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Interior Design Tips for a Victorian Style Home

The Victorian era was a time of restoration and prosperity for England. Peace brought great leaps forward in education, science, medicine, transport, communications, and social structure. In particular, the extremity of the social divide was reduced, and while the poor still had a hard time of things – this was the era of Dickens, after all – far more people were able to improve their lot in life than ever before.

The big change in design was the emphasis on luxury and decoration. Furnishings were built to be ornate, and to include maximum comfort or usefulness. Designers were influenced to imitate the styles seen in paintings of Continental nobility from earlier times. This was made possible by improvements in technology allowing larger scale production.

 

Neutral tones favoured for painted walls

The use of neutral tones was all the rage in Victorian times where paint was concerned. This may have had more to do with the difficulty of obtaining the materials for tinting and the difficulty of getting a consistent tint than for aesthetic reasons, however.

 

For wallpaper, it's quite the opposite

It's very interesting that wallpaper during the Victorian era was typically vivid and bright, with floral designs being highly popular. This may have been a decisive factor in the Art Nouveau movement that would follow.

If you decide to use wallpaper, it's good to go for the very intricate and bright floral designs.  The wallpaper designs of William Morris, are among the very best examples of Victorian era wallpaper.

 

Go for ornate rugs and carpets

During this indulgent age, it was definitely a case of "more is more". There was very little attempt at restraint or understatement, possibly because in just about every other area of life there was quite a lot of repression necessary if one did not wish to be ostracised.

In paintings from the time it can often be seen that the householders would place carpets under tables. This custom was probably started as a way of showing off that the householder was so wealthy that they had no concern for stains caused by spilled drinks.

Another iconic carpeting custom of the era was the "hall runner", a long and narrow carpet that was used in long and narrow hallways. It is important that the hall runner should be not the precise width of the hall, or it will cease to be a hall runner and will simply be a carpeted hallway – not at all the Victorian era look you are aiming for.

Hall runners are also sometimes used for the carpeting of stairs. Again care must be taken that the carpet does not extend the full width of the stairs, as part of the intent (for the Victorians) was to place emphasis on the existence of the carpet, to show off the wealth of the homeowner.

 

Kitchen Furniture

The kitchen had once been the exclusive domain of servants, and where this was the case, kitchen furnishings tended to be very basic. In Victorian times there was a cultural shift, with more people having the means to furnish their homes but not to keep servants, and so the concept of creating more indulgent kitchen furnishings was born.

The main changes in design can be seen in the more generous use of carving, as well as the inclusion of opulent door and drawer handles.

 

Dining Room Furniture

The dining room had far greater importance in the average household during Victorian times than it does today. Chair designs of the era typically called for generous padding which was neither too soft nor too hard (Goldilocks should have lived during Victorian times). The chairs, as you may expect, also would typically feature extensive use of ornate carving and a tendency to have bowed legs. There are many examples from the Christopher Wray collection include the Clanfield, Elenore, Farlick, Kescott, Louis, Mag, Preston, and the Stanford.

 

Rectangular or oval tables were favoured over round, as Victorian era families tended to be large, and dinner parties were also popular. Typically the desire was to have very solid tables, usually with carving, and often with bowed legs, imitating the styles seen in homes of the Continental nobility. Examples from Christopher Wray include the Clementine and the Rocco.

 

Lighting Designs

For lighting, it's best to choose very ornate chandelier such as the Abbots, Achille, Anne, Barnstable, Bideford, Cannington, Daddon, Elora, Flauto, Lorraine, Oakenfall, Spruzzo, Thornton, Trident, and Yanine.

Bathroom Furniture

The most distinguishing feature of a Victorian era bathroom is the ornate claw-foot bathtub, and apart from this, it is difficult to go wrong with the furnishing in this room. Just think "ornate" when it comes to fixtures and fittings. For lighting, over-stated wall lights such as the Ashgrove are the best way to go.

Living Room

The living room generally should use the same concepts for furnishing and lighting that are used in the dining room, although here there can be call for armchairs, chaise lounges, and other designs. You could also use carefully chosen table lamps to fill out your lighting and provide a more cosy atmosphere.

Bed Room

In the bedroom, opulent furnishings are just as important as in the rest of the house. Any kind of classic styled bed will generally do, though those with carved legs and elaborately carved headboards are most fitting to the era. A four-poster would be more regal, though perhaps not quite as authentic.

