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What kind of lighting should I choose for my bedroom?


Lighting is to decoration what jewellery is to fashion. From extreme purity to decadence, it does its job in all modesty or imposes itself as master of the place. Lighting transforms the atmosphere of a room, for better or for worse. Hence these few tips on how to light your room just right.

What kind of lighting do you need?

Several parameters need to be taken into account to get it right. Not enough light? You risk tiring your eyes on a book or a screen. Too much light? The atmosphere would be as welcoming as under the neon lights of a laboratory. Speaking of neon lights, unless it's a work of art hanging on the wall, we'll pass. Not just in the bedroom. And to make sure you don't make a mistake, ask yourself these questions before making a decision.

What intensity to choose?

Not all bulbs are suitable for all rooms. Their size, their function, the time of day when you spend most of your time there are all criteria to be evaluated in order to identify the intensity required. The latter has its own unit of measurement: the lux, or the quantity of light per square metre. In a bedroom, a light source with an intensity of 100 to 200 lux is considered sufficient for the general lighting of the room. If you work in the evening, or if you like to see clearly to relax before going to sleep, you can add functional lighting, dedicated to these activities, of 300 lux maximum.

And what temperature?

We're not talking about heat, but colour. For the light as for the sheets, several options exist. Some bulbs diffuse a cold, very white light. Others offer a warmer light with slightly yellow tones. And here too, everything is measured. In kelvin exactly, from the whitest (the highest kelvin number) to the yellowest (the lowest number). In a bedroom, 2700 kelvin bulbs are more than enough.

Our lighting ideas

Two hanging lights

Hanging from the ceiling, on either side of the headboard. The atmosphere of the room will depend a lot on the height chosen. You can adjust it lower for a subdued light, higher if you need more light. In terms of style, we have a slight preference for simplicity: bare bulbs, surrounded by a transparent or smoked glass globe or a lampshade that is not too large, will bring light without attracting all the attention. And since the wire will be clearly visible, you might as well play with it. We assume the fact that it is a little too long with several points of attachment to the ceiling, or a single hook around which we wrap it.

Or two wall lights

Hanging around the bed, at the height you want. You can choose a model that drops or tilts down, and position them close to the ceiling. Or opt for two soft diffusion sconces, and hang them lower on the wall, about 1.20 metres from the floor. This frees up some space on the bedside table. And it allows the light to be diffused where it will be most useful: on the pages of the book you are going to read before falling asleep.

A sculptural floor lamp

Placed in a corner of the room, to give it personality. This is the time to play with volumes and too bad if you do too much. A tripod lamp, made of metal, to shape the light with as much precision as on a film set. An arched floor lamp with a shade overhanging the bed. Or a light column, as sober as it is imposing, to dress up a corner of the room. Anything goes. And if the lighting is powerful, don't hesitate to add softer options, like...

A garland

Hanging on the headboard, provided it is high enough. You may need another light source to enhance the brightness of the room, especially if you like to spend time there to work, read, catch up on some late episodes on Netflix. But we couldn't think of a better way to give her room a cheery vibe. After all, these are the same garlands that we find hanging on the terrace, above a table for an outdoor dinner in the summer, or on the facades of houses in winter.

The essential bedside lamp

The possibilities are more numerous than it seems. What if, instead of placing it on the table that bears the same name, we tried something else? On a (well) hung shelf above the bed, or why not on the floor? For this last option, we still recommend a large or powerful lamp so that the light is sufficiently diffused in the room.

See also our advice for choosing the colour of the walls of a bedroom, or for the design of a bedroom corner