Tips for Beautiful Bedroom Lighting

There is no other room in the house where lighting is more effective at making a space comfortable than in the bedroom. While style, sophistication, and color palette all play their roles, lighting can help you create a space that is relaxing and restful as well as any single element can. Placement, fixture choice, and level of illumination are all major factors in setting just the right scene to turn your bedroom from random to refreshing.

Lighting for Specific Areas


Just like in the rest of your home, lighting can help to create zones, or activity-specific spaces in your bedroom. Think of your room in terms of what areas are used most for what activity. Areas for dressing and preparation require adequate light to match colors and textures. Areas for sleep require lighting for those late night trips back and forth from the kitchen or bath and areas for relaxation require subtle lighting appropriate for reading and conversation.

  • Multiple small fixtures, such as bedside table lamps and pendants can create pools of light in a small area without disturbing sleeping partners, or making the room overly bright.
  • Dimmable fixtures can go a long way to giving you that “just right” touch of ambiance when its needed, while still providing enough light to vacuum the rug and clean out the closet.
  • Use a variety of light placements as well as different fixture styles. Ceiling lights are great for overall lighting, while wall sconces are best used for ambiance. Experiment with heights, and positioning to get it just right, and don’t be afraid to try new things.

Trends in Bedroom Lighting

While classic styling should be a staple in every home’s décor to avoid that “dated” feeling, being on trend is always fun. Drama seems to be the buzzword in bedroom lighting these days, with sculptural elements and lighting incorporated into furniture hitting high on the list. These types of light can give a pop to a beautiful feature that might otherwise go unnoticed, or blend into the background, while adding warmth and dimension to your space. Not to mention they can add a special touch when the lights get “turned down low”.

  • Lighted headboards can be achieved in a variety of ways. Hanging small LED strip light in recesses in the moldings, or behind for light through cutout details works well. Mounting small sconces, especially those that can be positioned for focus, on the face of a large, stout headboard, or on the wall beside or above, can create great reading, or work light for those late nights.
  • Using strip lighting on top of large furniture, such as armoires, or above crown molding, behind picture frames, and on the back of sculptural art is another great way to get splashes of illumination. Experiment with color, if you are feeling bold, you might be surprised at what you find.
  • Recessed lights have been popular for decades, but they are making a strong appearance in new construction and remodeling as a way to focus light in narrow areas. Use them to highlight architecture, such as doorways and niches, or position your art, or seating areas under them for focused light that doesn’t overpower the rest of the space.

Portable Lighting Solutions for Bedrooms on a Budget

If you want a nice fixture, but would prefer to avoid that costly electrician’s bill, use plug-ins! They can be positioned anywhere that you have an outlet, and while table lamps are what we typically think of, there are other options as well. This is a great quick fix, and allows you to focus your budget on getting the best lighting, and not paying for labor.

  • Table lamps are a standby, but these are not all your mother’s bedside lamp. Vendors like Pacific Coast produce sleek, modern lamps with a touch of style that add more than just light. Minka also has a great selection with an ultramodern, futuristic design aesthetic, for contemporary rooms.
  • Floor lamps have come a long way too, from contemporary metal sculptural lamps with adjustable positioning, to tall, sculptural lighted fabric pieces that can create a sense of drama in that unused corner, floor lamps fill space, provide artistic detail and help to break up heights in your design scheme in addition to providing light.
  • Swag lamps are the solution when a ceiling fixture is called for, but adding one is not in the budget. You can get ready-made swags in a variety of styles, or add a cord to one of the many available small chandeliers for a great overhead lighting option that can be placed almost anywhere.

Blending Your Elements

Working the old in with the new takes careful planning and a keen eye for detail. Add lights to your bedroom that complement, rather than clash with the existing light scheme. With some imagination, you can have the restful oasis you have always dreamed of in that same tired space you have been looking at in the same way for too long and lighting is a simple way to achieve it.

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