Friday, November 13, 2020

How To Use Lighting To Complete A Room

 ~ This is a featured post.~

Its easy to underestimate the difference that great-quality lighting makes to the ambience  until you see less-than-effective lighting.

Homeowners sometime make the mistake of rushing into installing lighting that they liked the look of only to realize that they should have put more thought  into such aspects as lighting layout and design.

Lighting is not merely a superficial finishing touchto a room as it   plays a fundamental role in the broader design scheme and the day-to-day experience of using the space. Here are a few key steps to take to ensure you use lighting to complete your own homes rooms nicely.

1-Devise a plan for your homes lighting

If youre beginning with a bare room that does not yet have any lighting in place, its especially important to come up with a plan. This way, you hopefully wont make directionless and ill-advised choices that will be costly and inconvenient to correct. 

You will need to ask yourself a series of questions. What activities typically or are likely to take place in the room and what implications will this have for the illumination you will need? Are there architectural features, boundaries, or furniture to which you will wish to draw attention with your lighting or which may impose constraints?

Consider the existing style of the room, its décor as well as the time of day the room will normally be used and by whom.

2-Familiarize yourself with the three main lighting types

Once youve got a good idea of what your priorities will be for illuminating a room, youll need to know about the various types of lighting available.

There are three key types: ambient lighting, task lighting and accent, or mood lighting. Ambient lighting is also referred to as background or general lighting, and provides a room with its overall illumination–think recessed downlighters, large pendants and even some wall lighting.

Task lighting, meanwhile, is the kind of lighting that serves as additional, targeted illumination for such daily tasks as cooking, reading and using a laptop, as might be provided by the likes of desk and floor lamps. Finally, mood or accent lighting highlights specific features or items in a room, such as display cabinets, sculptures or ornaments.

3-Take a layered approach

One of the most crucial points to make about the three above categories of lighting is that you dont need to restrict yourself to just one type in a room. Indeed, the most impressive results may be obtained from an artful combination of all three types.

This is where the layering of different lighting types comes in–and its where adding and arranging the lighting in your space becomes quite interesting. Theres no single right or wrong way to layer lighting in a room as much depends on the size and shape of the room as well as  the ambience youre aiming for.

Nonetheless, there are some good rules of thumb to keep in mind. If youre looking to give the impression of the room being taller than it is, some stylish low-hung pendants from a respected  brand like ARTCRAFT Lighting are just what you need. . If youd like a large room to look  more intimate and cozier, why not consider clusters of lighting?

Completing a room with lighting is  fun so be sure to  enjoy the process  by keeping  the above strategies in mind to  get your space just right.

Thursday, November 5, 2020

2020 Cottage Season

Welcome to November! I can't believe 2020 is almost over and here I am, only starting to document  a very long cottage season we just wrapped up. 

Can we all agree we are not sad to see Year 2020 go? To many, 2020 has to be one of the most difficult years filled with stress, hardship and sadness. Fortunately to us, besides working ourselves to the bone and the inconvenience of not being able to travel for leisure, our lives were not impacted as much and our loved ones have been staying safe and healthy. 

We were able to spend perhaps a month in total at our cottage in the previous years. But this past summer, since there was no work commitment to keep us in town or other travel plans, we were able to spend nearly half of the warmer months at the cottage. 


Mid May was when we opened up the cottage this year. Since the lockdown in March, we couldn't wait for the cottage season to come any sooner.

Picture below: Mr. captured a sunset moment from our cottage porch. 

This was what our cottage woods looked like when we first arrived. 

Within a matter of 3 days, the woods came back to life. 

The warmer Spring gave us a head start on this season's planting. This flower bed was an addition this year. 

Added these Arctic Willows on the other side of the cottage.  They grow fast so I hope to trim them into hedge next year. 

Cottage pool was well underway.