For bedside tables and chests of drawers, again bowed legs or elaborate carving is what you should seek out. For lighting, a mix of classic styled wall lights, table lamps, and possibly a pendant or chandelier will provide plenty of choice to match the lighting to the mood.

Lighting Choices to Suit a Modern Décor

The modern era tends toward minimalism and simplicity. In earlier times, people favoured sophisticated designs that were highly decorative and complex. Both styles have their respective merits, but one thing that can be said in favour of the modern design style is that cleaning and maintenance are usually much easier tasks to accomplish.

In this article we'll look at some of the choices from the Christopher Wray collection that will help you achieve better lighting results to complement a modern décor.

"Aglio" Chandelier Pendant

This modern chandelier pendant design combines all-round light diffusion with soft downlighting to create a nice comfortable atmosphere.

It's ideal for work or study areas, and could also be good for the living room or even the dining room.

The clear crystal glass features soft ribs or ridges around the exterior, which helps to more effectively diffuse the light without scattering it or casting ugly shadows.

For a simple light that doesn't sacrifice anything in the way of elegance, Aglio fits the bill. 

"Alderbury" Hanging Light Strip

Some of the best modern designs are influenced by the classic styles, and Alderbury is no exception.

Designed as a row of three downlights supported by a cleverly engineered suspension system, this light strip is as ideal in the workplace as it is in the home.

Use it in any place where you need effective, focused downlighting. With good lighting you can be more productive and will be less likely to make errors.

As shown in the picture above, the lights are fantastic to use over an office desk, but are equally at home in the kitchen, or at a workbench.

The central arch that supports the main bar is the key to the strength of this design. The downward force is distributed evenly, allowing a wide base to be supported from a smaller central mounting area.

"Alumino" Hanging Light Strip

 Here is another very simple light strip that would be excellent to use in a home office. This design could also be effective in a shop such as a jewellers, an art gallery, or even a museum. Anywhere, in fact, that you'd like to show off whatever is placed under it as an exhibit.

For the office setting, Alumino provides simple direct focused task lighting with protection against glare. There is ample light emission at full power, and you can also add a dimmer switch to adjust the output according to your needs at any given time.

 

"Asteroid" Chandelier Pendant

Make your artistic statement with the Asteroid chandelier design from Christopher Wray.

Perhaps it's a bit ironic that this would also be a great choice for a retro 70s style café. Add a Galaga machine in the background, and it will take you right back to those dreams of the 21st century.

Well, not everyone owns a flying car or a personal jet pack yet, but fortunately you can buy yourself an Asteroid chandelier just by visiting Christopher Wray Lighting in London. At least one of those dreams of a better future can be fulfilled today.

"Bellatrix" Hanging Light Strip

Owning something like the Hope Diamond is not a realistic goal for most people, but the Bellatrix hanging light strip with the beautiful "diamond cut" Swarovski crystal can help satisfy your craving for a sophisticated modern lighting scheme.

It makes an especially strong statement in the Board Room, with its suggestion of class.

 

"Cabildo" Suspension Lamp

A simple eye-shaped lamp made from painted die-cast aluminium, the Cabildo suspension lamp will look great in such a wide range of different settings. It's ideal for home use, but could easily also be used for lighting a commercial exhibit or artistic display.

"Chevreaux" Suspension Lamp

One of the more stunning pieces in the Christopher Wray collection – and that's really saying something – is the Chevreaux suspension lamp. This one is very different from the typical hanging lamp design. If you like modern design with a futuristic twist, look no further than Chevreaux.

This design is inspired by the famous Möbius band, discovered by German mathematicians in 1858.

The properties of this band make it something of a physical conundrum. Every object that exists in our three dimensional universe should have at least two sides, but with the Möbius band it is practically impossible to determine one side from the other, even though we know logically both sides must exist.

"Connesso" Suspension Lamp

The Connesso lamp has similarities in design to the Chevreaux, but it is much larger and a bit less "illusiony".

This is another design that would be a great addition to the Board Room, as it conveys a certain aura of strength and power. It would be perfect in the Board Room of a bank or investment house, for example.

It looks far heavier than it actually is, so you need have no fears of it falling if it is installed properly.

"Denzey" Chandelier Pendant

The charm of the Denzey design is in the way it gives off such a warm and cosy look, which is unusual for a modern lighting design.

