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Hi, we own a 34-year-old log cabin (we bought it just less than two years ago). Does anyone have great ideas for lighting our living room? Every other room we've got decent lighting, but this is the one room that has no overhead light. We have five table lamps in the room (and one floor lamp), but it still is very dark in there. We had an electrician come in to see if we could put in some other types of lights, but of course with cathedral ceilings and solid logs, there's no way after the fact to get attractive lights in there. We looked into LED battery wall sconce lights, but all the reviews say they're not very bright at all, so that won't help much.

We literally cannot read in this room unless you're right next to a lamp. Any ideas for me?


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Fi,I am well aquainted with your lighting issue. I had the same problem in the log home we had before this one. Lots of floor lamps, as you have, was what we had to do also. But what we did do for over head lighting, and, it was the last resort, was to run the wire along the log beams to a hook in the ceiling and hang the fixture. We used cord covers painted to a matching color(as close as we could come)for the wiring that went to the fixture and for the most part, the wiring along the beams we could tuck in to hide it. Not as invisible as we would have liked it, but it worked well enough to give us some down lighting. An attractive fixture distracts away from the wiring. I also put up a sconce using the same technique, for the 6 inches of wiring I had to have on the face of the log, I covered with some feathers, who would know there was wiring under there, no one!! Hope this helps!

Rita H.
Rita, love the feathers idea :-)....We were hoping to avoid the cord covers but sounds like it might be what we need to do! Thanks!
Without seeing your problem room and the type of logs, cross beams etc. it is hard to give good suggestions. But, thinking out of the box, would it be possible to actually come from the outside through the logs with the wiring in the area of the outside overhang. This would allow you to put in possiblly track lighting, sconces or whatever. The outside conduit may be painted to blend in with the outside log walls. I believe there are probably lighting systems controllable by wireless controls and I know that remote wall switchs can control a switch wired into the fuse box to control a given feed off of that box as long as you are on the same side of the 220 coming in. It sends its signal through the 110 line. This allows the "wall" switch to be put into an existing wiring in the room.

Joe, Sarasota
Joe, what an interesting idea! I will talk to my hubby about this and see what he thinks. Thanks! I'll take all the ideas I can get :).
not to be dumb, but have you tried uplights, sconces, or anything like lighting bowls placed on horizontal projections or structures? since i don't know what your home looks like, i can't say these would work but there are literally thousands of ways to provide light which will not be obtrusive or have exposed wiring. i am an architect and have had many solutions to many problems - the biggest issue usually is with the reflectivity of a wood ceiling.
hope this helps.
Howard, we have tried all of that. We really need some light from above to shine down. Thanks for the suggestions, though! :)
I think what Joe is talking about is Insteon controls. We have several in and around our house. There are wall switches for each light - but they are programmable. For example, turn on the front porch light and the lamp post and driveway lights turn on also. In the kitchen on the counter is a small control box plugged into a wall outlet. We can turn any of the Insteon lights on or off from this box. Get a phone call a friend will stop by with their boat and it is dark - push the on button for the dock lights and they are on. The control signals go through the electric wires in the house.

A house has 220 volts coming. That is split into two 110 volt circuits. It is a bit harder to get the control signal to cross over to the other 110 volt circuit, but it does. If for some reason there is a problem, an amplifier can be plugged into any wall outlet.

So, if you can get power to a location, it is likely you can get an Insteon switch which can be controlled through the power wires. Check out as a place to do some research. Then you may be able to do track lights mounted under a purlin - wire going through the log - with the switch box on the up side of the log. Or up facing lights.
Thanks for the link, Brad. I'm off to check that out now!
the other thing to look at is low voltage cable wire lights. most fixtures are sorta modern but maybe would fit in nice.
I've never even heard of those, so I'm off to google it. Thanks!

Fi, here is a picture of one of those cable lights. They are very handy especially for a gallery wall. Spotting areas.
Wow, I actually LOVE the way it looks! I've tried finding them via google, but all I come up with are outside lights. Any idea of where to buy something like this? Thanks!


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