The high ceilings, huge windows, and open floor plans of loft homes are undoubtedly stunning. Unfortunately, they also present substantial lighting challenges – after all, not every indoor light can fill the often massive amount of space in a loft. However, this obstacle hasn’t stopped interior designers from figuring out how to combine classic lighting layers, fixtures, and design principles for breathtaking results. Below, find some loft lighting ideas that can awaken the designer in you.
7 loft lighting options
The below fixtures and lighting types should help you see your surroundings in a whole new way:
1. Ceiling lights
Every room – including loft spaces – needs a lighting foundation atop which to add extra layers intended for different tasks. This layer is called ambient lighting, and ceiling lights are perhaps the most common way to provide it. Fixtures that are recessed into the ceiling – the bulbs you screw into spaces already carved into your ceiling – are perhaps the most common option. Ceiling fans with bulbs are another approach, as are dimmable track lights.
No matter which type of ceiling lights you choose, your bulbs or fixtures should illuminate the majority of your loft. Rare is the ceiling light that can fill each and every nook and cranny, but you can’t illuminate these spots without placing this foundational layer. So consider starting with ceiling lights – and then, build on them with other fixtures.
2. Floor lamps
Floor lamps can provide nearly as much ambient lighting in lofts where you can’t install ceiling lights. Plus, you can simply place them in the corner of your loft and plug them into a nearby outlet. That’s a lot simpler than bringing in an electrician to wire recessed fixtures into your ceiling.
Additionally, floor lamps can offer more versatility style-wise than ceiling lights, as they come in numerous shapes, sizes, colors, and materials. To fully transform your loft on your own terms, floor lamps might be superior for your design.
3. Pendant lights
Most living spaces look more elegant with a pendant light hanging down from the ceiling, and that’s especially true of lofts, given their high ceilings. Plus, pendant lights are incredibly versatile and diverse forms of the foundational ambient layer. They encompass clear hanging bulbs, chandeliers, geometrically shaped lights, and much more.
To get started with your loft design ideas, consider hanging a pendant in the non-lofted part of your home. That could mean outfitting the ground-level dining room below your lofted bedroom with a chandelier. You’ll imbue your loft space with extravagance and modernism on par with the best lighting ideas an interior design professional might suggest.
4. Table lamps
After ambient lighting comes task lighting that fills in the gaps your initial fixtures leave behind. Perhaps the most common form of task lighting is table lamps, which work well for all kinds of loft design ideas, including in your home office, bedroom, or living room.
A table lamp atop your loft home office desk can help you see better as you do work. Similarly, a table lamp on your nightstand can help you enjoy a good bedtime read. But, of course, table lamps can stimulate your creativity, too: If you’re looking for desktop lighting that stimulates your imagination, the StarPort USB can shine hundreds of colorful stars right above your workspace. These starry sights can help you create a comfortable space perfect for celebrating your creativity.
StarPort USB Light
One tiny light. Thousands of stars!
5. Furniture lighting
Once you’ve solidified your ambient and task lighting layers, you can move on to accent lighting. This type of lighting underscores key features of your loft – say, a gorgeous painting in your lofted living room. Your furniture counts as an accent point, too, so unique fixtures to illuminate those points are within the realm of possibility.
Track lights that you place over your couch could serve as furniture lighting. So too could wall lighting placed close to, and equidistant from, each side of the sofa. Your goal is to emphasize the most awe-inducing parts of your loft. This way, when guests visit, they can fully sink into the environment you’ve established. And you’ll be right there, on this journey, with them.
6. Wall sconces
Wall sconces are, as their name suggests, a type of wall lighting. They often come in pairs. Common loft uses include placing them equidistant at each side of your bed or couch. This arrangement accentuates the furniture piece in question and can also double as task lighting. Their soft glow can be just bright enough to illuminate your favorite book or give you the light source you need for all kinds of activities.
Loft spaces typically come with high ceilings, and with all that extra space, you might need additional fixtures to really bring out your intended focal points in the space. Spotlights are a great choice to do just that. Point them at your favorite painting, a gorgeous vase, or another highlight to direct all eyes to it. The object in question will stand out more sharply than anything else in your decoration-heavy space.
