Photos courtesy CRAFT Interiors.

Designer tip: Cherith Craft on choosing the right lighting

Let there be light! While every space has some sort of lighting, it’s not always the star of the show. Whether lighting takes on the role of the showstopper or supporting act in the room, there are many ways to elevate the ordinary and make fixture choices interesting. According to Cherith Craft of CRAFT Interiors, there are a few keys to keep in mind when looking for lighting to enhance your space–whether in a new build or a remodel.

“Several things you want to consider when choosing a light fixture are finish, beauty, function, scale and drama,” explains Craft. “You also need to pay attention to what other elements in the room are intended to be the star.”

When choosing a finish for your fixture, it’s all about balance. “Ask yourself—how does that finish complement what is already there? If you plan to mix finishes, then consider what you need to add to balance the space,” says Craft.

However, function is just as important as beauty. Always consider the amount of lighting already present in your space. Is there ample natural light or even lots of recessed lighting? Assess the amount of lighting your space needs and choose accordingly.

“Scale is a huge factor,” says Craft. “Nothing makes it look like you tried to skimp on cost more than choosing a smaller-scale fixture than was needed. It’s better to find a completely different light than buy the one you love that is too small. Finding a light fixture that’s too big can also be an issue, but most people tend to make the mistake in scale the other way.”

Last, but certainly not least: the drama. Is lighting the main character, or is its place further down on the credits?

“In order for the show-stopping element of the room to draw the attention, it needs to be supported by lights,” she explains. “That doesn’t mean that the other lights can’t be beautiful. You just don’t want to overwhelm the eye with over-the-top fixtures at every turn. If you have a detail wall or a bold paint color you want to show off, you don’t want to distract the eye from that by using an attention-grabbing light. It’s all about understanding the give and take and using restraint.”