How To Use Lighting in Interior Design

Moretti Blog   •   November 21, 2018

Media room

Have you ever seen a beautiful interior where actually the lighting was not giving justice? Lighting is one element of interior design that is often overlooked. But, when you consider it, lighting can have a tremendous impact on your space. You could have just one simple piece of furniture in a room but with the right lighting effect that will become a piece of art!
Do you know that lighting can impact the emotion and performance of people? This has now become a hot topic. We are now finally understanding how important lighting is for human behaviour. If you think that from the beginning of life on the earth, lighting has always had a crucial importance for living beings.

The Circadian cycle


We live following the lighting circle every day, the circadian circle. But, what is it, exactly? Your circadian rhythm is a biological process, is a 24-hours internal clock that is running in the background of your brain and cycles between sleepiness and alertness at regular intervals. It’s also known as your sleep/wake cycle. That means as well over the course of the day, we are exposed to different intensities and colors of light. In fact

  • from morning to noon: the natural light level builds in intensity toward its noontime high, and the color temperature moves quickly from a warm, orange-yellow at dawn to a cooler, crisper blue-white.
  • In the afternoon, the intensity of the light from the sun wanes until sunset, and the color temperature warms from a cool white into the richer yellow glow of dusk.

Our human body is incredibly attuned to and dependent on the sun’s daily routine. In the same way, the lighting in our interior should follow this progression of colour temperature and intensity. We are lucky that nowadays technology can help us to achieve that (ie. using a programmable control system that can set the lights at a different colour temperature during the day). But the reality is that generally we are regularly underneath artificial lighting that provides one color of light, at a single intensity, from morning to night and still many interiors are not thought with this sort of lighting in mind.

Biological and physiological effects

In reality, lighting intensity and colors are two important factors that impact people performance into space in terms of biological effects and physiological effects.
In terms of biological effects, lighting can improve or disrupt our sleep and have a great impact on our mood.

In terms of physiological effects, lighting can decrease depression and help us to adapt to our environment.

Lighting can affect your mood and even improve the perceived value and size of a space, which is why it is an essential element to any design scheme.

Proper lighting can drastically alter the atmosphere of your room, it can enhance the colors used in your decor, and it can even prove useful in marking different areas of your home. For instance, it can be used to highlight building elements, spaces, paintings, textures, features, and creating focal points.

exterior garden

We can use the lighting effect to increase the perception of a given space. Technically you can do this by highlighting the vertical walls (using technics of wall washing, wall lights etc). Or if you have for instance a nice garden, try to highlight properly the perimeter of the garden to increase the sense of depth. When you have big open spaces you can use lighting to define the different zones in terms of activities or in terms of spaces. In this image, for instance, the coffered ceiling has been used to divide the cooking area from the dining area.

Check out our blog on the type of lighting you should use. If you would like to know more about the topic click the video in which I talk about lighting:

In our project, we always introduce lighting at the planning stage so that we can create different layers and play with colours, intensity and directions. For more information or to book a consultation in our West London studio, contact us today.

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