Whether you live in a temperate zone or the sun sets at 4 p.m. come winter, your home’s indoor lighting plays a vital role in your daily comfort and happiness.
Here are some tips for lighting your interior for a bright feeling year-round.
Add diverse lighting
The classic solution: Placing two different light sources in a room adds variation and creates a more pleasant ambiance. One primary overhead light will do the trick, though some homeowners find it to be monotonous, and it sometimes over-illuminates a space.
A good fix? Layering lights. Floor and table lamps are excellent ways to add lighting to a room and enhance your favorite activity, whether it’s gaming or reading.
Consider your window treatments
Your choice of curtains or window treatments plays a significant role in your home’s feel, even when they’re wide open. Sheer, light-colored curtains can let in more light, block glare and give an airy atmosphere to the room.
On the flip side, heavy light-blocking shades will block out nearly all natural light. But even open curtains can curtail your room’s light. If you want blackout options for sleeping, consider shades that you can push all the way up.
Install a mirror
Sometimes the best lighting tricks don’t even involve lights. For example, adding a mirror to a room will open it up and reflect more light. If you position it across from another mirror, it creates the effect of another window in the room. Hanging one next to an existing light source will kick your room’s light up another notch.
Just take care not to place it directly across from a light fixture. Doing so may bounce light around, and your room can feel more like a carnival fun house — and not in a good way.
Wash your windows
You might be surprised at how much even light seasonal grime will dull your windows and block incoming sunlight. If you wash your windows thoroughly inside and out, you’ll get a boost of sunlight right away.
If your house is taller than one story, or your windows are particularly dirty, consider hiring a pro whose expertise can do the job safely and effectively.
Add a coat of paint
Paint a room with warm colors like yellow, orange, red or white. Avoid bright white walls, which could look dull without natural light. Think about your finishes, too. Satin tends to be best to brighten up a room. Glossy surfaces can cause too much glare, while a matte finish can seem flat and dull.
Add a blast from the past to your home with this vintage-inspired furniture
Best vintage sofa
Mr. Kate Stella Vintage Convertible Sofa Bed Futon: available at Amazon
Our take: Classic teal color and a vintage-button tufting design make this sofa one of a kind.
What we like: Available in tan and teal velvet, this classically vintage sofa converts between three positions including sitting, lounging and sleeping. A rather large sofa, it measures 80 inches long, 33 inches wide and just over 32 inches high. Pocket coils provide a comfortable seating experience.
What we dislike: Some reviewers felt that the teal color was more of a sage green.
Best vintage rug
Well Woven Cenar Moroccan Tribal Area Rug: available at Amazon
Our take: Stunning 3D-style rug with different pile heights.
What we like: This rug harkens back to the ’60s and ’70s with its woven brown and beige design. Available in three different sizes and two colors, it features a tribal medallion design with alternating pile heights.
What we dislike: Some reviewers mentioned that the thinnest part of the rug was a bit too thin.
Best vintage lamp
WERFACTORY Tiffany-Style White & Blue Stained-Glass Table Lamp: available at Amazon
Our take: Vintage lamp with beautiful leaf-and-vine base in stunning shades of blue and white.
What we like: This vintage Tiffany-style lamp provides soft lighting and includes an LED bulb with purchase. Turn this corded lamp on and off with ease via a push button. The lamp base is bronze with a total height of 20 inches and a width of 8 inches.
What we dislike: The included bulb may not be bright enough.
Best vintage art
Set of Three Art Nouveau Absinthe Biere Liquor Drinking Collection Vintage Ad Posters: available at Amazon
Our take: A set of three vintage absinthe prints, perfect for the cocktail lover.
What we like: These fun prints are a great way to decorate any wall, especially in a powder room or near a bar. Printed on professional paper with fade-resistant premium ink, they will last for years to come.
What we dislike: The prints don’t come with a frame option.
Best vintage bed
Allewie Queen-Size Modern Platform Bed Frame with Vintage Headboard: available at Amazon
Our take: A vintage gold bed fit for a 1930s starlet, this model includes a standout vintage headboard.
What we like: This stunning and sturdy queen-size bed with a vintage metallic-gold headboard has no need for a box spring. Use the extra space for storage under the bed with a height of 12 inches. The beautiful, easy-to-assemble frame is supported by multiple legs and slats under the mattress.
What we dislike: Some reviewers mentioned the headboard holes and screws were slightly misaligned.