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Best Lighting Solutions for High Ceilings in Luxury Homes

By Maria Dinshaw | Oct 2021

Who does not love a high ceiling? They give you a lot of room to play with, look grand and elegant, and create a sense of freedom. A high ceiling can be the defining feature in a room so it is important to design it so that the space looks its very best! If you are feeling overwhelmed with decorating such a big space, this planning guide is made for you!

At Nitido Design, we love a high ceiling because it is a large canvas for lighting. Light helps attract the eye to all the fantastic features of the ceiling and the interior. It is also integral to establishing the ambience of the room. We have designed many luxury homes around the country and the world and there are some interior design principles that stand true everywhere. So read on for our top tips!

Here Are The Best Lighting Solutions for High Ceilings

Layering Lights

The main challenge with a high ceiling is that it can feel overwhelming and lack focus. To navigate that our top trick is to layer the lights. We use a collection of different lights that meet different functions. Our lighting strategy is made up of various elements that work as a whole to produce something wonderful. The end goal is to create an even and consistent lighting and prevent dark areas. We plan the lighting after considering the layout of the room, the existing decor, and the natural light available. The three stages of lighting are ambient lighting, decorative lighting, and targeted lighting. Let’s take you through them!

Ambient Lighting

When done correctly, a high ceiling can create a sense of grandeur and style. We want to use lighting so it maintains the impression of space. This is where ambient lighting comes in. Ambient lighting can be recessed lighting, false ceiling lighting, and any other lighting that substitutes natural light. Ambient lights emit light that gets bounced off the high ceiling and back into the room. This allows for a steady coat of light through the room. It is also the foundation on which you can add more light fixtures and create a more nuanced lighting story.

Task Lighting

Once the base lighting is set, we can create more distinctions in the room. The task lighting stage includes pendant lights and chandeliers. These lights help illuminate larger and important areas of the room. There are so many versatile options to an interior designer in a luxury home. Modern candelabras, geometric pendants, ornamental hanging lights are all excellent options. In a contemporary dining room, we would recommend putting up a minimal metal chandelier. This can beautifully light up all your family meals and dinner parties. In the living room, you could put up artistic pendant lights over the sofa sets. Fit them with lower lumens bulbs to enhance the inviting aura of the space. If you have a high ceiling in a kitchen, you can hang a light with higher lumens over your central island or countertop.

Accent Lighting

The last stage in a lighting strategy is accent lighting. This includes floo lamps, desk lamps, wall sconces, and other forms of targeted fixtures. They help you light up any dark areas and accentuate certain features. Accent lights help create visually interesting landscapes. Make a cozy reading corner underneath the high ceiling with a wooden standing lamp. Add a lamp on your side tables with a mosaic lampshade to let coloured light filter through. If you have art or tapestries hanging in your living room, sleek wall sconces angled down can help accent these pieces. Track lighting can help make sure that the whole ceiling can be fully illuminated if needed.

Bringing it all together

When you are picking out separate elements, keep in mind how they will all work together. It can be easy to visualize this if you have an eye for design or are a seasoned luxury home designer. However, certain elements are difficult to envision for anyone. We have some tricks to help with that!

We like to make sure that the ambient lighting and the task lighting are of the same colour. Warm yellow and yellow white shades work best to create soft lighting that feels warm and welcoming. Pair this with dimmers and you have an ingenious way to play with the versatility in lighting. This is perfect for spaces with high ceilings so that they don’t make the interiors look imposing and cold.

With task and accent lighting, try not to stress it. Buy fixtures with bulbs and lamp shade that can be replaced if you feel like it. It is your home and you are free to experiment as much as you want! Above all, interior design should be fun. Use the lighting to play around with aesthetics. It is much easier to change a bulb than to paint a wall. Don’t be afraid to try something new! Hide the recessed lighting in the crown molding or in the box beams, install lights at varying heights to break the monotony, put up wooden chandeliers in a contemporary home, put up an industrial style wall sconce in a rustic home – find what works for you!

There is always so much more to say about lighting. Check out our piece on Natural Light and Artificial Light to learn more about lighting in luxury interior design. If you have more questions, reach out to our team at Nitido Design today!

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