LED Lighting

Post Written by: Gilbert Cabrales

How to Strike a Balance Between Cost and Efficiency with LED Lighting 

The right lighting matters when it comes to designing spaces. Glowing, bright, subtle, subdued, clear, or sparkling – the lighting in your home, office, or business evokes a mood immediately.


the mirror where you put on makeup

the dining room table set for a dinner party

the counter you use for chopping vegetables

the area above the mantel of your fireplace

the desk space where you write out bills and check email

Now, think about all the different lighting options for each of thesespaces. It’s one of the most important design features to consider, and fortunately, new LED lighting selections provide the ability to combine beauty with efficiency, and energy and cost savings like never before.

What is LED lighting exactly?

Light emitting diode, or LED, represents the latest technology in lighting and energy savings. Over the last few years, campaigns have worked to encourage people to switch from older incandescent, halogen, fluorescent, and CFL lights over to LED lights. LED lighting uses about 85% less electricity than these older choices. This is due to the LED industry investing in and developing improved products quickly for increased efficiency and safety.

Who is using LED lighting?

Pretty much every household now at least has one LED bulb, but designers and electricians know that the future is going to be all LED, all the time. In 2009, there had been less than 500,000 LEDS installed. This number is now over 450 million.

Aren’t LED lights expensive?

With the increased demand, the prices have lowered which thrills both clients and designers. One of the reasons people weren’t switching previously, is because LEDs required a larger investment up-front with most of the savings incurred through lower electricity bills over time.

While the math still worked out to favor LEDs in the long-run, consumers had trouble with the initial purchase when so many “cheaper” options were available. Now, those concerns are smaller with the price of a bulb often below $5 with available rebates and they tend to last about 25 years longer than incandescents and up to 10 years longer than CFLs.

Some of the other ways that LED lights help you to save money are with your cooling costs. These lights have very little heat output. You know the feeling of being under hot lights? With LED, your AC system will not have to work to cool down spaces heated by traditional lighting.

How can I improve a space with LED?

There’s very few things you can’t get in an LED these days. Recessed LED lights are always popular if not standard for some areas, but now you can find candelabra, 3-way lights, and dimmable options in a variety of shapes and sizes. You can then change the look of an area is by selecting an LED light based on the color temperature, output or brightness, and dispersion, or range, of light.

In the example below, the LED strip lighting under the cabinets highlights the backsplash, but also makes the counters brighter for working. Recessed LED lighting gives the ability to layer the lighting and, with a dimmer installed, you can select just the amount of light required. This can help you save money every month on your electric bill by not having to have more light than you need.


large kitchen island. By House of J Interior Design. Edmonton, Alberta.

Full Kitchen

The color temperature of LED lighting provides a full range from cool blue lighting, to clear white, to warm yellow and golds to fit any space. Then, you can use LED directional lighting to provide a focal point on an art installation, stairs, walkways, or any design element you want to highlight.

Bike Tires / Wheel Art by House of J Interior Designer Jennifer Woch

Re-tired art in the Mercers building.

Finding Partners in LED Lighting

When it comes time to fulfill your LED lighting needs, of course you will need an interior designer, but electrical designers bring a tremendous amount of value to the design table as well. CSLED.com is one partner many firms and clients like to use because they are an electrician-owned and operated LED lighting supply company. Their personal electrical design experience helps to make decisions like Where, How Many, and What Kind simple. Get in touch with them to learn how their knowledge can make your lighting project hassle-free.

Author bio – Gilbert Cabrales has been with CSLED since its inception in 2008, first as an employee and then as a valued partner. Gilbert has vast experience in both lighting and electrical work and has a unique method for collaborating with his clients. He doesn’t stop at the sale. Instead, he works to truly connect with his clients and remains a resource throughout the lifespan of each one of their lighting projects. From design to implementation and beyond, you can count on “Gil” to deliver LED expertise and true partnership capabilities.

Summer Dreams! Furnishings to add to the ambiance!


Colourful splashes add to this simple, but eclectic bedroom! All furnishings available through House of J, please contact for more info.

Aww Summer, how I love thee! The smell of deep purple lilacs, freshly cut grass, the sound of the ice cream truck coming down the road, bbq’s, patio’s, festivals, markets, juicy peaches, carrots that taste like carrots, warm summer night’s…

I love to open my windows in my bedroom on warm summer evening’s and watch the late night dusk settle into my room.  Usually a robin is chirping it’s pleasure of a day well lived.  This is bliss. Equally, in the morning’s there is nothing better than the sun greeting me with warm happy rays, while I sit and enjoy a cup of tea.

I am one of those people who is incredibly affected by my surroundings.  If the colour on the walls comes across heavy or sallow, I feel it.  If the house is cluttered with mess and disarray, I struggle to function.  If the furnishings are placed without thought or meaning, it feels off.  However, on the flip side, a tidy space, a space that has been adorned with furnishings and art in a manner that speaks to one’s personality, that is a space I love, a space I can thrive in, a space where ideas flow, and the joy of little moments are easily cherished.

