Living rooms and guest rooms are responsible for so many varied activities that the lighting plan should be flexible. Think of all the activities that you will do in the room and then add various levels of light throughout the space to properly accommodate as many as possible.
If there is a game table or pool table, supply over head light on a separate dimmer switch to ensure you have complete control over the room’s lighting, no matter what activities are taking place. Be sure that bar areas, bookcases, DVD/video collections or architectural features like fireplaces are not overlooked. Instead of trying to hide these areas, think about making them a feature by adding light and making the area more visually interesting.
Track or recessed lights, ceiling fans, wall sconces and floor and table lamps can all be utilized in this multi-purpose room as well. Over head lighting helps light up large areas, while floor and table lamps work to light up smaller, more specific areas. A combination of each tends to result in the best balance possible.
A good rule to follow when it comes to lighting larger rooms that are used for multiple activities is to light the space from a variety of different heights. Instead of using one type of lighting fixture throughout the entire space, trying using over head lighting, wall (sconce) lighting, table lamps and/or floor lamps. This will help easily transform your space from a living room to that rare yet necessary party or game room you may need it to be.
What type of lighting is right for a living room?
There is no right or wrong answer; living rooms have a wide range of uses, and those specific uses are what will determine what lighting fixture(s) is right for the space.