Light Learning

Bright Ideas - May 2021

Posted by Amy Wommack on Tuesday, July 6, 2021


In the dark when it comes to lighting?








Issue #123


May 2021



Light Learning



PureEdge Lighting


In the dark when it comes to lighting?


If you find yourself saying “watts up?” when weighing your bulb options, familiarize yourself with these lighting terms before your next trip to the bulb store.


Kelvin – a measure of color temperature which describes the color quality of light; describes the warmth or coolness of light; the higher temperature the whiter the light


Color rendering index (CRI) – a measure of the ability of a light source to reveal color; a CRI of 100 shows the true color; a light source with a CRI of 90+ is excellent; a CRI of 80-90 is considered good


Lumen – a measure of brightness; the higher the lumen, the brighter the light

Watt – a measure of energy use; a 60-watt incandescent bulb is equivalent to a 6-watt LED


LED – light-emitting diode; LED lamps are more energy-efficient than incandescent lamps


To learn more, go online to or stop by an ALA-member lighting store to see the best options for putting your home in the best light.




Complete the look with layers of light


Allegri Crystal by Kalco

Once you find the perfect fixture for your room, consider the other types of lighting needed to complete the look. For optimal enjoyment and functionality, it’s best to light in layers: ambient, accent and task.


Ambient lighting is the main or general lighting, often generated from overhead from a chandelier, large pendant or grouping of pendants. Ambient light can also be provided by less noticeable fixtures like a floor lamp or recessed cans, for example.


Accent lighting gives a space its aesthetic appeal by highlighting specific areas or design element, such as a fireplace, architectural feature, special décor, or artwork. This type of lighting may come from spotlights, small lamps, sconces, any light that can be aimed to draw attention to a certain spot.


Task lighting is necessary to pour needed light onto surfaces for a particular task or activity, such as preparing food, doing office work, grooming, etc. Examples of task lighting include mini pendants over a kitchen island, sconces flanking a bathroom mirror, a desk lamp, or a directional sconce for reading in bed.


Fixtures of any one type or style are not all relegated for any one specific light layer. Depending on how they are sized and positioned, different types of fixtures can satisfy any light layer in the right space. A pair of sconces may provide ambient light in one room, while similar sconces in another space may be used as accent lighting.


To get the perfect mix of light, ask questions and peruse the latest styles at a nearby ALA-member lighting store. There you will find trained lighting experts as well as pick up a free copy of Lighting magazine. You can also find tips and view lighting design videos at


For inspiration, browse the new issue of Lighting magazine. Pick up a free copy at a nearby ALA-member store or go to Ideas.Lighting to see the digital version.


Image above: Eurofase



Lighting magazine is presented by the American Lighting Association and Meredith Publishing/Better Homes and Gardens.


Pick up a free copy of Lighting at an ALA-member store, or get a digital copy at Ideas.Lighting. The magazine is also available for sale on preferred newsstands.




American Lighting Association | 2050 N. Stemmons Freeway, Unit 100, Dallas, TX 75207

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