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Read This Before You Redesign Your Bedroom!

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As with clothing, lighting designs have changed dramatically over the years. Every generation seems to have its own aesthetic for what is considered fashionable and in good taste. Looking back, however, we now realize there is a reason why we do not wear polyester leisure suits and outfit our homes with fluorescent tube lighting. In both cases, they send a negative message. And even though trends tend to repeat themselves every several decades, there are some things that we should probably never revisit. 

Similarly, when it comes to redesigning or updating your bedroom, you should be thinking in terms of style and functionality. 

You want that space to look great but it also has to function as a bedroom. Therefore, whatever paint, flooring, and furniture scheme you go with, they need to work together in order to make your bedroom the tranquil space you want it to be. 

But first, you need to understand your lighting.

Lighting should always be your first consideration when you think about redesigning your bedroom. Here's why: no amount of paint or throw pillows will undo a poorly lit room. On one hand you do not want your bedroom to feel like an operating room with intense, glaring white lights overhead, but on the other it should not feel like you have wandered into a prehistoric cave where the lighting is so poor that you have to fumble around just to find the bed at night.

The first step is to simply walk into your bedroom and make some notes. Observe how much light you get in the room from natural sources like windows, or skylights. This will vary depending on the day and the weather conditions outside. If you have a fairly large window at one end of the room, notice how the intensity of the light diminishes the farther away one is from the window. You will want to consider placing lights in these naturally dark zones in order to even out the disparity.

Now, look up. How well does your current ceiling lighting serve your room? Is your bedroom blessed with tall ceilings? If so, your needs will be different from those whose ceilings are 8 feet or less. Also, do you have enough lights on the ceiling (or too many!)? Are you using bulbs that are too harsh, and hurt your eyes when laying on your back on the bed? Do the bulbs cast a white, yellow, or pink hue on the room? All of these elements can impact how your bedroom feels.

Next, start itemizing your current lighting selection and layout. If you only have one light in the center of the room, you may want to consider adding several ceiling down-lights, preferably controlled by a dimmer switch. Contact your electrician to have recessed, LED lights installed. This is a quick and easy solution to improving your bedroom lighting. 

Similarly, think about things you want to accent around the room, such as artwork, a beautiful piece of furniture, or perhaps an elegant bookshelf or an antique wardrobe. There are any number of ways you can accentuate the room with accent lighting, but the general rule is to incorporate it with small, unobtrusive designs that draw attention to the piece rather than to the light itself. 

Also, consider the types of activities that you do in your bedroom like reading or writing. Is your current sidetable lamp adequate for these activities? Perhaps a wall scones would help you to see things a bit more clearly. Or, when you look at the mirror hanging in your bedroom, to check yourself before you go out to work, is it well-lit?

Finally, now that you have started looking at your bedroom with a critical eye, you will realize that using different colors, wattages, and placements of lighting will enhance the way your room looks and feels. 

Having a greater understanding of how light functions is a necessary precursor to choosing lights that you like the look of. 

Yet even if you are a trendsetter, and prefer to be on the cutting edge of interior design, consider how mixing and matching timeless elements, like  many of our interior nautical lights, can add instant character to a room that one simply cannot achieve with the paint scheme and furniture.