18 May The Single, Most Important Element of Our Remodels
One thing that we don’t talk about often is one of the most important visual aspects of a home.
For every project we take on, comes a plethora of decisions to make. Some decisions are quite small, and more detail oriented than anything. Others, though, will completely impact the look and feel of a home. “Take out a wall here.” “Let’s expand that master bath this way!” “The entire roof needs to go — look at that color!” (The horror!)
The most important element of our remodels is lighting.
We found that have been some very exciting advances in lighting over the last several years. LED lighting is now our go-to for every fixture in a property we touch. Even our own home got the treatment! Over the years, great color corrections have been made to these bulbs. You can now choose lightbulbs and canned lighting from a spectrum of warm to daylight.
Warm bulbs will have more of that yellow hue you may remember from older homes. But once you get closer to the daylight side of the spectrum, the color turns to a more blue, brighter hue. It turns out that this more natural light brings out all the best in today’s popular design elements!
If you’re new to this look, it can take some getting used to, but we promise: bright daylight bulbs are what we use in our home and our projects! It makes ALL the difference!
White and grey elements are used heavily in our projects, and we want them to POP. We achieve this look by switching all of our interior lighting fixtures to LED Daylight Bulbs.
See the photo above, for example. This kitchen in our No. 4 Project was small with little natural light, and almost a galley kitchen in layout — not open to other living areas. The warm, incandescent bulbs you may be used to would make that sharp subway tile and white cabinet color look dingy. That blue on the lower cabinets would take on a completely different shade, closer to purple than the velvety indigo you see here.
To keep these colors crisp, we added four recessed LED cans in Daylight. We also added a can above the sink to highlight the herringbone patterned backsplash, and under-cabinet lighting to brighten the back part of the counters.
We’ve done the same treatment to several other projects, and found that it works especially well in kitchens and baths.
Most recessed incandescent cans can be converted to LED with simple kits, like these we found on Amazon. Installation is super simple (we did our kitchen in about 15 minutes!), and many of our clients have done this as their first home project before they move into a new home.
You can also find daylight LED bulbs for lamps, light fixtures, wall sconces and chandeliers.
We really love using them to brighten living areas and bedrooms — and are always sure to add these on dimmers.
The key to choosing the right bulbs for your space while using this method is to pay attention to the lumens, not the wattage. While wattage refers to the amount of energy that a single bulb will draw (usually very low in LED bulbs), lumens refer to the actual color of light. The higher the lumens, the more blue (and natural) the light!
Everything shown in these photos are 5,000k Daylight White LED bulbs, and in person the color is very natural and welcoming!
Here are a few of our favorite products for whiter whites and rooms that POP! Most are super easy to install as recessed lighting, and the rest screw in just like normal incandescent bulbs!
Recessed Lighting Retrofit Kits – 10 Pack (Recessed lighting for living rooms, kitchens, hallways, etc.)
FEIT LED Replacement Bulbs for Lamps – 10 Pack (Lamps, fans, ceiling fixtures)
Shine Hai LED Candelabra Bulbs – 6 Pack (Used in chandelier, pictured in photo above!)
Cree 60W Replacement Bulbs, Dimmable – 4 Pack (For anything else!)
The best part about it — it’s easier to change than paint! What do you think about this look? Do you prefer old school yellow bulbs, or is daylight the way to go?