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Big light on in the living room?

(335 Posts)
ViviPru Mon 20-Jan-14 21:17:07

I've just had one of those peculiar moments whereby something that you thought you knew to be a universal truth is turned on its head.

I was commenting to some friends about how irksome and peculiar I find it that another friend only has one light source in their living room, the main ceiling light, which they have on all evening. It's really bright, not on a dimmer and I find it really hard to relax there. My two friends were baffled saying that's what they do too (never been to their houses in the evening so I wouldn't know) and made out like I was the peculiar one as we rarely use our main overhead ceiling light.

Now all these years I've never questioned it, as far as I was concerned, in the evenings one would have a couple of table lamps on, enough light to read by, that's how it was at home growing up, that's what my parents do and what DH's parents do. Obviously I know some people have the overhead light on as you can see through windows at dusk but I slways just assumed these folk were the peculiar minority.", or they'd just stuck it on to clean/find something/perform a task.

Another friend has impaired eyesight so she likes a lot of light at all times, which is completely understandable. But those whose eyesight is fine, I can't understand why anyone would want to sit in glaring bright light all evening... But according to my friends I'm the minority...

I don't care what anyone does in the comfort if their own home, I'm not saying no one should use the main light but that I genuinely thought that barely anyone did... According to my friends this is completely at odds with reality.... What say you??

AndiPandi Mon 20-Jan-14 21:18:47

I hate the big light on too, only ever if ironing or for special tasks. 2 lamps for me too.

ilovepowerhoop Mon 20-Jan-14 21:19:14

I hate the big light being on so we have a freestanding lamp (the 'wee light') in the living room.

Floralnomad Mon 20-Jan-14 21:19:52

We always have our main light on ,my mum uses two wall lights ,it drives me mad ,I like it bright .

LastOneDancing Mon 20-Jan-14 21:19:55

Surely you only put the big light on when you're ready to go up to bed & need to turn the little lights off!

Princesspond Mon 20-Jan-14 21:19:58

Hate having the big light on, we always have table lamps, I prefer softer lighting.

MyNameIsKenAdams Mon 20-Jan-14 21:19:59

We have a big light and two table lamps (one each end of the sofa).

Need the big light on for eating as I like to see whats on my plate, but we generally leave ot on after dinner and then go to bed 1/ 1.5hrs later.

If on my own and stick a film.on, ill put the lamps on instead, but generally am lazy and cant be bothered with the faff of light changes.

theborrower Mon 20-Jan-14 21:20:06

I hate the big light, we use lamps or up lighters.

flopsytherabbit Mon 20-Jan-14 21:20:09

I do exactly the same as you! Only have the main light on when I'm looking for something, then straight off. I have two other side / table lights on. It's too bright otherwise!

champagnegoldfinch Mon 20-Jan-14 21:20:34

I could do away with our big light altogether - very rarely used, and a bit of a waste really. Lamps in the dining room too. Only the kitchen has a regularly used big light.

I also have a big-light-friend and I hate being at her house in the evening. I prefer a bit of ambience.

ViviPru Mon 20-Jan-14 21:21:06

How interesting, thanks for replying all!

RestingActress Mon 20-Jan-14 21:21:47

We are the same.

A friend always has lots of lights on, even at a party, it is too bright and harsh.

AnyFucker Mon 20-Jan-14 21:22:05

nope, I get ragey if the big light is on

DH and the kids turn it on, I turn it off and put a soft lamp on

if someone is doing homework requiring more light, I go in another room smile

MrsBungle Mon 20-Jan-14 21:22:22

I hate the big light! My mum used to have the big light on - it was like a torture chamber!

We have lamps. Much lovelier and softer.

BadgersRetreat Mon 20-Jan-14 21:22:47

we don't even have a central light - only light source is lamps

ViviPru Mon 20-Jan-14 21:22:53

How annoying that I can't show this thread to my friends and say NER you're wrong. MN deems it so.

thecapitalsunited Mon 20-Jan-14 21:22:54

We have a lounge diner and only put the main light on to eat. Before and after dinner we have a lamp on. It's just nicer to have a dim light in the evening and helps you wind down for bed.

My parents also only have a lamp or two on in the evening. I find it weird to sit in a room lit up like Vegas in the evening.

BellaVita Mon 20-Jan-14 21:22:54

I hate the big light too.

HyvaPaiva Mon 20-Jan-14 21:23:15

We never use the big light. As soon as it's dark enough, the curtains are closed and on go the fairy lights and candles. Two brighter floor lamps and two side lamps are switched on when we have company. We're all about the soft and cosy in this house! It's far more relaxing to have soft lighting.

YouStayClassySanDiego Mon 20-Jan-14 21:23:31

Lamps on here too , the big light is horrible and harsh.

somedizzywhore1804 Mon 20-Jan-14 21:24:19

DH and I have a divide over this and it drives me mad.

Like you OP my parents have always had lamps and "little lights". Big light only goes on if the remote has gone missing and needs to be searched for grin

As such I live by little lights and we have three table lamps in the living room. I hate sitting in the big light, it's too harsh and not relaxing at all. However DHs parents always have the big light on shock in all it's glaring horribleness. As such, if left to his own devices DH will bypass the lamps and just stick the big light on and sit like that all evening.

It drives me insane.

WhispersOfWickedness Mon 20-Jan-14 21:25:12

I like the big light on, I feel like I can't see properly with just a lamp on blush In fact, we've only just got one, and that was bought for my crafting, to provide extra light, not to be used instead of the main light grin I think we are in the minority though, my parents (divorced) both use lamps (it drives my mother insane when she stays here grin) and I'm fairly sure ILs use lamps too.

PavlovtheCat Mon 20-Jan-14 21:25:14

I can't bear the spot light of the main light. We have uplighters which don't work thankfully as they are hideous so we have a lamp, some soft lit fairy lights. If we want more light we put tealights on. DH is notorious for leaving the main light on, he keeps it on if I don't turn it off, but that is more due to laziness and not being bothered than this is how he likes it. When I adjust it, he is fine with it, unless he is eating his dinner in front of a film or something, then he insists on the main light on.

It's so bright! Why would you? I know several friends who do this, and like you, I find their place glaringly bright and not homely. I definitely prefer lighting to create a relaxing ambience.

So. YADNBU. Your friends are.

PuppyMonkey Mon 20-Jan-14 21:25:23

No big light in our living room either, if you need to do something that needs light, you go into kitchen. Ambient light only in my living room, one large table lamp.

gordyslovesheep Mon 20-Jan-14 21:25:43

also not a big light fan - I have 3 small lamps, fairy lights, a fire and a tall lamp - much nicer

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