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See your home in a new light

(NC) They call it mood lighting for a reason. Whether it's a cozy and intimate den or a bright and functional work space, choosing the right location, wattage, and fixtures is one of the most important design decisions you can make.

And with the news that incandescent light bulbs are being transitioned out across the country, now is the best time for a re-evaluation of your lighting needs. According to the experts at The Home Depot, the right lighting for every space is as easy as following these trusted tips.

Setting the scene: Each room should have a mood that reflects its use. Direct or task lighting focuses on a workspace, like a countertop; and ambient or indirect lighting is used to create atmosphere, for example in a dining area. Remember to vary the brightness levels in different areas of a room to help prevent "lighting fatigue" which often occurs in shadow-less spaces, such as conference rooms.

The layering effect: Using a variety of light sources in a room creates a multitasking space – from under cabinet kitchen lights for prepping meals to pendant lights for homework and casual entertaining. Start with ambient light to evenly illuminate, then spotlight work areas with directional lighting. Accent and decorative lights, such as chandeliers and lamps, bring it all together.

Go for drama: Why not add a crystal chandelier to an ensuite bath or emphasize a wood-beam with focused accent lighting. Creating drama is all about up-lighting to focus attention on important elements like a fireplace, painting, or an architectural detail.

Multi-directional: Consider using directional lightingon countertops, kitchen islands, dressers and seating areas to add interest. Reduce shadows without creating the “office” effect by training recessed fixtures on the table and chandelier in the dining area, or down-lights directly over sinks and vanities.

Dimming for dollars: Dimmers are the quickest fix for setting the mood and won't break the bank. And as the days get shorter and we need more lights on, switching to high efficiency bulbs will help reduce the monthly bills. In fact, why not try out the latest in LED, CFL, or halogen technology? The lighting department at The Home Depot has a wide selection of bulbs including the options from manufacturers like Philips and Cree.

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