Dominion Electric Lighting Blog

Friday, May 21, 2010

Tips for lighting a bathroom

Yesterday we listened in on a great webinar about bathroom lighting, sponsored by the American Lighting Association (ALA) and Besa Lighting. The speaker for their series is Joe Rey-Barreau, and he is full of wonderful info! One of the things he talked about was "layering" light in the bathroom. Hinkley Lighting talks about this on their website:

This picture is from Hinkley's site ~ an interesting application shot.

The basics of the "layering" concept are to have more than one source of light. Joe suggests five:

  1. lighting for grooming
  2. general lighting
  3. lighting above showers & tubs
  4. accent lighting (e.g. artwork)
  5. decorative lighting

Kichler Lighting has some great tips on their website, too:

Theirs match a lot of what Joe mentioned on the webinar yesterday ~ a vanity light (over the sink & mirror) should be mounted about 80" off the floor. If you are using a pair of sconces, they should be mounted 66" off the floor, and ideally 30-36" apart, if your space allows. You should avoid using recessed lighting exclusively at a vanity ~ it creates terrible shadows under the eyes and chin. I personally love to pair a low-voltage pinhole light over the sink with sconces or a vanity light. The pinhole light will accent the sink and hardware and make them pop, while the vanity light or sconces will light your face.

And don't forget a recessed light in the tub or shower. The technologies have developed nicely in the past few years, and we can now use low-voltage MR16 or line-voltage PAR lamps (both halogen) in wet locations, so again, you can achieve a great pop of bright light in these areas. And don't forget to put all your non-fluorescent lights on a dimmer! Dimmers will save energy and extend the life of your light bulbs tremendously.

Here are some great shots from Kichler's web site:

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