Let There Be Light
By Allison Harper
Sleek and simple is the word on the street for today’s hottest lighting trends. The economy has triggered a return to the basics from the patio to the living room. Here are some light sources that are useful to warm up an indoor space and provide security outside.
This lighting provides a complementary warm light and is the least expensive. Incandescent immediately produce light and are used in 85 percent of homes, and is often found in everyday use for desk and floor lamps. Look for stylish examples at Traders in East Atlanta Village (www.tradersatlanta.com), like the ones pictured at left, or at Illuminations, on Cooledge Avenue in Midtown (www.illumco.com).
Fluorescent lighting uses only 25 to 35 percent of the energy that incandescent lighting uses, but lasts 10 times longer. For lights that will be used more than two hours a day, typically ceiling or wall-mounted fixtures, fluorescent lighting is the most practical option. Some find the light color can be glaring and not the best option aesthetically. Those concerned with saving energy are using compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs. They use 75 percent less energy and last 10 times longer than an incandescent bulb. These types of bulbs are readily available at Lowe’s and even at supermarkets like Publix and Kroger.
Low-Pressure Sodium Lighting
Typically street lights and security lighting, LPS lighting is the most energy efficient option of all outdoor lighting. LPS lamps produce a soft glow that is warm in color. This lighting is most suitable for situations where the light will stay on for hours at a time. The Lighting Loft on Edgewood Avenue (www.lightingloft.com) has contemporary outdoor lights that add safety and style to a home.
Solar lights are the easiest to install, provide free electricity and require virtually no maintenance. Solar lights can be used both functionally and decoratively, lighting a walkway while complementing the landscape with recessed cans or downlights.