How To Use Natural Light In Your Home

How To Use Natural Light In Your Home

how to use natural light in your homeI was never quite sure why Spring has been so explicitly associated with cleaning the house.

Maybe it’s the freshness in the air and a feeling of new beginnings. Or perhaps it’s just the change in season and it’s a good excuse as any to make your home fresh as a daisy.

But no, I’ve figured it out. It’s all in the shadows.

It’s that morning sun finally shining through the blinds and NOT having to wake up to complete darkness before the commute – a shimmer of hope that Summer is just a hop, skip and a jump away. And along with the beauty of that sunshine comes a spotlight on everything that you probably missed in the depths of Winter. The questionable stains on the couch, suddenly with its very own spotlight. The sticky fingersprints on the glass window now completely magnified through the sunny rays.

I’m not kidding either. Exhibit A below…

Natural light creating shadows

OH GOD MY HOUSE IS DISGUSTING, I’M SO SORRY READERS.

If you’re already in an actual tidy home, without a toddler who just adores to kiss glass doors and lick mummy’s glasses, you might be in for a shot at taking this gorgeous natural light, and really embracing it. Utilise the wonderful shapes of the shadows and try to find interesting ways to make them a feature in themselves. Here are 3 things you can look to change in your home this Spring:

Walls in a South Facing Room

Take a look at any south facing rooms you may have. They’re going to receive a huge burst of direct sunlight, so take notice where it shines. If you have patterned windows or blinds, try not to clutter up the adjacent walls too much with images or furniture. Those accents through the glass will add dimension to your walls and sometimes, it’s enough of a feature on its own! It’s also a good time to take a look at what’s on the wall. Direct sun will show up every little paint stroke and uneven wall, so try and opt for textured or thickened wallpaper, or endurance matt paints.

Natural light creating shadows
Natural light creating shadows

Nature is Your Friend

Whether it’s layers of overgrown ivy or the spikes in a fake cactus, any jungle vibes in your home can create the most beautiful shadows, and if the sun hits them in the right place, can  give them the most gorgeous glow. Place plants on or near a window to really get the most out of those rays – as long as it’s a plant that can cope in direct sunlight of course! If you’re a plant killer like me, best to stick to faux florals. I won’t tell anyone…

Natural light creating shadows
Natural light creating shadows

Rejig Your Vignettes

There’s still one spot in my bedroom where a strip of light peeps through the curtains and lands right on my dresser. I’ve read before that this is the perfect opportunity to place a mirrored surface to bounce that light around the room and maximise the heck out of it. My experience of this has been different and created nothing but irritating glare – kind of like those moments where you finally get comfortable in bed only to have a street light shine into your eyes. URGH. Don’t do it! Instead, place a variety of ornaments in these lines of light, either with metallic colourings or battered finishes. They’ll still bounce light off but in a non-invasive way. Choose different textures for more interesting shadows.

Natural light creating shadows
Natural light creating shadows

So they are my tips on how to make the most of Spring making its grand entrance. Now, pardon me whilst I scrub the windows and do some overdue dusting.

* This post was written in collaboration with Network VEKA. All words and opinions are my own. Thanks so much for supporting the brands that support this site. 

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  • Hungry_Healthy_Happy

    There are lots of great tips here. We are really lucky that we have lots of amazing natural light in our house.

    • thank you! Ooo how lucky – definitely make the most of it while it lasts! 🙂

  • Strong use of plants here! I still need to work out my key natural lighting spots in the house x

    • Thanks Sarah! Get on it – I’m still waiting for your house tour 😉 xx

  • Fantastic tips Karen, thanks! I’d never have thought to use light to help me style a space in this way. I’ll be taking some on board next time I’m doing my tidy round No. 42.

    Fi x

    • Thanks Fi 🙂
      Oo how exciting. Can’t wait to see your piccies x

  • Robin Rue

    My house is so dark because it’s surrounded by trees. I actually have to take most of my photos outside on my deck to get any decent lighting.

    • Oh I know the feelings. Ours was recently sheltered by a massive tree and it definitely makes a huge difference!

  • Great tips and great photos. We have a lot of places where light comes in but I do not know that I can say that we use light well. Definitely have to work on that!

    • Thanks very much! And agreed, it can make a big difference x

  • OhNikka

    Thanks for the tips! I get a a lot of natural light inside my home. I make good use of it for my pictures and plants!

    • Good to hear! Pictures & plants are the best way to do it 🙂

  • Candy Kage

    I agree on the spring cleaning. Something about opening the windows and completely cleaning everything to start off the spring and going into summer. I am a fan of natural light and letting the sun shine in to our home.

    • Agreed! Just wish I was little better at the cleaning thing haha

  • valmg

    I so wish we had more natural light in our house. We don’t get much sunlight at all due to the way the windows were placed when the house was built.

    • Aww that’s a shame. Maybe you could try moving some furniture around to try and manipulate the way the existing light comes in? A change in wall colour might help!

  • Annemarie LeBlanc

    We have a fair share of natural light getting in the house. II guess spring cleaning has a different meaning in different parts of the world. I have a Chinese friend who says Spring cleaning is done before the Lunar New Year. They believe that a clean house is bound to receive a lot of blessings.

    • Ohhh how interesting to hear how it’s done around the world! I think we all have our own little rituals. I mostly do my big clean before Christmas!

  • Jeanette

    We always try to use natural light when we can. Where I live it’s sunny a lot and so usually what I’ll do is keep all the lights off in the house and just keep the window curtains open. I do so much better with natural light.

