If you’ve spent any time on social media, you may have seen a rise in popularity when it comes to the ‘neon aesthetic’ in room decor.
This futuristic, yet calming trend is brilliant for those that need a space that gives them a sense of tranquillity, whilst also highlighting the cool, quirky parts of their personality.
The dynamic lighting and atmosphere created with the addition of neon lights can bring a massive change to the mood of your room, and your Instagram feed will thank you.
Pinterest is filled with all sorts of ways to adorn your room with neon lighting in a way that looks fashionable, instead of tacky. When done properly, the neon-light aesthetic can change the way that you feel about any space, turning a boring room into the perfect gaming pad, or even just a great room to entertain and relax in.
Whether you’re using a strip of LEDs or purchasing an entire piece of neon-themed artwork, there is sure to be a way to make neon work for you.
If you want to know how you can decorate your room or home with neon lights to create that cool, neon, sci-fi-like effect, carry on reading!
The Neon Aesthetic
Neon lights, lamps, and artwork can all bring the ‘neon-aesthetic’ to any space.
This is a common decor style for those that have gaming set-ups, or enjoy having more of a neon aesthetic in their Instagram feeds, as this decor style likes to be shown off.
Some people incorporate neon elements into their spaces with an emphasis on subtlety, whereas others will often flood their spaces with neon.
It depends on your personality, and what you would like to get from the room – for example, a cinema room wouldn’t be very fit for purpose if everything is being drowned in neon-light, whereas a few subtle hints of neon lighting could take your cinema room to the next level.
What Is Neon?
In the early 1920s through to the 1960s neon signs became massively popular and were the thing that all storefronts wanted to have.
When neon signs first started to be used across America, the signs were so unusually bright for the time, passersby would stand and stare, even in the daytime. Although neon signs were more expensive than other signs available at the time, they still seemed to spread like wildfire across North America, and soon became iconic to the 20th century.
Neon signs are effective, but, frustratingly, they can cost a lot of money.
For this reason, it’s more common to use LED lights to obtain a neon look, especially at home.
Neon lights are glass tubes, filled with neon gas that has electricity running through it. These are expensive to produce, run and also more heavily impact the environment than alternative technologies that we have access to today.
The aesthetic is undeniably cool. If you haven’t got a bank to break, we’ve compiled some budget-friendly ideas for you to get that unique feel for your living space.
Utilizing LED Lights
Lighting, when done right, can be used to create certain atmospheres, as well as highlight specific elements within your room or space. LED lights are great for a wide
They cost a fraction of the price and are far more durable and practical. LED adhesive strips can be put pretty much anywhere and are fully programmable to emit any color you choose.
Get creative, turn your old furniture into a feature piece! LED strips are flexible and easily concealed.
One example of how you can use LED strips is by using an old shelving unit. If you have one to hand, turn your unit around and attach an LED strip along the back edges, focusing on where you would like the light to pool out from.
By adding an LED strip to the back, you are creating a back-light against the wall, which establishes depth and dimension within your space, as well as a contrast between color and lack of.
The possibilities are endless, but for the best look, make sure that you can’t easily see the light strip itself, just the glow of the light bouncing off a surface or illuminating an edge.
Incorporate other light sources along with your strip lighting to give the room a complete feel. Color-changing light bulbs, lighting fixtures, or interesting lamps would work perfectly to add to the neon style.
Bringing multiple light sources together brings a new dimension to any space, whether it be heavily saturated blends or crisp sharp edges you’re looking for, you’ll be amazed at how much you can transform a space.
Add LED strips to the top edge of your room – wrapping the lights around the inside of the top of your walls will give the entire room a beautiful, soothing glow that could also contribute to a sci-fi-themed room.
The great thing about LEDs is that you can change what color they are at a moment’s notice, so matching your entire room to your gaming setup (if you have any lighting components within your gaming setup) can be a clever way of tying your entire room together.
You can also use LEDs to bring attention away from any sore spots within the room – by using LEDs on an opposite wall, it’s easy to distract someone’s attention away from something you’d rather they didn’t look at, by bathing a separate focal point in light.
Custom LED signs that replicate the look of a classic neon light are available from many outlets. If it’s just a pop of light you’re looking for or the new focal point of the room, a custom sign will do the job nicely.
If you’re the type of person that is worried they’d end up turning their living room into a nightclub, here are some other alternatives to light sources that still capture the neon feel.
Creating A Neon Feature Wall
The feature wall is a great way to transform your space without having to commit to decorating the whole room. Find a neon wallpaper or paint, or simply utilize your LED strips, then use them to decorate an accent wall that can stand apart from the rest of the room.
If the straightforward approach doesn’t suit your style, then you can always get creative and use neon paper or paint to highlight features and accentuate the architecture that’s in your home.
All of those alcoves and small nooks and crannies that usually go unnoticed can now be focal points by being filled with vibrant color. This will look amazing against a white or neutral-colored room.
We love the idea of using LED strips to get a slight cartoonish effect – by accentuating the architecture within the room, you can create more of a comic art style.
Simply identify all the natural highlights on that wall – if it’s a wall with a shelf on, for example, maybe choose the top of the wall, and then the top of each shelf, and place an LED light to further pull these highlights forward.
