Lighting: Flipping the Switch


Lighting is one of the most understated aspects of decor.  Having a well-lit place is essential; it can make or break your living space.  Lighting includes everything from the wattage bulbs you have, to how many lamps, to what kind you have in your bachelor pad. 

Lighting to Set the Mood.  Say Watt?

Wattage: Less is more, usually. That doesn't mean to run out and buy a whole bunch of night-lights for your living space but don't toss 250 watt bulbs in your paper lantern, which is a fire hazard.  3-way bulbs are the best: 50-100-150 is a great combo, since these provide ranges from mood lighting to indoor lighting to lighting for entertaining guests. This lighting range also requires a lamp that can accept a three-way bulb. If your lamp doesn't accept a 3-way bulb, 50-75 watts is usually the best for all purposes. 

Types of Lamps: You have several options here. The right lamp depends on a multitude of things.


·      Floor lamps are good for main room living; for example, the living room, family room, or sun room. Floor lamps can offer a lot of light for a little space and whose main strength is vertical illumination.

·      Table lamps, on the other hand, are the best go-to lamp and offer both vertical and horizontal lighting and can fit on tables, nightstands, or bookshelves.  That’s why we consider table lamps to be bachelor pad essentials.   

·      Recessed lighting is a third type of lighting that needs explanation. Usually, your living space will already have this type of lighting. Downward facing spotlight bulbs or floods are the correct type of bulbs for this application and provide a blanket of light for your overall living space. In the event that you move into a living space that has light fixtures that extend below the ceiling, then replacing with recessed lighting is almost a necessity.

Placement of Lamps: This is one of the simplest answers. CORNERS. Place lamps in corners. They illuminate the room and reflect off of the walls. Recessed lighting should be lighting used for the middle of the room while lamps should be used in corners, with additional accent lighting in the middle. A good rule of thumb is to have a lamp for every 200 square feet. Table lamps are a great way to fill this void.

Types of Bulbs:  As traditional incandescent bulbs are slowly being phased out three new choices are available:  Energy saving incandescent, compact fluorescent lights (CFL’s,) and light emitting diodes (LED’s.)  Each of these has its positives. 

Energy saving incandescent have the ability to work with dimmers: the other two types cannot.  Both the CFL’s and LED save about 75% of energy that a regular incandescent bulb would use and last at least 10X longer.  Although initially more expensive, these models will start to pay for themselves after 9 months of usage.  

Used properly and in moderation, lighting can be one of the most useful tools and an important asset to have in your bachelor pad. You can change the mood of the room with just a flip of the switch. Buying attractive and tasteful lamps is always a good investment for your bachelor pad, since a lamp will probably outlive the current furniture that you own.