathroom into zones: bath, vanity, and shower. Use task lighting around the vanity where bright light is needed and consider installing LEDs or spots in vertical rows alongside mirrors as opposed to above. This gives you flattering light and minimizes shadows. In small areas, mirrored cabinets with integrated lighting is a simple and easy solution. 

 

 2. Maximize natural light. 

An all-white bathroom sets a tone that’s bright, fresh, and clean. White paint allows you to harness natural light to lessen the pressure on light fixtures; small flush-mount lights provide ample illumination because of the way natural light brightens your white walls, tub, and ceiling. 

 

3. Double-down with small pendants.

 

In a small and dark bathroom with natural textures and earthy decor, double down on lighting in front of your mirror to ensure the perfect level of brightness. Smaller pendants are an excellent option for bathrooms where wall space is at a premium. 

 

 

4. Read and relax. 

 

If you’re curling up with a good book in the bathtub, your reading light is as essential in the bathroom as it is on a bedside table. A swing-arm sconce provides ample light and style—it’s the perfect way to create a cozy bathtub nook for self-care. 

 

 

5. Replace your lightbulbs.

 

Replacing light bulbs is a simple and easy way to brighten up your bath. We like to use cool white, bright white, or daylight bulbs in bathroom lighting schemes to minimize shadows and provide the maximum output around a vanity. Consider ambient light in bathing spaces, like baths and showers. 

 

 

6. Layer your light. 

 

Like everywhere else in your home, great lighting in your bathroom is essential, and layering your sources light provides the best results. Try using a combination of overhead light from a chandelier (if you have the room), natural light from windows, and light from above mirror fixtures to cover all of your bathroom lighting needs. 

7. Mix shapes, styles, and textures.

 

Use color, texture, style, and shape to achieve balance and rhythm in your bathroom lighting scheme. Contrasting (but complimentary) finishes in light fixtures enhance texture, and lights of varied shapes, styles, and sizes achieve balance and rhythm.

 

 

8. Use functional lighting. 

 

Try using a pair of wall sconces to illuminate a freestanding bathroom vanity. In some cases, mounting sconces directly to the wall mirror maximizes their visual impact and offers shadow-free grooming. 

 

9. Illuminate bathroom art. 

 

If you have art in your bathroom, accent lighting shows it off. Recessed directional light fixtures give focused light for each piece of wall art or illuminate an architectural feature like an alcove used to display pottery or sculptures.  

 

 

10. Up your style quotient with pendants.

 

Pendants, in pairs or as a standalone fixture, give your bathroom a custom look. Drop them on either side of your mirror or vanity, or use a single pendant over your bathtub in place of a chandelier (assuming ceiling height allows) for extra function and style. 

If your bathroom is functional but uninspired, or worse, if it’s uninspired and missing functionality, it’s time for an update.

 

 A well-considered bathroom lighting scheme is a simple way to update an older space or to ramp-up the style in a new home. Make a statement in your bathroom with smart task lighting, pendants or a chandelier, and even an elegant table or floor lamp. Like the other rooms in your home, mixing textures, styles, and shapes adds interest and personality to a bathroom.  

 

Do you need help creating a beautiful and inspired bathroom lighting scheme? We’re here to help! Visit one of our two metro Denver showrooms for a consultation with a bathroom lighting specialist.


Direct vs. Indirect Lighting: What's Best Solution for Your Denver Home?

Understand a few lighting basics to create the perfect illumination plan for your Denver home.

 

Regardless of how well-designed your home is, poor lighting choices quickly dampen the mood. Working with a design professional versed in the subtle nuances of lighting design helps. Still, you should understand a few basics as you begin your search for the perfect fixtures.

 

When lighting designers and interior designers create a lighting plan, virtually all the fixtures they select fall into two categories: direct and indirect lighting. In this post, we’ll discuss the difference between the two types, and explain how to use both styles to create a beautifully lit space.

 

What is direct lighting?

Direct lighting refers to lights or fixtures that point directly at the subject or space with no diffusion or bouncing off of other surfaces. These are typically fixtures that direct the light downward onto a surface below. If you stare up at a fixture and see the bulb, then you’re looking at a source of direct light. Recessed lighting and track lighting are the most common fixtures for this application.

 

What is indirect lighting?

Indirect lighting most often refers to fixtures that bounce light off of a surface or highlight a specific design feature without pointing the light straight at the object. Up-lights that sit above eye-level to highlight an interesting ceiling feature is an excellent example of indirect lighting. LED strip lights are also frequently used for indirect lighting because they can easily be hidden in recessed areas.

