Forum Communications, Published November 23 2012
Creative lighting can spruce up your holidays
The American Lighting Association offers some holiday lighting tips and ideas:
- Make your home’s entrance a priority. The front door is a first impression for family and friends. Start by adding a few, easy-to-install landscape up-lights to highlight trees and shrubs, or path lighting to illuminate a sidewalk or driveway. Do-it-yourself tip: Go for low-voltage landscape lights, which are easy to install and consume less energy.
- Add drama with color-changing lights. Newer LED lights can add custom color scenes that compliment a specific holiday decorating mood. You can produce the exact ambiance you like at any moment during your party or gathering. Colors can be changed at the push of a button.
- Use lighting to create a focal point. Lights can draw attention to virtually anything – a centerpiece, buffet, unusual decoration – which helps guests know where to focus their eyes.
- Add portable spotlights as highlights. These small, inexpensive fixtures typically work with a tabletop dimmer and can create pretty silhouettes, particularly under a Christmas tree, shining up through the branches.
- Illuminate corners. When decorating with lights for the holidays, make your space feel larger by placing spotlights in room corners to illuminate dark spaces.
- Swap out lighting accents. Replacing a neutral lampshade with one that is red or gold will soften the light and create a pretty atmosphere when decorating with lights for the holidays. Replace a chandelier’s crystal teardrops with gold, silver or red glass balls, or add a few shade charms, available at many craft stores, to add some sparkle and fun.
- Check your dimmers. Dimmers are ideal for creating a look, regardless of the season, because they allow for the general lighting to play a supporting role.
- Update your powder room. A few simple, extra touches, such as a portable lamp with a colored shade, will make a huge impact.
- Try novelty lights. Consider themed novelty lights for a bit of fun when decorating for any holiday. Try string lights in shapes or LED crystal lights on a festive mantle.