Of course, an ideal aspect is not always possible for everyone. City flats may enjoy little naturally available light and be overlooked on all sides. A north-facing room can expect less sun than south or west-facing one; but whatever the aspect, with clever lighting and colour scheming the interior can be made to feel welcoming and attractive. The style of house you live in can also make a great deal of difference to the amount of available light in an interior. A country cottage may be in a superbly sunny location but have a low ceiling and tiny windows, which can make the interior, feel dark and gloomy.
Modern homes with spacious open-plan interiors and large picture windows will be even more affected by their characteristics and seasonal changes. If there is a living room with a patio or conservatory attached which is used as an additional seating area during the summer but not in winter, the decor will have to be flexible enough to accommodate the changes. For people in doubt over lighting and colour schemes, some top interior designers suggest painting a room white before making a final colour choice.
This is a good way to observe how changes in natural light affect an interior and helps you make the most of it when choosing a colour scheme. Windows and walls will appear darker as they only receive reflected light; the ceiling always looks darker than walls painted the same colour. The effect of artificial lighting on curtains is better seen if a sample gauge of fabric is pleated and held upright. Put samples flat on the floor and move them around the room to see how different positions and lighting conditions can affect the colour.