 

When to use direct lighting:

Direct lighting is an ideal solution for task-oriented spaces like kitchens, dining areas, offices, or bathrooms. While sources of direct light are both functional and beautiful, it’s essential to consider the function of each light as well as its aesthetic value when searching for this style of fixture.  Most lighting plans start with direct lighting and indirect sources are added later. We love to use direct lighting fixtures to create a striking focal point. You can cluster pendants in a kitchen or dining space, or over an island where attractive and functional light is essential to illuminate the area where food is prepared or served.

 

When to use indirect lighting:

Indirect lighting fixtures are either shaded or bounced off of another surface to provide soft overall light to a room. You’ll often find indirect lighting used to bring attention to architectural features, or as a purely decorative design element.

 

Home theaters are excellent for indirect lighting. Dimmable wall sconces are often placed on either side of a screen to provide subtle and soft light both upward and downward, without creating a distracting screen glare. We like to place LED strips under stair treads to offer gentle (but hidden) illumination to a home theater without interfering with the viewing experience.

 

Always layer your sources of light.  

We recommend that you use both direct and indirect sources of light (along with other fixture styles) to create a layered approach to lighting your Denver home.

 

Find additional information about layered lighting here 

 

To start, determine the primary purpose of each room. Is the space task-driven (office, kitchen, bathroom, etc.), or is it a place to relax or hang out (living room, bedrooms, home theater, etc.)? After deciding how you’ll use each room, brainstorm ways to use both direct and indirect light to efficiently illuminate the space (or let us do it for you).

 

Need help in creating a lighting design plan for your space? We’re here for you! Give us a call (303) 222-9322 or visit a showroom, and our lighting experts will work with you to craft a plan that you’ll love.


30 Ceiling Fans That Will Blow Your Mind

Move over chandeliers! Ceiling fans have arrived, and they are so much more than you ever thought they could be. Ceiling fans used to be all about function. These days ceiling fans are a design element used to complement and promote the style of your home. New trends in ceiling fans have propelled them to their proper place in any design plan: a room focal-point or statement piece. Here’s our top 30 new ceiling fans that will have everyone looking UP as soon as they walk into the room. They say it loudly: Yes, I am a ceiling fan. LOOK AT ME.

 

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-minka-aire/vintage-gyro™-42-ceiling-fan/sku-V39-f802-bn-ch

With its brushed-nickel chrome finish, the 42” Vintage Gyro from Minke Aire is perfect for a room that combines modernity with a throw-back flare. Its extremely unique design draws inspiration from 50s and 60s era table fans.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-progress/sanford-24-enclosed-indoor-outdoor-ceiling-fan-with-led-light/sku-V149-p2594-0930k

Progress Lighting designed this 24” fan for small spaces. It’s brushed-nickel finish screams DINER, but in a good way. (Points if you’ve ever seen Disney’s The Rocketeer.)

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-monte-carlo/70-maverick-max-led-black-on-black/sku-V6-3mavr70bkbkd

This 70” ceiling fan from Monte Carlo features blades with unique upward curves. It’s all about simplicity. The fan is a big deal, it knows it, and doesn’t need to waste time screaming at you about it.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-minka-aire/tear-led-60-ceiling-fan/sku-V39-f831l-td

The Tie Dye fan is from Minke Aire’s Tear collection. Because the market has been demanding a tie dye fan for years.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-monte-carlo/72in-prairie-led-14bld-bs/sku-V6-14prr72bsd

The windmill-inspired Prairie Grand ceiling fan from Monte Carlo has a large 72” diameter and features not 12 but 14 blades.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-minka-aire/artemis™-iv-led-64-ceiling-fan/sku-V39-f903l-sbr-mbk

This creative fan is perfect for modern rooms with it’s 4-blade design featuring sharp curves on each blade. 4-blade fans are relatively uncommon, and this one provides an extra “twist."

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-minka-aire/dream-star-led-60-ceiling-fan/sku-V39-f788l-gs

This graphite-steel finish from Minke Aire’s Dreamstar has mesmerizing dimples and curvature on the blades. The only problem is it needs to be run on low speed to notice!

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-minka-aire/slant-led-36-ceiling-fan/sku-V39-f410l-wh

If somebody from the 1950s was imagining what fans would like like in the future, this is what they’d imagine. The 36” size is perfect for a modestly sized room and would be a nice complement to your Warhol.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-progress/spades-collection-56-two-blade-ceiling-fan/sku-V149-p2570-15

No legit modern fan collection is complete without a 2-blade design. The drop from the ceiling to the blades on this one from Progress Lighting gives it a bit of chrome-y flair.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-minka-aire/cage-free-gyro™-led-37-ceiling-fan/sku-V39-f304l-orb-mm

Any fan called Gage Free Gyro has to be good, and Minke Aire brought some originality to this one. This fan will work will perfectly in a rectangular, long room.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-monte-carlo/54-butterfly-brushed-steel/sku-V6-4bfr54bsd

