From The Blog

Furnishing and Lighting a Space

When redecorating, or moving into a new home; placement of furniture and lighting are very important, as the wrong size furniture, or bad lighting, can ruin the look and feel of a room.

Furniture Selection and Arrangement

If your room doesn’t already have a natural focal point, you should develop one. This could be an artistic painting or mural on the wall, a fireplace, an ornate window treatment, or a well decorated shelving or wall unit.

Choose furniture based on the size and purpose of the room: If you are buying new furniture, take pictures of the furniture that you are keeping, so that you will be able to choose items that will work well together for the room. When we moved into our new house the previous owners had used this Warwick loft conversion company to create an extra bedroom, and while it was cosy, it was tiny! We solved this problem by adjusting the lighting and with an Ottoman bed from Cheap Upholstered Beds as a storage solution.

Now is the time to draw a floor plan to scale: You will need to measure the floor, walls, windows, doorways, and any permanent fixtures in the room, then decide what seating, tables, etc you require, then add them to your plan, to make sure they fit well before buying.

Furniture Arrangement Tips:

Remember that contrasting coloured furniture stands out more; Keep them to a similar colour if you want the pieces to blend together.

Allow a space of between 35cm to 50cm between a coffee table and the couch or sofa.

Allow 45cm between a bed and a wall to the side.

Keep a space of 90cm in front of wardrobes.

Traffic space is important, to avoid the feeling of congestion in a room. Keep 45cm walkways for smaller traffic areas, and between 1.2m and 1.5m walkways for larger traffic areas.

Allow 90cm between the wall and a dining table with chairs, and 40cm – 50cm between each dining chair.

Pouffees, ottomans, and stools, make useful seating arrangements and take up little space.

Buy pieces of furniture that can double as storage units.

Stereo equipment should be placed opposite a soft covered wall (curtains, etc.)

Remember that upholstery fades in strong sunlight, and wood can be easily damaged in humidity.

Light Fittings

Ceiling Lights are pendants, chandeliers, flourescent strips, down lighters, spotlighters and recessed spotlights.

Wall Lights are brackets, up lighters, picture lights, strip lights or angle

Floor or Table Lights are table lamps, desk lamps, up lighters or angle-poises.

Table lamps are good sources for light as well as for smaller focal points

Lighting and Accessories

Lighting and accessories are what bring a room together; they’re what complete the picture.

Firstly, before planning any lighting treatments or buying any new lighting fixtures, it’s important to consider the following guidelines:

Based on the activities of the room, what lighting is appropriate?

What is the overall light level required? How many light fittings are required and at what wattage?

Remember to keep a balance of lighting throughout the room.

Are there any features you wish to highlight?

What is the decorative style of the room? Will the fittings clash or compliment this style?

Is the ambiance of the room seductive, dramatic or reflective? Is it a place of work, rest or pleasure?

Is the room going to change in the future to incorporate any other activities?

There should be a variety of light fittings in the room.

Types of Light:

NB: Always have a mixture of general, task and decorative lighting.

Warm Light: Objects appear closer, it’s cosy and flattering.

Cool Light: Objects appear further, a sense of space and dignity is created. It’s unflattering.

NB: Colour changes according to the kind of light shining on it.

Watts:

45 watt: Used for bedrooms, dining rooms and hall fixtures

60 watt: Ceiling fixtures in small rooms, such as bathrooms

75 watt: Outdoor lampposts or patio lights

100 watt: Dressing table or study lamps

150 watt: Intense task light for reading or storage areas

200 watt: Utility areas. Extremely bright

Accessories

There are hundreds of items that can be used as a way to accessorise and highlight features in a room. These are known as accessories.

Examples of Accessories:

  • Light fittings
  • Decorative screens
  • Cushions or throws
  • Paintings or posters
  • Mirrors or clocks
  • Books
  • Sculptures or antiques
  • Pottery or decorative bowls
  • Plants or Flowers

Before buying plants, make sure that you have information on the following:

Space and colour of the room, humidity and temperature conditions, sources of light, room to place or hang the plants, if there are air-conditioners in the room, if heavy smokers will be using the same room, and if there are any nearby sources of heat.

Plants can be used as room dividers, or they can be fillers or be made to stand out. Plants may provide contrasts in height and colour together, and they can be put in pots, vases, or floating water. You can use whatever you have available as accessories, even pine cones.

Whatever your budget, whatever your theme, style or preference; decorating is an expression of your personality.

It is a way of making your house into a home.

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