This makes it ideal for use in living room or bedroom, though it's also suited to large open shared spaces in commercial environments such as bookshops, cafés, or communal areas in schools and colleges. The picture makes it look almost like it is made from paper, but actually it is a solid wood construction with a pyrex glass core, so it is very strong and safe.

You can complement this light with some matching table lamps that are also available from our London shop.

This concludes the first instalment in our series on modern lighting design innovations. As always, we hope it was an illuminating read, and thank you for joining us on our journey through some of the standouts among more than 1200 lighting choices provided at Christopher Wray Lighting.

 

A Study of Art Nouveau Lighting Designs

People often confuse Art Deco with Art Nouveau, believing in many cases that the terms are interchangeable. If you want a truly integral design theme for your home or office interior, it's important to understand the key difference in styles. Whereas the Art Deco style was purely concerned with decorative geometry, Art Nouveau attempted to capture the elegance and beauty of nature and express this in the design.

In the section below, we'll look at some examples of Art Nouveau style lighting designs from the Christopher Wray collection and examine some of the points that make this style able to transcend the bounds of time and fashion.

 "Ampula" Chandelier

The natural inspiration for Ampula is much more obvious. Having a strong resemblance to hanging flowers such as fuchsia, the tendril-like flutes and floral light shades are as beautiful as they are bold.

Making a design as intricate and large in scale as the Ampula chandelier requires expertise in many skills, and focused attention to the finer details.

If too much pressure is applied to any one component during the crafting process, the delicate glass could shatter and ruin the whole piece.

Because each piece must be made by hand, there are numerous options here that can be customised, from the number of flutes to the colours and materials used in the fabrication. Ampula is different from the typical chandelier design, and beautifully so.

"Aria" Chandelier

 A more contemporary style of Art Nouveau that evokes thoughts of the mysteries of the deep sea. Scientific knowledge of this area has only expanded during the later half of the twentieth century, so earlier lighting design artists did not have access to the information required t make these kinds of designs.

The beautiful organic simplicity is cleverly offset by the straight edged geometric lines, making Aria a unique conversation piece.

"Azure" Chandelier

The intense yet sparse colouring and intricate glasswork of the Azure design make it a striking addition to any room.

The detail, when you look closely, is impressive. This is made from hand blown Murano glass, and everything must be done quickly and precisely.

The glass must be worked while it is at exactly the right temperature, and care must be taken not only in the handling but also in management of temperature. If the glass cools too quickly, there is a risk it will shatter. If it cools too slowly, it may warp or lose some of the precious detail.

The colouring is also important. Colour must be applied in exactly the right place, in the right way, at the right time.

Beautiful and functional, Azure is a fine example of classic Art Nouveau design.

"Corbet" Chandelier

The design of the Corbet chandelier is reminiscent of the Spring season, with its cheerful colours, finely crafted floral motifs, and breezy hanging bell-like tassels.

The apparent simplicity is deceptive. Take a closer look and you'll notice the careful twists and turns that appear to defy gravity. Surely such delicate glass should not be able to hold its shape, and yet indeed it does. The flowers are available in a range of colours, as well as multicoloured flowers.

As in many of nature's wonders, the chandelier is constructed in a series of tiers. At the very bottom is an assortment of hanging decorations. Above this is a succession of sculpted layers. Overall the effect of conveying an aspect of nature in the springtime is achieved successfully by the Corbet design.

"Daffy" Chandelier

For those who like to make a big statement, there's no bigger way to do it in the interior decoration context than with Daffy. This is a positively huge multi-layered chandelier with enough individual light points it will actually help to warm the room on a cold winter night.

As the name implies, the design is inspired by daffodils, and all the necessary colours and shapes are there to create the right impression.

The colossal size and bold colouring mean this chandelier will command attention, and it will dominate the overall décor scheme unless strategically placed. Large cavernous rooms such as hotel lobbies, ball rooms, or libraries would probably be the most suitable places for Daffy to be featured.

 

"Farington" Chandelier Pendant

Farington pays homage to the classic Tiffany style that started off the whole Art Nouveau movement in lighting design.

Elegant, yet minimalist, the design is comfortable to look at and will give a room a more cheerful and cosy aspect.

