Published at Tuesday, June 13th 2017, 11:51:04 AM by Kalyca Sanna. Living Room
Use different kinds of light to illuminate your living room and create an inviting atmosphere. Homeowners spend lots of time choosing a sofa or paint color for their living room walls, but often forget about the importance of proper lighting. In a space where you watch TV, read books, play games and entertain guests, lighting serves an important purpose in both the function and look of the room. "Lighting is important because of the intimacy it creates," says interior and lighting designer Linda Allen of Linda Allen Designs. "Since living rooms are usually one of the first rooms you walk into, it sets the tone for the rest of the house." Texture and neutral colors help make this living room the ideal spot for relaxing and entertaining. A good living room lighting scheme uses different kinds of light, set at different levels, that work together to make the space warm and attractive. Allen says if you want people to linger, use dimmers that allow you to control the level of light to suit the activities that take place in the space. Take advantage of the newer, more energy-efficient lighting solutions for residential use, suggests Mary Beth Gotti, manager of the GE Lighting Institute. "Ten years ago you wouldn‘t have seen nearly as many halogen fixtures, and LEDs are definitely one of the newest options," says Gotti. "Lighting can be magical. You can go online or visit your local lighting showroom and learn about the new light sources and colors now available." When you want to highlight certain features in your living room, like a fireplace, textured walls or a favorite painting, accent lighting is the way to go. Recessed, adjustable lights directed to points of interest or under-cabinet lighting in a display case that highlights selected objects are examples of accent lighting. "Accent lighting adds a pleasing variation of brightness," says Gotti. "You are drawing attention and putting more light on an architectural feature." In order for accent lighting to work, it needs to supply about five times as much light on the focal point as the surrounding general light. Although the overall style of the workspace is traditional, Alex was able to bring a touch of his classic, modern style into the room with a smoked glass pendant light centered above the Chinese farmhouse table. Stylish chandeliers, ceiling lights, wall-mounted fixtures or portable lamps can provide the ambiance that casts a warm glow in your living room. It controls glare and provides the general illumination that makes the living room feel comfortable and inviting. "As a lighting designer, when I am creating ambient light I am creating an effect," says Allen, who likes to use ambient light when she wants to illuminate a surface but not see where the light source comes from. Since this type of lighting affects the overall quality of light in the room and tends to be used the most, Gotti says this is where you want to use your energy-efficient When you want to create interest and add sparkle to your living room, table lamps, hanging pendants and chandeliers can provide the decorative light that adds coziness and intimacy. "It personalizes a space," says Allen. "I always say it‘s like wearing a great pair of earrings to complete an outfit." When you want to read a book or need to write at a desk, good task lighting helps you get things done. This brighter light can be a floor lamp with a swinging arm next to a comfortable chair, or a directed light source over a desk. "These are not the lights you use all the time — they are only to be used when you are doing a task, like reading or writing," says Allen. A more localized type of lighting, positioning is especially important. Portable table lamps allow for flexibility when furniture is moved.
Define and Highlight Your Style with Living Room Accents, as one of the most trafficked spaces in a home, the living room is primed to showcase your style preferences. The large pieces in your living room definitely play a role in the tone and appeal of the space, but it’s the living room accents that play a critical role in defining and highlighting your style. Choose wisely, and your guests and other house members will love to spend time in the living room environment you’ve created. This article presents some great ideas for living room accents that aim to inspire and delight. While animal head mounts have certainly become more popular and more common recently, there are still ways to use this idea in your living room décor in original ways. Different colors, sheens, and/or other coatings on an animal wall mount than what are generally expected give it just the right amount of personality and individuality. A sophisticated twist that showcases great style (and a sense of humor). Contemporary Area Rug. Living room rugs can be interesting beasts, really. If your décor is spare, you might want to bring in some visual interest with a heavily patterned rug. If your room already has multiple things going on, a sparser rug might be in order. Play off the lines and proportions of your living room to select a great rug… and make sure it’s big enough for your space. Modern, Industrial Wall Art. Artwork is an integral part of successful living room accents. Of course, wall art can and does take a variety of forms. Consider a simple industrial piece out of thick gauged wire to suggest movement and great taste as one of many modern living room ideas. (This piece has great DIY potential as well!). Organic Elements Blended. Handwoven upholstery on a single side chair or set makes for a fantastically unique living room accent piece. Really raise the organic, world market vibe by pairing it with other earthy elements, such