Lighting: Jewelry for Your Home
I never discovered the excitement of lighting fixtures until I did renovations on my fixer-upper and needed to update the lighting from 1978 to something a little more up-to-date. Even though I am finished buying my fixtures, I still enjoy looking at lighting. It wasn’t until I was speaking with my lighting consultant about my continued fascination with lighting that I understood why it held my interest: lighting products are like jewelry for your home!
Ah ha: a lightbulb moment!
Leah Taylor, from Robinson Lighting and Bath Centre, was the lighting consultant for my renovation. She has a strong background in interior design, which was fabulous for this first time renovator! I quickly learned there is more to selecting the right light fixture than pointing and saying, “oooh, pretty!”
I knew from having an electrician for a father that I needed quality lighting, and that I needed to have it installed properly. However, picking out light fixtures that would add to the look and value of my home was a little overwhelming. To discover my needs Leah asked me a bunch of questions and I attempted to draw the layout of my living room - something that is best done before you get to the lighting store! (See tip #2 below.) I showed her some pictures of the renovation in progress so she could get a feel for what I liked, and finally we talked budget.
I really enjoy the choices I have made, and I feel the light fixtures really add to the look I am going for in my own home. And by the way, it is especially exciting when I see that internationally-acclaimed real estate developer and educator Scott McGillivray has chosen a very similar dining room fixture for the outdoor patio at his home (but hey...I bought it first!)
I would encourage anyone needing light fixtures to work with a lighting consultant; these folks can make your life a whole lot easier (and they have BOOKS of light fixtures from different companies if you can’t find the right fixtures in the store!)
- A lighting consultant will want to know where the location of the light will be (i.e. living room, kitchen), what your needs are (how much light do you need – a reading light or indirect lighting to feature treasured artwork), are you sensitive to certain kinds of lighting (some people are sensitive to the flicker rate of fluorescent lighting) and what finishes you prefer (i.e. brushed nickel, chrome, or copper).
- It is helpful to bring a floor plan with you, and if you can measure the room and outline furniture in the room that is even better. If you take along some pictures of the room or bringing photos showing things that might best represent your style, this too will help the consultant choose the right lighting fixture for you.
- If you have a limited budget and want to invest in lighting that will give you the best bang for your buck for re-sale, Leah recommends investing in lighting over your dining room table, the island, the foyer, and the stairway.
Scott McGillivray’s patio with a stunning chandelier over the table