Saturday, 31 December 2016

Lights - positioning them

In real life we move into a house and arrange our lives/furniture around lights and sockets wherever they are and I suppose there is no reason not to replicate this in small world.  You can simply do as UK builders do and put a ceiling light (pretty much) in the centre of the ceiling and a socket on each wall in the corner and arrange your furniture accordigly.

If you are dealing with a pre-electric house this won't prove so simple and you will need to consider where you want chandelier, wall lights, candles or lamps on furniture. So there is much to be said for collecting loads of things to go in your house during the building stage.

That way you will know exactly what you need to wire in where.

I long ago gave up on being that organised and I am lucky if I even have any sort of constant idea of how I might want my rooms to look.  

For this 'electric' house I decided anything that was going to be lit would exit the back wall and that was that: so any table lamps (etc) that found themselves at the front of the house after the floor had gone down just won't be lit: otherwise I would be in a permanent state of stasis waiting to find the perfect desk light for the desk at the front of the library for example.  Every level that doesn't have the wiring finished prevents the level above from being worked on.  In my case, waiting for concrete ideas and then shopping for items, would mean the whole house would always be half done.

Even though this is set in 2016 I don't want most of my ceiling lights slap bang centre as they often look offset in some way when the furniture goes in.  

The dining room light for example really needs to be centered over the dining table.  The diary is standing in for how far forward the fireplace will be.  The table and chairs may not be the final ones but they do very well to give me an idea of where the centre of a table might be. 

The hall lantern presented less choices and is just placed centrally.  I suspect they actually were nearer the front door in Georgian houses (?) but it is so dominant it would 'stop your eye'.

I don't have any furniture for the sitting room which makes positioning the light a bit fraught but basically there will be two pieces of furniture either side of the fireplace on the back wall and a pair of sofas lengthwise down the room.  I used some stand-ins even though they are possibly a bit small.  This was still good as it made me realise that I didn't want to count in the first three inches of space (depth into the room) space in front of the door as being part of the seating area.  Therefore the light should go in the centre of the space between the sofas and half way between the fireplace and the right hand door jamb.

All these rooms were simple enough to allow me to just measure from the front of the room, make a mark and then measure from the left hand side and make an intersecting mark. 

If the room is an odd shape for any reason I just make a paper template and use that in the room above to mimic the space.  This has not been necessary on this house so far.

Drill a hole big enough to take the wires where the lines cross.

I like to keep my posts short so ..... see next week for making grooves and then the next week for getting your lights and roses ready and putting them in.

Happy New Year