Interior Design: Store Lighting is Essential for Customers


The focus of retail lighting design is essential to a successful jewelry store. There are several elements of lighting that will be the focus for your store. First, understanding the main goal of the design of lighting in your store. Second, discussing how technical lighting can capture your clients’ attention and, third, revealing how LED lightboxes can add significant value to your store.

Lighting makes all the difference to the store’s success but, too often, jewelry retailers forget its importance. Not only is lighting critical in setting the mood of your store and showcasing your merchandise, but it also must be one of the first items on your wish list. Having lighting inside of the showcases can really add sparkle and glitter to your merchandise. Proper lighting is a huge part of what defines your store’s image.

It is important to know the color of the of the lighting in your store. The light bulb color temperature lets us know what the look and feel of the light produced is called Kelvin. Kelvin temperatures for commercial and residential lighting application fall somewhere. On a scale from 2000K to 6500 Kelvin. The ceiling lighting and in the jewelry incase lighting there are two (2) Kelvin temperatures to be used: 5000K and 6000K. The 5000K is what we know as our white daylight and used the most. The 6000K is daylight with a cooler blue tone.  For gems, the “issue” is they likely look better under a 4000K; however, if they are in the same line as all the other cases, you then want the same color light, or the case will stand out and look out of place. Therefore, a 5000K-5500 is the best choice color in the store.

In my designs, I use a lot of recess cans in the ceiling. The main reason I design that way is to keep the ceiling as subtle and simple looking as possible. The installation of the recessed lights with the ceiling does not create a busy look. The main goal in designing a technical lighting plan for a jewelry store is to keep the clients’ eyes looking at the jewelry cases and not at a busy ceiling.

The other lighting advice is to keep the walkway a little dim to create a relaxing mood, while the lighting over the jewelry cases is bright to make the sparkles of the jewelry come alive. See picture of Adlers Jewelers recess cans in the ceiling directed right on the jewelry cases with correct Kelvin temperatures and light boxes in the background.

Adlers Jewelers

LED light technology is rapidly shifting. It is changing how we light our world in a brighter and more economical way. Therefore, proper placement of lighting is essential to keep your consumers highly interested and increase sales in the jewelry store. A popular design element is to have a chandelier in the entry to set the stage for the style of the store’s interior. Another option is to use the best lighting, as in LED recessed cans. This will create a flood of light, keeping the entry bright without creating a focal point the minute you set foot in the store.

This all depends on where you want the customer’s eyes to go, as well as how the entry lighting fits with the overall store design. Therefore, lighting is one of the most important features when it comes to designing your store. This is because the placement of each light is critical so all the jewelry will reflect the light and look more sparkly. Specifically, the lighting trend is to light up the jewelry cases themselves. See M. Robinson Jewelers white jewelry case lite from the top of the outside of the jewelry cases. 

M. Robinson Jewelers

Why should we use backlit lightboxes in our spaces?”  Lightboxes add an inviting dimension to the store’s ambience. Let’s reflect over the basic reasons when and why retailers would want to use LED lightboxes instead of non-backlit signs or posters. For LED lightboxes the two (2) Kelvin temperatures usually use a 5000K or 6000K as their goal is to make everything sparkle more for the effect in photos.  See photo of Lasker Jewelers light box.

Lasker Jewelers

Large LED lightboxes images are essential to increase the store’s sales and are very in trend. The bigger the image the better. Oversize lightboxes look is what is happening now in stores. Lightboxes tastefully distributed around the store do an amazing job of conveying important branding messages to the customers, which increases jewelry resonance and sales. This ability to activate emotional triggers in the customers is what jewelry stores need.

About the Author: Leslie McGwire™ has over 35 years in business development, interior design, equipment, furniture sales and marketing services in retail and jewelry-based businesses. Leslie has won over 25 national design awards, including the prestigious Salon Today and INSTORE Jewelry Store ​awards. Leslie has a true passion for business, design for the jewelry and retail industries. Visit for more information.