Recently, renovating my apartment, I was forced to work on a very tight budget which, consequently, forced me to get creative with the lighting. Here are the five types of lighting that I used that will help give you the best bang for your buck when you’re setting out to set the perfect mood.
I stumbled upon this when I accidentally left my Christmas lights up longer than I should have. As it turns out, a simple white rope light will work wonders without making you seem like Mrs. Claus. It fits best in a bedroom, allowing you to snake it around a bed post, run it along the base boards, or simply hang it from your wall. Casting a white glow along the rope, it adds a bit of flair to an otherwise boringly-lit room. Drape a few colorful sheets in with the lights and you’ll find yourself in an Arabian palace in no time. Don’t underestimate the power of a simple rope light.
Harsh, overhead light is the quickest way to kill a mood. Do away with the warehouse-style florescents and invest in a few lamps. Running as low as a few dollars at Target and Hobby Lobby, you can furnish your home with lamps on a small budget and come away with a warm, cottage-like living space. Lamps come in such a variety that you are sure to find some that match your home’s aesthetic without too much trouble. Once you purchase and install them, make sure you use the same kelvin in all the light bulbs or your lighting will seem disconnected and discolored. Your typical incandescent bulb will generally run between 2,700 and 3,300 Kelvin which is considered a “soft white.”
When possible, opt for the wall sconce. Especially when you are working with a small room where ceilings are low and hanging lights would be in the way, the sconce works beautifully. They are unobtrusive, cast an ambient glow along the room’s walls and ceiling and can give your space that extra dose of depth that livens the space. As an added bonus, install fader switches and fader light bulbs so you can control the ambiance in the room.
If you’re settling in for a nice evening with your spouse or want to take a relaxing bath to de-stress, you will want to turn off all of the switches and light like the 1800’s. Gather a collection of cheap tea candles, medium sized candles and one or two large candles to give off a neat effect. Candles have a warm, comfortable feel to them; the flicker of the flame and the aroma of the wax will do wonders to turn your boring night into a magical evening. Adding even one candle in a bathroom or kitchen will also give your home a little extra life. It’s a neat trick used by real estate agents who are trying to sell a home because the combination of a live flame, the shifting light and the delicious smell will help make the empty house feel more like home.
The classic fireplace is a staple around the world. Whether your settling in for a long, winter’s night or simply want to bring a cabin feel to your home, light a fire and break out the s’mores. Whatever the commercial might tell you, TV fires are not the way to go.
With these five lighting set-ups or a creative combination of the mix, you’ll create the perfect mood in no time.
Featured photo credit: Summit Design Remodeling via flickr.com