Heads up: Lighting the closet is unlike lighting anywhere else in the house. We turned to Remodelista guru Thomas Paterson, lighting designer and founder of London- and Mexico City–based Lux Populi, for guidance on how to handle the often confusing space.

Photo courtesy of The Design Confidential

The goal is to eliminate shadows by getting a lot of diffuse light into the space. The variable factors are color (how warm or cool) and quantity (how much light).

Photo via Poliform

“The mission for lighting a closet is different from almost anywhere else in the home,” says Paterson. That’s because the goal here is not about achieving atmosphere but about adequately lighting everything inside, from top to bottom.

Photo via Ikea

The lighting in the TriBeCa shop of La Garçonne transitions from daylight at the front of the store to diffused artificial light at the back.

Photo via La Garçonne

People like to see how they’ll look both in daylight and in glamorous evening light, so “the closets we light in higher-end homes will often have both cool and warm lights and the ability to switch between them,” says Paterson.

Photo via Vogavoe

Photo via La Garçonne

In a small closet–one in which you can touch all walls standing in the middle–you’ll need the equivalent of 150 watts or 2,000 lumens of light.

Photo via Amee Allsop Design

The ideal closet has white walls, white floors, and lots of mirrors so that light bounces around the space. If you want a dark closet, paint it a dark color but be sure to add mirrors, which will maximize the light.