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Above: Use of the LED Strip Streamer, the Polestar and Plaster Flat from John Cullen

Middle: Beautiful use of the Square High light, also from John Cullen Lighting

We do some digging and get the inside scoop on the best ways to light the haven of any home.

When you get home from a busy day out, there’s nothing quite like relaxing in the living room. This room is designed for nothing but relaxation, and as such lighting needs to be able to put people at ease. Ajay Vasdev, Founding Director of lighting design and consultancy company, Asco Lights, understands how important it is to remember that everyone is different, and as such their living room needs will be very different; “It’s not good enough to take a brief and run with it. To create truly memorable, practical and liveable lighting you need to completely understand your client. What do they use their spaces for, when do they use them, how do they use them?” It is very important for lighting designers to take the time to understand exactly what is being asked of them, as it is the clients tastes that are being represented, rather than their own. “Great lighting design comes from understanding a client’s aspirations for their space, knowing their movements and most important focal points and designing around their personality and that of their family. Lighting design is the art of illuminating someone’s life the way they wish to view it.”

After obtaining an understanding of the

needs of a client, it is important to assess the space in which the lighting will be placed. As Vasdev explains, the space says as much to the designer as the client, and it is important to work with the space and features provided; “Every room has a something of interest that a client will wish to illuminate. It might be an architectural feature or a reading space, a work of art or a wall full of family photos. These are the accents that punctuate the living room’s background lighting, and are often the personality that makes a space a home.”

Before you make any decisions on lighting, work out exactly where your sofas and any tables will be going and what focal points you will want to highlight. - Sally Storey, Design Director at John Cullen Lighting.

For Sally Storey, design director at John Cullen Lighting, the most essential aspect of any lighting design is to plan ahead; “Before you make any decisions on lighting, work out exactly where your sofas and any tables will be going and what focal points you will want to highlight.” Agreeing with Vasdev, Storey also believes that deciding on your focal points can help to develop a balanced and comfortable living

room setting, and John Cullen’s Polestar fitting is ideal for this role. “Paintings, furniture, sculpture or other works of art can each be accentuated very subtly with a directional recessed downlight such as the Polestar” explains Storey. “Different lenses in front of the bulb can be used to vary the effect for the perfect result. For that really special picture an almost invisible framing projector may be the answer.”

No matter what size your living room might be, lighting can really help to ensure that the correct

atmosphere is created. Statement lighting pieces can be partnered with subtler effects, like lighting under shelves to help create a soft and calming source of light. Running a strip of LEDs under a shelf can help to create an ambient setting when central


Above: This room is wonderfully illuminated by the Drawing Room Polestar 50, provided including transformer from John Cullen Lighting

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