Ceiling light fixtures are great for starters, but when it comes to setting a specific ambiance, they do not quite do the trick. They leave unwanted dark corners and unflattering shades on decorations. Table fixtures with shades are still popular, but overall, they are quite impractical. A floor lamp is easier to clean, has a better throw of light, and casts the most flattering shadows for the room.
Perhaps the kitchen is your bete noir? If it is you can do a lot with some new blinds and lampshades. Try some potted plants on the window ledge this can brighten most kitchens. If the paint-work really is past its prime then you need to decide whether you need a whole new paint job or whether you can get away with touching up the doors and base boards. If your bedroom needs a face-lift then try some new bed covers and toning curtains. Add a few cushions to your bed and you immediately have a more luxurious look.