Style Illuminated

Our home decorating blog offers interior design tips and lighting ideas for today's home! Enjoy professional interior design advice, home decor ideas and inspiration.

  • Traditional House Facades

    I was just in Sag Harbor, New York and was dazzled by the sheer volume of traditional house facades that capture the essence of early American architecture.

    Timeless Sag Harbor Homes

    Classic American domestic architecture is rooted in a design that heavily favors the Colonial and Federal Styles. Straightforward, sturdy and symmetrical is the basic formula and is in abundance on the East Coast.

    I think I was most taken by the attention to detail with regard to the exterior design elements. Classic outdoor benches flanking the front door of the lower right image was such a “throw back” and so unexpected that I had to pull over and take a snap.

    Another item that is never overlooked? Black outdoor lighting fixtures. Whether there were nautical Style wall lights or colonial style hanging lanterns, each house had some version, but were used sparingly as would have been the case 200 to 300 years ago.

    I loved my trip back in time and hope you are inspired by the time-honored look of these traditional house facades.

    Classic Colonial Style Lighting and Exterior Decor from Lamps Plus

    1. This colonial-style outdoor wall light captures the true nature of East Coast traditional architecture.

    2. The matching Henry Street Outdoor Hanging Light from Troy Lighting  above would be ideal if you have a covered porch, stoop or landing as seen in the Federal Style homes in the first image.

    3. I love this timeless ash gray outdoor wood bench inspired by the English landscaper Lutyens.

    4. Traditional homes generally have a welcoming vibe, so why not put it into writing with this Home Sweet Home Printed Coir Doormat.

    Images: Rob Levine

  • Choosing the Right Style of Bar Stool

    Bar stools are kind of like any other piece of furniture - they come in several sizes, several styles and several finishes. And choosing the right one can be a daunting task.

    Rustic wooden bar stool near counter with wicker storage basketsFrom backless to partial backs to full size upholstered chair styles. Simple or detailed, wood or iron,or upholstered and detailed, the list goes on and the options are seemingly endless.

    As you can see,  bar stools come in many shapes and sizes and when it comes to choosing the right one for your style - there are so many things to consider - and the overall style is just one of them.

    French-style bar stool in kitchen with crystal chandelierToday I am going to talk a little bit about two of the most popular styles of bar stools - a backless stool and a stool with a full back - and share a bit more about why each are fan favorites.

    Backless Bar Stools

    Backless bar stools might be my favorite.

    Why? Very simply because they can blend in seamlessly in so many spaces and styles.

    Without a back that is visible - their style plays the most important part in their look. And they are perfect for tucking into areas where a larger more prominent bar stool would take up too much room.

    On top of that, backless bar stools are easy to climb up onto so it makes them a perfect choice for island seating.

    1. I love the simple, classic construction and upholstered seat on this Harper Bar Stool.

     Simple whitewashed bar stool with upholstered seat
    It has the upholstered seat for comfort while keeping a rustic chic vibe and simple lines.

    2. Another classic backless favorite - the Zuo Anaheim Bar Stool. The attention to details is what caught my eye with this one. The carved frame and nail head accents are perfect and bring a bit of style while keeping a low profile.

    Backless bar stool in a cerused finish with a beige linen seat

    3. For simplicity - you cannot go wrong with an antiqued black wood saddle seat stool.

    Black antiqued bar stool with a saddle seat

    4. And for a more modern look - the California Adjustable Acrylic Bar Stool takes the cake while keeping a clean minimalist look.

    Adjustable acrylic bar stool with chrome base
    Bar Stools with Backs

    The other style of bar stool I wanted to delve into today is a bar stool with a tall back. These bar stools are made for comfort and are perfect for gathering around a bar where guest might gather, or for a home where breakfast at the kitchen island is common.

    Comfort is king with this style - and they are often upholstered, much like any other chair would be in your home.   And while bar stools with backs have been known to take up quite a bit more space visually - they don't have to with the huge amount of styles available today.

    1. The cousin to the acrylic backless stool is the  acrylic Malibu Counter Stool. With more functionality for sitting in and leaning back - while keeping a quiet presence.

    Clear acrylic counter stool with chrome base2. For gorgeous mid-century modern lines and appeal - you can't go wrong with a rounded streamlined bar stool like the Andre Bentwood Counter Stool.

    Bentwood Danish Modern-style counter height stool with cream seat and back
    3. For both a modern and traditional look - try an upholstered bar stool such as the Villa Avenue Belgian Linen Counter Stool. I love the nail head details on this one - but you can also find tufting, wing backs and all types of styles to fit you perfectly.

    Stonewashed counter stool with linen seat and back with nail head trim

    Another very popular style right now is the cross back chair - and it comes in bar stool height as well. The Powell counter Stool is ideal for adding a bit of vintage charm while giving you a comfortable place to sit.

    Industrial counter stool with metal frame and wood seat and back with crossed back detailAnother consideration when choosing a bar stool is height. They generally come in two height ranges, bar stool height and counter stool height, and when shopping for new stools, make sure to measure your existing ones first - or measure the counter height ahead of time. You need room for legs and knees to keep the comfort and conversation coming.  

