Interior Designers Share Their Lighting Ideas and Tips

Modern Living Room Lighting Ideas
James Tiffany

The lighting you choose can transform your home, for better or for worse. And since it's always preferable to land on the former—especially because lighting has such a direct impact on mood and energy—it's important to make informed decisions when shopping for a new fixture.

We reached out to interior designers and influencers to find out some of their tricks and tips for choosing the right lighting for different types of spaces. As expected, they had plenty of savvy style wisdom.

Read on to see how they use lighting to flatter every corner of a home, from the living room to the bedroom and beyond.

01 of 08

Make a Statement

Modern Living Room Lighting Ideas
James Tiffany

With high ceilings and an open floor plan, this space is destined for a statement-making light fixture. Designer Erica Reitman picked this one "because I wanted a large, open-feeling fixture for our space. We have a tiny little house (750 square feet), and I needed something that would make a statement, but also not feel too overwhelming for the room," she tells us. The gold finish also dresses up the white exposed beams for a more refined touch. 

Hudson Valley Aged Brass Gideon Chandelier with Crystal Accents $1,678.00
02 of 08

Traditional Meets Contemporary

Traditional Bathroom Lighting Ideas
Picture Perfect House

This primary bathroom strikes the perfect balance between modern and timeless. The bright, cheerful rug and medallion tiles warm things up a bit, while the lighting feels more conservative and traditional.

Primary Bathroom

The term “Primary Bathroom” is now widely used to describe the largest bathroom in the home, as it better reflects the space’s purpose. Many realtors, architects, interior designers, and the Real Estate Standards Association have recognized the potentially discriminatory connotations in the term “Master.” Read more about our Diversity and Inclusion Pledge.

Designers Amy Storm and Lisa Abeln of Amy Storm & Company tell us they selected this lighting "because of their timeless design and outstanding quality. We believe that lighting is one of the most important pieces of our design and we love to use statement pieces. The soft scallops on the pendant complemented the curve on the sconce and tied the two lights together beautifully with the gentle pattern on the floor." 

Hudson Valley Aged Brass Glenford Wall Sconce $416.00
03 of 08

A Touch of High-Shine

Stylish Wall Sconces
Adam Macchia

Here's another great example of a space that balances tradition with forward-thinking design. The key is to stay true to the architectural roots of the home while adding in accents that feel modern and fresh. And lighting is the perfect chance to do that. "In this pre-war NYC apartment, we were looking for an update without abandoning the bones of the space," BDHM Design tells us. "To accomplish this, we refaced the fireplace and flanked it with these prismatic sconces from Troy Lighting. They add just the right mix of tailored masculinity and modernity, and helped us underline a more Gotham-esque vibe for this Manhattan-based client."

Layer the lighting in a single space by choosing fixtures of varying heights and installations—think sconces, a chandelier, and a floor lamp. This helps create ambiance and interest.

Troy Lighting Graphite Prism Wall Sconce $352.00
04 of 08

Think About Contrast

Living Room Lighting Ideas
Anissa Zajac

Though they stuck to a strictly neutral color palette, there's plenty of intrigue and dimension in this living room because of all the interesting textures and contrasting materials. "With white walls, light floors, and linen furniture, I knew the black iron would add necessary contrast to the space. I love how it pairs well with all of the natural elements in the room while adding drama and depth," says Anissa Zajac, CEO and lead designer of House Seven Design. 

Troy Lighting Forged Iron Candle Chandelier $398.00
05 of 08

Don't Be Afraid to Try Something New

Bathroom Lighting Ideas
Tracey Jazmin

While cohesion is an important ingredient in designing consistent, thoughtful spaces, don't shy away from the unexpected. This bathroom is the perfect example. As Kristina Lynne tells, "I chose the District pendant from Troy Lighting for this bathroom because it was sleek and sexy. With the majority of the space being light and bright, I wanted something that would contrast well and grab people's attention. I love this pendant because it is simple and clean in design but the glass shade sets it apart."

Troy Lighting Satin Black District Pendant with Vintage Tube Bulb $300.00
06 of 08

Create a Vignette

Stylish Table Lamps

When styling smaller spaces like a console table in the entryway or living room, the right table lamp can really elevate the entire space, especially if it tells a story. Think about the message you are trying to get across and go from there. For example, Lea Johnson of Creekwoodhill tells us she "chose the Mitzi Mia lamp not only for the obvious—its aesthetic, form, and function—but because of its sculptural beauty to me symbolized balance. And who doesn’t covet a little more balance in their life?"

Mitzi Aged Brass Mia Table Lamp with Opal Etched Shades $406.00
07 of 08

Play With Proportion

Modern Lighting
Photo by Monica Wang Photography

Even the small details can make a stylish statement. For example, this "pendant has a classic industrial vibe that's been given an elegant update with a gorgeous slate blue finish," Anne Sage tells us. But its real edge is the proportion play that feels both sophisticated and whimsical. "I love the cheeky twist on tradition provided by the oversize bulb," she says. 

Mitzi Navy Avery Wide Pendant $292.00
08 of 08

Bring in More Texture

Dining Room Lighting Ideas
Tracey Jazmin

Lighting offers up an opportunity to put the finishing touches on a space in one fell swoop. Need a pop of color? Looking for more texture? Is the room feeling too casual? Opt for a light that not only brightens up your space but also balances out of the design. As Kristina Lynne tells us, "I originally pictured this space with a woven pendant because I was really craving some texture. When I saw the Hideaway fixture from Troy Lighting, I knew it was the perfect compromise. The metal cage, finished in champagne leaf, creates the woven look I was hoping for. It's delicate and welcoming with the softest diffused light, which makes it perfect for an intimate dining space."

Quoizel Lighting Dury 3-Light Pendant $290.00