Compact fluorescent light bulbs are five times more effective than incandescent ones. Improvements in the efficiency of light bulbs and the lowered price of electricity have meant that it is more viable than ever to add extra light sources to your San Diego home.
With that said, how can you get a great-looking entrance with a lighting plan?
Below we discuss our essential outdoor lighting ideas for your porch that you can incorporate into your own lighting design.
- Layer Up Porch Lighting
You don’t need to have lighting against one wall or surface. By layering up your lights you can add a lot of depth to even the plainest facade. This does not just start and end with the porch itself.
For example, imagine you have the front door, a seating area on the porch and a small tree in the garden of your San Diego home. If you light the front door alone, the eyes are drawn straight to it, circumventing the other items. Lighting them all creates layers that take the eyes on a journey toward the home.
The advantage of this is that you can use it to pick out the key features of the garden. Each of these will add to the beauty of the porch itself. All you need to do is decide what part of your property is interesting enough to be lit.
- Hang String Lights
The famous movie director Michael Bay has a signature set piece in many of his movies. This is the addition of string lighting, often seen on houses and fences whenever he shoots a scene. The reason he does this is to layer his shots and when he’s shooting at night.
This cinematic technique is not just for celluloid. String lights are a very cheap way to build layers and frame your porch. Not only do they provide practical downlighting, but they are perfect for creating edges and defining boundaries.
A white light will always look best when you are doing this. In addition to the porch, you can use it on fences, or even hanging from trees, to show the different areas of a yard or edge of the porch.
- Utilize Lanterns
Lanterns are one of the creative porch lighting ideas that work for both modern and classical buildings. They can be used to light an area and draw attention to it. Generally, the higher the ceiling of the porch at your San Diego home, the bigger the lantern should be.
The beauty of lanterns is that they are available in a range of colors and materials. For industrial or rustic looks, vintage coppers work well. For a modern home, go for a sleek silver and metal finish.
Bear in mind that the fewer you have, the more attention will be drawn to them. Therefore, if you only choose to have one lantern make sure it is a feature instead of an accessory.
- Stay Simple
If you have a simple, plain entrance, then treat it as such. Very often, trying to make it interesting with multiple lights and features can look like you are trying to make it something it isn’t. In these cases, stay simple.
Perhaps a single lantern next to the door or an upright light will do the trick. Go minimalist and not only do you save on your budget, but you also save on electricity costs.
- Use Candlelight
If you have a little room or tiered steps on your porch, then mixing lighting with candlelight can look fantastic. The trick here is to not keep it uniform. House your candles in everything from lanterns to plant pots and birdcages.
You don’t actually have to use traditional candles either. For a much safer option you can get LED lights that look like candles, and even flicker. Some of them can even be solar-powered, so they can charge in the day and light up your exterior at night. A great option for San Diego area residents looking to go a little greener.
Uplights are sources of illumination that come from the ground and shine upwards. They give ambient light to objects and surfaces that are above them. You can use them to draw attention to objects or create extremely interesting effects on textured surfaces.
The physical light source should always be hidden away, usually in a recess. Hiding these lights takes away the intensity and creates warmth. You can uplight plants, pots, shrubs, and walls around the porch.
- Use a Beam Design Over Benches
Your porch does not just have to be the entrance to your home. It can be used as a functional space, bringing usage to the outside of your property. With a dining area under a covered porch you can enjoy hosting in the evening whatever the weather.
One great way to do this is with bench-style seating. Hang a beamed design light over the top of the bench itself. Add a dimmer so you can turn the lighting up or down depending on your needs.
- Light Architectural Features
If you have something of interest, don’t be afraid to show it off. You can do this by using porch lighting to highlight the features. These could be beautiful arched doorways or beams and decorations on the porch itself.
Illuminate Your San Diego Porch to Highlight Your Entryway
Now you know these creative porch lighting ideas, consider the current look of your facade. Think about which of these would work with your style, or get assistance and advice from an expert in the San Diego area.
If you enjoyed this article, Lighting Distinctions has many more to help you. In addition to advice, we also have a range of lighting solutions for in and outdoors. Click here to see our range of products and how we can help you design your perfect home.