13 lighting tips for the home

lighting-tips-for the home

David Scott

Thirteen lighting tips for the home is part of my series on design tips for a more beautiful home which have all been doled out in the press by the design trade at one point or another. These, as the others in prior posts, came from various sources including House Beautiful, Veranda, Traditional Home, Elle Décor and Architectural Digest and they serve as a guide … they’re not necessarily the last word on the subject.

Lighting tips for the home


lighting-tips-for the home

Anthony Baratta

“Limit overhead can lighting to functional areas such as bathrooms and laundry rooms – the light is too harsh and flat for your living areas” (Timothy Corrigan)

“The mirror in a bathroom needs overhead AND side lighting for a better and more evenly lit face” (Richard Rabel)

“Use recessed lighting sparingly. Two many fixtures turn your celling into Swiss cheese” (Anthony Baratta)


lighting-tips-for the home

Veere Grenney

“Light switches should match the height of the door handles” (Veere Grenney)

“We put light switches about 1 1/2 – 2” off the side of the door casing to stay away from art on the walls” (Gil Schafer)

“Lighting is everything. Create drama by using dimmer switches. I always use dimmers, even in the powder room” (Martyn Lawrence Bullard)


lighting-tips-for the home

Martyn Lawrence Bullard

“When you don’t have dimmers, use 15-watt bulbs to simulate candlelight. Works like magic” (Mary McDonald)

“To create flattering light, have your lampshades lined in soft pink or use GE soft pink 100-watt bulbs” (David Scott)

“In lamps with 2 sockets, I like to use one pink and one white bulb” (Marshall Watson)


lighting-tips-for the home

David Easton

“Invest in lampshades not in lamps. I can make a lamp from Crate and Barrel look as high end as one from Christie’s. Use old saris, box pleated silk, anything you find attractive can be made into a lampshade” (Jeffrey Bilhuber)

“If you can’t afford fabric shades, paper shades are great. I love white opaque, as they are clean and modern. Fussy shades date a room quickly” (David Easton)

“Chandelier (size) is tricky for people to figure out. A rule of thumb I use is take the width of the room in feet, double the number, convert to inches and that is the MINIMUM dimension for your chandeliers diameter” (Alexa Hampton)

“When choosing a chandelier or pendant for an entry hall or foyer, remember that the bottom of the light should be approximately 7 feet from the floor” (Richard Rabel)


lighting-tips for the home

Jeffrey Bilhuber

Richard Rabel is a New York Interior Designer and Principal at Richard Rabel: Interiors+ Art, a design studio offering residential design, decorating and art advising services.

image credits: lighting tips for the home: Architectural Digest where noted; all others the designer