Universal Design Solutions for Lighting

With winter coming on in full swing and Daylight Savings behind us, we’re reminded daily that adding lighting to our homes can be beautiful, useful and promote greater health.

Different types of lighting can help us with everything from reading and cooking to highlighting wall art to alleviating symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder. For those who live with disabilities or are experiencing symptoms associated with aging, the right light can truly impact quality of life.

There are 3 main types of lighting

  1. Ambient Light
  2. Task Light
  3. Accent Light

Ambient Lighting is the most common form of lighting. It is the “natural light” within the room and is often referred to as “mood lighting” because it sets the tone of a room. With a shift in your ambient lighting you can take a room from a cool, calm, relaxing place to unwind after work to a warm, inviting space to have coffee with a friend. Recessed, track lighting and chandeliers all fall under this category.


Task Lighting includes pendants and desk lamps that help you do certain activities throughout the house. Pendant lights over an island can help you see clearer as you’re cooking and a mirror with lights installed in the bathroom can help with applying makeup or shaving.


Accent Lighting is used to highlight certain pieces of art or light wash walls to showoff texture. This type of lighting is also popular with landscape illumination designs.

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When we are designing a home for our clients, we take into consideration their lifestyles, abilities and future plans. If you’re planning on aging in place, adding lighting to stairwells, pantries and closets are some simple changes you can make to smooth out the transitions that come along the way.

What is Universal Design? Check out our intro post to learn more!

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