Thursday, July 25, 2013

Let there be LIGHT

We spent last weekend learning alot about landscape lighting and have started working on an exterior lighting plan for both our front and back yards.

We are finding out that it is just as, if not more challenging than a beautifully lit interior.

But nothing really elevates your home more than a well thought out landscape lighting plan.

 Exterior lighting can add so much drama to your home after the sun sets.

It can be a beacon at night with exterior lights for pathways, pools, trees and shrubs and of course, the front door.

Using up-lighting to highlight your home's architecture and landscaping can literally transform its facade.

There is nothing more welcoming than a well-lit exterior in the evening.

A great tip it is to look to the moon for a naturalist lighting design by blending a number of light sources to emulate the effect of moonlight.


But first you must choose between solar, low voltage halogen and the latest kid on the block, LED.

I think LED is the best way to go for ease of installation and energy savings.

 My only concern is the light quality.

I don't know about you but I am not a fan of the blue tone light from solar and prefer the softer warmer light of halogen or low voltage.

Someone recommended an online source for landscape lighting called Volt.

They swear their LED products are indistinguishable from halogen and the quality of the fixtures and transformers is far superior to what can be found at the big box stores. 

Though it might cost a bit more upfront, it more than pays for itself in the long run.

The options are many...  uplights, down lights, spot lights, flood lights, wall washers, accent lights, path lights and more.

What I think is most important though is using the right fixtures with the right wattage in the right spots which is harder than it sounds.

After taking a look around Pinterest I am more convinced of this than ever.

I saw many homes that in my opinion were over lit.

I also saw many examples where not enough light was utilized.

It's definitely an art and the homes that looked the best were professionally done. 

In fact, the homes with modern architecture were the most stunning!

If money were no object I would love to hire a professional but as it stands I'm going to try and light our home to the best of my ability.

I have a feeling there will be a lot of trial and error involved but I'm up for the challenge!

It's amazing that with all the time, energy, focus and money we put towards the interior of our homes, many of us forget about the WOW factor that exterior lighting can have.

So now of course I'm curious how many of you have homes that shine at night? 





Kathysue said...

As you well know, this gal has to have light!! Inside and out. I love a soft ambient lighting outside and I so agree, no blue based light, has to have the glow of a candlelight. I ran into this problem when placing lights inside the glass door cupboards. I wound up using strip lighting and it just glows at night. Outside I like the same soft glow. I know what ever you do will be stunning, you have impeccable taste. It will be so nice once it is done!
Come by my blog today, there is a tour of my home, even though you have been here, it might bring back a memory or two.
xo Kathysue

Sarah said...

Good luck with the process. I know it will be lovely. We did moon lights, but that was years ago. They tell us we need to upgrade to LED.

Patti's Artful Design said...

I can't wait to see the results of your latest home project:). I know it will be wonderful....enjoy the journey and have a great summer:)!

The enchanted home said...

This is such a beautiful post. This is one area we have yet to tackle, just put in the most basic but we have a consult with a big lighting guy in our area next week to see what he thinks we should do. I agree I too like the soft golden/warm glow vs. the blue light...look forward to hearing what you decide!

for the love of a house said...

In Dallas we had tree lights installed in all our large pecan trees using "mercury vapor" lights. Absolutely loved them. They produced the closest light to moon light. I also did a lot of research (hours driving around Dallas at night;) and found, for me, the most natural lights shined down instead of up. I was looking to replicate moonlight as opposed to highlighting things though. Here we just use the real moon;)