You may have come across our most popular blog post of all time: “How To Layout Recessed Lighting in 4 Easy Steps.” It gives readers step-by-step instructions about how to create an ideal lighting scheme in any room by adding recessed cans. Recently, we were racking our brains about how to bring that information to you in an even more accessible way…
Then inspiration struck!
We’ll make an infographic about it. The business of mapping out your lights is so visual anyway, of course a solid visual aid would come in handy. Wouldn’t it be better if readers could see how to sketch out their rooms? If they could visualize how to space out their fixtures? Or observe different lighting configurations?
We thought so.
If you’re still in the dark about how to plan your recessed lights, get ready to learn. This infographic will teach you:
Where your lights should go on the ceiling.
How to create a focal point, or an even distribution of light.
The amount of space that should go between each light.
Have you ever watched someone go spelunking? The spelunkers almost always come to a place in the cave where they have to squeeze their bodies between two huge slabs of rock and you think, my god, they’ll be trapped! How in the world are they going to get all the way through that tiny opening, and with all that gear to boot? You imagine the hard, weighty rock pressing in all around as you watch their tight, treacherous journey onward. Will they escape, or be stuck forever?
Bottom line. If you have a room that makes you feel this same vague, claustrophobish discomfort, it’s not okay. So your space doesn’t have ceilings like the Sistine Chapel. You’d be surprised at how airy and dramatic the right lighting can make your room feel – even if it has an extra-low ceiling.
Here are some tips to help you light that low ceiling:
1. Embrace width.
As a rule, the bottom of any hanging light should be at least 6’8″ off the ground – unless it’s over a table or island. When you have an 8′ ceiling, this doesn’t give you a whole lot of room to play. If you long for the grand impact of a decorative ceiling light, try a larger low-profile fixture that stays close to the ceiling, but holds some real estate up there. It’s dramatic without looking cluttered, and it will help you avoid the drama of a gash to the head.
2. Use more than one light.
A room with a single light fixture is depressing. Kick the shadows by adding multiple light sources. A few stylish flush-mount ceiling lights. Some table lamps. An accent light here or there. When you have multiple lights shining in different directions, the space will feel lighter and more open. Make sure to place ceiling lights at least 3′ from the wall, any closer and harsh shadows will make your ceiling seem lower. (more…)
What do you need to know about recessed cans? If you wouldn’t exactly label yourself an expert on these popular ceiling lights (welcome to the vast majority, my friend), it can be a huge pain to skim through pamphlet after pamphlet, manual after manual, trying to discern how to find the right lights for your space.
Instead, try taking a quick (and colorful) glance at our latest infographic, which illustrates the basic components of a recessed light, and what you should look for when picking one out. Learn what kind of housing you should use, the kinds of trims you can choose from, and how light sources like incandescents, LEDs, and more compare with one another.
Get ready for a fast, wild, innovative, informative, and (yes) long lighting roundup this month, because the lighting industry has been BUSY. You’ll hardly believe your eyes at some of these new lighting inventions, displays, and successes – so allow us to enlighten you…
In Lighting News…
“Alfredo Moser: Bottle light inventor proud to be poor”
How do you light a house using recycled materials and zero electricity? Alfredo Moser, a mechanic in southern Brazil invented a new way to light his house during the day, using only plastic bottles filled with water and a few drops of bleach. By early next year, these bottles are expected to be in over 1 million homes. Read more.
“Superdome gets new lighting system”
Remember those 34 terrible minutes at this past Super Bowl, when half of the Superdome lost power? Well, the Superdome managers are determined never to drop the ball (ha) like that again, so they’re upgrading their aging electrical equipment with a new, state-of-the-art system. Get ready for stunning computer-programmed lighting scenes, and more. Read more.
“Researchers identify cause of LED efficiency droop”
When LED light bulbs are subjected to larger electrical currents, they can loose up to 20% of their efficiency. Nobody wants that. This “efficiency droop” first identified in 1999, has hindered the LED’s development and popularity. BUT, researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have finally identified the mechanism behind this nuisance – a phenomena called “electron leakage.” Read more.
“Obama White House finally getting solar PV panels”
The White House is going solar! After spending about 40 months getting all the right permits for this energy-efficient retrofit, American-made panels are finally coming to the roof of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Read more. (more…)
What could make your experience with under cabinet lights better?
That’s the question the experts at Pegasus Lighting have been asking for years. We’ve written numerous blog posts on the subject, created video guides, and hand-picked every under cabinet fixture on our website – always with quality, affordability, and ease of operation in mind. And yet, we wanted to do more.
That’s when we decided to write an eBook. A complete resource to guide you through every step of an under cabinet lighting project…
Today, the lighting experts at Pegasus have achieved that goal. It’s called “The Complete Guide To Under Cabinet Lighting,” and you can download it for free, in the format of your choice, right here on our website.
The book includes sections on how to pick out, install, and operate under cabinet lighting. I, along with Chris Johnson, answer some of your most pressing questions, including –
Why do I need under cabinet lights?
What kind of lights will work best for my needs, my space, and my tastes?
I remember way back when I was a sophomore in college, I had a pretty weird housing situation. Unlike most dorm rooms where you can barely get the door open without smashing into your desk, my dorm room was huge. Uncomfortably huge. I shared it with two other roommates, and yes, our furniture took up a lot of the space, but as I stared out from my lofted bed in the corner at the expansive walls and high ceiling, I couldn’t help thinking it felt more like a gymnasium than a bedroom.
Eventually, I put up some posters and learned to ignore it. Then, I moved out.