The Monte Carlo 54” Butterfly is inspired by the wings of a butterfly. This fan is damp-rated for indoor and outdoor use, so imagine this over your rose-party with Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda on a hot summer eve.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-maxim/counter-fandelier/sku-V19-60003sn

Maxim hit this one out of the park. It’s more like modern art, with a fan blade tucked inside. This unit has a short downpost, so works great in a room with lower ceilings.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-access/vortex/sku-V7-63114ledd-igld

Inspired Gold by Access. The name says it all- this fan is inspiring. The wrap-around curved blade cage combined with the three stubby blades create a beautiful visual effect.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-fanimation/gleam-16-inch-bn-with-led-light-kit/sku-V90-fp8404bn

The 16” Gleam by Fanimation is perfect for small spaces. The circular 18 watt LED light with opal frosted glass frames the 4-blade fan perfectly.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-artcraft/marlborough-ac11080-chandelier/sku-V12-ac11080

Artcraft truly created art with this one. Inspired by candelabras with a contemporary flair, this eight light fandelier is easy on the eyes. Pair with Edison filament bulbs for maximum impact.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-fanimation/brewmaster-short-neck-bl/sku-V90-fp10bl

This is a brilliant reproduction of a classic belt-driven fan first introduced to the ceiling fan scene in the late 1800s. You can imagine this in an Old West tavern (which is fitting, as it’s called The Brewmaster).

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-fanimation/torto-52-inch-bn-with-18w-led/sku-V90-fp7902bn

Post-modern art that creates a cool breeze, the eye catching Torto from Fanimation is the perfect center piece for any contemporary room. The three wrap-around blades create a unique airflow, pushing at an angle instead of straight down like most traditional fans.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-fanimation/palmetto-five-sections-ab-220v/sku-V90-fp605ab-220

No matter how hard you try, you can’t ignore this fan. If you’re trying to create an ancient-Egypt inspired paradise, this is the one you want. You can configure the Palmetto from Fanimation to be as long as you’d like, up to 46 feet long. Yes, you read that right. 46 FEET.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-fanimation/kellan-motor-bn/sku-V90-ma7966bn

This is a contemporary take on the late 1800s style belt-drive system. The blade units themselves can be placed in any configuration, making this a very dynamic piece. Surprise, surprise, it’s extremely affordable to, coming in at only $299.97, but on sale now for $199.98.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-fanimation/enigma-60-inch-mg-with-led-220v/sku-V90-fp2120mg-220

A fan with a single blade? Yep. The Enigma from Fanimation is a Hollywood icon, appearing as Will Smith’s co-star in the movie iRobot. There is no other fan like it in the world.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-kichler/50-inch-kyte-fan/sku-V2-300254ni

How do you describe this one? Its unique mounting design uses two separate posts attached to the outside end of the blades, rather than a hub in the middle. It’s highly decorative, and brings a whisper of air movement to rooms in a big way.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-kichler/50-inch-kyte-fan/sku-V2-300254ni

The Terna by Kichler is the perfect fan for modernists. Its compact stature makes it a good fit for small spaces, and it’s vertically-oriented blade design draws inspiration straight out of sci-fi novels.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-kichler/15-inch-terna-led-patio-fan/sku-V964-310215wsp

Meyde Tiffany’s Tall Pines collection is vast, and incredible. Whether you’re designing the lodge at a multi-million dollar ski resort, or looking for something for your own humble hunting retreat, this are what you want to hang. The shade on this chandel-air features Ambra Siena Idalight, casting a beautiful, warm hue.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-meyda-tiffany/72-wide-tall-pines-chandel-air/sku-V96-201990

With two drop stages this 27 light chandel-air is a wrought iron masterpiece. The two mica diffusers illuminate behind handpainted green pine tree silhouettes wrapped in textured black. With an 80” drop this is created for very large spaces with very high ceilings. Of course, if you’re spending $14,000 on a fan, having a really big space to hang it probably isn’t an issue.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-meyda-tiffany/55w-tall-pines-w-up-and-downlights-chandel-air/sku-V96-156087

The Marquee Gural from Meyda Tiffany is the most expensive fan on our list, by a lot. Coming in at a whopping $30,240, this fan is only for those with discerning taste. This baby is all drama and sophistication. Clear glass with prismatic lines provide a dimensional illusion and textural look that’s not seen in any other piece on this list.

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-meyda-tiffany/36w-marquee-chandel-air/sku-V96-165603

The Meyda Tiffany Lady Slipper collection is custom crafted in Yorkville, New York by artisans…wWhich accounts for the $5200 price tag. No two are identical, and the burnished brass tint with silver mica finish screams hand-made.