This is also a very simple hanging light to install because it has so few parts. It's certainly much easier to clean and maintain than the typical chandelier design.

 

"Florello" Chandelier

The name says it all with Florello. A distinctive floral design is dominant here, with bright reds and greens that will catch attention even when the light is unlit. Switch it on, and the real elegance shines through. You can experience the way the light plays delicately through the carefully folded leaves and petals of the design.

This is a very distinctive Art Nouveau piece, and the exquisite detail is simply a joy to behold. There are no exposed light points, which makes this more suggestive of the Edwardian era than most of the other chandeliers which tend to allude to earlier times.

 

"Garthurst" Chandelier Pendant

Another design that will remind the viewer of the Tiffany style, Garthurst is similar in concept to Farington, except that by opening at the bottom it combines the elegance of a chandelier with the focus of a downlight, so it's good for areas that need more than average illumination.

The larger surface area provided by the "pyramid" walls allows for more detail to be added in the floral part of the design. Hanging three or four of these over a kitchen counter would provide plenty of light for food preparation tasks.

This concludes the first instalment in our series on Art Nouveau lighting designs. We hope you found it illuminating and inspiring.

 

2019 London Design Festival

London Design Festival – three words that are guaranteed to excite everyone on the Christopher Wray Lighting team. We love London. We love design. And we definitely love festivals.

If this is the first you're hearing about this festival, have no worries as we have all the information you need to become an expert on this particular event.

 

When is the festival on?

This year the London Design Festival will be held from Saturday 14 to Sunday 22 September. That's a whole 9 days, so however busy you may be, there should still be some room to fit this event into your schedule. Founded in 2003, the festival celebrates and endorses London as the design capital of the world and, 15 years later; attendance numbers hit a record-breaking 588,200 so it’s growing each year.

It's worth being aware that London is always a busy city, but during the London Design Festival it will be a whole lot busier. More than half a million visitors flood into the city from all corners of the globe, and that's in addition to the usual tourist crowds, shoppers, and city workers.

Planning your visit in advance is definitely a good idea!

 

Where is the festival held?

The London Design Festival takes place in London, England. Unlike many other festivals, this one doesn't have a single central venue. It's just an event that is held across the city, although the official zones or districts as devised by the LDF organisers are:

  • Bankside (South London on the banks of the Thames, from Borough Market to Oxo Tower Wharf).
  • Brompton (Brompton area, centred on Brompton Road. This road is a continuation of Fulham Road, and eventually fuses into Cromwell Road).
  • Clerkenwell (Historically famous area of the central North. Also known for being a centre of Anglo-Italian culture).
  • Fitzrovia (right in the heart of the city, Fitzrovia is where you'll find a lot of high-tech companies competing for attention).
  • Marylebone (a very old area of central London with many small shops, boutiques, and studios).
  • Mayfair (one of the largest and most upmarket design areas of London, made famous by being the most expensive property on a Monopoly board).
  • Pimlico Road (one of the smaller zones, but easy to find and traverse).
  • Regent St & St James's (big, popular, and famous, this district hardly needs an introduction).
  • Shoreditch (officially the "Shoreditch Design Triangle", it's in the East End of London).
  • Victoria (officially the "Victoria Connections Design District", it's an area that mostly caters to the business community).
  • West Kensington (a very arty district, centred on the Olympia building).

 

We hope you enjoy the show

We are really thrilled that the London Design Festival is going to be a hugely popular event once again this year and we look forward to the buzz that it creates.

Christopher Wray Lighting has always been a pivotal figure for lighting design in London and we are constantly innovating and devising new ways to light up your life so take some time to check out some of our bespoke designs. We’re proud to play such a big part in London’s design scene and it’s festivals like this that allows designers like Christopher to promote and showcase their creativity.

Why Choose LED Lighting for Your Bathroom Upgrade

Technology is a wonderful thing in most aspects and it’s sure been a game changer when it comes to the lighting industry. Since 2015, homeowners have spent millions of pounds on upgrading their more traditional lighting to LED lighting and they’re reaping the rewards of doing so.

Your bathroom is a hugely important space within your home; it’s a sanctuary where you can wash off the hard work of the day, relax in the bathtub and pamper yourself. It’s also somewhere that you groom and get freshened up; ready to face everything you have to like a champ.

