Lighting Up Low Ceilings

Gone are the days when a standard family home featured high ceilings and ornate central roses. These days, most new homes in the UK are built to stringent environmental standards to keep them warm and insulated from the harsh British weather. As a result ceilings tend to be lower than those of our ancestors, in fact industry standard height allowance is 6ft 10 from the floor to allow for most modern homes.

Depending on the size and shape of a room, these lower ceilings can sometimes make it harder to prevent it seeming dark and gloomy.  But with these lighting tips from the experts at the Light Company in Swansea, we will help you to make your home feel airy and inviting at all times as well as making your home feel bigger and brighter.

Lighting to Avoid

When it comes to homes with low ceilings, it’s best to avoid large, low-hanging light fixtures. Not only will they make your room look smaller but they can also become a safety hazard for taller people who may live there or visit you!  You’re much better off investing in a selection of wall lights, floor lamps or table lamps to create that bright feeling  (though you don’t have rule out pendant lighting completely!)

In general, for a room with a low ceiling, it’s a good idea to introduce an even spread of lights at different heights which will draw attention away from the ceiling and emphasise the wider wall spaces.

Layering Light

The most effective way to create space and air in a room with a low ceiling is to introduce a combination of different types of lighting – known as layering light.  This approach involves mixing up the light fittings to include ambient, task and accent lighting in different areas of the space. 

The reason these layers work so well together is because they all have different purposes.  Ambient lighting is generally the main form of lighting a in a room; task lighting in situated in a specific area for a specific activity such as reading; and accent lights is how you create mood and atmosphere/

Uplighters are a good source of ambient lighting in a room with low ceilings and can come as floor or wall lights.  Floor lamps and table lamps are great for practical task lighting, while also adding an extra layer of ambience.  Finally, accent lighting such as recessed lighting in alcoves or inside cabinets will add depth and atmosphere at different levels of the room.

Choices and Styles

You have many options when it comes to choosing types and styles of lights for rooms with low ceilings. Here are some of our top tips for these different choices and styles:

  • Wall lights provide practical lighting whilst also building warmth and atmosphere without drawing attention to the ceiling. As a general rule of thumb you should aim for the top of the wall light to sit slightly above eye level, to avoid glare from the bulb.
  • Uplighters will wash light upwards and along the walls or a room which help to elongate the space
  • Floor lamps and table lamps are effective in brightening up darker areas and enabling a more uniform spread of light across a space. For a low-ceilinged room, make sure the size of the lamp is in proportion with the space as oversized floor lamps can make a room with a low ceiling feel more enclosed.

If you’re set on including a pendant light in your home, a small, sleek pendant light with a short, adjustable fitting with shades that allow for light to spread outwards as well as downwards.  You also need to take care where you place your pendant light. While you should avoid hanging them near any walkways, a pendant or a group of small pendants can be very effective placed above a seating area, a table, or over a kitchen island.

The Light Company

At the Light Company, we offer a huge range of lighting which is suitable for all areas of the home, including rooms with lower ceilings.  You can see our full range of products here or you can call us on 01792 414662 for advice and guidance.