Lighting upgrades provide quick room makeover

Ever wonder how designers make the rooms you see in magazines or on decorating shows look so good? It doesn’t always depend on paint colors or fabric choices. From fresh and airy, to intimate and cozy – and everything in between – lighting sets the tone of a room and should be an integral part of its design and layout. And you can make dramatic changes by doing something as easy as switching out a light bulb.

Not only does a good lighting plan make a room more inviting, it also makes it more functional. To create a good lighting plan, you’ll need different kinds of light:

Ambient – Provides overall illumination and a comfortable level of brightness, allowing people to see and move around safely and easily.

Task – Helps you perform a specific activity, such as reading or playing games, by concentrating light in a particular place.

Accent – Sets the mood and highlights certain areas and objects, such as paintings, walls and collectibles.

Decorative – Fixtures become an element of the space themselves, such as chandeliers or pendants.

The type of light bulbs you use matter as well. Due to the EISA Act of 2007, traditional incandescent light bulbs will eventually be phased out; however there are several energy-efficient options, ranging from CFLs to halogen or LED light bulbs.

For more lighting tips and information about energy-efficient bulbs, visit or