Getting your closet in order is all about organizing and optimizing—and one surefire way to optimize the space is with great closet lighting. “The right lighting can dramatically impact the overall functionality of a space,” says Monika Kerstens, a design consultant with California Closets. "A thoughtful lighting design combines additional useful illumination with the luxurious boutique effect that highlights favorite collections like bags or shoes as showpieces.”
Strategic placement of recessed puck lights at top shelves, ribbon lights along the edges, or a brightening at a cabinet’s base can create a pleasant ambience and keep showcased pieces organized. Whether your closet is big enough to walk inside or has just enough room to store your items, lighting can transform the space and give way to an elevated and chic new look.
Discover 11 of the best closet lighting ideas that will take your space from drab to fab. Let there be light!
Opt for LED Closet Lights
One of the most useful and efficient bulbs to install in a closet are LED lights. "They generate a minimal amount of heat even if placed behind glass cabinet doors that may showcase handbags or perfume,” says Kerstens. Their long-lasting and energy-efficient qualities translate into energy savings. “In some cases, it’s an investment that may add to your home’s value,” she says.
Find the Right Wattage
LED bulbs come in a range of wattages and can create different room effects depending on the cabinetry color and the existing natural and ambient lighting. “A medium-intensity ribbon light has approximately 1.4 watts per foot and can provide a soft accent glow,” she says. “Higher-intensity ribbons are about 3 watts and are great for task lighting or brighter illumination over clothes.” Dimmers add another level of customization, altering light intensity up or down. Based on a cabinet’s finish, a warm or cool LED can coordinate with a room’s colors and materials.
Add Ribbon Lighting Above Closet Rod
Running recessed ribbon lighting above clothes along the length of the closet rod will create brightness at both ends, which is often lacking in most spaces. “It provides the best visibility for your wardrobe and even the contents inside drawers,” says Kerstens. This solution works for any closet, big or small.
Install Recessed Puck Lighting
Installing recessed puck lighting around the cabinetry’s top perimeter will impact the overall lighting scheme or put a spotlight on treasured pieces.
String Up Twinkly Lights for a Whimsical Feel
While string lights don’t provide the most robust lighting, they definitely add whimsy and calm to your closet. They come in a variety of colors and styles. You can keep it classic with a string of solid LED white bulbs or use cascades of rainbow lights. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes. You could even wind up a wire string of battery-operated lights and place them in a mason jar. The possibilities are endless.
- Place a Candle in Your Closet
- Let In Natural Light
- String Up Twinkly Lights for a Whimsical Feel
- Make a Statement with a Chandelier or Pendant Light
- Try LED Strip Lights
- Install Track Lighting or Light Bars
Having a window in your closet is a luxury that really lets in the light. If you have a window in your closet, take advantage: Keep it clear and free of any light-blocking clutter (like boxes stacked up high and obscuring the light stream). If you need a window treatment on it, keep it lightweight and airy.