Room to Shine
Let natural light enhance your home decor
(Family Features) Something about warmer weather inspires homeowners to lavish attention on their homes. While painting and decluttering are great ways to revitalize home decor, there’s no better way to breathe new life into interior spaces than decorating with light.
Incorporating light into interior design can go far beyond a few strategically placed, attractive lamps and some upgraded overhead lights. It’s possible to use both natural and artificial lighting to complement other decor and architectural elements, and to create a brighter, upbeat mood that makes your home more enjoyable year-round.
Natural beauty plus improved air quality
Adding skylights is a relatively low-cost, but high impact home improvement that can be accomplished by a professional in a day or two or over a single weekend. They not only enhance home decor, but deliver energy-saving benefits as well. Fresh air skylights can help reduce dependence on artificial lighting and mechanical ventilation, which saves money on electricity bills.
Skylights can work in concert with vertical windows to provide improved passive ventilation that improves air quality and energy efficiency. For example, Energy Star-qualified fresh air skylights, such as those at veluxusa.com, let you circulate air in your home with flexible features to match your needs.
Manual and electric venting models are available, but top-of-the-line, solar-powered fresh air models offer all the features of modern, no-leak skylights plus significant savings on product and installation costs. They feature a solar panel that charges a hidden internal battery, which operates the control system. These skylights require no wiring, making for easy and cost-effective installation. An integrated rain sensor automatically closes the units in case of inclement weather and all Velux skylights offer three layers of water protection backed by installation and no-leak warranties.
A variety of light-filtering, light-blocking and light-controlling solar powered blinds are also available in a mix of designer colors and patterns to enhance decor while improving skylight energy efficiency by as much as 45 percent. The skylights, as well as the blinds, are operated by a programmable remote control and are eligible for a 30 percent federal tax credit, as are installation costs.
Continue the color upgrade through key decorating elements, such as upholstery fabric, accent rugs, window treatments and wall art. Replace heavy drapes with translucent sheers that admit natural light and give rooms an airy, open feeling.
Upgrading other light sources
Keep in mind the importance of layering light with a mix of sources throughout a room and choose lighting styles that fit the room’s purpose. For example, in kitchens where a lot of work gets done, overhead and under-counter lights provide the best illumination for cooking and other chores. In bedrooms, wall sconces and table lamps provide softer, more soothing light.
Don’t overlook energy efficiency when you’re revamping your artificial lighting. You can boost your home’s energy efficiency by replacing old, electricity-guzzling incandescent light bulbs with energy-sipping CFLs and LEDs.
Which skylights are right for your home?
Closets, hallways and laundry rooms
For more ideas on lightening up your home and to view the available types of skylights, blinds and accessories, visit whyskylights.com.
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