 

https://shop.gallerialight.wpengine.com/brand-meyda-tiffany/45w-lady-slipper-chandel-air/sku-V96-110240

The above 30 fans just scratch the surface of the brave new world of ceiling fan design! Will one of these work for your space? Or perhaps you’d prefer something a little more… traditional. Either way, our ceiling fan experts here at Galleria can make some suggestions. Book an appointment to visit us today.

 

 


It’s lit: Five Simple Tips for a Perfectly-Lit Room

Putting together a lighting plan for your Denver home can be a daunting task. After all, so much depends on it! How a space looks, feels and performs its functions are all determined by your lighting choices.

 

Thankfully, with a little research, careful planning, and some helps with your friends here at Galleria, you can design a lighting scheme that complements both your lifestyle and the space you’re working with. Here are six tips for getting your lighting right.

 

Mix in the layers

 

You don’t always need to light the whole room. In fact, it’s best to build up your lighting in layers that blend well together and create the mood you’re looking for.

 

Start by mapping out the space. Consider what you’ll be doing in each part of the room and what kind of lighting you’ll need for it. Place a floor lamp next to the couch for reading, for instance, or some under-counter lighting in the kitchen for when you’re chopping the veggies. This is your task/directional lighting.

 

Next, use accent lights to add drama to your space by drawing attention to particular areas or objects. Bookcase lighting puts the focus on your ornaments and favourite treasures, while uplights placed on the floor can highlight plants or artwork.

 

Finally, add in the ambient or general lighting to add to the room’s overall glow. Use recessed spotlights to give clear, even lighting for the whole kitchen, for instance, or hang pendant lights or a chandelier over the dining table for more focused illumination.

 

Pro Tip: Great lighting can add function and beauty to a room. Don’t just create a lighting plan for what you currently use the room for, create a plan for what you want to use the room for. For example, good lighting can turn a formerly useless and dimly lit corner into the perfect reading nook.

Dim the lights

 

Dimmer switches are one of the most cost-effective ways to add important flexibility to your lighting plan, particularly if your options are limited to one or more ceiling fixtures.

Using a dimmer switch allows you to adapt a room’s lighting according to the time of day, activity and the mood you’re in. It also saves energy and helps your bulbs last longer.

 

Pro Tip: Traditional incandescent bulbs change to a warmer hue as they are dimmed. Because LED bulbs don’t work the same way, they generally did not look “warmer” as they were dimmed, sometimes looking slightly gray or odd. Now there are “warm dim” LED bulbs available, so you can still use LEDs and get that beautiful warm orang-y hue that we’re accustomed to.

 

The right placement

 

If you opt for a hanging light, it’s important to get the positioning right. Ultimately, you should go with what looks and feels right to you, but here are some guidelines to go by.

 

Over a kitchen island, you’ll want at least 30” to 32” clearance between your surface and the bottom of your fixtures. If you’re hanging multiple pendants, leave 30” to 32” between the lights.

 

For a dining table, leave about 33” to 36” from the bottom of the fixture to the table for an 8’ ceiling. Hang the light an extra 3” higher for each additional foot of ceiling. Traditionally, more formal dining rooms have lower hanging light fixtures. Consider hanging them a little higher for a more casual, modern feel.

 

Pro Tip: Have slightly lower ceilings? Consider a flush-mount or semi-flush mount fixture. This style of fixture has come a long, long way in recent years, with many unique and high-end flush-mounts now available.  The right flush-mount will still generate interest but preserve the room’s headspace and keep the eyelines wide open.

 

Light it up

 

You don’t have to rely on down-facing lights to illuminate a room. Add some upward-facing lights for a soft, warm glow that casts no shadows.

 

Wall sconces can disperse light over a wall without taking up surface space, while cove lighting can add some soft light and visual drama to the ceiling.

 

Pro Tip: Uplights typically are used for soft, even lights. However, if you’d like to get creative, consider using uplights that feature seeded glass for extra texture and interesting shadows.

Find your style

 

Just as lighting affects the mood of every room, it also contributes to the decoration. Try to match the style of your lighting fixtures to the theme of your room and the look of your furniture and finishes.

 

For instance, a brushed steel table lamp in the living room is the ideal complement to a clean, contemporary style, while an antique chandelier could be the perfect focal point of a traditionally furnished room.

 

Pro Tip: Even if you’re an experienced designer, finding a lighting fixture to match your room’s style can be difficult. Bring a photo of your room or a sketch of your room’s design with you to Galleria. Our experts average more than 20 years of experience in the industry and can help you pick the perfect fixture to match your room’s interior design and decoration.

 

 

Creating a lighting plan can be tricky, especially if you’re a first timer. Don’t let that slow you down! The hardest part is getting started. If you need some inspiration, we’d recommend visiting our showroom at 100 Rio Grande Boulevard. We have Denver’s widest selection of fixtures to help you get the wheels turning, and our lighting experts are always available to help.