It became very clear to me early on during the lockdown that we would be working a lot more from our cottage this year. So we decided to install this Ikea Svalnas shelving unit with a desk so we could use the guest bedroom as an office. We've got so much use out of it this season so it was the best decision ever. 

To refresh your memory, this was what that wall looked like pre-Ikea Svalnas. 


June is my favourite month at cottage: longer days, cooler temperature, a lot more greeneries, and fewer tourists in town. 

The new garden bed was already lush in early June. 

I was able to find not just one but two white Rhododendrons to add to our cottage garden this year. 

The white Rhododendron Chionoides flowers are just dreamy. I could stare at them all day. 

This white Potentilla Creme Brulee was from last year. I highly recommend this plant for its ease to grow and super long blooming time. 

Inside the house, I finally got around to replacing our builder basic range with this KitchenAid slide-in electric range in white. Couldn't be happier with its oven temperature precision. The cooking elements however were extremely aggressive so it took me quite a while to get used to. 

And because we've been spending so much time at cottage, I was able to start a tiny herb garden which came in very handy for making our favourite Caprese. 

Another Ikea Svalnas shelfing unit installed on this living room wall. 

Got around to styling the bigger Svalnas unit in the guest bedroom. 

We added under-bed storage drawers and replaced the nightstands with floating ones to free up the floor space. 


We had a ceiling fan in our master bedroom which we never turned on. We have central air conditioning at cottage so a ceiling fan seemed redundant. Not to say it's a bit of an eye sore. So in July, we finally got around to replacing it with this modern and minimalist branch chandelier - it looks so simplistic but it's nothing simple to put it up. I was just relieved that we were still married after the installation :). 

The olive green organic linen throw was from Zara Home. 

Mr. called dibs on the guest bedroom office. 

Cottage pool was finally ready. 

We hired Terra Vista Landscape to clean up a river rock filled area on this side of the cottage to create a flower bed. If you are in the Prince Edward County in need of a landscaping company for jobs big and small, give Terra Vista a call. I highly recommend them. 

This shrub rose "Carefree Delight" was an addition this year. It bloomed well into the late fall. 


We usually stopped working Friday afternoon to give us a head start on the weekend. It gave us more time to explore the county. This was a small goat farm behind the PEC General Store. 

Hydrangea Phantom in full bloom. 

The new flower bed Terra Vista created was in full bloom: pink Gayfeather, yellow flashpoint Kniphofia. 

We also finally managed to inflate our raft and took it to the lake for a float - it only took us two months to unbox it. 

There were tree frogs like this everywhere around our cottage. They startled me from time to time when they jumped to escape my potential bone-shattering stumbles. 

I came across a few of these alien-like Stinkhorn (devil's horn) fungus in our woods during the muggier days of summer. They certainly lived up to their fame oozing a rotten stench. Ew! 

This is now my favourite spot inside the cottage. CH25 easy chair was super comfortable to sit in for a hot cup of tea. 

Rose of Sharon Diana White has the most delicate flowers. 

We drove by this pond on our way to Belleville. Did this scene not remind you of a Renato Muccillo painting?

We spent a lot of our time after dinner on the beach. Nothing felt more calming and liberating than waves gently brushing our feet. 

The Sandbanks Dunes Beach is a short five minutes drive from our cottage. We certainly got a lot of good and low-impact workouts exploring different sand dunes. 


I was ready to go home for good after a long stay at cottage. A big part of the fun at cottage was to explore local shops and try out different new restaurants in the county. But this year obviously we weren't able to do any of that. 

Picture below: a swamp near our cottage, I found the sunset in the distance extremely soothing so I spent quite a bit of my early evenings there. 

My first-ever Clematis was doing really well. 

Some spider entertainment during my never-ending Zoom meetings. 

If you are still with me after such a long and picture-heavy post, I will share an exciting news with you. We bought a new house last year! Well, a piece of land for now to build our dream home. The pandemic delayed everything but we should be back on track soon. You can follow me on my Pinterest to see the design direction I am taking this house. 

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