as a fur throw pillow, ceramic bowl, and plenty of wooden elements. One of the most beautiful aspects of the use of natural materials in design is their uniqueness, and a stone- or rough-cut wooden sofa side table provides just that. Wrought iron legs on this natural side table make it a perfect living room accent piece for any number of styles. Unexpected Gilding. Antlers are nothing new in the world of décor, particularly in rustic settings or those seeking an element of unpretentious natural appeal. But the charm in this coffee table arrangement comes in the unexpected gilding of one of the antlers. It’s subtle, whimsical, and completely charming. Glass-Topped Coffee Table. finch table camp chairs and glass top coffee table, When an interesting coffee table’s base can serve as a foundation for an artistic vignette, a glass table top is a great choice. This also works well in small living rooms (glass = visually lightweight) or above area rugs that might be on the “busier” side, aesthetically. Bold Color, bold Statue. Living room accents are so fun to play around with, largely because the living room tends to be the home’s main gathering, mingling space (perhaps tied in hang-out popularity with the kitchen). A life-sized statue of a beloved or interesting animal, for example, becomes the backbone of the space’s personality. Who wouldn’t want to sit comfortably in chartreuse-and-chrome club chairs and observe the great outdoors with such a statue? (Or should we say, “Whoo”?) Things-Are-Not-As-They-Seem Lamp. Its shape is largely traditional, but the surprise two-dimensional aspect of this rustic, reclaimed-wood lamp is anything but. This simple unexpected detail catapults this piece into contemporary design, but with a definite cottage-appeal twist. A loose and wrinkled lampshade also provides casual charm. Pull-Up-A-Chair Pillow Stack. Seating options make a living room what it is just as much as anything else, and for the comfortably welcome home, a stack of lusciously worn leather poufs is just the thing. Piled up in a corner, this adjustable seating option certainly serves as a deconstructable living room accent piece. Symmetrical pops of color. In a neutral living room space, there tends to be a certain sense of order and predictability. Adding in a bit of color is often helpful for infusing the space with energy and fun, but if the color accents fall too far outside the realm of structured order, it can seem disharmonious. Hence, the practice of incorporating pops of color in somewhat predictable, pleasing ways – symmetrical red throw pillows, for example. Universal Sunburst Mirror. Sunburst mirrors have made acomeback in the past decade or so. While they might seem like a piece that could be overdone, it’s quite amazing how individual yet universal the sunburst mirror design is. I believe a person would be hard-pressed to find a living room in which some kind of sunburst mirror wouldn’t “work.” Unique seating options from rattan and leather. Have you ever remembered someone’s house based on one piece alone? That can absolutely be the case if you incorporate a standout living room accent by way of unique seating. This leather-upholstered wicker number (is it a rocker, even?!) is easygoing and chic; a perfect combination of beachy-suave. Be sure any seating in the living room has great lighting options to encourage visitors to sit and stay awhile. Versatile Coffee Table. Versatile coffee table design Perhaps one of the biggest stars on a furniture piece’s resume comes from its ability to multitask. A versatile coffee table is definitely a heavy-hitter when done correctly. If it has style AND separates, seats, and/or stores stuff, give your living room’s coffee table a thumbs-up next time you’re in the room. Who knows? The table is talented enough that it just might high-five you back. Easygoing Upholstery. For the homeowner who likes to not take him/herself too seriously (and who wants visitors to feel the same sense of ease and acceptance), non-traditionally upholstered pieces in the living room work wonders. We love the colorful accents in this inviting space – golden yellow, comforting cottage green, and plenty of white and wood elements. Leggy Lighting. Many of us look for opportunities to break up the large chunks of mass that tend to accumulate in the living room, such as the sofa, club chairs, even fireplace and armoires. One way to do this is through living room accents such as lighting. Choose a streamlined floor lamp with an oversized shade for a balanced aesthetic statement. Furniture with a Built-In Appeal. Most of us love built-ins, but sometimes it’s hard to think of anything but bookshelves when it comes to a built-in look. However, a chunky attached “side table” with an accompanying brass lamp are living room accents that give this loveseat an unabashed custom aesthetic. Beautiful! Double-Pillow Chair Back. The no-nonsense colors of this unexpected chair are part of its perfect charm. Emphasizing pillows or other soft textiles in your living room accents is a lovely way to bring comfort into the space, both visually and tactilely. Classic Lighting. Among our favorite living room accents is lighting that reeks of sophistication, shine, and simplicity. This balance isn’t an easy one to strike, but a basic pharmacy floor lamp in brass is hard to mess up in living rooms of almost any size and style. Oversized Wall Mural/Accent. Get a massive bang for your decorative buck by adding in an oversized piece on a living room wall. This becomes an automatic focal point and, despite its massive size, actually simplifies the decorating requirements of your space. The light-on-dark motif is particularly striking.
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