Inspiration in the Studio

The Lighting Experience Center at Cree

Today, Martha and I took a break from work to join our fellow ASID members for a visit to the Lighting Experience Center at Cree in Durham.  Let’s just say, it was well worth our time! Goodbye to obsolete, energy-inefficient lighting. Hello LED!

Bob Henderson, Cree’s Manager of Lighting Education, managed to en”light”en us with an abundance of information on LED technology in our short visit.  As designers, it is assumed that we will make a space aesthetically beautiful. As educated designers (trust me, we’ve had a lot), we strive to improve the lives of our clients and stay on the cutting-edge of design with new technologies.

One of the demonstrations exemplified how different light sources can affect color on a variety of surfaces. How appropriate for us that it happened to be fabrics and tiles and wall surfaces that we work with every day!

LED lighting has come a long way (and Cree is the leader of the pack)!  A few fun facts:

LED lighting lasts 25 times longer than incandescents.

LED lighting has an 84% energy savings.

New technology has made LED affordable for consumers.

LED lighting can be used on dimmers (helpful tip: use Lutron).

Cree has just recently introduced LED lamps that can replace any incandescent in your home (table lamps, sconces, pendants, you get the picture). The $10 cost will pay for itself quickly and is well worth the investment (helpful tip: they are currently only available at Home Depot).

There are also LED lamps that can replace traditional recessed lighting without changing the housing.  Since we often work in new construction and remodel projects, it is easy (and getting more affordable) to specify LED throughout our projects. After today, I’m a true believer and it almost seems irresponsible NOT to use LED.

My favorite quote from Bob today…

We are in a Revolution!

Thanks for the education, Bob!  We look forward to our “improved visual environment using significantly less energy”!

For a more technical education on LED lighting, check out the Cree website.

Integrated Audio Video is host for ASID Meeting!

Last week, our local ASID Design Community was hosted to a lunch and learn by Integrated Audio Video at Southpoint!  Brian Giordano and his staff gave an excellent presentation on the current technology available for the home…and lunch was great too!


Anyone who knows me well, knows that I can be seriously challenged when it comes to technology (my family is amazed I can handle this blog)! Well, Brian had me wanting MORE technology in my life! What about a docking station for your new iPad that can control the music throughout your home? Or a system that notifies a parent when their child comes home from school? Or a surround sound and television system made especially for the outdoors (think hot tub and movie)?


Integrated Audio Visual partners with Jeff Witherspoon of Witherspoon Woodworks to create unique, one-of-a-kind custom furniture pieces to accommodate the equipment. This television is on a custom lift that recesses into the cabinet when not in use. It’s an excellent solution to the never-ending problem of designing around a television!


Thank you, Integrated Audio Video, for giving me a new appreciation for home technology!