The goal is to illuminate the space in a way that best protects your eyes for long periods of time and encourages productivity
Each week, Mansion Global tackles a topic with an elite group of designers from around the world who work on luxury properties. This week, we explored how to choose home office lighting.
In lighting a home office, the goal is to brighten the space in a way that best protects your eyes for long periods of time and encourages productivity.
“Working in an office means you’re in one place for quite a while. It should be both comfortable for long periods of time with low glare and bright enough to light your work well,” said Tom Simon, design and product development manager for Juniper design and manufacturing studio.
We turned to the design pros to illuminate us on the ways to light a work space right.
“Lighting plays a big part in how a room feels. Natural light is always my first choice and always a consideration when designing a home office, or any space. When you do need additional lighting, avoid harsh overheads and fluorescents in favor of dimmable lighting and natural light whenever possible. Consider recessed lights on dimmers and task lamps on the floor to provide more focused light on the desk in the evenings or when it’s gray outside.
“Orient your desk or workspace accordingly, factoring in light and glare on your computer screen and also what you want your daily view to be—it’s nice to be able to look out the window easily. And in the age of Zoom, remember, you don’t want windows behind you creating glare on your laptop.
“If you prefer brighter, whiter light look for a higher kelvin rating on your lightbulbs. If you want warmer, softer light look for a lower kelvin number.”
—Colleen Simonds, designer based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Strike a Balance
“When it comes to home office lighting, it’s important to consider the balance between task and ambient lighting. Task lighting provides focused light for activities such as reading, writing or working on a computer, while ambient lighting helps to create a warm and inviting atmosphere in the room.
“A combination of both task and ambient lighting is essential for a well-lit and functional home office. It’s also important to consider wattage and color temperature when selecting lighting for a home office. Opt for LED bulbs with a color temperature of around 4000K and a soft white bulb in your desk lamp or pendant around 60 watts on a dimmer.”
—Michelle Sauter of One Coast Design in Summerville, South Carolina
Let Wattage Lead the Way
“Wattage is determined by the feel you would like to create with each light. In general, you will want to install high-wattage bulbs in pendants and link them to a dimmer, so you have the flexibility to adjust the atmosphere in the room from the day to the evening.
“As a good rule of thumb, 40-watt bulbs are usually suitable for table and floor lights, but you could opt for 25-watt if you prefer a soft, ambient glow. On the other hand, if you are using a floor light to help provide light to the rest of the room, you may want to boost the wattage to 60 watts.”
—Charlie Bowles, Director of Original BTC lighting in Oxfordshire, England
Even the Light Level
“Eye strain often comes from excessive contrast between light levels. Having a bright screen in a dark room, for example, forces your eye to constantly adjust as it glances around the room. With that said, it’s best to try to create a relatively even light level. Keeping your color temperatures consistent in your home is generally a good idea as well. High CRI (Color Rendering Index) is always helpful, and sometimes essential if your work involves things like physical samples or color swatches.
“Task lighting is a flexible, simple solution for creating a comfortable work environment. It has the added advantage of being portable in case you want to rearrange or move your office entirely. A high-quality task light does wonders for your workspace.”
—Tom Simon, design and product development manager for Juniper design and manufacturing studio in New York and Connecticut
Build in Flexibility
“Whether it’s a task light, table or floor lamp, ceiling-mounted flush-mount, decorative pendant or pair of wall sconces, having options will allow you to control the amount of light you need for any task at hand. A mixture of lighting types will give you the opportunity to turn things up for focused work or turn things down to create the perfect ambient glow.
“By using paper lamp shades on your table and floor lamps, you can create even illumination and avoid creating hot spots, which can cause glare and shadows.”
— Dan Mazzarini, principal and creative director of BHDM Design and ARCHIVE by Dan Mazzarini in New York
Article is contributed from www.mansionglobal.com