2018 has been an interesting and active year in outdoor and landscape lighting. As its days dwindle to a precious few, let’s pause and highlight some of the year’s top outdoor lighting trends. Path lighting, if you will, to next year.
The standout markers of 2018 have been in design and technology. As can be seen, the two are often mutually energizing.
OUTDOOR LIGHTING DESIGN TRENDS 2018
Rustic materials are emerging as a prominent item in designers’ palettes. Copper and brass are the darlings of the worn metals world. Genuine antique material is top shelf. The same look, however, is being achieved by “antiquing” new metal. Ingenious craftsmen apply household vinegar, salt water, and even chemical fertilizer to rapidly age the metals. Fixtures from worn metals are used in rustic-themed designs, and as contrast points in modern designs.
Rustic materials appeared also in the rise of trendy lanterns in 2018. Moroccan, faux-nautical, and farm-style lanterns are adding quirky atmosphere to outdoor kitchens and dining areas.
Big, bold fixtures that make statements trended up this year. Statement lamps are works of art in and of themselves. Their luminance can be (and often is) functional, but their main purpose is attracting admiring eyes. The statement of a statement lamp is ‘Let me make you say WOW!”
TECH TRENDS 2018
The LED revolution marched on in 2018. Gains in color consistency, light output, and efficacy continued to rocket up. Cost and size continued to shrink. These trends naturally open doors to design innovations like compact fixtures and LED arrays. Things have come a long way in the LED world. So far, in fact, it may be that the technology is peaking. Accordingly, all eyes are on the future. After all, only time will tell what comes next. But come it will.
Control and Connectivity technologies gained acceptance this year. Home– and business owners love controlling and programming their lighting from phone apps. Wireless is finding its place, too. Remote motion sensors, light fixtures, and security cameras connected without the trouble and expense of wiring.
FRIENDLY SKIES AND THE NEW YEAR
One of 2018’s trends is not based on design or technology. As has been noted, home- and business owners are becoming more aware of the environmental impact of their outdoor lighting systems. Specifically, the Dark Skies concept gained in acceptance and participation. Technology and design concurrently have answered the call. Increased focus on downlighting in design, and minimalism, for example. Energy-efficient LEDs as the gold standard. It all hangs together. In any case, Houston Lightscapes is going to have a bright New Year. We hope yours is just as luminous.