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Light fixtures step into the home design spotlight

Once an afterthought, great lighting now tops the list, says Sudbury lighting expert

“Everybody is taking lighting more seriously in their homes,” says Diggs and Dwellings lighting expert Bobi Liinamaa. 

Sudbury residents are really starting to pick up the latest trends, such as gold finishes and mixed metals. “It took a while, but we’re here now and I think it’s going to just get stronger,” she says.

Right now, clients are definitely embracing black finishes, but not the industrial style seen in the past few years. The current look is much more modern farmhouse, which can be found in a black finish, in cage lighting fixtures, in glass and oversized pendants. 

“Oversized in huge,” says Liinamaa. “Over kitchen islands now, instead of doing three pendants, people are doing two oversized. It’s such a beautiful look.”

Certain trends are on their way out, as well. Staff have seen much less demand for solid, heavier-looking pendants. Everyone seems to want lighting fixtures that have a bit more of an airy feel to them. Crystal chandeliers are also waning in popularity. So are incandescent bulbs. 

Liinamaa has noted a really interesting trend. People are much more interested in bulbs than they have been in the past, concerned about the quality—and colour—of the lighting they’re purchasing.

Lighting can greatly affect how your home looks and feels; it can even change the way you see the paint colour on your walls and your furniture. 

“There are so many different bulbs out there that you can get, and they really help with your décor,” she says. “When everyone thinks of an LED bulb, they picture a bluer light, but there are all different temperatures you can get them in now.”

If you’re in a grey room that has a cooler tone, you’ll want to go with a higher Kelvin bulb, so the paint stays true, suggests Liinamaa. The same holds true if you have a white room. If you use a more yellow bulb with fewer Kelvins, it’s going to yellow your paint.

Staff are also seeing a great deal of interest in LED-integrated lighting, as well as a move toward more modern fixtures.

As we move into the cooler seasons, it’s the perfect time to make our homes feel a bit cozier. One of the best ways to do this is to think about your lighting. By making strategic selections and being thoughtful about placement, you can warm your home’s interiors significantly, helping to create a real feeling of comfort and welcome.

To do this, start with bulbs that have the right colour temperature. Another great tool to consider is the dimmer switch. Dimmer switches have grown in popularity because they’re so versatile; they allow you to take advantage of maximum lighting as well as create a subtler, more mood-enhancing vibe.

“Use a table lamp or a floor lamp to brighten up a corner,” suggests Jennifer Reich, owner. They create little pools of light that make the whole space instantly feel warmer. 

“One thing we always say is that lighting is the jewellery of your home,” says Reich.

“It just completes everything,” agrees Liinamaa. “When you wear an outfit, the last thing you do is add your accessories and it really brings everything together.”

Lighting should always be a priority. Instead of leaving it to the bottom of the list, many, in fact, are now taking the exact opposite approach. Clients are now consulting with the lighting experts at Diggs and Dwellings right from the start, when they are building their home, renovating or redecorating. 

“We get blueprints all the time and we go over them with our clients,” says Liinamaa. Staff will suggest where the client might want to put some wall sconces or pendants, to get maximum use and enjoyment from their space. “We definitely sit down with our clients and make sure that they’re lighting their house properly.”

Whether it’s a statement piece for your entryway or under-the-cabinet lighting for your kitchen, too much lighting is always better than not enough. You can always dim your lights or shut certain ones off. A well-lit home is not only more functional day today, but it’s also more inviting.

Diggs and Dwellings won The Sudbury Star’s Readers’ Choice Award in 2020 for favourite lighting store in Sudbury. Their interactive showroom offers the largest display of lighting fixtures in Northern Ontario. The store is proud to support Canadian manufacturers and buys Canadian-made as much as possible.