Lovely crisp clean white bedding on my British Isle’s 4 poster bed make my summer dreams a little bit sweeter.  My well worn tufted leather sofa envelops me while I sip my morning tea.  Art that sings to my heart adorn my walls.  The ambiance of my home laces every experience with a little extra happy.

Thanks for reading! Cheers to your happy home!

Product links are below.  House of J is a retailer for these items.  Get in touch if you’re interested in any pieces not listed on the House of J website!

1  http://www.lhimports.com/Collections/Malibu/malibu-king-bed-sandstone-white/1221

2   http://www.lhimports.com/Collections/Malibu/malibu-nightstand-sandstone-white/1223

3   http://www.lhimports.com/Collections/Malibu/malibu-6-drawer-dresser-sandstone-white/1225

4   http://renwil.com/en/lighting/ceiling-fixtures/lpc4125-martine.html

5    http://shop.houseofjinteriors.com/shop/rugs-area-rugs/25882-arura-area-rug

6   http://shop.houseofjinteriors.com/shop/wall-wall-mirrors/1958-simonton-mirror

7   http://shop.houseofjinteriors.com/shop/wall-wall-decor/44150-chino-hills

8   http://shop.houseofjinteriors.com/shop/pillows-throws-decorative-pillows/27673-bowood-pillow

9   http://shop.houseofjinteriors.com/shop/living-benches-trunks/30116-frome-stool

Feature Friday: Spring Accents – Rug – Table Lamp – Art

This warm sunny weather here in Edmonton this week has me feeling the spring and wanting to freshen up my home decor!  Here are some items from my shop that I’m loving this week!


Pretty vibrant blue table lamp- purchase item through House of J Interior Design Online Shop!

Pretty vibrant blue table lamp

Patterned yellow door mat- purchase this item from House of J Interior Design Shop! Free Shipping!

Patterned yellow door mat



Herringbone background with plump little bird!  Purchase this item from House of J Interior Design online shop!  Free Shipping!

Herringbone background with plump little bird!


Peach Herringbone pattern with Plump blue bird! Purchase from House of J Interior Design Online Shop! Free Shipping!

Peach Herringbone pattern with Plump blue bird!


Quick fun accessories such as these can add a little bit of spring to your home decor!



Giving New Life to an Old File Cabinet with a coat of paint! Home Office Decorating.

I was in need of a new file cabinet, but instead I found an old one….

Old file cabinet found at Re-Store for $40

Old file cabinet found at Re-Store for $40

Using an electric sander, I lightly sanded the surface of the entire unit.

Using an electric sander, I lightly sanded the surface of the entire unit.

After wiping down the excess dust I sprayed the cabinet with even overlapping strokes.

After wiping down the excess dust, I sprayed the cabinet with even overlapping strokes in an Avocado colour spray paint.

This is how it looked after the first coat.  It looked pretty good after the second coat, but I did a 3rd just in case!

This is how it looked after the first coat. I probably could have stopped at 2 coats, but I did a 3rd just in case!

Here is my end result!

Here is my end result!  Out of sheer impatience I painted over the hardware as well, however I actually like the monochromatic effect.

Functional and fun against my pale lavender walls!

Functional and super fun against my pale lavender walls!

File cabinet and magnet board all in one!

File cabinet and magnet board all in one!!  Gotta love a good Saturday afternoon project!

Canadian company: check, Green company: check, Stylish window coverings: check

I’m now selling some wicked window coverings from a Canadian company called Sunglow.  Not only do they sell some really cool products for your windows, they are a company committed to being green.   So not only are the majority of their fabrics environmentally friendly, they even have one fabric called PureScreen that, in their words, “actually cleans the air.”

You might be wondering how a mere blind can accomplish such a feat.  According to the Sunglow website, the PureScreen fabric has “A special coating on the fabric enables it to accumulate harmful gases and bad odors on its surface and covert them in a catalytic process into harmless substances such as water (H20) and carbon dioxide (CO2).”   Pretty cool right?!

Its always nice to know that you are choosing a product that is green, but also nice to know the company actually actively seeks out more environmentally friendly ways to manufacture.

The reason I fell in love with this company though, is that they actually offer bling on their roller shades.  At the moment, they are the only window covering manufacturers that I know of with embellishments such as crystal pulls, leather trim, gem stones and more.  It really spruces up the look of the shade and makes it more personal.

crystal trim and pull on shimmer shade

crystal trim and pull on shimmer shade

Roller shade crystal embellishments

Roller shade crystal embellishments


Another really cool feature offered by this manufacturer is the ability to put a business logo right onto the roller shade.  Brilliant little marketing gem for business owners!  Many businesses have roller shades on their windows, how awesome would it be to have a couple with the company logo printed right onto the shade?!

I’m super stoked to get this product out to my clients, so if you know anyone who wants an environmentally friendly product, or anyone who wants a window covering that is totally unique, or anyone who owns a business and needs some blinds that double as advertising, Send them my way!