That’s why it’s so imperative to have the right lighting in your bathroom. A lot of bathrooms have poor lighting that doesn’t cast enough light on mirrors to be effective, or the lighting is simply wrong for the overall style of the bathroom.

If you are remodelling your entire bathroom or you simply want to upgrade the lighting to suit your modern fixtures, then LED lighting is the way to go.

 

Here’s why our first choice for bathroom lights are LED:

 

Prices are much better

The LED lighting market has seen a massive growth in popularity, which has resulted in more affordable prices for both bulbs and fixtures. It now costs a whole lot less to upgrade your lighting to LED than ever before.

Whether you are simply looking to swap out your bulbs to LED or you want to upgrade the entire system and go for the sleeker looking new LED fixtures and strips – then you can do so without the hefty price tag that used to accompany it.

 

A whole range of new styles

When people hear the term “LED lighting” they often think that they are going to end up with bare fixtures that cast some sort of fluorescent glow all over their homes. The truth of the matter is that the LED lighting market is now one of the most stylish and modern within the industry.

You can now get LED lighting for your bathroom in a huge range of styles to suit the décor of your bathroom, whether that’s contemporary, rustic or traditional. LED lights are cool, stylish and will add that little bit extra to bring your bathroom décor together.

 

An improved quality of light

We are well aware that the early attempts at LED lighting often produced the sterile white or blue light that you’d find in an office or a hospital and it wasn’t particularly stylish or flattering. However, the LED lighting industry has advanced so rapidly that you can hardly tell the difference between LED and incandescent lighting nowadays. LED lights are also dimmable, which makes them the perfect addition to any bathroom, as they can be as bright as they need to be for your grooming but put down low when you want to relax in the bath with some candles.

 

Smart lighting

One of the most wonderful things about LED lighting is its potential for connectivity; LED lighting can be controlled from your smartphone or tablet through an app. This means that you don’t have to get out of bed when you realise you’ve forgotten to turn the bathroom light off.

Smart lighting is also an important feature when it comes to the safety of your home, as you can turn lights on even when you are not there and deter anyone that thinks you are out.

 

Save energy

We are all becoming more and more conscious of the impact that we are having on the planet and one of the main problems is our energy consumption of fossil fuels and other non-renewable sources. LED lighting was developed due to the need for more energy efficient lighting solutions. LED bulbs use dramatically less energy than older bulbs; they use less energy and save you money on your monthly bills. We think that’s a win-win!

If you’d like to know more about our lighting range or you have a question about interior design in general, we would love to hear from you today so please do get in touch.

How to Light Low Ceilings

It’s common knowledge in the interior decorating world that a high ceiling makes your room look larger, lighter and much more spacious, even if the width dimensions are not huge.

We would all love to have high ceilings in our homes, but the fact of the matter is that it’s not always possible and sometimes our homes simply have low ceilings; this shouldn’t put your off trying to make the room look as spacious as possible.

The right lighting fixtures can go a very long way in making your low-ceilinged room look far bigger than it actually is.

If your ceiling is under 2.4 metres, then it is considered a low ceiling and this is mainly due to the fact that you have very little leeway when it comes to vertical lighting fixtures. If you have a low ceiling, you need to carefully select your lighting so that it doesn’t become a hazard for the taller visitors or members of your household.

Whether it’s just in your attic and other such rooms, or if it is your whole household – having low ceilings means that you do have to make some compromises but it doesn’t mean that you can’t have really great lighting designs.

If you light your low ceilings badly, it could cause accidental pools of high-contrast lighting in your room and across your ceiling which will leave huge hot spots and really dark shadows that may make it hard to see what you are doing. If your low ceiling is somewhere like a basement, then lighting is particularly important as there is bound to be a lack of natural light.

You really don’t have to worry about your low ceilings, instead embrace what you’ve been given and take the opportunity to make unique, calculated design decisions that will enhance the size of the room and make it feel spacious.

 

Use low-profile fixtures

Large, long/low-hanging fixtures are simply not going to work in a room that has a low ceiling. They are going to take up all of the vertical space and actually make the room look and feel more cramped – particularly for taller guests that keep bumping into them.

So, pendants and chandeliers are probably not going to be the first choice for a room with a low ceiling. Instead; there are a whole lot of really great, modern low-profile options for you to choose from including;

  • Flush mounts and semi-flush mounts: Flush mounts don’t have the best reputation in the lighting industry and that’s because they used to be archaic and unsightly lamps that detracted rather than added to a room’s charm.

