LIGHTING IN LAYERS
|Layers of light from the chandelier, lamps, and even
candles in this dining space create an atmosphere
that is warm and inviting.
|This bathroom not only maximizes natural light,
but the unique chandelier and pendant lights add
personality to the sleek and modern space.
|For food prep, recessed lighting is ideal, but the
beautiful glass pendants are special elements that
provide interest in this kitchen.
One of the most complex elements of
design is creating an effective lighting plan.
Lighting can lend depth and ambience to a
room and tie together all other aspects of
decor. Michelle Mio and Jill Schumacher
of Rariden Schumacher Mio & Co. share
their tips on creating lighting that will feel
comfortable and welcoming in your home.
The design duo first suggests bringing the
lighting down to eye level to create a more
human scale with lamps. “When you bring
lighting down to eye level, it’s warmer light,
and it doesn’t feel like it’s coming at you
from nowhere,” says Schumacher. Lighting
with lamps in a living room fills a space
and makes that room more social.
“Recessed lights over head can cause
shadows and be unflattering. Lamp lighting
is romantic and natural,” says Mio. Using
lamps along with other lighting options will
create layers of light, adding warmth within
the space and depth to the room.
There are a great number of lighting
options available and it is simple to keep
lighting within your design theme –
whether it’s contemporary, or traditional,
or somewhere in between. You can even
get creative and design light fixtures from
almost anything, a basket, antique pottery,
a vase. Convert something with meaning
into something functional. “It’s a way to
add a unique, one-of-a-kind element into
your home,” says Schumacher.
Lighting fixtures can be a design statement,
but also act as a functional and dynamic
part of the decor. “It’s like placing highly
functional jewelry in your room,” says Mio.
She and Schumacher love to place
chandeliers in unexpected places like little
girls’ rooms and bathrooms. “It’s a little
funky and quirky,” says Schumacher.
When it comes to natural light, the
designers are conscientious about
window treatments and suggest taking
full advantage of the light that comes
through that window during the day.
Valances that cover too much of a window
won’t allow for natural light to enter the
space. “Use natural light to your
advantage, and emphasize your windows
by not covering them up,” says Mio.
And what about the pesky dilemma of
exposed lamp cords? Manufactures are
now creating lamps that have rechargeable
batteries. That means no more hunting for
a wall plug or attempting to hide messy
Making the most out of natural light from
windows, and a well thought out plan for
lighting in layers will help create warmth
and add natural depth to your space, while
contributing to a room’s personality and