Morning thought I would touch on lighting today, as itâs the second most transformative thing you can do to a space. I didn’t realise the importance of lighting until I converted (to the dark side of course) where getting the lighting right became an obsession.Â It has magical powers, highlighting, adding depth and intrigue, drawing the eye, making a space look bigger, cosier you name it. Lighting is clever. In the newly revamped bedroom I have nearly got it right – not quite but nearly. I have one more small light to put near my bedside for reading at night when I can’t sleep which seems more and more often these days.Â I should also say that as a buyer its one of the hardest things to source because for me I want the lights to be functional obviously but also pretty darn cool!
Having been in this business quite a few years I do see a lot of mistakes when it comes to lighting, so I thought I would point a few out.
I would say the number one all time mistake of the decade is recessed down lights. I don’t have a problem with them at all until I see zillions in each and every ceiling so that rooms are lit up like an airport runway! Now this bit is personal but I never put recessed in living rooms or bedrooms; in hallways, kitchens, dining rooms I am pretty much OK with as long as they are on dimmers so you can control the mood.
Next mistake neglecting either ambient, task or accent lighting in an apace. All spaces need all 3 – ambient is the general kind of light (i.e. recessed), task is concentrated lighting for performing certain tasks, writing, reading, cooking and accent,Â my favourite one highlights things. Artwork, architectural details, a grouping of vases, for example. Every room needs all 3 no matter if your rooms are dark and enticing or pale and (boring) sorry being mean there, couldn’t resist!
You also don’t need to spend a bomb on lighting – I have and I haven’t. Some of my pieces are quite expensive but a lot of them aren’t. I save on the boring stuff and spend on the decorative stuff – but again its personal. Flea markets are amazing for lighting; the high street has some totally cool lighting, when I worked on the Channel 4 show last year I was constantly in and out of Debenhams, BHS and B&Q not forgetting Ikea of course.Anthropologie has cool lighting, not forgetting my own cool store! My go to vintage sources are; French House, Fandango as well as Two Columbia Road.Â and The Dog & Wardrobe