    However, these lamps have gone through a complete revamp and now are available in all sorts of styles and designs that will bring an extra bit of energy and style to your rooms that have low ceilings. Our range of flush and semi-flush mounts are perfect for your low-ceilinged room, but remember to avoid anything that hangs.
  • Recessed lighting: If you haven’t heard of recessed lights then don’t fret too much – they are also called pot lights and for good reason. These lights are built into the ceiling, rather than on the top of it and outside of it, which means that they take up virtually none of the vertical space that is so important in a room that has a low ceiling.

There is a wonderfully large range of lights for low ceilings that you can choose from that will make your rooms seem bigger, more spacious and won’t knock your tall friends or family on the head every time that they enter the room.

If you’re worried about your low ceiling, then get in touch with us and our team of expert designers will be on hand to help you achieve the look that you want.

Top Tips For Lighting Up Your Kitchen

Like anything in life, your kitchen requires the right balance between lighting and décor to get it looking and feeling as perfect as it possibly can. The kitchen is often the hub of the home and many hours are spent meal prepping, cooking, doing grocery lists, helping kids with the homework and drinking wine with your best friend.

That’s why it’s so important that you choose the right light for your kitchen. Here is a handy guide put together by our design experts on how to get your kitchen lighting just right:

The three types of lights

As with any room in your home, you shouldn’t just stick to one type of lighting and rather use a combination of different lighting types and styles to get the best overall effect. The three best kinds of lighting for your kitchen that you should know about are ambient lighting, task lighting and accent lighting.

  1.        Ambient lighting

Ambient lighting is the main source of lighting in your kitchen and could be an extra addition to natural window light, or a fill-in if you don’t have any natural light to rely on. Ambient lighting works best when it is cast evenly over the room from your ceiling and this means that you can use a combination of lighting styles like chandeliers and flush or semi-flush pendant lights and mounts.

  1.        Task lighting

As already mentioned, task lighting is the main source of light in your kitchen, however, it isn’t going to be able to reach every nook and cranny in the room and, as such, it’s doing to leave shadows and dark areas that you are going to want to adorn with lighting.

Task lighting helps you to illuminate the areas that your ambient lighting doesn’t reach; this ensures that your countertops and cabinets are sufficiently lit to safely prepare food, read recipes and do homework. Strip lighting and puck lights are two of the most common choices when it comes to task lighting in kitchens.

  1.        Accent lighting

Accent lighting is the crème de la crème of kitchen lighting; while some people may see it as an unnecessary addition, most people know that accent lighting is absolutely essential. Accent lighting includes fixtures like kick lights and cabinet lights that are used for the sole purpose of making the most beautiful and unique parts of your kitchen stand out.

 

The Most Important Areas to Light in Your Kitchen

Your kitchen is comprised of a few very important areas and you need to make sure that the following spaces are illuminated in the right way and style to accentuate their features:

  • Your island: Your kitchen island really is where all the action happens; whether that’s as an integrated cooktop space or if it’s more of a chopping and hanging out area – you’re going to want to ensure that you light it correctly.

    If you have an island that is used predominantly for cooking, cutting or reading recipes, then something like hanging lights of down lighting is going to look great. If you have a more of a counter seating space or socialising island, then look at lighting fixtures such as pendants.
  • Under-cabinet lighting: Lighting your cabinets correctly is way more important than many people believe it to be. Ambient lighting is great for an overall light throughout the kitchen but it can leave dark shadows under cabinets and under-cabinet lighting is used to rectify this and give the space the illumination it needs.

    Task lighting can be used for these spaces to ensure that you can read your recipes, see your ingredients, find your spices and much more.
  • Ceiling lighting: Lighting your ceiling well can make a huge difference when it comes to how big your kitchen looks. Uneven lighting often causes rooms to look small; use recessed lighting or other lighting options to ensure your ceiling is evenly and properly lit for the look you want to achieve in your kitchen.

If you’d like more expert advice on how to remodel your kitchen or you would simply like to find out more about our lighting fixtures, please get in touch as we’d love to hear from you.

How To Get the Perfectly Lit Room

It’s hard to get the lighting absolutely perfect in all of your rooms – not impossible – but hard. It takes a lot of planning and calculating to understand what lighting you need in your room and how it’s going to work in conjunction with other lighting fixtures.