#superparty #yeg and me!

Interior designer-check

business owner-check

Local Artist-who knew?!

I recently had an awesome opportunity to create art out of recycled and re-used materials.  #rethinkjunk  The opportunity was created through Edmonton’s Green Window City project.  Local artists collaborated with local business’s (on whyte ave for this pilot project).  In April, appropriately timed around earth day, I took off my designer cap and donned my artist’s one to collaborate with Lululemon on Whyte.  Basically I was asked to make art out of junk!

I wanted my window to represent the style and vibe of Lululemon and incorporate the vibrancy and energy that is Edmonton.  And everything was reused or recycled.  The paint was from the eco station and I had the excellent staff at Cloverdale paint,  tint the paint to coordinate up with Lululemon’s current seasonal colours.  The wheels were donated from a bike enthusiast who’d bought them 2nd hand on kijiji.  The rope for hanging the wheels was sitting dormant in a barn begging to be used for something.   The tree branch was found broken on an acreage, it reminded me of a yoga pose somehow, all bent over, clearly perfect for my Lulu window!  Even the hardware to hang the wheels was second hand!



After the Green Window City project, Startup Edmonton asked if they could purchase the wheel installation as a permanent fixture for their space in the Mercer Warehouse.  I was quite honoured that they were interested in my creation so I happily donated the installation.  The vibrant wheels compliment the raw exposed brick of the Mercer Warehouse.

Painted bicycle wheels - art hanging in the Mercer building - Startup Edmonton

The Mercer Warehouse, Startup Edmonton, Make Something Edmonton, Edmonton’s NextGen, The Culture Collective, and TD recently hosted a Super Party.  Mercer Warehouse was opened up for exploration and a wicked street party topped it off.  More art installations, a pop-up market, a lego building area, free slushies, ping pong, chalkboard drawing, dj, live music, live theatre, all kinds of awesomeness at this #superparty.

Poppy Barley





Easter, Spring, Decorating….Ready, Set, Go!

Easter, Spring, Decorating….Ready, Set, Go!

 With Easter comes spring!!  Or so we hope, in this part of the world!  And in my world, new season=new decor!  Who’s with me??


Yellow Grey Living Room Fireplace Vignette

I love to change up my home for the season especially in spring.  There is a definite sense of out with the old and in with the new.  These decorating changes can be as small as adding vases with fresh flowers and some trendy toss cushions, to a complete overhaul of  your space! 

In the photo to the above, (courtesy of Better Homes and Gardens) the toss cushions, the layered art, a new modern floor lamp, of course some flowers and an adorable little bird house, all add a freshness to this space.

Decorating for the season does not have to be a pricey venture, although power to you if you have a healthy budget to really change things up.

If you’re trying to be careful where you spend, simply moving around the furniture that’s already in a room can make a remarkable difference.  Perhaps paring down and removing that tired old bookcase that has become the catch all spot,  or taking out the chair that’s in the room because “we pulled it in at christmas for extra seating.”  Little changes such as these can really have a big impact on the feel of a room.


Radiant Orchid Map Kitchen

If your wanting to take things a step further, how about a change in paint colour?  And as you can see from the picture below (Courtesy of design sponge), paint colour does not just have to apply to walls.  A table painted in the colour of the year, Radiant Orchid, makes a statement!  Perhaps this isn’t your colour of choice, but painting up a piece of furniture can make it seem like a brand new piece.

Many of us move into a new home and like the paint colour that exists.  Over time we add furniture, art, accessories, and that colour that looked great in the beginning is no longer a  good match for the personality we have added to our space.

We tend to get very comfortable with the status quo, but changing things up can really add a vibrancy and energy to our homes.





Change is good.  So Happy Easter, Happy Spring and Bring on the fabulous decorating! 

2014 Upcoming Design Trade Shows

Spring is coming!  Really it is.  And with it comes trade shows.

One of my favourite trade shows being The Edmonton Home and Garden Show, March 20-23.


A perfect show for anything home decor! This show has an extensive list of exhibitors allowing for one stop window shopping, information and inspiration on both indoor and outdoor decor and design.  A brilliant plan for all those who would rather not truck all over Edmonton to find flooring, kitchen cabinets, countertops, hot tubs, windows, landscaping, stone work, garage detailing, closets, spas, wood work…um you get the picture.

 fresh chip it

And if your an HGTV junkie or perhaps you’d just like to hear some darn good decorating info, you might be interested in catching one of the presentations by guest speaker designer, Sarah Richardson.


For more info check out the Home & Garden Show link below.




And after you’ve had a thorough look at all the lovely things you would like for your home, give me a call to help you put it all together  😉


If you are interested in a design presentation that is a bit more intimate and led by yours truly, check out Windows on Wellness: A Women’s Conference, March 22.


I will be doing a presentation on design trends and how to incorporate them into your space.  There will also be an opportunity to ask me your design questions!

Check out my 2014 Design Trends Pinterest page for a sneak peak.



I hope you all have an inspiring weekend and thanks for checking out my blog!