Ideas & Quick Tips Lighting Multi-Purpose Rooms Practical Tips For the Home

How to Light an Entertainment Room

Question: We are remodeling our garage and converting it into an entertainment / family room. What type of lighting is best for our media centric room?

Answer: With so many activities going on, you need to layer the light so you’ll have it where you need it. here’s how to do it:

1. Start with general room lighting in the ceiling, which can be achieved either through a large fixture in the center of the room or recessed cans, and put them on a dimmer.

“Having the ability to dim the lights is critical for a lot of reasons,” says Henry Scott, general manager of Meletio Lighting and Electric in Dallas. “When you’re watching TV, you don’t want the light from above to contrast with what’s happening on the screen. Plus it gives you the ability to create ambiance in the room.”

2. Light the sitting areas with floor and table lamps.

When you’re sitting on the couch talking to someone or reading a book, you want the lighting to be bright and focused. You need to supplement the light from above that will be soft and scattered.

3. Add task and accent lighting to the bar and game table area.

For the bar area, you can do this by hanging two or three mini pendants from the ceiling, adding toe-kick lighting under the cabinets and below the bar stools, and illuminating the inside of cabinets to show off glassware and collectibles inside. “All three applications require similar low voltage, so you can put them all on a single transformer, which is nice,” says Rey-Barreau.

Over game tables, a popular option is to hang a special pool table lamp with three light sources that will work together to eliminate shadows. Toe-kick lighting under the table itself is also a popular addition.

4. Planning to do a lot of entertaining in the space?

Phil Scheetz of Lutron Electronics in Coopersburg, Pa., recommends you put your lighting on a remote control system. “This will allow you to set the lighting in the room just right for any activity from the comfort of your easy chair,” says Scheetz. “With the click of a button you can turn on the wall scones or lights over the pool table, shine lights on photographs on the bookcase, or dim them for a movie; and at the same time, by going with a system like this, you’re reducing energy use and extending the life of your light bulbs.”

Source: Press Release, Direct Buy, www.directbuy.com

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