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How to Control the Light in Your Living Space: A Room by Room Guide


Note: this is a partnered post and consideration was received for its publication. CC-licensed image by Tom Rolfe.

Letting light into your living space is an incredibly important yet easily overlooked aspect of home design.

How so?

For starters, the benefits of natural light are well-documented to increase our moods and help us feel that we're not living in some sort of dark, dingy cave. Likewise, natural light can make our rooms feel larger and compliment our paint-jobs if we've got some off-the-wall colors in our space.

On the flip side, picking and choosing window treatments can be a bit of a pain, especially as you take the following into account:

  • You more that likely want to block out light in certain rooms more-so than others (for example, you may not mind some light in the living room versus your bedroom)
  • Certain window fixtures ensure privacy while others are more “open” (think: you probably don't want something transparent in the bathroom)
  • Some window treatments are flat out expensive: in addition, we don't want to sacrifice style for the sake of functionality, do we?

Fortunately, a room-by-room approach to switching up your window treatments is a safe bet. Take the following tips into account whether you feel like you're quite literally living in the dark or are looking for a new home improvement project that won't break the bank.

Go Vertical in the Living Room

Durable, affordable and easy to clean, vertical blinds are ideal for your living room. Unlike more intricate window fixtures, vertical blinds are simple to take care of and can easily adjust to let in just enough light or block it out completely.

Versus costlier treatments that require a more involved cleaning process (think: curtains), blinds are optimal if your home is prone to accumulating dust or pet dander. Blinds also allow you to truly control how much light is in your living space, as you may not mind some sunshine during the day, you may want to shut it out to avoid a glare on your television, for example.

Block Out Your Bedroom

It's absolutely crucial that you block out light at night in the bedroom, especially to optimize your quality of sleep. Additionally, privacy is obviously also an issue as you slumber.

The ideal solution for many bedrooms would be heavy curtains, drapes or black-out blinds. Granted it meshes with your room's style, the darker the colors, the better.

Privacy in the Bathroom

Peace of mind in the bathroom is only natural: however, there's no reason not to let some natural light in, right? You can get the best of both worlds through either cellular shades or roller blinds, which typically boast lighter fabrics that filter light and keep anyone from looking in. Keep in mind that you should pick a mold resistant fabric for your shade given the the amount of moisture that builds up after weeks of hot showers and baths.

Curtains in the Kitchen

Kitchens often fall into a sort of all-of-the-above category depending on your home, although many kitchens incorporate some form of curtains or drapes. After all, it's nice to be able to look out the window as you cook: likewise, sometimes you may not want the neighbors to see what you're up to. Granted they're easy to reach when it's time to clean up, some lightweight curtains will probably do the trick for most homeowners.

You should be in control of the light in your living space rather than be at the mercy of mother nature. Although window treatments are easy to overlook, consider how this subtle element of home design could potentially transform each room of your living space.