Skip links
dining room design with chandelier and landscape artwork

Illuminating Island Spaces with the Power of Lighting

The Importance of Lighting & Its Effect on Your Living Environment

When it comes to transforming a personal retreat or a vacation rental, there’s a secret weapon that often goes overlooked, is regularly underestimated, or misunderstood: lighting. As an interior designer, I’ve had the privilege of working with clients for over two decades, and time and again, I’ve witnessed the transformative power of lighting. It’s more than brightening a space; it’s about setting the tone, optimizing functionality, and highlighting key elements.

In this blog, we’ll dive into the ins and outs of lighting through island interiors, where windows and doors are often open to welcome the fresh ocean breeze and natural light.


Living room sky lights

Why is Lighting Important?

The proper lighting can accentuate the beauty of a room, influence our emotions, and redefine the very essence of a living space. Understanding the significance of lighting is the key to unlocking your interior’s true potential and a whole new world of design possibilities.

For those who have never had to go without electricity, imagine a place where you must use other means of seeing your way through your home without the flip of a switch or the push of a button. Once you’ve experienced an opulent lighting experience, you can never unsee its impacts on your psyche and interiors.

Vacation Rental Reading Nook with Soft Blues and Natural Light

1. Mood Enhancement & Functional Impact:

Lighting can alter your mood as you interact with a space, so when in doubt, always add more, then you can customize your lighting needs with dimmer switches. Aspects of light that can enhance and directly impact your feelings depend on factors like color, brightness and intensity, direction, and focus. If an area has bright, intense lighting, it can create a lively and energetic workspace, while a diffused glow can convey a comforting and more intimate ambiance for relaxation.

Color temperature is another feature of lighting that you may have yet to notice but felt the effects of. If the light has yellow and orange tones that warm an interior, you’ll feel a cozy embrace within the space, while cool light with blue and white tones can create a sense of alertness and focus.

Nautical Entry with Vibrant Wallpaper Design

2. Elevating Design Elements:

Strategic lighting can accentuate architectural features, artwork, and furniture, drawing attention to the most attractive aspects of a room. Highlighting or downplaying design elements requires an expert understanding of light and how to layer in its properties effectively. For example, we leverage focused, directional light such as spotlights or ambient track lights to cast light on specific architectural details like moldings, columns, or accent walls to highlight key features, while the fixtures themselves blend into the backdrop and complement the natural light already present in the space. Carefully layered design schemes like this play a significant role in the overall success of an interior.

dining room design with chandelier and landscape artwork

Adjustable sconces are perfect for illuminating artwork or other mementos while enhancing their color and details. To complement custom furniture, we recommend placing ambient or task lighting with floor lamps, table lamps, or under cabinet lighting. By layering different lighting mediums like our favorites below, we can create depth and visual interest in a room while defying the perception of any space.


Shop the Georgian Lamp
Shop the Culloden Lamp
Shop the Fisch Lamp
Shop the Garth Floor Lamp


Shop the Flynn Sconce
Shop the Banner Sconce
Shop the Minimalist Sconce
Shop the Sleek Sconce
Shop the Penny Sconce

3. Creating Sustainable & Energy Efficient Homes:

In our previous blog, “Why Sustainable Interior Design is Important on an Island,” we discuss how sustainable interior design can mean many things. The same can be said in terms of sustainable lighting solutions. Smart lighting choices, like our curated selections below, not only enhance a home’s aesthetic but can also reduce energy consumption, contributing to sustainability. LED bulbs use significantly less electricity than traditional incandescent or fluorescent lighting, which translates to lower carbon emissions and a smaller environmental footprint, which protects our island home and all its habitats. Less electricity can also lead to substantial cost savings, especially for vacation rental owners who stay on top of their business expenses.

You’ll notice some of our selections below include the option for LED bulbs.


Shop the Norman Pendant
Shop the Headlands Pendant
Shop the Arundo Pendant
Shop the Pearlie Pendant


Shop the Pemberly Pendant
Shop the Laguna Pendant
Shop the Dome Pendant


Shop the Bowery Chandelier
Shop the Alluria Pendant
Shop the Meredith Chandelier
Shop the Sethos Chandelier
Shop the Georgia Chandelier
Waterfront Kitchen Island Design

We love creating compelling, carefree, and illuminating living environments for our clients. Ensuring their home is functional and energy efficient goes hand in hand with protecting our little piece of paradise. Let’s not forget a huge bonus of living in the USVI: the beautiful weather. Nothing compares to natural light. Careful window treatments and space planning to allow our clients to use as much natural light as possible reduces their exposure to glares and contributes to an overall healthier and more comfortable outlook on their day-to-day.

When in doubt, consult our team to create a custom design plan tailored to your space. We are proud to offer numerous resources like our lighting guide to help you improve the function and interaction within your home. Here are some examples of the insights we share. Download your copy of our beautiful lighting resource guide today.

bedside sconce
island pendant lights
Table lamps

When applied thoughtfully, these lighting techniques and strategies can completely transform your environment. Even in the world of beachside interiors, where the sun sits high in the sky, lighting isn’t just an accessory; it’s the spark that brings the entire masterpiece of waterfront properties together.

Leave a comment

This website uses cookies to improve your web experience.