Lighting Types And How To Tell The Difference

If you are embarking on a room design one of the key elements is the lighting. And if you are renovating completely you’ll have to get the positioning of the lighting just right in terms of where it is in the room and how it is used.
There are a variety of different types of lighting and lighting effects:

Ambient lighting
Ambient lighting is a perfect way to create a certain ‘mood’ in a room. It’s a type of lighting effect which is not in your face but rather subtlety highlights certain parts of the room, washing it in a warm glow. A good example of a light fitting which can give of ambient-type light is a wall sconce. However, other types of lighting can also give this effect. If you have a traditional ceiling downlight a paper lantern is a good way to give this type of feel. The best way to get ambient light in any room is to install a dimmer switch so the light levels can be lowered as needed.

Accent lighting
If you want to highlight a certain object or add interest to a particular part of the room it’s accent lighting which is needed. Directional light fittings are a good example of accent lighting as are halogen spotlights.


Task lighting
The traditional type of task lighting is perhaps found in the kitchen where small fluorescent tubes may be fitted under kitchen cupboards to light the work area. But task lighting can also encompass many other forms, such as lighting for reading, shaving, writing, or even putting on make-up.

Aesthetic lighting
Any type of lighting which is purely decorative in design can be classed as aesthetic lighting. A good example here is a work of art which is illuminated by a light fitting to show it off to its best. It generally cannot be used as a stand-alone type of lighting because of its specific job of making something look better or providing a talking point or design statement.

Natural lighting
Making a room’s lighting feel as natural as possible can be difficult, especially in dark rooms which don’t see a great deal of natural light. However, light fittings and light bulbs can be purchased which give off a natural type-light which is better for the eyes and can make you feel uplifted on dark winter days.

The type of lighting design you use in a room should never be an afterthought. If the design is done correctly at the outset you can get a totally different feel to a room which will show it off at its best.

Fiona Oliver is a home design expert and explains that the right lighting can mmake all the difference when it comes to your mood. She tells of how her house is full of lights of different styles and types, courtesy of

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