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It never sounded like much, but now we all know how long 20 seconds really is. While you’re standing there singing Happy Birthday – or whatever song you have settled on – a couple of times, you’ve probably had plenty of time to think about what’s for dinner or which Zoom background you want to use for the next meeting. (If you took the opportunity to look at your bath lighting, and have decided it’s time for some more contemporary light fixtures, just let us know!) 

Some of the folks here at Sculpta Designer Lighting, had some questions about handwashing so we’ve been doing a little research. We figure if we had questions, you might, too, so we thought we’d share what we learned. 

What’s better – soap or hand sanitizer? 

The CDC (Centers for Disease Control) say that if you have a choice, go with soap and water, which reduces the amounts of all types of germs and chemicals that might be on your hands. And, of course, wash for 20 seconds. “But if soap and water are not available, using a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can help you avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others,” the say. 

The downside to sanitizers is that they don’t eliminate all types of germs. “Soap and water are more effective than hand sanitizers at removing certain kinds of germs, like Cryptosporidiumnorovirus, and Clostridium difficile,” the CDC experts explain. “Although alcohol-based hand sanitizers can inactivate many types of microbes very effectively when used correctly1-15, people may not use a large enough volume of the sanitizers or may wipe it off before it has dried 14.”

Which leads to the next question…

How long should I take when washing my hands with sanitizer? 

This one is easy – until they are dry.

 

Of course, we’re not scientists or medical professionals, we are experts in lighting design and contemporary light fixtures, so always check with your doctor if you have questions.

Interior lighting is an important element of every room in your house, helping to evoke a certain ambiance while also facilitating the function of the space. When it comes to making a home office a place where you can be both productive and comfortable, the lighting design can be key.

Designer home lighting can make life not only more beautiful but also easier. For example, a contemporary chandelier in the entryway will illuminate the area when you’re looking for your keys but can also fill the space with warmth that will be appreciated when you welcome guests. The right bath lighting can make it easier to put on your makeup or get a good shave, while also helping to create a soothing haven. 

If you already have a home office or if you are converting a space in your home for use as a home office during these unprecedented times, you should take the time to determine if the existing lighting design is going to facilitate your efforts or if, perhaps, you need to make some changes. 

Home Office Lighting Design

Whether you are working from home or are simply at home trying to work, the interior lighting of your workspace can play an important role in determining how much you get done on any given day. 

As Michael Desmond of The Spruce says, “Poor lighting can reduce your energy, dampen morale, produce eyestrain and headaches, and ultimately impair your ability to work effectively.” Boom!

“If you don’t have a lot of natural light, then artificial lights are even more important when considering workspace illumination,” he says. “Many home offices have ambient lighting that includes overhead or recessed lights, but it’s a mistake to think that those will suffice. Existing ambient lighting is not designed for functional lighting in the home office, and it’s necessary to add additional sources.”

Designer home lighting can be both attractive and functional and is worth investing in for the long-term. At this moment in time, when you may need to get your home office up and running quickly, you may need to focus your interior lighting needs on the functional. If we can help in anyway, contact us.

There’s nothing like curling up with a good book. Of course, the right kind of interior lighting can make a big difference in the enjoyment you get from reading. For example, contemporary light fixtures such as a perfectly placed table lamp or floor lamp will bathe the pages of your book in light.

Lighting Design for Readers

If you are a reader and have a special chair or nook where you like to relax and read, it should definitely be taken into account when the lighting design of your home is being laid out, so be sure to let your lighting designer know about your love of books. 

To get the best lighting for your reading pleasure (assuming that you are reading an actual book or magazine rather than reading from a screen) it is best to position to have the light source behind you, so that the light is falling over your shoulder and on to the page. 

If you don’t currently have a lighting design that lends itself to that, you can place a floor lamp behind your favorite chair, sofa or chaise. And if that flocontemporary lightingor lamp is from Sculpta Designer Lighting, it can be both lighting and decorative accent for the room.

Appropriate Lighting for Screens

The Canadian Association of Optometrists says that interior lighting is also important if you are reading from a tablet or digital reader, such as a Kindle. “Be mindful of the brightness of digital screen vs. your reading environment,” they say. “It’s important to remember that the lighting of the area you’re reading in should be as bright or brighter than your digital device.”

You may not think you need to have the interior lights on if you are reading from a well-lit screen but reading in a darkened room can cause eye strain. “Reading from digital devices in a dark room can cause discomfort, leading to lower concentration and disorientation because your eyes are constantly adjusting between the brightness of a screen and your dimly lit surroundings.”

If you need more light for your reading, Sculpta Designer Lighting Company offers a number of decorating lighting solutions, ranging from contemporary chandeliers and bath lighting to contemporary lighting in the form of standing lamps.

You may have been too busy celebrating the holidays to pay much attention to the Winter Solstice when it rolled around on December 21. But you were probably marking the occasion even if you weren’t aware of it simply by relying much more heavily on your interior lighting.

