The word ‘contemporary’ is often used when referring to interior design. However, what, exactly, does contemporary mean, and how do you create lighting effects that complement a contemporary home style? Good questions. Glad you asked!
The term ‘contemporary’ deals with any style or design that reflects the most current and modern trends in society. You often here the phrase, ‘that’s so last year!’, especially in response to the fashion world which constantly changes trends. Home interior design isn’t quite as fickle as the fashion industry, but if anyone ever enters your home and says something along the lines of ‘that’s outdated’ then you know you’ve left the world of the contemporary and it’s possibly time for a remodel.
Current contemporary home interior design trends tend to utilize very sleek furnishings with soft, free-flowing curves. Decorations are used modestly and artwork sways towards the abstract. Spaces are generally open and uncluttered with specific, interesting and often unusual objects being highlighted.
In a contemporary design setting, light plays a very important part in creating the proper atmosphere. During the day, natural light is generally utilized a great deal in the design, using large windows, sliding glass doors and sky lights. However, when the sun goes down, creative lighting fixtures are used to create and maintain the contemporary feel.
Creating ‘Contemporary’ With Light
The way in which you use lighting in a contemporary setting is very important. Proper lighting should enhance the room’s modern design while incorrect lighting can take away from it. Also, certain types of lighting fixtures will draw attention to various aspects of a contemporary home. All these factors need to be considered when designing a contemporary space with light.
The following types of lighting fixtures are good choices when decorating a contemporary living space:
Ceiling Surface Mount Fixtures – Should your contemporary space need a central ceiling light, many stylish and modern designs now exist to meet modern needs. Various models today are both sleek and attractive for such a setting.
Wall Sconces – Stylish wall sconces set on either side of a living room, bedroom, bathroom mirror or large hanging picture not only add light to the room and highlight the object, but add creative beauty to the space.
Recessed Lighting Fixtures – Recessed lights work very well in a contemporary home. Since they are set into the wall or ceiling, they provide a broad, bright illumination which is ideal for a modern atmosphere. They can also be used to bathe specific items in a bright cascade of light.
Track Lighting Fixtures – Track fixtures now come in a large selection of stylish designs and work very well in a contemporary setting. Tracks can be laid out in various patterns that work with the room’s design and the individual heads can be moved and repositioned to add even more depth to your décor.
Torchiere Lamps – Because of their modern look, Torchiere lamps fit into a contemporary atmosphere nicely. Also, they direct light up a wall and onto the ceiling which is another coveted effect in a modern room.
Besides selecting the correct lighting fixtures to accent your contemporary home, keep in mind that various light bulbs can also be utilized to add to a modern atmosphere. Shop around before committing and test out the differences between fluorescent, halogen, xenon, LED, Verilux natural light and other types of bulbs on the market and see how each one can provide its own characteristic to a space.
Once you’ve taken the time to strategically plan and place the correct lighting fixtures and their bulbs, you can kick back and relax in a wonderful setting which you are proud to call contemporary!