The power of good lighting is certainly no secret, but how can we ensure every single room in our home brings out our best selves? It's not easy, but it is possible, as the Kardashians interior designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard shares.
'When I was designing for the Kardashians, we had to work out ways to incorporate lighting into their home that makes them look amazing when they’re on camera,' he says in an exclusive interview with H&G.
'We buried special lighting into the plasterwork of the house so that their lighting gave them this wonderful, beautiful glow. When the cameras were on, they always looked their best. Remember, they are on camera every day, so their homes almost work as their film sets.'
'Sometimes, it's not about just interior design. Sometimes, it's about finding ways that make the client the star on their own set, and in this case, it was their home.'
As Martyn explains, however, this isn't our prompt to replaster our rooms to incorporate camera-friendly lighting (unless we want to, of course) – but it is a reminder of light's power. And this reminder translates to every size and style of home.
'The most important thing in anybody's home is lighting. Lighting is everything. Whether you're in a small apartment or a castle, an over-lit or badly lit room will instantly create the wrong atmosphere,' Martyn says.
Martyn is a world-class talent and the largest award-winning designer and author based in Los Angeles. He is known for his trademark glamour and flair for the exotic as he curates sophisticated and inviting interiors for Hollywood A-listers and global glitterati, including Kendall Jenner, Khloe Kardashian, Kourtney Kardashian, Tommy Hilfiger, Cher, Ellen Pompeo, and Eva Mendes, to name a few.
Elevating our home's atmosphere with lighting can involve investing in a statement chandelier or small ambient pockets of task lighting. However, one of the most impactful things we can do is invest in a dimmer switch that allows us to lower our lighting levels to match our mood.
'You can buy a dimmer switch for $20 [such as this one from Amazon], which changes everything. Dim the lights; you light a candle, and you create ambiance. You create an immediate atmosphere,' Martyn says.
'One of the cheapest things to do in your home that will change the vibe is to dim the lights or brighten the lights or whatever it takes to make the space feel good for you.'
Martyn's interview with H&G also marked the launch date of his new book, Star Style, a collection of all the celebrity homes he has worked on in his career. Among them are the Kardashians, Cher, Tommy Hilfiger, and Ellen Pompeo.
'It's been a pretty amazing journey. I have to say I'm very, very lucky to experience and be part of that,' he says.
In his third book, Martyn Lawrence Bullard takes you inside celebrity homes in Star Style, a collection of sensational, eclectic interiors.
While we're not all going to rush to replicate the Kardashians' plastering trick, Martyn's teaching remains the same: lighting is key. No matter the size of our home, this feature will make the biggest difference of all, so whether we experiment with lighting trends or pick up a dimmer switch, this is our cue to try something ambient and new.
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Megan is the News and Trends Editor at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes. As the News Editor, she often focuses on emerging microtrends, sleep and wellbeing stories, and celebrity-focused pieces. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.
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