Depending on where you live, you might be turning on not just your favorite reading lamp but all of your contemporary light fixtures at what seems to be an unreasonably early hour in the afternoon. In the summertime, you might not even use some of those fabulous lighting fixtures, aside from your bath lighting, on a regular basis.  But you have to pay a little more attention to your interior lighting on these long winter nights.

The Longest Night of the Year

The Winter Solstice is the shortest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. As the experts at Time and Date explain, “December Solstice occurs when the Sun reaches its most southerly declination of -23.4 degrees. In other words, when the North Pole is tilted furthest away from the Sun.”

But if you think you’ve got it bad, needing to turn on the lighting in and around your home halfway through the afternoon, think about the poor people living north of you. “North of the Arctic Circle towards the North Pole there is no direct sunlight at all during this time of the year,” Time and Date says.

With the enhanced need for interior lighting, it’s not unusual for people to pay more attention to the light fixtures in their home. Some may notice that the lighting design doesn’t banish all the shadows. Others may just notice that it really is time to hang a more contemporary chandelier in the dining room!

If you fall into either category, contact the designer home lighting experts at Sculpta Lights!

There is something warm, comforting and, dare we say, romantic about candlelight. There was a time when burning candles was necessary, but now with the wealth of contemporary lighting options that we have, burning candles is an indulgence.

And it seems to be an indulgence that lots of us really enjoy. According to the National Candle Association (yes, it is a thing):

  • Approximately 35% of candle sales occur during the Christmas/Holiday season. Non-seasonal business accounts for approximately 65% of candle sales.
  • More than 1 billion pounds of wax are used in producing the candles sold each year in the U.S.
  • It is estimated that more than 10,000 different candle scents are available to U.S. consumers.

 

Candle Cautions

You should never leave a burning candle unattended – that’s the first thing you need to remember if you want to safely light your interior spaces with candles.

As the Chicago Tribune reports, you should also be aware of what your candles are made of.   “Paraffin wax is made out of petroleum, while soy or other vegetable-based waxes and beeswax aren’t, said Ted Myatt, senior scientist at Environmental Health and Engineering, Inc., professor of environmental science at Brandeis University and director of research Integrity at the University of Rhode Island. A 2009 study by researchers at South Carolina State University found that long-term exposure to paraffin wax can be hazardous to your health and may cause poor indoor air quality,” the paper reported.

Certain scented candles also pose the possibility of contributing to indoor air pollution. And, of course, there is the issue of soot with some candles.

There are plenty of safe options if you want to use candles as bath lighting to treat yourself to a some relaxing “me time.” If you like using candles because of the fragrance, you can always investigate the use of essential oils, which might be a healthier than lighting your interiors with scented candles.

Thomas Edison will never be forgotten and his incandescent lightbulb will always stand as a testament to human ingenuity, but contemporary light fixtures and lighting design allow for the use of different kinds of lightbulbs.

“The incandescent light bulb has been around since the late 1800s, but the venerable technology’s dominance seems just about over,” National Geographic reported. “On January 1, 2014, in keeping with a law passed by Congress in 2007, the old familiar tungsten-filament 40- and 60-watt incandescent light bulbs can no longer be manufactured in the U.S., because they don’t meet federal energy-efficiency standards.”

The Next Generation in Lighting

If you need to change the lightbulb in today’s contemporary light fixtures – from bath lighting to designer exterior lighting and contemporary chandeliers – you will be using a CFL lightbulb or, perhaps, an LED bulb. With either, you won’t need to change them nearly as often as you did their incandescent precursors.

“By the late 1920s and early 1930s, European researchers were doing experiments with neon tubes coated with phosphors (a material that absorbs ultraviolet light and converts the invisible light into useful white light). These findings sparked fluorescent lamp research programs in the U.S., and by the mid and late 1930s, American lighting companies were demonstrating fluorescent lights to the U.S. Navy and at the 1939 New York World’s Fair,” the Department of Energy says. “These lights lasted longer and were about three times more efficient than incandescent bulbs. The need for energy-efficient lighting American war plants led to the rapid adoption of fluorescents, and by 1951, more light in the U.S. was being produced by linear fluorescent lamps.”

The need for energy conservation continued to drive innovation. “It was another energy shortage — the 1973 oil crisis — that caused lighting engineers to develop a fluorescent bulb that could be used in residential applications,” the Department of Energy says.

In the 1970s, Edward Hammer at General Electric created the first compact fluorescent light (CFL) by bending the fluorescent tube into a spiral shape. While they were more energy efficient, until fairly recently, the price of CFLs was a deterrent to their use. Now, according to the Department of Energy, “Nearly 30 years after CFLs were first introduced on the market, an ENERGY STAR® CFL costs as little as $1.74 per bulb when purchased in a four-pack.”

For more information on fluorescent lighting and other options in designer home lighting, feel free to contact your friends at Sculpta Contemporary Lighting.