Bedside Lighting: 3 tips for picking the right one

The soft glow of a bedside lamp…


Bedside lighting is an essential item that every bedroom should possess. Instead of relying strictly on the overhead fixture for illumination, you can brighten the room from the comfort of your bed. This eliminates the possibility of stumbling around during the middle of the night in search of the light switch. The right lamp will serve aesthetic and functional purposes, offering both style and a source of illumination.

1. Type of lighting

The most common options are table lamps, wall-mounted lights, pendants, and adjustable task lamps. They’re typically placed on either side of the bed and are usually matching. (Note that lighting experts say to avoid installing ceiling down lights directly over beds–soft light at face level is more effective and saves you from staring up at a bulb.)

2. Making sure it’s the right height

There is no standard height rule, because beds and mattresses vary widely. To find the ideal lamp height for your bedroom, start with the height of your mattress top. Your nightstand should be about the same height as the top of your mattress, give or take a few inches.  Then, when choosing a lamp, you want the bottom of the shade to be about even with your chin level when sitting up in bed. That provides ideal reading and task light without glaring in your eyes.

3. Lighting that matches your bedroom style

As long as your bedside lamps are in keeping with the rest of your bedroom’s décor, the coluor and style are up to you. Spice up a contemporary bedroom with a sleek glass or chrome lamp, or pick a traditional ginger jar lamp for a country bedroom.  Think of your bedside lamp as a powerful accent in your bedroom, and choose accordingly.

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