Why does lighting matter? | The Manila Times

EVERY home needs lighting. From the perspective of interior design, lighting is not a simple matter of buying an incandescent or fluorescent bulb from a hardware store and installing it if one chooses to go DIY (do-it-yourself).

Homeowners need to understand lighting is a vital aspect of the ambiance and overall mood of a room. The right lighting arrangement can make a room feel larger. Some would combine natural and artificial lighting sources to give a space a fresh look.

According to a study conducted by the Journal of Consumer Psychology in 2014, it found that if lighting is more intense, the more affected and intense emotions of the occupants in a space, whether it may be positive and negative.

Lighting can make or break the features of any space, depending on what is used. A well-lit room assures a warm, inviting and functional atmosphere in a home. It can boost and lift every single corner of a room, from the furniture, flooring, fittings to the finishes and textures.

Strategic placement

Get the latest news

delivered to your inbox

Sign up for The Manila Times’ daily newsletters

By signing up with an email address, I acknowledge that I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Expert interior designers know how to make full optimum use of these two sources with respect to given design elements. Lighting is considered a game-changer in home decor and should be taken into very careful consideration. The following are places in the home where lighting is strategically important.

Doorways and foyers. This is the point of entry into a home, hence this is where a good first impression is to be made. The lighting should create a warm, welcoming effect, creating a transition as one enters a home. This can be accentuated by hanging ornaments.

Living room. This is where the majority of activities are spent. Therefore, it is important to have functional lighting here, particularly those that help create a mellow and warm effect. Overhead lighting may not be enough and experts recommend combining it with a combination of floor and table lamps. In the daytime, it is also a good idea to make use of natural light from the sun, which helps save energy.

Dining room. A dining room is a place for relaxation. It is a place where family meals and dinner parties take place, so lighting is also very important here. It is suggested that pendant lights or chandeliers are strategically placed above the dining room table. Another suggestion is to install dimmers to add drama and ambience, especially in the evening.

Kitchen. As the busiest space in the home, all lighting should be utilitarian (nothing fancy) and task-focused, pointing downward toward the countertops and stove or oven where most of the work takes place — preparing and cooking, respectively. Given this is a space bustling with activity, lighting here must be brighter and color accurate.

Bedrooms. Bedrooms provide private and intimate spaces. Therefore, soft, ambient lighting is ideal to help relax and unwind at the end of the day. Bedside lamps and wall lights with dimmers are just right in this space.


Color is also an important factor when it comes to lighting rooms. Darker colors on walls can create a feeling of claustrophobia as it makes spaces feel small. In contrast, lighter colors create more open and welcoming spaces.

How this works is light bounces off surfaces like a wall. What this does is it creates an illusion of space. Therefore, one light source like a ceiling light may not be enough or may create an undesirable effect. Accent lighting may help illuminating the walls and creating a more dynamic space. Directional lighting would help soften wall colors and create “motion.”

The key to creating an appealing aesthetic and functional interior is understanding the trick to good lighting management. Using various lighting creatively can do wonders in making a space in a home very attractive rather than rely on one source of light.

“No matter how good or bad your interior design, but if you have the proper lighting and proper planning in the layout of the interior, you can never go wrong. You can achieve the proper interior effect you want to create. Proper lightings make a lot of difference on items that you want to accentuate and color follows,” said interior designer Antonio “Tony” Adriano.