 If you aren’t a professional when it comes to lighting, then this can all seem quite intimidating and creating a beautiful, functional space for you, your family and your friends can be a little daunting.

 

If you feel like there’s just something that isn’t quite right about your room, then we’d safely say that it could be your lighting. That’s why we put together this quick guide to help you get started on creating the perfect lighting for your rooms.

A well-lit room takes preparation and this all starts with four predominant issues that you need to consider: 

  1. What the room is used for
  2. How to light the different parts of the room
  3. What kind of light sources to use
  4. Using dimmable light fixtures

 

What are you using the room for?

Before you get started with your lighting design plan, the most important thing to consider is what the purpose of the room is. The activities that you are doing in the room are going to be a massive factor when it comes to deciding the lighting that you are going to need.

For example:

  • Avoid using very bright lights around your bed, as they will stimulate your mind and make sleep harder to come by – blue light is particularly bad for getting beauty sleep. Use something with a low colour temperature if you want something close to your bed.
  • Use bright bulbs in wardrobes and cupboards to ensure that you can find what you are looking for no matter what time of day it is.
  • Make sure that the lighting in the dining room doesn’t shine into people’s eyes.
  • Use a combination of lighting in the kitchen to light up dark spaces and accentuate work areas.

 

Light the different parts of your room

The best and simplest way to have a well-lit room is breaking the room down into zones that have their own lighting sources, kinds and controls. By doing this you will be able to better control the ambience of your room and dim or brighten different sections according to what you are using them for.

It also allows people to enjoy the different activities in a room with a light setting specific to what they are doing; you can also save money and energy by only lighting the area that you are working in.

 

Choose your light source

Your light sources are one of the most important aspects of your space and now that you have decided what the room will be used for and split the space into lighting zones, you can now go ahead and find the fixtures that will suit it best.

Don’t just stick to one style; instead combine different kinds of lighting fixtures such as floor lighting, desk lamps, natural light, wall lights and overhead light. This will help to accentuate the special parts of your room and make sure it’s practical for its function.

 

Using dimmers

We really do believe that dimmers can go a long way in creating the right ambience for your room, especially if it’s a multi-purpose space.

A dimmer gives you flexibility and control that set lighting fixtures don’t and allow you to adjust the lighting to suit your needs; for example in the bathroom you can make it bright when putting makeup on or shaving your beard, but put it right down when enjoying a relaxing bath.

These are just some of the ways that you can make your lighting perfect for every room. If you would like to get more advice from our professional designers here at Christopher Wray, then please feel free to get in contact with us. We’d love to help you achieve perfectly lit rooms in your home.

Lighting Trends for Spring Summer 2019

Spring is just around the corner and that could mean an update on your home’s decoration and design. One of the simplest and most effective ways to give your home a wonderful update without having to do anything too drastic is simply by changing up your lighting.

 

 

Lighting can make your house ooze in character and sophistication, or it could make it a drab and character-less space. It really is as easy as swapping out those old lamps with something more contemporary to give your house a whole new fresh look.

If you’re thinking about changing up the lighting in your home, these are just some of our favourite trends for Spring Summer 2019:

 

Au Naturale

There has been a massive shift to sustainable, eco-friendly materials throughout the interior decorating industry and that also applies to lighting trends.

Natural textures and raw materials are the new in thing. Thanks to a growing awareness of the dire straits we have landed our planet in, green living has become an ever-popular trend and an opportunity for designers to create some truly beautiful lights.

You can give your home an organic, earthy feel using lighting fixtures made of materials such as wood, bamboo and even concrete.

 

Bold

The one thing that we love about the current place we find ourselves in at the moment in the interior design industry, is that sleek, minimalist trends seem to have found common ground with more contemporary looks.

There is going to be an increasing demand for signature lights or lights that really stand out in a room. These awesome designer light features are really making waves this year and are an excellent way to add something a little different to your home.

 

Chandeliers

Chandeliers and pendants had a massive resurrection in 2018 and in 2019 so we only expect them to grow in popularity. Whether you put a chandelier in the bathroom, the bedroom, the kitchen or in the lounge, it’s going to look right at home.

 

Chandeliers come in so many materials these days, from glass and metal to beaded, natural and crystal - there’s simply something for every taste and to suit the look you want for your home.

