How can I light my desk when it is floating in the room?
Desk placement in the center of a study is difficult because most have a fan in the center of the ceiling. If you try to put recessed cans over the study for task lighting you get what we call the “strobe effect”. As the shadow from the fan passes over the lights, an effect mimicking a strobe light is created. This is very difficult on the eyes and can cause headaches and facilitate poor concentration in this important room. The best way to light a desk is to just use portable desk lamps. These classic options now come in so many styles, there is sure to be one that matches your décor. In addition to being a great décor option in a home office, I always recommend having a portable light on the desk so it can be aimed directly at specific tasks.
We already have built-in cabinetry installed in our study. What is the best way to light it?
Cabinetry in a study looks amazing when lit correctly. Always consider what will be placed on the shelves. I like to incorporate at least two different types of lighting in built-in cabinetry – mini recessed cans and LED tape. If you are displaying books, use LED tape installed on each side of the shelves. This can be done easily and is very affordable. Dust will not show as easily when using LED tape, a great perk for a home office! If you are displaying glass art or sculptures, I recommend a one-inch recessed LED mini can light be installed above each shelf. To create the right look, you will need the shelves to be at least three inches deep, but you will be amazed how great each piece of art looks on the shelves, truly making your new cabinets come alive.
My study is very dark, with a southern exposure, dark cabinets, and tall ceiling. What are some recommendations for making the room feel brighter?
This is a situation that I see very often. When lighting a dark space, I try to
incorporate wall washing lighting techniques using recessed cans. A few well-placed, adjustable art lighting recessed cans will allow the light to make the room feel bigger and brighter by emphasizing the vertical surfaces. Also, I like to incorporate floor lamps in the corners of the room, selecting ones that create indirect lighting. Indirect lighting is a great way to throw light up into the room, allowing the reflectivity of the white ceiling to help illuminate the entire space without creating glare.
Lighting Design by Lynne Stambouly
Photography by Giovanni Photography