Ten key lighting tips from interior designer Natasha Rocca Devine

By Aoife Valentine Secor 29-08-2018

A House and Home promotion

‘The Interiors NRD’, Natasha Rocca Devine, has specialised in lighting, so with that in mind, we asked her to give you the lowdown on lightbulb and lampshade lingo. Take it away, Natasha!

Oliver Bonas

There is an opportunity with lighting to not only light the space yet, also re-create spaces, while styling the room and your overall home and garden. Lighting is unquestionably one of the most powerful design tools. So, in your home and garden, take time to enjoy the process of lighting, with your choice of bulbs, pendants and lampshades alike.

Choose pieces those that are economical, purposeful and aesthetically pleasing to you and those in your space. Most importantly, to ensure your home and garden will be lit appropriately all year round.

Let's take a look at my top ten lighting tips, and the fresh brands to bring this into your home:


Design Botschaft

1. Lighting Layers

Enjoy the endless array of options available with lighting. Start layering your home with the top three styles; Ambient or General Lighting (chandeliers and ceiling fixtures); 2. Task Lighting (For cooking areas, make-up areas etc.) and; 3. Accent or Decorative Lighting (tray ceilings, lighting below or above cabinets, lighting over a picture or art).


2. Bespoke Beauty

Create bespoke areas of lighting in key areas of your home. For instance, over longer dining room or kitchen table – or even a rectangular table – consider a linear chandelier or multiple pendants along the length of the table. Or in a make-up area choose feature lighting framed over the mirror to enhance this feature.


April and the Bear

3. Hanging Height

Hanging height can vary depending on the size of the ceiling, style of the home and pendant(s) chosen. So, always check your relative height before you hang your pendant lights. For example, dining room chandeliers are typically hung at 28” to 32” above the table’s surface.


4. Bulb Budget

Lightbulbs can be costly when lighting is applied to all areas of your home or garden. Consider the type of light bulb being used in each application. Recommending long-lasting and energy saving LED lighting be used to replace standard household bulbs such as halogen, commonly used in the past. This choice may save enough in energy costs to pay back the price of the bulbs long-term.



5. Colour Chic

Colour choices are key and on trend in 2018 are green, orange, purple, peach and so forth. Yet, for all lighting and lampshades, keep to your personal budget, style and the room in question. Regardless of trends when choosing lighting this should always be to your own style and the overall style of your home.


6. Accessorised Accents

Outside of core lighting features, invest in some stylish, on-trend floor lamps or accent lighting. These may be more short-term pieces but add pops of colour and variety in your home. Investing in shades such as children’s patterned lampshades or tassels can add some excitement to specific rooms.



7. Landscape Lighting

Include exterior or landscape lighting in your home. For example, a lantern on either side of the door or hanging lanterns if there is a porch. Not only will it provide increased security and highlight surrounding landscaping, it will also visually expand your interior spaces and offer a welcoming space to guests.


8. Hit Your Height

The height of a table lamp shade is approximately the height of the base (to bottom of socket) x 60% up to 70%. The height of a floor lamp shade should be the height of the base x 30% to 40%. Measure the shade height along the slant and also keep the height to the relative height of your room.


Harvey Norman

9. Solar Style

For solar lights, photovoltaic cells absorb sunlight during the day to charge the batteries, which then light the bulb at night. Choose ambient or decorative solar lights. While motion-sensor in the garden in particular solar lighting is frequently common to create lighting in key areas. For these, placement is key to ensure there is enough lighting throughout the day to charge these at night so plan this right.


10. Solar Panels

Invest in Solar panels on your roof or key areas of your garden. Although strong sunlight in Ireland is not always common all year round, a solar or landscape lighting pro can help position a remote photovoltaic panel in key areas can pick up sunlight and can used effectively. Although in darker months’ these won’t be as sustainable, they will reduce costs and assist in your lighting all year round.


You might also like: Everything you need to know about roof lighting


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