20 Brilliant…. Wall Lights

Image: Original BTC x Superfront

For this week’s 20 Brilliant… shopping post I polled Instagram to ask for some suggestions of what people would like to see covered.  The first response that came back was actually something that I have found one of the trickiest items to choose when working with clients – wall lights.

Although, or perhaps because, we have no wall lights in our house I love them.  I’m an ardent subscriber to the theory that every room in the house, perhaps with the exception of bathrooms, needs a whole range of light sources from downlights to pendants, table lamps, standing lamps and accent lighting.

Different lights sources have different uses and create different moods.  Downlights (in small doses) can be great daylight-like lighting for workspaces in the kitchen.  Pendants are fantastic for for creating a feature in a room and also as ambient light over a dining table.  Table and floor lamps provide lighting for tasks and also allow you to turn off the main lights in the evenings and create a softer mood as you head for bedtime.

Wall lights are another way of creating this kind of mood or task lighting and, with the right design, they can really elevate or work with the scheme of the room that you are putting together.  Finding the right design, however, is not always as easy as you might think given the volume of lighting suppliers and styles available.  It often feels like wall lights are overlooked perhaps because of the additional effort required to add wall lights into your house if you don’t already have the wiring.

For the purposes of this post I haven’t focused on the high street names as it’s not rocket science to suggest the likes of John Lewis (who do sell Original BTC, one of my all time favourites) although I do think Made have some fantastic lighting and are always well worth a look.

Also worth considering are vintage options, eBay of course, but also sites such as skinflint which sells restored vintage lighting from the 1920s to the 1970s including some amazing Czech wall lights such as this one:

Image: skinflint

For more vintage-style lighting I would also suggest both Industville, who do lighting for both residential and commercial projects, and Urban Cottage Industries, whose designs can be customised to your desired finish.  I recently used pendants from Industville in a commercial project and thought the quality was excellent and you can also find similar examples at Pooky Lighting which has the added bonus of having the same name as my cat.

Clockwise from top left: Brooklyn Glass Funnel Wall light – 7 inch; Brooklyn Umbrella Wall Light – 8 inch -brass; Swivel Wall Light – Single -Pewter; Swan Neck Step Wall Light – 16 inch.  All Industville.

Clockwise from top left: Bakelite Vintage Wall Light, Angled; Maria Scorsese Designer Wall Light, Bronze; Ceramic Industrial Wall Light, Right-Angled; Silver Maria Banjo Wall Light, Bronze.  All Urban Cottage Industries.

At the slightly more glamorous end of the spectrum I love and very often suggest Spark and Bell to clients.  They don’t have an enormous range of lighting (which by the way I love, nothing worse than trawling through 27 pages) but what they do have is beautifully designed and will work well in both contemporary schemes and mid-century settings like my own.  I also love, but haven’t yet tried, Inscapes Design who you can find on Etsy.  Again, the range isn’t huge but they are truly beautiful to look at.

Clockwise from top left: White and Brass Asymmetric Wall Light; Aureole Wall Light; Flexi Neck Swing Lamp with Black Wall Mount; Walnut Aureole.  All Spark & Bell.

Clockwise from top left: Contemporary Lindi Wall Lamp Sconce; Mid Century Inspired Lelo Wall Lamp; Modern Industrial Inspired Wall Sconce; Modern Kelly Wall Sconce.  All Inscapes Design.

And finally, although none of the lighting that I have chosen has been at the top end of the price spectrum, if you need a larger number of wall lights and you are on a budget then I would highly recommend checking out Iconic Lights.  Nothing I have chosen costs over £40 and yet the quality of their lighting is superb (not an ad).

Clockwise from top left: Gladstone Pewter and Bronze Steampunk Wall Light; Wilhelm Antique Brass Style Wall Light with White Shade; Colonial Black and Antique Brass Twin Wall Light; Cumulus Paint me Wall Light.  All Iconic Lights.

As a final note, a few more things to consider when looking for wall lights:

  • If you like the look but don’t want to get the electrician round there is now a decent selection of plug-in wall lights that work particularly well for bedside lighting.
  • Tailor the light to its use – for ambient lighting translucent shades give a nice glow but you may need a spotlight if you are using it for a specific task such as reading or over a desk.
  • Wall lighting typically sits around eye level or at around 5ft up so consider what your chosen wall light will look like at that height from different points around the room.
  • If you are highlighting a particular feature consider using a pair of wall lights either side to add balance.

And f you have any other suggestions for shopping posts please do let me know!