18-20 October 2024
International Convention Centre Sydney

Always Look on the Bright Side of Lights

A great guru once said: ‘great lighting is rarely seen, but often felt…’ – actually, that wasn’t a guru but instead designer Adele Locke of Mint Lighting who gave an illuminating talk at the Home Show recently.

We run through the fundamentals of lighting design and hand-pick innovative products making it all possible.

Mint Lighting

Colour is feeling. Studies indicate we’re kinder and more generous under warmer light spectrums. Adele even suggests following the natural rhythmic cycles of the day with lighting. Wake up basking in a dim orange glow of the sunset. After breakfast, coffee and a shower, the light subtly moves to the blue/white spectrum of the midday sun, promoting activity. Finally, return home with a gentle sunset orange to help you wind down after a long day.

Lighting Illusions

Lighting Illusions made all this possible at the Home Show with their range of TRI colour 4W LEDs that change between 3 colour temperatures in one bulb. No smart home hubs or apps needed, just flick the light switch off/on to change settings.

Lighting Illusions made all this possible at the Home Show with their range of TRI colour 4W LEDs that change between 3 colour temperatures in one bulb. No smart home hubs or apps needed, just flick the light switch off/on to change settings.

Their stand showcased striking metallic industrial lights sporting brass colours. Warm filament lamps glowed by contrast. Massive timber blade fans swung above which doubled up as spotlights. Finally, we saw absolutely wild chandeliers with 180W LED strips; designs you won’t see anywhere else.
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Lights Lights Lights

Danielle Mastro from Lights, Lights, Lights took to the Home Show’s Kitchen Design stage to share her wisdom. She said: “You spend so long picking paint colours, but how long did it take to pick your light? Why not put the same emphasis on lighting?”

She took us on a journey through time; the 60s functional design where a single light unit sat on the ceiling producing a dull, 2D scene with no shapes accentuated. Disco dancing into the 80s, we introduced highly lit criss-cross downlighting where everything stands out for better but usually for worse. That’s what we have inherited today, ‘one size fits all’ lighting design.

New York Lighting

These guys put the middle finger up to lighting of the 60s and 80s. Rocking the casbah with massive gold chandeliers of the 18th century with a modern LED twist. Some of the set-pieces feature 24 lights with crystal and diamond edges that sparkle with Americana.

Adele warns us not to get too distracted by the glitz and glamour saying: “Light is not supposed to be the big grandiose feature of your home, instead, giving you function where you need it, giving you beauty when you need it and tying it all together.”

So, it’s practicality first, grandiose last. Is there a lack of natural light? Use cove lighting. Need to cook on a kitchen bench? Use spotlights. Can’t see your face in the bathroom mirror? Use strip LEDs.

You can problem solve using three states of light:
?Ambient luminescent – walls, ceilings
?Focal glow – kitchen worktops, sinks, wine racks, artwork
?Sparkling brilliance – chandeliers, pendants

Adele spoke of her client who remarked: ‘I have all these downward facing lights, yet the first thing I want to do when I get home is turn on a floor light.’ Does this sound like you? You’re not alone, those horrible functional lights of the 80s are reminiscent of office lights that produce the enemy of heat light: glare.

Adele expanded on this: “Using downlight is fine in the right place, your entire home is not the right place.” The kitchen counter may be the only place in the home that always needs down lighting.

Instead, we need to focus on embedded light housing that creates less contrast between light and the surrounding area. Pointing light in different directions creates a sense of flow around the house. Otherwise, you experience the hotel corridor farce, walking in and out of shadow and light.

Domus Lighting

That’s where Domus Lighting shines through. They stormed the Home Show with a wealth of modular downlighting options. Two racks of thirteen embedded lamps from their Cell Series beamed downwards like stage lights.

Also shown off, was the exterior Lightwall Series adding glamour to front views and much-needed light in the garden. The moveable, dimmable, blocks and cones come in white, black, silver and copper.

Domus also have a wild card up their sleeves, for your eyes only. Called the Magneto Series, Domus is the only company in Australia to use electromagnetic induction for lighting. This air-tight technology allows the user to plug a bulb into a submerged live socket without electrocution. So, if you have a pool or simply want durable outdoor lights, you can be safe knowing that rain, dirt and even electricity cannot get through the seams.

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Did you know: light isn’t visible to the human eye until it bounces off a surface? This fact alone should influence all your lighting design choices. For this reason, Danielle recommends dimmable, wall mounted up-lighting for your all-in-one solution to ambience. This is because light bounces off so many surfaces, it basks the entire room in light with minimal glare (the enemy).

JD Lighting



For wall mounted lights, look no further than JD. They boast a warehouse selection, ranging from the aforementioned wall mounted lights to… Well… Almost every style you can imagine (and many you can’t imagine). Unusual geometric shapes, Hampton style pearl chandeliers, dark and light timber frames, chrome balls of light, giant glass balls containing Edison LEDs; the list goes on.

Black, glass and brass. The stand infused this combination with carbon lamps which are exploding onto the scene this season.

We’ll end with this quote from Danielle, our lighting guru, who said: “Light is not just a means to an end. Light is the only factor that moves in an otherwise static home.”

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