How To Use Lighting And Colour To Create A Cosy Ambience At Home


Just like colour, lighting can create a certain mood within a space. And when combined with colour, lighting can enhance, complement or even offset the intensity, brightness and overall attractiveness of a paint scheme. Here are some tips from interior paint brand Dulux on pairing coloured paints with lighting.

Know the different types of lights

  • LEDs are the most flexible and can be paired with most colours to create an attractive space.
  • Incandescent lights emit warm lighting and can enhance hues like red, orage and yellow. They can also counteract cool tones.
  • Fluorescents emit cool tones and can enhance cool colours like blue, purple and green. Inversely, they diminish warm tones.
  • Halogen closely resemble daylight and have the effect of making colours pop.

SquareRooms colour and lighting living room

Decide how you would like the space to make you feel

To create a cheery atmosphere, use bright colours and complement them with bright or white lightbulbs. For a cosy ambience, put together deep colours with lighting that emit a tinge of orange.

SquareRooms colour and lighting home study

Adjust the intensity of colours with lighting 

Use lighting and colours with the same underlying tones to enhance the intensity of coloured walls. On the other hand, opt for contrasting tones to downplay the intensity of coloured walls.

SquareRooms lighting and paint Dulux

Soft lighting can enhance the ambience

When it comes to complementing neutral colour schemes, soft lighting is the way to go. Avoid lights with a harsh warm or cool tone as this could add an orange or blue tint to the wall, altering the colour entirely.

SquareRooms colour and lighting bedroom

Swatch it first

Pairing lighting and colour can yield varying results, so test out different combinations with swatches first. Throughout the day, observe how light plays off them and how the appearance is affected before committing to a paint colour.

SquareRooms light and colour paint swatch Dulux

This was adapted from an article originally published in the October 2017 issue of SquareRooms. Photo credits: Dulux