Last year, I was lucky enough to meet up with George Clarke in London, and chat about all things lighting, along with the Philips Hue team. It was a great meeting and I was really impressed by Philips Hue, and determined to try it in my own home. We love new technology, and I could see everyone in my family embracing it, and it actually making impact on our lives.
What’s Philips Hue?
Well, its three types of smart lights that come in different shapes, sizes and models.
- Hue white for easy control and comfort.
- Hue white ambiance for relaxing warm white light to cool daylight to support your daily activities.
- Hue white and color ambiance for an immersive experience.
They all work together (you can also just go for one type if you wish) to make your home smarter, impacting the whole ambiance and making it more energy efficient. There’s an app and even a motion sensor. Philips Hue takes lighting your home to other level.
Now one of the things we got to do whilst we were in London, was chat to George about any lighting issues that we had in our own home. To give you an idea of the kinds of things we covered, here is Jen from Love Chic living’s post, who talked about her living room lighting and Rachel from Ordinary Lovely, who wanted some ideas for her sons rooms, and lighting help with the challenges of open plan living.
I wanted some stair lighting inspiration, I have the very standard ‘big light’ pendant at the top and the bottom of my staircase, and a lamp on the console table in the hallway, and that’s it. I’d say my home is pretty typical in terms of lighting and if I’m honest I was a bit bored of it, so wondered if George had any interesting suggestions to light up staircases. Well he definitely did! George thought that I should create (with the help of a little DIY) a baton lip of some kind running up the length of my stairs and attach some of Philips Hue strip lighting to the underneath of it. I went away buzzing with this as an idea, and have been waiting to put it into practice ever since.
First up, we decided that the stairs needed new carpet, this took a lot longer than we thought as we had a few hiccups, but it all got sorted in the end.
Carpet by Carpetright/Boston
It was something we had been meaning to do, as our old carpet had been down for 10 years and was looking very tired. We had (by we I mean me) been procrastinating about colours for so long, I just needed to go ahead and make a decision. In the end we went for a subtle neutral stripe, and even though I had been musing for way too long about introducing a pop of colour on the stairs, I guess at least with this I might not get fed up with my choice. That’s where the Hue lighting came in really, as this added something a little different to the project, and, as George suggested made me feel differently about the whole space.
So we first set up the Philips Hue bridge. This is actually the brain of the operation that enables you to control all of your Philips Hue products via the Philips Hue app. Once you have installed the Philips Hue bridge and downloaded the Philips Hue app on your smart device, you can set your imagination free and build your very own system. Adding more lighting as time goes on, up to 50 lights off one bridge.
We then added the lightstrip. We didn’t even need to do any DIY, as it fitted perfectly under the wood at the bottom of the balustrade side of the stairs. Adding the Lightstrip was really simple to do, you just need to make sure that you have a plug socket fairly close by.
Philips Hue lightstrip plus was the one we opted for, as then we could look at so many different colours as well as both warm and soft and bright light on the staircase. You can shape the strip in nearly any form and use the adhesive tape on the back to attach it to any clean solid surface. If needed, you can cut your Philips Hue lightstrip plus to size at the scissor markings. We added one extension strip (which we bought separately) to ours, so it went the whole length of our stairs. We’ve also added one of them behind a TV in our conservatory, which I’ll show you in another blog post. They give really interesting indirect light to a room.
To give you an idea of what it looks like, here is my stairs with warm, bright and just some of the coloured lighting using the free Hue app.
Can you believe there are 16 million colours and over 50,000 different shades of white. We have ours turning on in the evening, it then gradually turns a warm light that fades to off at around 11.30 pm, when everyone is usually in bed. That is set up using the app, which is also where you make all of the colour choices too.
It seems now like a simple thing to add to your home, but its just so fab, and has made such a difference to what was a really boring staircase. Our next idea, is to buy a few of the bulbs to dot around the rest of our home, adding them to areas that we use the most of in the evening. Who knew lighting could be so exciting!
Thanks to Philips Hue who sent me the hub and a lighting strip to test.