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Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Planning a Home Renovation Part 3: Furniture Plan & Lighting

As an aspiring vlogger and keen photographer, lighting in my home is extremely important.  And, when you want to go luxe on a budget, lighting can 'make' a room at low cost.  Having a qualified electrician as a husband is handy because my lighting ideas are huge!

I started with a spidergram of lighting uses and ideas.  Here are the things I scribbled down, putting my dreams, and needs down, yours may be different to suit you and the way your family live'.

Walk space lighting - to guide to rooms and stair
Task light - dining, reading, game play
Highlighting - Wall art/pictures, books and displayed items

What did I want the lighting to achieve - ambience, brighten room for filming and photography, warmth.

I then wrote a list of what type of lighting I wanted, table lamps, recessed spotlighting, pendants, wall lights and strip lights.  This was a culmination of my Pinterest loves and items that I loved and already had.  Now, this is when I looked at my room layout.

I have over the years, accumulated the furniture that works for us and don't wish to replace or add to what I have.  With the wall being removed the two rooms and becoming one space, the way we use the space is due to change.

My picture here is pretty crude but, as my furniture was in the room already, I actually had the boys move things around until I was happy with the layout.  That's when I was able to draw up my lighting design.  Intro another crude drawing (I am no professional, the husband gets them!)  This particular drawing explains to my husband, the electrician, where I'd like the lights and how I'd like to turn them on.  I left the actual measurements to him, making clear that I wanted them to be uniform.  A lot of it also came down to what was possible, the upstairs beams meant that the middle yellow lights were changed from recessed to mounted spots as the beams were in the way.  

Green = 'Porch' light, 
Blue = Walkway lighting
Yellow = Highlighting
Red = Dining table 
Purple = Main room light
Silver = Living room feature light

The word 'circuit' indicates the switch I wanted them to be on as I wanted to layer the lighting, having as much or as little light when needed; and, of course everything is on a dimmer.  

The dimmer switch is the cheapest and easiest way to use lighting to 'dress' your home.  I absolutely swear by them.  They can completely transform the mood of your home, from bright and functional to cosy or romantic.

 It may seem excess but we have, altogether, 28 'lamps'  as builders call them, bulbs to you and I!  6 of those are on the lounging area pendant light.  All are energy saving LEDs so are minimal to run, also every corner is adequately lit, no dark corners and it is better to have too many than not enough.  Table lamps work for us along the mirrored wall as there is already a piece of furniture in that space and it gives off a better light at the mirror than a very unflattering spotlight in the ceiling.  If you do not have the space for table lamps, consider wall sconces.  They are perfect for target lighting without taking up valuable floor space.  There are an array of styles and prices to suit all.  

Don't be fooled in to thinking that you can not get creative with lighting, there are so many ways to maximise impact with minimal cost.  It doesn't always have to be a show stopping chandelier that costs the earth to wow your guests.  Cleverly placed lighting strips can surprise and delight.   Check out our lighting matters Pinterest board, it is a great place to inspire you.

When you've chosen all of your lighting, the next question to ask yourself is, 'Where will all the switches go?' You don't want to have to fumble across the room in the dark tripping over furniture before arriving at the light switch.  Ideally your walk space lighting should have a switch near to the entrance door.  This would be a great time to look into remote lighting options, which can come with a remote control or be controlled from your phone.  

With all of the fantabulous ideas you have, be sure to have an depth conversation with your electrician who will be able to guide you on the 'cans and cannots'.  Have a look at our lighting in the pictures below.  And please pop over to our Pinterest boards for ideas and inspiration.

Lamps from a selection at Homsense

Lighting sets the mood

Highlight art

There is so much to come, please do subscribe, follow us on our other social media platforms to see what we are doing in real-time!  And, please comment, we do love to hear what you think.

Tomboy -x-

Only Boys and Tomboys are a family of 6, 4 boys aged 23, 14, 8 and 5, Mum and Dad.  5 of us are living in a 3 bed terraced railway cottage in London with a cat, a bearded dragon, a fish and two shrimp

We share fashion, food, holidays, home decor, what we read and how we live.  All of it through blogs, vlogs and instapics.  We each have social media platforms covering many a topic with followers on each.



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