This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through these links, I might make a small commission at no extra cost to you. In fact, you get a 10% discount using the code “ZACH”. Thanks for the support and hope you enjoy the read!
You’ve knocked your ambient lighting out of the park, nailed your task lighting, and now you’re wondering: what should I do about the accent lighting in my bedroom?
Well, fear not because in this article, we will explore all the different top tips I can offer you for accent lighting in the bedroom. Ready? Let’s go!
What Is Accent Lighting?
Before we go into the ideas I have prepared for you, let’s start with the basics. What is accent lighting?
Accent lighting is lighting used to emphasize different elements of your design, such as art and decor. It focuses on a particular area or object and it’s usually meant to accentuate this area and make it shine.
Although many times it’s mandatory (we will see when later), its main purpose is not to help us perform an activity, which is how it differs from task lighting.
Accent lighting basically highlights objects and parts of your home by placing light directly on them.
Common Fixtures For Accent Lighting
Common fixtures for accent light include:
- Track lighting
- Wall sconces
- Picture lights
- LED strips
- Wall washers or grazers
- Directional can lights
- Neon signs
- Step lights
- LED pucks
Top 9 Ideas For Accent Lighting In The Bedroom
1. Use directional can lights (uplighters) behind your plants
This is definitely my favorite idea, and so it gets position numero uno.
Directional can lights are floor or ceiling/wall lights that can be turned to point the light wherever we want.
If you have plants in your bedroom (which you should), get a directional can light, place it on the floor, and twist it pointing upwards behind the plant. It will make your space SO much more dramatic and intense. All while keeping your bedroom a relaxation haven.
2. Use motion-activated LED strips under the bed
Accent LED strips under the bed give so much power to your bedroom! Combine that with a motion sensor and you have a killer combo.
Late-night trips to the kitchen or bathroom become so much easier, and with no toe stubbing!
For this idea, you can use either neutral color LEDs (warm white) or something more red-ish.
Colors like blue or green help with relaxation while red and pink give more energy to a space. However, low-brightness red LED lights have been associated with melatonin production and regulation of sleep.
You don’t want to overdo your red lights in the bedroom, so under the bed is a good place to start (and end). Orange is probably the safest choice.
3. Install wall light art
Wall light art comes in many forms and we will discuss a couple more in the next ideas. But for now, consider installing an illuminated piece of art on one of your walls.
I am not talking about a painting with a picture light. Although always nice, this is nothing original.
I am talking about a piece of art that includes light in its artistic components, such as the following:
4. Add neon art (carefully!)
Neon signs and symbols have become a very popular choice for those aiming at a more retro style. If this sounds like you, then consider placing them over the bed headboard or on an empty wall. However, don’t overdo it! A simple sign should be enough.
I have a detailed article on the pros and cons of neon lights in the bedroom, so you can read more about that if you’re interested.
But in short, neon lights are your chance to go wild and just not follow the rules. Choose your favorite design and color and go for it. (The only rule you should follow is to not place too many as that would look tacky!).
5. Install motion-activated LED strips in your closet
This works both as accent and as task lighting, which is why I love this idea.
As you can see, this is the second time in the list referring to motion-activated LEDs. Why is that?
Well, it’s because, in the bedroom, you want to automate as much of your lighting as possible, so that it helps you unwind and therefore sleep better. For example, smart lighting options are ideal for the bedroom because of how much easier they make your life when you want to relax and sleep.
Read more about the best sleeping lights for the bedroom.
6. Use wall grazers (or even wall washers!)
The purpose of wall grazers is to create shadows and give extra dimension to your textured wall. They are usually placed 6-12 inches (15-30 cm) from the wall at an angle of 10 degrees.
Definitely consider them if you have a stacked stone wall or brick wall.
If you don’t have a textured wall, you can consider wall washers, which are placed more than 12 inches (30 cm) from the wall at an angle of 30-35 degrees. Even though they are mostly used for ambient light, their purpose is to eliminate shadows and accentuate the wall itself.
Consider wall washers if you have interesting popping colors on your walls.
7. Light up your shelves
This idea can give an extra dimension to your boring ol’ plain shelves and make them stand out.
Simply add LED strips or a neon tube behind your floating shelves and voila! Nice and easy, you’ve created discreet but cool accent lighting.
8. Get an accent floor lamp
Floor lamps for accent light can be truly stunning. An example of this is the following floor lamp by Residence Supply:
9. Surround your mirror with LED pucks
Placing LED pucks around your mirror not only gives it a nice glow but also illuminates yourself. This is another case of LED strips functioning as both task and accent lighting.
The look of your mirror will resemble cabarets and big Vegas shows!
So there you have it! These are the 9 coolest ideas for accent lighting I could think of. Do you have any more unique ideas that I left out? Feel free to reach out to me and let me know your thoughts!