    • Great idea – and fab that you can save on electricity if you don’t need to use much additional lighting!

  • paulaschuck

    Seems to be quite a lot of natural light here today. It rained all night and now we are getting sunshine so I will have to try some of these ideas. I love these pictures by the way. The one of the plant with the vine leaves trailing in the light is fantastic.

    • Aw thank you very much! Still trying to improve my photography so that means a lot thanks 🙂

  • It’s not so messy, don’t worry!
    This time of year, we get this certain patch of sun beams throughout the day and I love it. I love to lie in it when it hits the couch just right. As a professional photographer, I always get burnt out by winter’s light, and then this happens in the nick of time!

    • Ha aww that’s very sweet of you to say – I’ll let my husband know that the internet doesn’t think I’m quite so messy 😉

  • blm03

    I love natural light. Every time we have a sunny day, I have to open all of my drapes and get natural light. Lately it’s been so cloudy and dreary though.

    • Aw don’t worry, the sun will always come shining again x

  • Melanie E

    I wish that we had more natural light in our house. We definitely make the most of what we do have, though!

    • Absolutely – sometimes we just need to make better use of what we already have, and top it up with additional light sources!

  • Lizzie Woodman

    Such an interesting post! I love all your gorgeous plants. I’ve noticed that different rooms are at the best at different times of the day due to the light. Annoyingly the sitting room is at it’s best at about 3pm when I never have time to sit in it!! #HomeEtc

    • Thanks so much Lizzie! Definitely makes a difference the time of day. Once you’ve got it sussed though, it’s much easier 🙂

  • Pam

    Natural light can really change the look of your home. It’s the best lighting in my opinion. Great tips for making the most of it.

  • Some great tips on use of natural lighting. I can’t wait for Spring x

    • Thanks Geradline 🙂 Nor me. If we get a proper Spring!

  • I despair at the lack of light at this time of year so it feels even more wonderful when it’s a sunny day and it comes flooding in through the living room windows. Although I don’t really know which way the house faces, shame on me! Thank you for the tips X #HomeEtc

    • Thanks for commenting Lins! Your house has got lots of beautiful big windows though which certainly helps 🙂

  • I love natural light. It evokes a sense of freshness and a new start. Spring is my favorite time of the year. I always open the curtains to let light inside.

    • Completely agree! I’m definitely a winter person but these glimmers of light make me warm to Spring pretty quickly x

  • Stephanie Pass

    I definitely tend to use natural light over the lights in our home. We luckily have a ton of windows in our kitchen and connecting living areas.

    • Brilliant! Saves on electric too 😉

  • Stacey Sheppard

    I’d never thought of the Spring clean being brought about by natural light showing up all the dust and dirt but you are totally right. Yesterday, unexpectedly, it was really sunny in the morning and as I looked out the window I noticed how absolutely filthy the windows are. I hadn’t noticed before due to the weather. Desperately need the window cleaner to pay us a visit. And what is it with toddlers and glasses? Mine is constantly whipping mine off my face with her sticky little fingers.

    • Haha the struggle is real Stacey! I have actually had to buy more pairs of glasses because my toddler keeps hiding mind atfer playing dressup with them. Really cute until I can’t drive because I can’t see! x

  • Love this post! Great tips. I adore seeing daylight flooding in through our bay window, but not so much the way it shows up all the fingerprints and glass smears 😀 I’m not the best at getting sparkly windows – must try and work on my technique for spring! X

    • Thanks lovely 🙂
      I’m rubbish at windows too. That’s what cleaners are for haha! x

  • mummyofboygirltwins

    Ha ha yes me too!! We have glass internal doors and OMG they are filth from the kids! Lovely, lovely light in these photos 🙂 Thanks for sharing & linking up – Jess xx

    #HomeEtc

    • Thanks Jess! Glad I’m not the only one with filthy glass from the kids ha x

  • This reminds me I need to have a spring clean, great tips, the sunlight brings out all the dust and imperfections on my walls and suddenly my windows look filthy! Don’t worry, we’re all in the same position x

    • Thanks Cate 🙂 Glad I’m not the only one! x

  • TheNewClassy

    Most of my pictures I take outside, to capture the natural light the best that I can. I really think natural light makes pictures look so much better.

  • LisaLisa01

    The way my home is positioned I don’t get much natural light. I too take most of my pictures outdoors.

  • Shannon Graham

    This is a really great tip.It saves on electricity and it makes for very nice photos.

  • Great tips! My favorite spot of natural light here at home is beside the living room window.

  • Haha!! LOVE this — and yep. I have two boys who like to wipe their fingers over every surface… you can only see it in certain lights. Same as cobwebs!! That said, I’d MUCH rather spring than winter — SO happy to have the lighter nights, just around the corner 🙂 xx #HomeEtc

  • Spring really does show us up doesn’t it? For me it’s the space under our spiral staircase that the sun shines dust on, makes me feel all slovenly 🙂 #bloggershomes

  • Paula Bendfeldt-Diaz

    These are great tips, thanks so much for sharing them. I really want to experiment more with natural light when taking pictures.

  • Stephanie

    Great tips, I want to add more plants in the house, need to pop them on the window sil.

  • Firefly

    About those mirrorred surfaces – this is actually dangerous advice. Some mirrors magnify the light and can burn your house. So it’s better to use just regular glass… Something similar was posted on http://thehomeexpert.uk/ too. I completely agree with those fingerprints thing… I can’t look at m windows haha 😀 they need some serious cleaning.