Want Gorgeous Interior Colors? Look to the Light

If you’re studying this ideabook, you’ve probably already looked at hundreds, or even tens of thousands of photographs of beautiful homes. Maybe you loved the colors in a room and wrote to ask the designer or contractor to inquire what these colors are.

It is very important to keep something in mind when browsing photos: Lots of home interior photographs are taken with supplemental light, which affects how you find the interior colors.

Get inspired by the photographs you see, but experimentation in your house with the light you plan to use before you begin painting. With all the newest technology on the market that affects the way the space is lit, the tips that follow can allow you to arrive at the perfect color.

Arnal Photography

How color changes in a space. Each wall in this room is painted the same shade of gray, but look at the differences caused by the angles and positioning in the room. Color also looks different under different circumstances: The day progresses and the organic lighting in the space changes, seasons change, a few candles at all or night recessed lighting on total blast changes the look. It’s well worth the cost to paint samples multiple walls before you commit to a color. The light in the room ought to be countered also — don’t look at samples with temporary bulbs hanging out of pigtail lamp holders. And make sure you look at the color at different times of day.

A couple of tactics to affect color through light:
To warm up a room’s color: Look for a bulb using a temperature close to 2,700 Kelvin. Halogens are a good option, but all kinds of bulbs can be found in warmer evaluations. To cool a room’s color: Look for a bulb using a temperature close to 4,000 Kelvin. Standard fluorescents will normally cool down a room, but check the numbers. To most accurately replicate natural daylight: Midday sunlight is around 5,000 to 6,000 Kelvin, but remember this is very cool light — contrary to what you might expect.


Note that the chandelier within this room is not on. Combine this with the fact that colors look different on different computer screens, and what you see in the photo is at best close to exactly what the space looks like in person.


Strategies for choosing a lightbulb. You’ve probably noticed there are a lot of choices these days in regards to shopping for lightbulbs. Although most of us have a feeling of what to expect from a 40-watt incandescent bulb, watts are not a good way to describe a bulb’s light output, today that different technologies use different levels of power to produce the same light.

Compare lumens to understand how bright a bulb is, and if you want to understand how cool or warm the light produced is, look for the kelvin score. For the warm light traditionally produced by incandescent bulbs, look for close to 2,700 Kelvin. The majority of the old fluorescent tubes you’re acquainted with are around 4,000 Kelvin. Fluorescents are available in many varieties these days, from warm to cool, out of conventional tubes to compact fluorescents (CFLs), all in several interesting shapes. Each will have its own effect on the colors in your house.

Portal Design Inc

If you’re concerned that the government has outlawed your favorite lightbulbs, plunging you into a confusing world of ugly-looking lightbulbs that offer off bizarre light, don’t have any fear. The one thing that has been outlawed is promoting lightbulbs that warmth your house more than light it. The old incandescent bulbs transformed just 10 percent of the energy used into lighting; the remainder became heat. Ever hear of an Easy-Bake Oven?

Incandescent lighting is still available but in a more efficient package. Start looking for a halogen bulb such as the one light this chandelier. These bulbs look the same as conventional bulbs, but using the filament encased in gasoline, they can generate light such as a 100-watt incandescent bulb with only 72 watts.

McClellan Architects

Use light to your advantage. The lighting source you choose affects how colors appear in a space, but so does the way you utilize the lighting. With this project, the golden leaf wall is washed with light from a bright LED strip. This combination gives off a warm glow. Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are the longest-lasting bulbs on the market, plus they cost the least to operate. They have a higher up-front price, though. Do not be surprised to pay $20 for an LED. Although the life savings are worth the investment, if you don’t enjoy the standard of the light, it’s all for naught.

Visit a lighting showroom where you can observe unique bulbs in action, or buy one and use it in the basement or garage if you don’t like the color. If you prefer the yellowish light throw with a conventional incandescent, try out the Philips Ambient LED. At 8 watts, it uses 80 percent less electricity than an incandescent 40-watt bulb.

Shannon Ggem ASID

Adjust bulb color with fixtures. If the color of light produced by a bulb is not quite to your liking, you can tweak it by choosing a fixture color that changes the lighting, similar to this glass color out of Schoolhouse Electric. But know that an enclosed color on a fixture that hangs upside down just like this has restricted bulb choices. LED bulbs will not last so long if they are subjected to the heat buildup within an enclosed colour. CFLs don’t like to hang upside down — they’ll work and still generally last longer than an incandescent, but you won’t get the complete predicted life from them.


Hubert le Gall Polyedres Chandelier

This trendy modern chandelier includes exposed bulbs that would look great with some of those interesting-looking LED bulbs that are out there today. If your fixture is on a darker, remember that while the color created by the LED at full strength will probably fit that of its equivalent incandescent, when dimmed the incandescent will become warmer in tone, while the LED will just dim and the color will stay pretty consistent.

Scott Haig, CKD

Get help figuring out how a light plan. Because of all of these factors, it can really pay off to have a designer help you with a light plan. Someone with knowledge concerning the light choices are going to have the ability to maxmize energy efficiency and help you get the color in the space just perfect.

Fluorescent tubes are placed behind the mirrors in this room. Incandescent recessed lighting and LED accents make for a fascinating mix.

Studio Carver Architects, Inc..

Using natural light. We’ve spent a lot of time speaking about artificial lighting, but monitoring and controlling the organic light a space receives is also critical to selecting the right colors. Large windows are costly and need blinds or curtains for privacy. For diffusing light onto a huge scale, consider Kalwall panels. These fiberglass panels are gaining in popularity in residential projects and may flood an area with light with no warmth. Of course, as with any source of pure lighting, colors will look different throughout the day, so don’t pick a color you love at 10 in the morning, just to find it looks drab and dreary once you come home from work.


Velux Sun Tunnel Skylight

Light out of a skylight could be harsh, developing a spotlight effect and bringing as much warmth into the house as light. Skylights also often require structural alterations to roof framing, and structural changes are never affordable. Rather than a skylight, consider a tubular daylighting device, shown here in cross section. Much like Kalwall panels, the gadget fills a space with diffuse natural light. Though a 5,000- to – 6,000-Kelvin bulb will supposedly replicate natural lighting, there is nothing like the real thing. Though the new bulbs out there use a lot less power than these Edison bulbs, there is no beating free light.

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