Lighting in the home is about so much more than flicking a switch. Light layering is about creating different shades of light, playing with shadows and using colours to create your best lighting yet. It’s about transforming a room from the ordinary to something you’ll enjoy every day of your life.

Lighting is often a forgotten factor in the home, yet it has a profound effect on its overall look and feel. Using basic light layering rules, you can maximise the appearance and functionality of any space.

Multiple light sources help balance a room by minimising glare and shadows, while adding depth and dimension. Basic light layering covers three layers of lighting: Ambient, Task and Accent.



Ambient lighting is considered the base level of lighting. Done well, it makes a room considerably more welcoming. It provides an area with overall illumination and a comfortable level of brightness to see and move about safely.

Ambient lighting is typically provided by ceiling-mounted luminaires, with illumination mainly for orientation and general vision. Examples of ambient lighting include: downlights, spotlights, oysters, batten-fix, pendants and wall-mounted luminaires.

Task lighting provides a direct source of light for a specific activity like reading, grooming, preparing food and cooking, doing homework and playing games. Ensuring adequate task lighting makes a work environment more pleasant, free of glare and shadows and bright enough to prevent eye strain.

Examples of task lighting include track lighting systems, spotlights, wall-mounted, pendants & under-cabinet luminaires.

Accent lighting adds drama to a room or area by creating visual interest. It can be used to draw the eye to items such as artworks or displays, highlight architectural design elements and outdoor landscaping.


Accent lighting is often provided by downlights, under-cabinet luminaires, spotlights and track lighting systems.

Before you start, consider...

  •  Do you want to create a design statement? Pendants and lamps are ideal for this.

  •  Have you chosen products that are efficient for your home?

  •  What style would best suit your room? Consider your current surfaces and the look you would love to achieve.

  •  What activities will be carried out in the room?

  •  How big is your room? How many fittings will it need?

  •  Where are you going to place and arrange your lighting?

  •  Consider your furniture layout. Can it help you choose the correct lighting plan for your room?