Design

Design Guide: Using Light Fixtures as Artwork

February 21, 2024

When I bought this house in 2018, it came with 11 ceiling fans. ELEVEN! No offense against ceiling fans, but that really seemed like such a wasted opportunity to me. You see, I view light fixtures as artwork. They are the true jewelry of a room and in most instances, the only thing adorning your 5th wall. This is an amazing opportunity to dazzle!

Today I’m rounding up my top four spaces where I believe the light fixtures act as a true work of art. Lucky for both of us, I have plenty of spaces left to finish so this is simply the beginning of a very long love story.

The Bubble Chandelier

We may as well start things off with a bang. When I was designing my dining room, I knew I wanted it to feel traditional but not stuffy. Once I settled on a wallpaper, I set my sights on finding a chandelier that was a statement but one that wouldn’t necessarily overpower the wallpaper.

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The Talia Chandelier by Julie Neil for Visual Comfort truly strikes that balance in a way I’m not sure another light fixture could. It is like a cloud floating in the middle of my dining room and elicits a WOW from any newcomer that walks in. A true work of art, I’m still head over heels in love with it.

Priscilla

Everyone, meet Priscilla. She is the only light fixture in my house that is so special, I felt she deserved to be properly named. I did not stumble across Priscilla, I actively hunted for her.

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I had been visiting my local Salvage shop here in Nashville quite regularly. In between those visits I’d find myself scrolling through their Instagram page. One day my scroll completely stopped when I found this beautiful blue light fixture. I went into the shop and showed them the picture, hoping to learn more about the light. I learned this specific light fixture is called a skyscraper pendant, and is from the 1930’s. Unsurprising, they are quite rare to find (and are priced accordingly).

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Determined to find my own, I began to actively search Google. After several weeks, I finally found a small shop in Phoenix that had several of these exact blue skyscraper pendants. The best part? They were priced for 75% less than what my store in Nashville had priced theirs. I called the shop owner and to his dismay and my delight, the pricing was old and had not been updated. He honored the pricing and the rest is history. Priscilla is the perfect addition to my little breakfast nook.

The Golden Leaf

After I decided the cozy tv room needed to be color drenched, I also knew the previous boho beaded chandelier had to go (we all make mistakes, okay???). With the new dark paint as a backdrop, I felt this would be the perfect opportunity for something brass. It would pop against the dark ceiling but also compliment the other brass pieces in the space (the Primrose Mirror, Brass art lamp, etc).

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Enter this beautiful golden leaf chandelier. It is eye catching but not dominant, and with 8 lights gives off plenty of brightness for the dark space. Who could ever want a ceiling fan in place of this beautiful light fixture?!

The Crown Jewel

Last but certainly not least is my little crown jewel, located in the living room. I purchased this light fixture for my previous house, and it was one of the things I insisted was coming with me. And it will continue to move with me shall I ever move again.

It really looks like royalty to me, with both its shape and it’s jewels throughout. I think this piece strikes the perfect soft balance for the overall living room aesthetic and couldn’t imagine anything else that could be more perfect in this space.

Light Fixtures as Artwork

Do you see what I see now? The ceiling is truly a canvas to use light fixtures as artwork. Yes, there are places such as bathrooms and kitchens where task lighting is essential, but in the majority of your spaces I hope you can see this as an opportunity to elevate your design. Good design does just that: it’s the balance between beauty and function. You can in fact have your cake and eat it too!  

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