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How to Create the Perfect Mood for Valentine's Day on a Budget!

February has arrived which means love is in the air and romance is turned up a notch. Thanks to COVID, Valentine’s plans have likely changed for most and the spending budget has been reduced. It seems like it will be a home-based Valentine’s Day celebration but this doesn’t mean it has to be any less romantic. In fact, with a few small adjustments, it can be even more romantic while keeping costs down and be used more than once (even more cost effective). A simple change in lighting can create just the right mood and ambience. “But how?”, you may ask. Read on to see how you can create the perfect mood for Valentine’s Day on a budget!

Let me set the scene for you. Candles are glowing on a beautifully set table, the lights are dimmed and there is a soft red glow in the room. A slight twinkle surrounds you while you catch a whiff of the delicious food that is to come. The mood is definitely set and a romantic evening is about to unfold. Now that you have the image in your head, how can we make it happen while keeping the budget low.

First thing is first, choose the room/ area you wish to romanticise. This can be the dining room where you want to set a gorgeous table or maybe the lounge where you might want to create a picnic type of setting. Potentially, a picnic outside in the garden or even the bedroom for some good ol’ tasty treats in bed. Once you have decided on the room, make note of the current lighting. Do you have downlights or a central light fitting? Do you have side lights? What lighting type are the globes you currently use? Are they cool or warm white? Where are the plug points? These questions will help to highlight the areas that can be improved.

With these answered questions in mind, let’s dive into the to-do-list so that we can answer the overarching question of ‘how to create the perfect mood on a budget this Valentine’s Day?”

Lighting type

Lighting type is a great place to start and generally the cheapest as it can be as simple as changing a globe. There are 3 lighting types that have specific purposes depending on your needs.

  • Cool white - This lighting is around 5000k and produces a very bright, clear and white light. It is best suited for areas that require decent lighting to do precise tasks like in the kitchen, garage and bathroom.

  • Natural white - This is the ‘happy-medium’, natural white lighting is about 4000k to 4500k and produces good lighting for precision work while not emitting the harsh brightness of cool white.

  • Warm white - This lighting is approximately 3000k thus producing a more yellow tone and creating a softer, warmer lighting. This sets a more relaxed atmosphere for a room and generally is used in the dining room, lounge and bedrooms.

So how can this help you with creating the right mood? Well, if you currently have cool white globes in the room you chose, change them to warm white globes. This will make a big difference in changing the tone in the room. Prices of warm white globes start from as little as R27 but prices will differ depending on your light fitting.

Level of illumination

The level of illumination in a room makes a significant impact on the level of romance. No one really feels like leaning in for a kiss when a bright, white light is shining down on them. However, if the room is a bit darker with a softer glow then romance will definitely be in the air. To achieve a lower level of illumination you can do one of two things.

  • Change your current bright lamps to ones that have a lower wattage or lower lumen output. This will create a lower light level and enhance the ambience in the room. This is the cheaper alternative with prices starting from R25.

  • The second option is a bit more pricey but gives you way more freedom to play with the level of illumination. Installing a dimmer to your current lights will allow you to have the bright light you need for other, more precision-related, occasions AND allow you to dim the lights right down to a real romantic level. The price of dimmers generally start at around R330.

Colour-changing lighting

When you think of romance and Valentine’s Day, what colour pops into your head? Red, right? Red has been the universal colour for romance for as long as most people can remember so what better way to create romantic lighting than to change the lighting colour to red? Again, there are a few ways you can achieve this, depending on your budget.

  • Use coloured LED strip or rope lighting in the room of your choice. The price of 10m rope lighting starts from around R500. A bit pricey but a great investment for many occasions.

  • A new and exciting product that doesn’t just limit you to red, the new Quri colour-changing globe. Easy to use and will change the ambience in the room to match whatever occasion. The 10w colour-changing globe is on special for only R139 at Northside this Feb.

Decorative lighting

Finally, we get to the real good-looking and impactful items. Decorative lighting can add that extra twinkle and ambience to really take the romantic atmosphere to the next level while still staying within budget. Yes, there are some options that may be out of budget a bit but they are too beautiful not to add.

  • Fairy lights are one of the most reasonable ways to make a room or outdoor area feel like a fairytale. They add beautiful soft lighting while making one feel like the stars are around them. A 10m warm white set of fairy lights generally cost around R190 and again can be used for multiple occasions (such as Christmas or New Years).

  • A classic option made easy and safe are battery-powered candles. These give the same charming look without the fire hazard. A set of three can cost about R90.

  • LED strip lighting also creates a beautiful soft light depending on how and where you use it. Strip lighting is great as it is versatile in its uses and starts from around R280 for 5 meters.

  • One of the trends lately in home decor is using filament lamps which produce a lovely warm, romantic light while adding a trendy look to the room. These lamps start from about R50 and differ depending on size, wattage, etc.

  • Similar to the filament lamp are the LED wire bottle lamps. These are like fairy lights in a lamp, creating that same fairytale look. These cost around R130 each.

  • If you really want to add some sophistication and elegance to your dining room and create gorgeous lighting over your table, hanging pendants (with dimmers) will create an idyllic ambience which will be a real talking point at dinner parties too. There is a large range of pendant options but some of the more budget-wise pendants can cost as little as R280.

  • A great option for an outdoor romantic evening is cable lighting. It looks similar to fairy lights but makes use of lamps so produces more light while maintaining a picturesque setting. This lighting is a combination of cable, lamp holders and lamps which gives you the freedom to choose extra what you want. This combination to create the cable lighting costs around R300, depending on what lamps you choose.

There are many options you can choose from to help you create the perfect Valentine’s mood, whether you are looking for a simple change like using warm white, low lumen globes or a more impactful move like colour-changing globes and decorative lighting. Some options may be more pricey than others but the beauty of these tips and tricks is that you can pick and choose which works best for you and your budget while still achieving the goal of romance. We hope you can create the perfect Valentine’s mood using these tips and tricks and enjoy an intimate, romantic and picturesque Valentine’s Day with your loved one. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Remember, if you require any of these above products or advice visit one of Northside Electrical's branches or call and chat to a sales consultant to personally assist you with your specific needs. Northside provides the KZN region with superior quality electrical, lighting and security products with remarkable service.

Red Hill - 031 569 1005

Ballito - 032 946 0977

Durban North – 031 564 5692

Hillcrest – 031 765 4140

Umbilo – 031 942 7755

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