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Please help a lighting dunce

(9 Posts)
JustALittleBitLost Mon 02-Jun-14 07:30:49

Throwing myself on your mercy here - somehow my knowledge of lighting has never really progressed beyond an energy-saving lightbulb hanging from a cord in the middle of the room. So I urgently need your advice and suggestions.

I need to light a smallish dining room. It's on the ground floor of an extended 2-up 2-down. Although it's south-facing and has a French door, it's not the brightest as a lot of the light is shut out by the extension. You have to walk through this room to get to the kitchen, which is very light and bright.

Is there such a thing as an overhead light that would give a bright but warm light? There are two LED spots in an alcove, which work really well. But ideally, I'd like something in the centre of the room, which could just be flicked on via a wall switch.

Decor-wise, I suppose I'd describe the room as 'modern' - white walls, stripped floors, quite a bit of natural wood in the form of furniture (1940s/1950s), shelving, doors. I'd definitely be open to some sort of Scandivanian-style feature light, but the most important thing is the light!

Thank you!

wowfudge Mon 02-Jun-14 08:01:59

What shape is the table? If you have a rectangular table, a low rectangular light fitting hanging down from the ceiling with small LEDs could look very effective, providing soft lighting above the table. Atmospheric too as you are not putting very bright light around the whole room.

JustALittleBitLost Mon 02-Jun-14 08:10:11

At the moment, I have a fold out tale in one corner - so it is quite small. But I might get a larger rectangular one if I can find the right one.

Do you mean this sort of thing?

I can see how that would give a nice light.

PigletJohn Mon 02-Jun-14 08:58:04

Do you mean that there is no ceiling pendant? If not, get one for a start. Two for a longer room. You can supplement with standard or table lamps which are very flexible. Wall lamps can give supplementary lighting but are not flexible.

Spotlights are intended for lighting spots, not rooms.

Weegiemum Mon 02-Jun-14 09:01:14

I thought this said lightning dunce and I was all ready to put on my geography teacher hat .......

Have you thought about wall lights - I'm not a big fan of a single-bulb pendant, they can be quite harsh I think.

PigletJohn Mon 02-Jun-14 09:19:16

A single-bulb pendant, if it has the bulb exposed to the eye (e.g. an open lampshade) is less glaring if it has a large globe lamp.

I have a few with a 22W CFL, where I use 150mm globes.

In a narrow or high room like a hall where you are unlikely to be looking directly at the lamp, or a small room with a lower power lamp, glare is not such a problem, but I still think an opal or pearl globe looks better if it is on show. With energy saving lamps it is just a glass or plastic cover over the real lamp.

LEDs which are very small points of light can be quite bad for glare.

But an enclosed shade or luminaire also avoids harshness. Modern low-energy lamps run much cooler than old incandescents so can be enclosed without overheating.

A ceiling pendant gives vast choice of shade or luminaire or other fitting, so if the previous owner removed yours, it was a mistake.

JustALittleBitLost Mon 02-Jun-14 09:53:24

Thanks all, this is really helpful.

There is a pendant, but I don't know what sort of bulb/shade/fitting to go for to create a warm, lively light. Ideally I'd like something that is bright but also warm - a bit like sunshine if you know what I mean.

Aberchips Tue 03-Jun-14 10:01:46

What about some modern wall lights? We have some like this

Which I think are really outdoor ones, but look very nice in our kitchen/diner/snug area. They give a really nice light that is bounced back off the ceiling & walls. They can all be turned on & off with a single switch.

JustALittleBitLost Tue 03-Jun-14 14:13:25

Interesting! Thanks. Perhaps I need to go to a lighting showroom and have a look at different options. It's really hard to imagine what sort of light any of these would throw, especially in that particular room. I can see why people hire lighting designers....

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