Once you've selected what you want to light, you'll have to decide how you're going to light it. Your local ALA showroom is the best place to view the many different styles, sizes and shapes of lighting fixtures that are available to deliver the general, task, and accent light you need.
Hall/Foyer Fixtures can create a congenial atmosphere, while providing you with the general lighting you need to greet guests and assure safe passage into other areas of your home. Use ceiling, chain-hung, or close-to-ceiling fixtures in hallways, stairways, and entranceways.
Chandeliers can add sparkle and style to your dining room while giving you the general lighting you need for dining and entertaining. They are also used in bedrooms, foyers, or over a living room grouping or a grand piano. Some are designed with downlights to provide task lighting for homework or table games, or to accent table settings.
Chandeliers are available in both incandescent and tungsten-halogen(see light sources). The addition of a dimmer control lets you alter the intensity of light to suit the mood and activity (see lighting controls).
Pendants can provide both task and general lighting. Equipped with shades or globes to avoid glare, they are suspended from the ceiling over dinette tables, game tables, kitchen counters, or other work areas. When used over end or night tables, they free up the space occupied by table lamps. The use of a dimmer control gives you the flexibility to vary the light to suit the occasion.
Ceiling Fixtures usually provide general lighting. They are practical in busy areas such as foyers, hallways, bedrooms, kitchens, baths, laundry rooms, playrooms, and dens. They are available with incandescent, fluorescent, and energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs.
Wall-Mounted Fixtures can furnish general, task, and accent lighting. Many are designed to match and supplement dining room chandeliers, or to provide hallway, bedroom, or living room lighting. Wall brackets are often used for task lighting at the bathroom mirror. They are available with a choice of incandescent, tungsten-halogen, and energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs.
Bath/Vanity Lighting Strips supply task lighting, while supplementing the general lighting provided by ceiling fixtures. Similar to the lighting in theater dressing rooms, these softly glowing strips of globe-shaped incandescent bulbs provide excellent lighting for applying makeup, shaving, and grooming.
Portable Lamps can deliver general, task, and accent lighting, while giving you the flexibility to move the light whenever you want. Table lamps, floor lamps, and torchiers are available in a variety of styles to complement your decor. Small specialty lamps, such as clip-on lights, uplight cans, adjustable task lights, mini-reflector spotlights, desk and piano lamps fill a variety of task and accent light needs. These lamps are available with incandescent, tungsten-halogen, and energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs.
Track Lighting can provide general, task, or accent lighting all at once in one flexible lighting system. You can move, swivel, rotate, and aim the individual fixtures in any direction along the track, giving you the versatility to change your lighting scheme when the need arises. You can also hang chandeliers and pendants from the track. Track fixtures are available in standard or low-voltage current, and a choice of incandescent, tungsten-halogen, and energy-efficient compact fluorescent light sources.
Recessed Lighting can provide general, task, or accent lighting inconspicuously. Installed in the ceiling with only the trim showing, recessed fixtures can be used anywhere in the home, including outdoors under eaves. They are ideal for low-ceiling areas, and with a special adapter they can also be used in cathedral ceilings. They are available as downlights, adjustable accent lights, and wall washers in both standard and low-voltage current and a choice of incandescent, tungsten-halogen, and energy-efficient compact fluorescents.
Undercabinet/ Undershelf Fixtures offer both task and accent lighting. Under kitchen cabinets they light a countertop. In a display cabinet they show off prized possessions. They're used in a workshop or anywhere you need lighting right at hand. They include slim, energy-efficient fluorescents, miniature track lighting, and strips of low-voltage mini-lights.
Lighting Can Make a Difference
Basic Types of Lighting
Energy Savings and Efficiency
Designing with Light