Yesterday we discussed the colour of the light and today we are looking at the energy efficiency of the lights and fittings we are installing. As a designer, I always consider the long-term effects and usage of what I’m installing in someone’s home. Building work can be disruptive, expensive and time consuming, so I make long lasting decisions with fixtures and fittings, ones that won’t cost my client’s a small fortune to use.
Lights can look absolutely gorgeous, but again they really need bit of thought. As you can see the light fitting we thought we were going to use (we didn’t in the end) could have cost us a lot of money just to turn on! The downside, as I mentioned was the long visible part of the LED in comparison to the Halogen, the slightly different colour and also the spread was focused down obviously, rather than the Halogen which effected light in all directions. Lighting has changed a lot in the past few years with LED technology, which is a good thing because they no longer make us look green when we stand under them.
The best thing to do is to think about the end result that you want and test different lights and bulbs until you get the desired result. Most spaces will require more than one type of light, so do take this into consideration if you are creating a moody space, especially when you realise you might need some extra lights for cleaning. I woudl always take note of (or keep the packaging) of the light bulbs you put into each room. You don’t want one light to blow, end up replacing it and then have it looking different to the others!
If you are thinking of remote controlling or digitising your lighting, the best companies I have used are RAKO (which are quite adaptable) and Lutron. There are lots on the market like Home Works or Philips as well, and they all have different features, so look into those if you are interested in home automation and lighting control / scene settings.