 

Future modern

It was always a given that even though we have embraced some of the styles of the past - a nostalgic trip back down memory lane - there was always going to be those designs looking to break the mould and cater for those looking for the ultra-modern lighting designs.

These come in shapes that are sleek, minimalistic and futuristic. Everything from floor lamps to painting lights, hanging bulbs and reading lamps has been tinkered with and these modern and mystifying representations of the new age will fit seamlessly into any modern, minimalist home.

 

Landscape lighting

No, we aren’t talking about lighting that is going to make your garden look spectacular, but rather lighting that is veering away from the traditional vertical hanging fixtures that we know and love.

Vertical lighting spans the width of the room and creates a contemporary, yet clean look to any room in your house. Use exposed bulbs for extra emphasis on the effect that they can have on the lighting in your home.

 

Structures

We seem to be pushing our creative abilities to their absolute peak at this stage of the lighting industry and some of the designs coming out are simply breath-taking. Sculptural fixtures or lamps make a statement in a room and can often be viewed more as art than as lights.

These are some of our favourite lighting trends for 2019. If you’d like to know more about how we can help you upgrade the lighting in your home, please give us a call or simply browse through the amazing ranges on our online lighting store.

The 5 Most Important Interior Trends for Spring 2019

We all know that it’s been a pretty long and brutal winter and everyone is waiting for spring to bring some sunlight, warmth and cheer into our lives. It’s no coincidence that spring is the season that sees the most renovation and redecorating when compared to its 3 other seasonal compatriots; besides they don’t call it spring cleaning for nothing!

 

Spring is fresh, it smells good, it’s reinvigorating and it’s the time of the year where we at Christopher Wray are most excited to see what trends are really going to take off in a big way.

We attended a whole host of design events and shows last year and if the whispers are to be believed, these are the top design trends to keep an eye out for in spring:

 

  1.        Sustainability

There has been a palpable shift over to sustainable and eco-friendly designs over the last few years, but this year we really expect to see designers really getting stuck into it with their utmost creativity.

People are simply steering away from furniture and fixtures that are produced en-masse and are looking for quirky, personal, high quality and sustainable decorations for their homes.

2019 is going to see a new market of sophisticated household fixtures and furniture made from recycled and environmentally-friendly products that aren’t just good for the planet but also clean and elegantly designed for the modern home.

 

  1.        Darker kitchens

An interesting trend has reared its head over the last season and we have seen the search for black and navy blue kitchens expand dramatically.

Now don’t get us wrong, you shouldn’t make your whole kitchen a dark blue colour but select an aspect that you want to make pop; this could be your walls, floors, cabinets, frames or countertops. Blue is the new grey and we hope that it is here to stay.

 

  1.        Linear lights

There’s nothing that makes your house more of a home than lighting; luckily we’ve moved away from dull, overhead lighting into a much more exciting and sophisticated lighting era.

This year we are getting more and more requests for linear lighting that is effective whilst bringing an extra element of modern glamour to a home. Linear lighting such as the Abthorpe Range is one of our customer favourites.

 

  1.        Clashing colours and prints

We missed the years where bold patterns and prints were a thing; for very many years, the minimalist movement and modern sophisticated look seemed to shy away for anything too fun or overstated.

However, we are happy to report that colourful patterns and prints are definitely back for 2019. Whether you’re putting in outrageous wallpaper patterns, velvet cushions, or covering your couch in something bold and beautiful - you’re getting decorating on-trend this year.

However, remember that this also needs to come with some balance, as you don’t want to make your whole house patterned - select a few aspects of your home and furniture and boldify them up and they will light up the whole room.

 

  1.        Living Coral

There is absolutely no shying away from the fact that Living Coral is this year’s Belle of the Ball. Living Coral was recently named 2019’s Pantone Colour of the Year and this means we’re going to be seeing a whole lot of it.

It’s a bright, pinky-orange dusting of colour that manages to find the middle of the ground in being both understated and eye-catching. How you use it is going to impact the effect that it has on your home; as a wall colour it will pop with playfulness and give your home a bold look and on the other side of the spectrum, using just small pockets of it in a minimalist/modern home will just give you cheeky glances of warmth that bring everything together.

Get in contact with us if you’d like some more expert advice on interior decorating, or have a look at our extensive range of high-quality products from the world’s best designers.