Loft lighting ideas for different design styles
The vast feel of lofts often demands design unity that isn’t quite as fundamental to other spaces. To see why, think about the tiniest apartment you’ve lived in. Yes, you probably decorated it well, but you didn’t have to strictly stick to a design school to make it pop. That’s because you had less space you needed to adorn with your personality and vision. The high ceilings and often exposed pipes or framing of lofts, though, demand more cohesion.
To that end, here are some design styles you can follow to outfit your loft space.
The industrial style emphasizes metallic fixtures that evoke the most enticing features of old industrial warehouses and factories. No, your loft won’t feel laborious or like a crowded space where people go to work. Instead, with the industrial style’s Edison bulbs, darker colors, and metallic textures, your loft will feel uniquely enticing. There’s just something about a colder, more stark design that can truly immerse you and your guests in your loft’s vibe.
2. Rustic farmhouse
Rustic styles emphasize lighting fixtures that appear natural, somewhat aged, a tad rough, and super casual. The farmhouse school of rustic design adds to these principles with finishes that intentionally appear to be a bit worn and torn. You’ll also see plenty of repurposed items in rustic farmhouse design.
To incorporate this design school into your loft, add rustic pendants to your space. Pendants that fit this bill will be grey or brown in color, and their bulbs will showcase exposed filaments. Complement these fixtures with old tables living a second life to cast your loft in farmhouse lighting that mentally transports you to the countryside.
Modern loft lighting ideas typically incorporate wood and earthier elements in their design features. An open feel is also typical, meaning that exposed bulbs are again a great choice. Ceiling lights and modestly sized pendants can help establish this openness too. You can also add narrow floor lamps that don’t take up a ton of loft space. Other fixtures with clean, linear designs should fit the bill too.
Scandinavian loft design overlaps with modernism in its focus on clean, simple, minimal lines. Scandinavian designs, though, focus somewhat more on eliminating clutter and including solely necessary design elements. As such, recessed ceiling fixtures may be better ambient lighting choices than larger, more elaborate pendants. At the same time, caged pendants with open designs, exposed bulbs, and geometric arrangements work for Scandinavian lofts too. Your fixtures should be metal and dark in color.
Boho loft design focuses on a somewhat intense, stimulating combination of rich patterns, textures, and colors. It’s inspired by the most artistic portion of the bohemian community, hence the name “boho.”
Given boho’s focus on color and texture, exposed bulbs are uncommon. Fixtures with strong colors and interesting, non-geometrical shapes are more appropriate. The transfixing, extraordinary colors and visuals of laser lights such as the Ark Ambient Aurora Light would work too. The Ark’s gently oscillating green auroras and stunning blue nebulas will transform your already vibrant space with just the push of a button.
ARK Aurora Light
Transcend reality with a moving abstract aurora.
Loft lighting styling tips
You should keep some extra tips in mind as you use the above loft lighting types and design schools to shape your space. These tips can help you decide which fixtures to choose and where to place them. They include the following:
- Consider fixture positioning. Often, given their higher ceilings, lofts demand a greater amount of ambient lighting. Where you place these lights can make a substantial difference. For best results, you might want to place some track lights where your ceiling meets your walls. You could also opt for “uplights” designed to shine brightly in large spaces without any wiring or drilling requirements.
- Think about your fixtures’ material. Wood fixtures in an industrial loft won’t fit the bill. Likewise, clear glass lacks the vitality and color of boho spaces. So instead, take a moment to imagine the fixture drawing your attention inside your actual loft. This way, you buy a light appropriate for your rustic loft – say, a lamp wrapped with leather – instead of a modern geometric pendant.
- Prioritize surface area coverage. Try using a lighting calculator to determine how well your bulbs and fixtures will cover your space. Doing so will help you confirm that you’re buying lights that can actually fill your large loft. After all, most fixtures don’t indicate how much surface area they cover – well, except BlissLights. For example, the Sky Lite 2.0 can cover 900 square feet from just 10 feet away! It can fill your whole loft with lighting that takes you miles away without you moving an inch.
Sky Lite 2.0: Galaxy Projector (App Control)
Shine a galaxy of moving stars and a vibrant multicolor cloud.
Light your loft with BlissLightsLighting design that incorporates ambient, accent, and task lights is the easiest way to illuminate every corner in even the most sizable lofts. Use fixtures that fit seamlessly within a certain design school to further transform your loft beyond the everyday. BlissLights, for example, can fill a large portion of your boho loft space and recast your surroundings in a whole new way. Browse the BlissLights collection now for loft lighting that’s out of this world.
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