Lighten up! 5 designer tips for transforming your home lighting

(BPT) – When it comes to choosing beautiful, functional lighting, the selections can appear endless and may be leaving you with no idea where to start.

If so, you’re not alone. Many homeowners mistakenly believe any fixture will do the same job, when in fact effective lighting design is something of an art. The right lighting elements can make your home more relaxing or energizing, boost your sense of well-being and make daily tasks easier, all while reflecting your personal taste. According to Statista, the desire for such improvements motivated 63% of U.S. consumers to plan changes to their home lighting over 2020-2021.

To assist such forward-thinking homeowners, Erin Hoover, director-design, Luxury Space for Kohler Co., offers the following suggestions on choosing ideal home lighting.

Factor in function. Ask yourself what you’d like your lighting to accomplish in the room you’re addressing. How is the room used? Do you need a main source of illumination for the space, or do you need to supplement that with decorative accents? Where do you need direct and indirect light?

Consider existing architecture. Even if you like an eclectic look (Pinterest and Instagram can be inspiration), you’ll want to at least partially align each fixture with the rest of your space in terms of form, line and/or color. In general, high ceilings work well with pendants, chandeliers and linear-style lighting and lower ceilings work better with flush or semi-flush fixtures and sconces. Your furniture layout may guide placement of chandeliers, linear style designs or pendants.

Stay savvy in the kitchen. Since most kitchens feature multiple light sources, Hoover recommends designating one fixture as your statement or focal piece, then choosing other functional and decorative accent pieces that align. “The other lighting doesn’t have to match, but should be a little simpler,” she says. “Make sure it’s the correct scale for your space and ceiling height,” Hutton continues. “Pendant or linear lighting is a good choice for kitchen islands and bars, and mixed metals are on trend with or without black or white accent finishes.” For added design flexibility, she notes, choose lighting that can be raised or lowered to easily adjust the height above bar areas, counters and islands. KOHLER Lighting also exclusively offers finishes that perfectly color match Kohler and Kallista fixtures and faucets.

Introduce style to your bathroom. Depending on your daily routines, you may want your bath to offer both bright, functional lighting (for grooming) and mood lighting (for relaxation). Popular layouts feature 7- to 9-inch sconces mounted on each side of a vanity mirror, or a larger single sconce placed on the wall overhead. In powder rooms where steam isn’t an issue, Hoover likes decorative Kohler sconces that feature linen-look woven shades; she also recommends installing dimmer switches. “If you have the ceiling height, I love a chandelier in a bathroom,” she adds. “A 20- to 24-inch chandelier may be better than a 30- to 36-inch one unless you have a very spacious bath with a ceiling height of more than nine feet. A larger pendant of 15 to 18 inches makes a statement over a freestanding tub if ceiling heights allow.”

Fit out your foyer. Hoover recommends considering the height and depth of these important, first-impression rooms before deciding on the pendant, pendant cluster or chandelier that will make the right statement. “A single pendant can look stunning in a foyer that’s nine feet wide, whereas a 36-inch chandelier or two-tier chandelier is perfect in a grand foyer,” she advises.

Since your lighting design is so important to the beauty, functionality and overall mood of your home, it should never be an afterthought. Take time to choose from the wide variety of bright, beautiful styles available, then invest in the fixtures that will truly transform your living spaces. Find more information about KOHLER Lighting at