This can create a cool comic-style wall, that you might even decide to draw out through the rest of your space. Amplifying this theme by using comic/cartoon geared accessories can work in your favor if you are trying to create a room with characters, but want to ensure that all elements complement each other.
You can play around and get a feel for what you like by experimenting on a smaller scale. Use neon wallpaper or paint to upcycle an existing piece of furniture that you already own or use wallpaper to line the bottom of your draws, this works especially well in kitchens.
Decorating With Neon Wallpaper
Neon wallpaper might not be something that you thought that you would ever consider, but everyone from a minimalist to a maximalist will be able to find a neon wallpaper that meets their needs. Solid neon colors look good against whites and neutral colors.
If you’re looking to make an impact, try to go for something like a neon geometric print or neon wallpaper with a fading effect.
If you don’t want to make the walls the same color as a highlighter, keep an eye out for other wallpapers that have a splash of neon or bright colors in their design.
Decorating With Neon Paint
If you’ve decided to go and fully commit to the neon vibe, but you don’t have the money to change out your existing furniture, using neon paint may be an option that you choose.
Upcycling what you already own could be a great, cost-effective way to breathe some life back into your old stuff, whilst updating your space into something new.
The thought of painting your favorite piece of furniture neon green might be quite a scary one at first, but with enough thought and planning, you’ll get a remarkable piece of furniture back. There’s plenty of flat-packed furniture that you can customize by painting yourself.
The next time you are in a store or browsing online, try to reimagine what you can see and think of ways to incorporate it to fit your style.
How To Accessorize With Neon Wall Art
If you’re thinking about decorating your room in more of a neon-aesthetic type look, one of the most exciting things to think about is probably the type of wall art that you plan to use.
When someone says ‘neon’, we often think of a word spelt out in bendy, neon-lights, glowing in a way that gives any scene more of an industrial, glowy feel.
Not only does this type of wall artwork amazingly if you are looking to add a touch of your personality to mix into the general look of the aesthetic, but you don’t have to have a specifically ‘neon-inspired’ room to utilize these signs in the future.
Add your name, one of your favorite quotes or song lyrics, or even just a sentiment you would like to express to the people you are planning on using the space.
For example, if you are decorating a room with a specific function, you may want to choose a quote specific to that room. If it’s a kitchen, for example, you may want to choose a quote with a food theme.
Of course, you don’t only have words to pick from – there are plenty of neon-art styles and designs to pick from. You could have neon wall art in almost any shape and color, it’s just up to you to come up with your design if getting one made custom, or choosing from designs if you are simply purchasing from a few options.
How To Accessorize With Neon
Finishing touches are what complete a home. Be ready to think outside the box for this part; pillowcases, lamps, plant pots, coat stands, chopping blocks, and everything in between.
All of these types of things can be used to make your home more inviting, comfortable and also show off your personality. When it comes to accessorizing, the same rule applies to this as everything else.
Don’t Overdo It
Focus on your most important accessory, what are the items that you like the most? Start there. Give yourself around five to ten accessories to choose from, based on the size of the space that you are looking to decorate, and shortlist from there.
Remember, your accessories are going to be your stand-out pieces. You don’t want too many of them, otherwise, they won’t stand out, and you’ll be left with more of a cluttered feel instead.
Identify Spaces For Accessories
Identify a few spots throughout the room that seem bare and could do with a little sprucing up.
It might be a coffee table, mantelpiece, windowsill, or bookshelf; all of these places are calling for accessories a lot of the time, whether we realize it or not.
Use these little spaces sparingly – don’t accessorize all of them to the absolute max, as this will only contribute to a cluttered vibe, instead of the artfully styled vibe that we are looking to achieve.
Think About Any Colors And Patterns
Accessories are there to tie in multiple aspects of a room and change the overall impression that’s being created. It could be that you have some select items that are going to pop against a simple color scheme, or it could be that your color coordinating using specific colors, and you use accessories to break up the repetitiveness.
Importantly, remember that your accessories don’t need to match.
Your accessories bring character, and choosing a few accessories that are geared towards the same things will only stop that character from shining through.
Instead, try to select accessories that complement each other, or your theme. For example, if you decided to take more of an art-inspired approach with your theme, you could allow the neon lights to be complemented by some quirky art, turning the entire space into a surreal experience.
A lot of people use neon lights to decorate their cinema rooms – in which case, accessorizing these rooms with movie-themed accessories would be perfect. Try to find a good theme to work from, and build from there.
So, now that we’ve taken you through all the best ways to decorate a space by taking inspiration from the neon aesthetic, we hope that you’ve found something that suits your style or what you are looking for!
You don’t have to sacrifice on atmosphere or aesthetic – no matter what your budget or taste, there’s always a way to make neon work for you.
If you’d prefer subtle touches, or you want the entire space adorned in neon lights, it’s really up to you. The main thing that matters is that you are happy with the final product and that it brings you joy whenever you walk into the room.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do Neon Lights Work?
Neon lights are glass tubes filled with neon gas with positive and negative ends. Electricity travels through the gas and when it passes through a neon atom, it strips it of its electrons – this process is called ionization.
The free-electron then attaches itself to a neon atom that’s already missing an electron, and when this happens a photon of light is produced.
How Much Power Do Neon Lights Use?
Neon lights use less power than you might think, especially considering how bright they can sometimes seem to glow. Despite this, most modern show-window signs use the same as a domestic light bulb.
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