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How to Add Natural Lighting & Design Elements

“Be one with nature” is a common mantra that helps many people find balance in their lives. What if you could bring the relaxing elements of the outdoors inside your home? A growing trend in home design, more and more natural components can be found in lighting and furniture showrooms. This summer, bring the outdoors in with natural lighting and home décor from Connecticut Lighting Centers! We offer 3 tips to get you started.

Choose a Focal Point

Natural interior roomIf you’re not quite ready to take the leap to a completely natural-themed room design, consider choosing one central piece to highlight. Many homeowners start with a natural backdrop to bring the organic theme into their rooms, then draw attention to it with strategic accent lighting. For example, a wooden wall panel can add texture and fun, but still pairs well with traditional lighting and furniture.

Pair Lighting Fixtures with Home Accents

This may seem like common sense to some homeowners, but the natural theme works best when all aspects of a room follow the trend. Complete the rustic look with wall décor and accent furniture that add texture and lighting that adds depth.

At Connecticut Lighting Centers, we have pendants with branch detailing etched into stainless steel and wooden wall sconces that give rooms a luxurious lodge feel. Paired with a driftwood glass top cocktail table and silver wall leaflets, you can create the calming ambiance you desire.

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Create a Backyard Oasis with Lighting

Summers in New England are the best time to be outside enjoying the sunshine, warm breezes and cool nights. Many of us love to host get-togethers with our family and friends, but if your outdoor patio, deck or backyard pool area is dimly lit, it’s not the best entertaining space. Whether you’re hosting a casual party or major social event, rather than gathering everyone inside on a nice evening or renting an expensive banquet room, transform your outdoor space with the right lighting. What steps can you take?

Add Layers of Light

pool and outdoor patio lightingThe simplest way to add a soft glow to your backyard without the glare of too many bright lights is to layer with ambient, task and accent lighting. What’s the difference between each?

Ambient Lighting

This is your main source of lighting for the space. An ambient fixture should bathe the backyard in gentle light that is not too dim or harsh. Depending on the size of your yard, this could be a large chandelier over the dining table or spotlights attached to the home.

Task Lighting

What will guests be doing in the backyard? If you have activities or an outdoor bar set up across the grass, people should be able to see what they’re doing while they’re doing it. A table lamp or under-cabinet lighting can help you safely accomplish these tasks.

Accent Lighting

Finally, accent lighting can create depth and highlights the aesthetic features of your space. When you want to show off your manicured lawn and shrubbery or your favorite garden gnomes, post and path lights help illuminate these characteristics of your landscape.

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Energy-Saving Tips to Light Your Home This Summer

Summers in New England can be hot and humid, but many of us prefer the heat over bitter cold winter weather. When we see these extreme temperatures, we often also see extreme increases on our HVAC bills. When you’re planning lighting design for the upcoming summer, consider these 3 easy tips to light your home and save energy.

Landscape Lighting: Less Is More

exterior lighting and greeneryLighting the outside of your home at night is about safety and aesthetics. A sufficiently lit pathway prevents guests from falling and can help deter intruders, but also creates a beautiful scene of illuminated shrubbery.

We like to say that less is more with landscape lighting, especially during the summer, because homeowners want to keep the ambience of a warm summer night when daylight lingers until after 8pm.

It also lowers your energy costs to strategically place lighting fixtures around the yard, rather than several groups near each other. We recommend using energy-efficient LED bulbs, so you do not have to worry about the cost of keeping outside lights on all night long.

Indoor Lighting: Be in Control

There are two surefire ways to run up your electricity bill inside the home: over-lighting rooms and failing to turn the lights off when you leave. Too much light can be harsh, depending on the time of day.

Five fixtures brightening a single room at night can have the opposite effect of relaxation after a long day at work! We suggest having multiple switches with dimmers for each light source, so you can be in complete control of which lights are on and how bright they are.

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2017 Lighting Trends

Predicted trends for 2017 include virtual reality, artificial intelligence and neon clothing; but what about lighting? The lighting industry is constantly changing and adapting to new technology. Let’s explore six of the top trends in 2017 for fixtures and lighting design.

1. Chandeliers in Non-Traditional Rooms

Tetra 1-Light LED Pendant in Polished Chrome with White Tiffany Glass

Tetra LED Pendant with White Tiffany Glass

Upon entering a home, you often see a chandelier hanging in the foyer or the dining room. As two of the most popular spaces for chandeliers, you likely haven’t seen them in many other rooms. However, in 2017 it is on-trend to place chandeliers in rooms like the master bedroom, bathroom or kitchen. It adds a little design flair where guests least expect it!

2. Decorative Wall Plates

Colored and patterned wall plates turn an otherwise bland part of your home design into something extraordinary. Legrand adorne® wall plates are stylish, hide the screws and come in vibrant colors like plum, cherry red and turquoise. They’re also easy to install, with simple snap-in assembly for a style transformation in no time!

3. Geometric Shapes

In interior design, geometric shapes will be very popular in 2017. When it comes to lighting, you can bring this trend to life in your home with fixtures that have geometric elements. Whether it’s a pendant with glass triangles or a geometric frame around a bulb, you’ll find plenty of geometric inspiration at our showrooms.

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Tips to Improve the Ambience of Your Home

Lighting design has advanced dramatically over the past decade. The introduction of home automation allows ordinary homeowners to control the mood of every room! If you’re looking to enhance the ambience of your home, we offer five quick tips.

1. Layered Lighting and Dimmers

Chandelier in entryway The three layers of light are ambient, accent and task. Ambient lighting is your general illumination, accent highlights certain features of a room and task provides the right amount of light to complete chores. Dimmers help you control the balance of these three layers with a touch of your finger! Whether you’re hosting a big party or planning a romantic evening, proper illumination is a big factor in creating the atmosphere you want.

2. Under-Cabinet Lighting

The kitchen is arguably the most lit room in a home; we need sufficient light for meal prep, entertaining or doing homework. When you want less harsh light, under-cabinet lighting is a great feature that also saves space. It is essentially track lighting that runs the length of your cabinets, eliminating the need for bulky fixtures. Under-cabinet lighting can be used in tangent with general illumination or on its own for a more relaxing ambience.

3. Focal Points

Any room can benefit from a central focus! Large lighting fixtures enhance the atmosphere of your home for guests and allow you to show off your personal style. For example, a chandelier as the focal point in your entryway sets the mood for guests as soon as they walk in the door. Focal points throughout other rooms create a different feel in each space and can help tie a room together.

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