Tag Archives: Natural Light

LAYERING | A Well-Lit Kitchen

When making plans for that new kitchen, it’s important to think about how you’ll be using the space and where specific light sources will be needed.  A well though out lighting plan has many layers to it.  Let’s explore those layers to help you create a cohesive and functional kitchen.

A M B I E N T | Lights for Navigating

Delafield Kitchen Remodel

Recessed cans, chandeliers, wall sconces, flush mount fixtures, even natural light – ambient lighting is your foundation, a general “blanket” of light for your kitchen.  It helps you navigate your space (without running into things), and it’s really the first step to your lighting plan, serving as the base for all other layers.

T A S K | Lights for Doing

Hartford Kitchen Remodel

Task lighting may arguably be the most important layer.  It helps you complete specific jobs, like meal prep and cooking, in the kitchen.  Under cabinet lights over the countertop, pendants above the island, lights at the range – it’s important to see what you’re doing especially when working with sharp knives and other potentially dangerous tools.

A C C E N T | Lights for Feeling

Herringbone Tile Layout

Accent lighting sets the tone for your kitchen, creating a warm and inviting space.  It’s often known as the decorative layer.  It can also be considered task lighting, but it demands a bit more attention – in-cabinet lights to display dishes or collectibles, beautiful pendants, and other fixtures to highlight a unique aspect of the space.  They round off the room to make it feel complete, and with so many options, it’s a great opportunity to really show off your personality.

M O O D | Lights for Changing

Wauwatosa Kitchen Remodel

Throughout the day, your lighting needs change.  During the day, natural light is often sufficient, but as the day progresses you’ll need help from your fixtures to illuminate the space for cooking and cleaning.  Entertaining?  You’ll want to set the mood.  That’s where dimmers come into play.  Dimmers can be incorporated into all layers of lighting, so you can adjust the light for your specific needs.  For instance, they’re a great option at night or in the early morning when you’re not quite ready for bright lights.

Now that you’re familiar with the various layers of light, it’s important to note that you don’t have to use separate fixtures for each layer.  There’s often a lot of overlap.

Happy light planning!

Simple.

Simplicity.  It’s something we hear in reference to many aspects of our lives.  But what does it mean for home design?  First, let’s discuss what it does not mean.  A common misconception is that simplicity is synonymous to boring, modern, cold, plain, or sterile.  Simplicity should not be confused with these descriptors.  So what does it mean?  Simplicity is timeless and unfussy.  It is effortless.  It puts emphasis on quality materials, functionality, and efficiency rather than ornate details and expansive floor plans.  How does one achieve simplicity?  Bartelt. The Remodeling Resource explores the “how” in this article.

Subtle InterestHartford Sunroom Addition

Although order and repetition can be used to achieve simplicity, there are many opportunities to add detail and character to a simple space.  Include “imperfect,” yet soft, elements such as distressed woodwork or hand-hewn beams.  Consider a monochromatic color scheme.  Create contrast with a mix of old and new items.  Add texture or pattern to your home.  Reclaimed materials, hand-scraped floors, honed countertops, a herringbone backsplash or floor, tin ceilings, brick – the options are endless to add charm and showcase your style in an understated manner.

Wauwatosa Master Bath RemodelNeutral and Natural

Cool neutrals, soothing earth tones, natural textures – simplicity is warm and adaptable to changing styles and trends.  Many homeowners opt for tone-on-tone grays, beiges, and off-whites.  For an organic feel, weathered wood, natural stone, and various metals are just a few ideas.  These elements can add a calmness to your space.

Restraint

“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”

-William Morris

This quote is a great example of simplicity.  For a simple, uncluttered space, homeowners need to learn how to “edit.”  They must choose what’s important to include and what is not necessary.  This is the “less is more” or “quality over quantity” idea we’ve discussed in the past.  Instead of a huge, open floor plan or elaborate design details, opt for efficient space planning and quiet elements.

ConnectionWauwatosa Sunroom Remodel

Simplicity and less “stuff” can connect you more to your surroundings by emphasizing natural light and showcasing views of your home’s backdrop.  It also focuses on establishing a better flow and seamless transition between the indoors and outdoors such as a sunroom with a patio door or accordion glass door that creates easy access to an outdoor entertaining space.

The Sunroom

Comfortably enjoy the outdoors year-round.

Serving as a connection between the indoors and outdoors, the sunroom is an essential space in many households.  It is a room that allows you to enjoy your setting year-round.  Whether you’re looking for a spot to relax, entertain, or get some work done, a sunroom has a lot to offer – natural light, more space, gorgeous views, and beyond.

Environmental Control

Hartford SunroomFrom extreme heat to the bitter cold, with the proper insulation, heating, and air conditioning systems, this light-filled room can be enjoyed throughout the year. A natural or gas fireplace provides additional warmth on chilly evenings, creating an inviting atmosphere.  Radiant floor heat is another option, so homeowners are able to comfortably enjoy the space in winter (even without socks).  A ceiling fan is an option, as well.

ViewWaukesha Sunroom

Choose a spot that takes advantage of the views.  Whether you live on a wooded lot, by the lake, or near a sprawling field, the sunroom is a perfect opportunity to showcase your backdrop.  Floor-to-ceiling windows, transoms, French doors, and a large patio door offer natural light and ventilation and help frame your surroundings.

Versatility

Waukesha SunroomA sunroom that serves multiple purposes will be used more often. Perhaps, the space includes a sitting area and a bar.  This is the perfect spot for either relaxing after the workday or entertaining a group on the weekend.  Maybe the sunroom features a reading nook and a table for dining.  It’s the ideal location to enjoy some alone time or share a meal with your family.  There are endless options to make this room work harder for you.

ProximityOconomowoc Sunroom

It’s important to position the sunroom near other entertaining spaces – the kitchen, family room, powder room, and patio.  If it’s easily accessible from frequently used rooms, you may enjoy the space more often, and it extends your living area.