Large rooms can be nice though, right? In them, you can spread out, or have parties – they’re so versatile and the decor possibilities are seemingly endless. But when you’re charged with making a huge space feel full and cozy – like a home – things can get real. Suddenly, the room is an ocean, and you are drowning.
While you can add furniture and wall hangings to your heart’s content, there’s nothing like a quality lighting scheme to fill a room without making it feel cluttered.
Warm light bouncing off the ceiling and walls gives you control over the entire area of your space. It will turn a huge cave of a room into a place that can envelop you.
Divide your room into three sections. Add lighting to all.
If you’re at all into art, photography, or design, you’ve probably heard of the rule of thirds. Applied to a room, this rule has you split the wall into 3 equal, balanced parts – the top, the middle, and the bottom. These are your three different “design levels.” Furniture or wall paneling can go at the bottom, art or other wall hangings in the middle, and the top remains as is.
By adding lights to each of these layers, the space will feel fuller and more cohesive, with focal points to diminish the room’s large, intimidating feel. Add table lamps, step lights, or uplights to the bottom portion. Floor lamps, wall sconces, or low-hanging pendants can go in the middle. The top should have recessed cans, track lighting, or larger, higher hanging lights or fans.
Finally! You can make your hanging light dreams come true. (more…)
When you think of a room with good lighting, what picture comes to mind? Does your room have skylights or giant windows? How about recessed cans or a constellation of pendants? What is the color temperature?
Bright, alone, doesn’t cut it.
There are a lot of different ways to light a room so it’s stylish and functional, comfortable and versatile. It just takes planning. Use these guidelines to get started:
Good lighting can change in a second. A well-lit room isn’t necessarily visible from space. You need different light levels for different tasks. Adjustable “layers” of different lights and dimmer switches will let you enjoy the room in more ways.
Good lighting embraces shadow. Large shadows along the walls and ceiling can turn a room into a dungeon. However, the right combination of light and shadow can help sculpt a room, giving it more character and atmosphere. Don’t be afraid of shadows that accentuate interesting textures or architecture in your space.
Good lighting isn’t distracting. Some lights shine right in your eyes. Some lights have ugly color temperatures. Some lights hum. Some lights heat up your whole room. When installing yours, make sure they’re not this obnoxious. (more…)
When you buy a new light fixture, you don’t want it to be a piece of junk. You want it to last for a long time, and hold up under the elements. You want to get your money’s worth.
But how can you figure this out before getting out your wallet? Shaking the box or tapping on the cover just won’t do.
You need to hear about IP rating.
IP, or Ingress Protection ratings are developed by the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC). A fixture’s rating indicates how well its enclosure protects its electrical equipment from the environment.
The IP rating usually includes two different numbers:
The first rates protection from solid objects and materials (like dust).
The second rates protection from liquids (like water).
These tables show what each rating indicates:
First IP Number – Protection Against Solid Objects
No special protection
Protected against solid objects up to 50 mm, e.g., accidental touch by person’s hands.
Protected against solid objects up to 12 mm, e.g., person’s fingers.
Protected against solid objects over 2.5 mm (tools and wires).
Protected against solid objects over 1 mm (tools, wires, and small wires).
Protected against dust limited ingress (no harmful deposit).
Totally protected against dust.
Second IP Number – Protection Against Liquids
Protected against vertically falling drops of water, e.g., condensation.
Protected against direct sprays of water up to 15° from the vertical.
Protected against direct sprays of water up to 60° from the vertical.
Protected against water sprayed from all directions – limited ingress permitted.
Protected against low pressure jets of water from all directions – limited ingress.
Protected against temporary flooding of water, e.g., for use on ship decks – limited ingress permitted.
Protected against the effect of immersion between 15 cm and 100 cm.
Protected against long periods of immersion under pressure.
If you’ve read our blog for any length of time, you know we’re pretty enthusiastic about light. At Pegasus Lighting, we love writing about lighting design, technology, news, advice, art, and more. BUT we also love to read about it. For today’s post, I decided it was high time to send a shout-out to some of our favorite lighting blogs, magazines, and websites. Each one is run by passionate individuals and offers a unique perspective on the lighting industry. And you better believe they keep us on our toes.
To indulge your inner lighting geek, check out Lighting Science’s company blog. You’ll learn things like how lighting affects sea turtle behavior, what it can do to our sleeping patterns, and more. The best part – Lighting Science is actively solving these problems with new, creative lighting technology!
No one can give lighting topics pizzazz and personality like Jim Hutchison from Jim On Light. He covers everything from light art to lighting technology and much in between, all with memorable enthusiasm.
As much as some good task lighting and a ceiling full of recessed cans will make a room come alive, there’s nothing like airy, natural light. You can change your home’s color, its style, and even its structure, but when it comes to the amount of sun you get, you can rarely change much. How much natural light you home receives depends on so many different factors both in and outside of your house – the direction your home faces, the topography and structures around, the number of windows you have – these can be costly or just impossible to fix.
So, when you’re on the market for a new house, be sure to consider the lighting potential of any dwelling – lest you end up with a dungeon, or an oven.
Here are some questions to keep in mind when scoping out a new property:
1. Which way does the house face?
Normally, south-facing homes get sun at the front of the house, and for most of the day. They tend to be brighter and warmer. A house that faces north gets light at the back and is cooler and darker. This may be especially important to note depending on your climate. When it’s cool most of the year, you may want a house that’s naturally a little warmer, if it’s warm for most of the year, you may prefer a house that doesn’t make you cook.
Also be sure to take a look around your property and note what could potentially affect your light. Does your house face an open field, or another row of houses? Are you at the base of a hill that will cast a shadow for most of the day, or at the top, almost always exposed to sunlight? These factors will influence the brightness in your home, and also the temperature.