How To Shop For Light Bulbs, Part 2

It’s hard to mentally make the switch from watts to lumens when you’re thinking about light output. It’s just too easy to think, “I know exactly how much light my old 60-watt incandescent light bulb gives off, and I want something that’s equivalent to that!” Thankfully, modern light bulb packaging often notes which incandescent light bulb you can compare the light output to. (We do this on our light bulb product pages as well).

It’s very handy to have a chart that lays out the conversion for you! We shared one by the Federal Trade Commission last June, but it didn’t include examples of efficient light bulbs to replace the incandescent ones. This one, by Lighting Facts, is straightforward and very informative. Enjoy!

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A Guide To Retail Jewelry Lighting

Jewelry doesn’t sparkle and shine on its own – the reason a gem looks radiant is because of the way it reflects light! That being said, lighting is integral to retail design in a jewelry store. You want your displays to entice customers and show off your products in all their brilliance! Hopefully, we can help. This post will lay out options for various jewelry lighting displays.

The Illuminated Wall Display:

Planning on featuring jewelry within shelving units alongside a wall of your store? It’s a great way to display a large amount of inventory, but it’s important to make sure items don’t get lost in the shadows.

For the most dramatic effect, use puck lights to call attention to individual pieces, as seen in the photo to the right. Puck lighting above jewelry creates beautiful silhouettes and puts a spotlight on each piece.

If you love the look of evenly illuminated in-wall shelving displays, there is a way to avoid the spotlight effect. For a more subtle glow, install light fixtures on the inside edges of your shelves. See these photos for an example of this type of display case installation. You can accomplish this using our Xenon Low Voltage Light Strip or any of our microfluorescent fixtures. (more…)

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Set Design & Lighting Effects, Featuring FX Group

If there’s anyone that knows a thing or two about the effect lighting has on people, it’s the broadcast set designers at FX Group. In their opinion (and we couldn’t agree more), “the difference professionally-designed lighting makes is stunning — colors pop off the screen, talent looks their best and your set and branding grab viewers’ attention.” Here’s an example of their work:


FX Group also works with theme parks and museums (see their portfolio here) to create experiences that engage audiences through set designs.

We haven’t covered broadcast lighting here on Light Reading much, but it has more in common than you would think with display lighting, under cabinet lighting,  and even bedroom lighting. When you look at a room – whether that’s your own kitchen or the set of your favorite news channel – lighting is rarely the first thing you notice. Instead, you’re checking out the granite countertops in the kitchen, or the furniture in the bedroom, or the newscaster’s wacky new tie.

However, without good lighting, those granite countertops would be duller, the bedroom would seem cold and nondescript, and the newscaster would be ensconced in unflattering shadows.

FX Group’s CEO Mack McLaughlin recently shared a blog post about a new app by ZVORK that enables you to see the effects of various lighting instruments on a person. You can place up to six light fixtures in the scene, control the intensity, add color filters, and more. Here are two screenshots from the application:

Quite a different feel, isn’t it? 

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Put Lighting On Your Road Safety Checklist

This glowing light will lead the way if you're walking to the car late at night. Plus, it makes finding keys in a bag a breeze!

It’s impossible to anticipate a breakdown or roadside emergency, which is why it’s important to always be prepared. Already equipped with a spare tire, first-aid kit, and jumper cables in the trunk? They might not be of much help if disaster strikes after dark, and you have no viable light source to illuminate the problem.

We recently added a few new products to the website designed for road safety. Our LED Road Flares will keep your stopped car very visible to other drivers: They can be seen from a mile away.

Our LED Trouble Light makes it easy to check under the hood, and it’s a handy tool to keep in your car. With 16 LEDs on the side of the thin wand, a flashlight-style spotlight on the tip, and an integrated laser pointer, it’s definitely a sophisticated flashlight.

Road safety is a serious issue. It’s the leading cause of death for people between the ages of 1 and 34. For more products that will keep you safer on the road in the event of an emergency, check out our battery operated lighting page.

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Seen & Heard At The Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS)

We were not able to attend The Kitchen & Bath Industry Show in Chicago this year, but we have had a lot of fun following the Twitter hashtag (#KBIS) to stay tuned in to the latest & greatest kitchen and bath products.

Here are a few photos that caught our attention:

Top Row, Left to Right: Retractable Towel Rings by Moen; Image via @HGTV. VibrAcoustic Bath Controls by Kohler; Image via @AptTherapyBottom Row, Left to Right: Space Corner Drawers by Blum; Image via bobvila.com. Galley Sink by Roger Shollmier; Image via remodeling.hw.net. (more…)

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Light Show Powered By Bikes

This is not everyday lighting design. Unless, that is, you’re accustomed to an inspirational light show accompanying your workouts.

The photo to the right is one of British lighting designer Bruce Munro’s latest exhibits. Called Star-Turn, it’s completely interactive with mechanical components powered by bike pedals. As a participant spins the pedals, tealight candles also spin to create spiraling rays of light. The exhibit consumes no electricity at all.

Recently, Star-Turn was used in a fundraiser for Help for Heroes, an organization that aids wounded soldiers in the UK. Munro’s inspiration for the exhibit:

Two years ago I was riding my bicycle in the lanes near my workshop – it’s a very good way to keep fit. But that winter afternoon it was dark and my lights had failed, and I fell off into a ditch full of icy cold cow-poop. As I got to my feet, the idea of cycling in a warm, dry, well-lit environment seemed irresistibly attractive. Almost immediately when I got home I started sketching the Star-Turn bike. – Bruce Munro, “The Inspiration”

To see more, check out his website. Here’s one more photo of the magnificent Star-Turn:

Photos via Discovery Channel.

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