There are basically three kinds of lighting options for your home, general, task and accent. General lighting and task lighting include the types of light fixtures and lamps that are needed to illuminate the room and perform tasks like reading, sewing or cooking. Accent lighting is used for decorative purposes and can include things like candle lanterns, rope lights, table lamps, spotlights that illuminate plants and novelty lamps such as lava lamps. Accent lighting helps set the mood in the room. It is also used to enhance architectural features, illuminate artwork and decor, and enhance outdoor landscape features as well.
Create a romantic atmosphere with accent lighting.
Restaurants often use accent lighting to create a romantic or relaxing atmosphere in their dining rooms. Small candle holders placed in the middle of the table allow patrons to have candle lit dinners. Soft glowing wall sconces can also be used to create a warm, cozy atmosphere.
I have a fake tree in my bedroom with small, clear Christmas tree lights strung through the branches. When I want to create a romantic or relaxing atmosphere in my room, I plug the lights in and light a few candles. These tree lights are also great for creating a cozy place to watch movies.
Installing a dimmer switch on overhead light fixtures can help turn general lighting into accent lighting and will help you save money on energy costs.
Add accent lighting in the kitchen.
Under cabinet lights, which are installed under cabinets that are positioned over counters, are perfect for task lighting. However these lights can also be used as accent lighting, as they are mostly hidden from view and can be turned on to highlight decorative kitchen décor on the counters or to illuminate a decorative tile backsplash.
If your kitchen has a high ceiling, you can install hanging pendant lights over the bar or kitchen island. With the use of a dimmer switch, these lights can double as both task and accent lighting.
Small LED lights can be used inside cabinets with glass doors to highlight decorative dinnerware, stemware or other kitchen items.
Add accent lighting outdoors.
Landscape lighting can be used along walkways, flowerbeds and around shrubs and trees to highlight the best features in your yard. Many landscape lights are solar powered.
Rope lights, string lights and hanging lanterns make beautiful accent lighting on patios and gazebos. Deck rail lights make a nice decorative accent on your outdoor deck.
Wall sconces can also be used along the outer walls of your home and along privacy walls surrounding the boundary of your property.
Lighting is one of the most important elements of a home’s design scheme. Make sure you consider your lighting options, including accent lighting, when planning your next decorating project.