There are countless ways to bring your style and aesthetic into your home, but perhaps none as important as the essential and ever-needed light fixture.

Overhead lighting can be overlooked, especially when there are so many fabulous lamps we can use to spice up a room and countless other must-have home accessories available to dress up a space. However, the impact that good lighting can have on a space is worth the time and effort it takes to find just the right piece.

Besides the obvious function of lighting up dark corners to display your room (and the aforementioned must-have decor within it), lighting can impact how you see color. You want that paint color you spent two months agonizing over to pop!

Light can affect your emotion and moods: There’s a reason that seasonal affective disorder is most comment in the fall and winter months, when it is often brought on by changes in your biological clock caused by — you guessed it — a “reduced level of sunlight.”

Chandeliers tend to be a more extravagant and eye-catching lighting solution and are often used in places of prominence. (Nell Hill’s via TNS)
Chandeliers tend to be a more extravagant and eye-catching lighting solution and are often used in places of prominence. (Nell Hill’s via TNS)

There are many ways to bring light into your home. A room’s lighting needs are determined by its use, though generally a balanced space has a mix of overhead, accent and task lighting.

While there are many beautiful lamps to set by your sofa and chairs, and plenty of accent choices to showcase your art and bookcase decor, let’s focus on the showstopping effect of an impactful hanging light fixture. From the bedroom to the kitchen and the dining room to the living area, a dramatic fixture can bring more than just light to your space.

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Let us begin with the not-at-all-humble chandelier. Unlike their single-bulb cousins, chandeliers feature many light bulbs, often in symmetrical branched frames (at least those with a more traditional aesthetic).

A longtime staple in traditional design, chandeliers tend to be a more extravagant and eye-catching lighting solution and are often used in places of prominence. In addition to being aesthetically impactful, they provide a greater amount of light and are ideal for large spaces and high ceilings.

While pendants are the reliable team players of the home, chandeliers as showy statement pieces that are perfect for a foyer or formal dining area. It is essentially another piece of art for the room.

If you don’t need or want the drama of a chandelier, pendant lights are another stylish and multifunctional option. They can offer direct, task-oriented lighting, such as when grouped over a kitchen countertop; create a more subdued ambience by stringing them in a group in the middle of a room, be it a bedroom, dining room, living room or sun room.

Lantern-style fixtures are more formal than a pendant light but more relaxed than a chandelier. (Nell Hill’s via TNS)
Lantern-style fixtures are more formal than a pendant light but more relaxed than a chandelier. (Nell Hill’s via TNS)

When placed at the right height, pendants can make your room feel instantly cozier and more welcoming without causing eyestrain from too-low lighting. The style options are vast, from natural woven fibers to modern minimalist metal, and they are perfect to complement existing design elements without overwhelming your space.

Lantern-style fixtures, while technically a subcategory of pendant lighting, offer something between the direct and practical pendant lighting and the far-reaching light of the eye-catching chandelier. Often more formal than a pendant but more relaxed than the chandelier, it is the “baby bear porridge” of lighting fixtures.