    What style bar stool would you choose for your home?

    Images:French Country Cottage

  • Crystal Accents Bring High Style to Unexpected Places

    It's the little design details that elevate something from the ordinary to extraordinary. Crystals are the accent du jour, and we see them being used in the most unexpected places to bring high style to everyday items.

    Mirrored accent chest with octagonal mirror and a pair of crystal table lamps

    Crystals are a luxe design detail that adds instant chic to your entertaining. Crystal accented cake stands will make your dessert spread extra sweet, as seen in the image above.

    Bathroom with mirrored sink vanity and mini crystal chandeliers

    In the powder room, your lighting becomes an opportunity to provide a sophisticated touch of sparkle. Impress your guests with glittering mini crystal chandeliers.

    Black velvet couch with diamond tufting and crystal details

    And in the living room, a crystal-accented sofa in plush velvet is an absolute showstopper. Don't be bashful with your bling - go ahead and sparkle this fall and winter!

    Images: Lamps Plus

  • Beautiful Floor Lamps Make a Style Statement in Your Home

    Sometimes you might want a lamp that can stand on it's own, while lighting up your room beautifully at the same time.

    Maybe you have a chair that is tucked in the corner with no side table, or maybe you just like the way the sofa floats in the center of the room and don't want to clutter it with too much stuff.

    Enter a floor lamp. Tall and stately,  a floor lamp can be placed anywhere you would like to illuminate a little more - and are also perfect for adding a splash of style to your home at the same time.

    Glamorous living room with peacock blue walls and crystal lighting

    Thankfully, for those who love floor lamps - they come in an abundance of styles and designs. From industrial to romantic to simple and traditional. And today, I am going to share several styles of floor lamps to fit your space.

    Industrial Love

    I am a huge fan of a little sprinkling of industrial in a room - and a little bit goes a long way. These floor lamps bring that slightly vintage and rustic vibe to a space and they also bring a lot of character and charm.

    The Ott Lite Provo Oil-Rubbed Bronze Adjustable Floor Lamp  is a favorite. That gorgeous muted oil rubbed bronze color and vintage style is perfect. Makes me think of wood plank floors and a comfy old squishy chair.

    Vintage-style oil-rubbed bronze adjustable floor lamp with bronze shade

    And the second choice - a slightly more rustic version. This one reminds me of an old cabin in the wood with a warm fire glowing in the fireplace. I love the simple vintage vibe the Downbridge Dark Rust Floor Lamp has - a winner in any decor for sure.

    Industrial-style rust floor lamp with arc neck and an industrial gear as a base


    For those looking for a floor lamp with a bit of crystal pizazz and glam - you are in luck. These next two lamps are covered in crystals and oozing with romantic charm.

    For something on the more simple side, this crystal floor lamp with an ivory shade is a perfect fit. Elegance, charm and simple style make it a gorgeous addition to your romantic-inspired home.

    Crystal floor lamp with dangling crystals and ivory lamp shade with gold trim

    And for something with just a little bit more bling - the Soft Silver Three-Light Crystal Floor Lamp will stop you in your tracks.

    Art Deco-influenced silver floor lamp with shade made of crystals

    The details on this one are amazing - and just look at the crystals covering the entire shade? Gorgeous for sure.

    Close-up of Art Deco-inspired cloverleaf shaped shade frame with crystals around the edges

    Traditional Charm

    Traditional floor lamps are always a good choice. And the best part is - they definitely do come in several shapes and styles all by themselves.

    From simple single lights to several lights- the traditional category is a great place to look if you are unsure of just what style you would like best.

    One of my favorites is a simple light with a detailed frame like the Hancock Downbridge Lamp.  It is classic in style which means it will fit in perfectly with several kinds of decor - and it is a charmer with that curvy frame.

    Traditional bronze floor lamp with a linen empire lamp shade

    And the retro style on this Cupola Brushed Brass Two Light Floor Lamp brings a vintage look and a lot of light to a room. I love the brass - and the fun look of this one.  I could see this working well in a corner as a reading light and also an accent light for a room.

    Retro brass floor lamp with 2 lights and brass dome shades

    As you can see, there are an abundance of styles of floor lamps to choose from and they are definitely stylish lighting elements to add to your home.

    From floor lamps with art shades, to vintage styles, to modern and unique - the perfect style for you and your home is out there waiting to be discovered.

    What do you think? Do you have a favorite style?

    Image: Lamps Plus

  • Multi-Tasking Mini Pendants

    When considering lighting, often what designers are looking to add is not bright light, but a smaller dose of illumination for the purpose of creating ambiance.

    Some light fixtures are chosen to simply beautify a room and dangle as a decorative accent, much like jewelry is chosen to enhance an outfit.

    Crystal mini pendants used in place of sconces in a transitional bathroom

    In bathrooms, sconces placed on either side of  mirrors are always practical, but another attractive solution is to suspend elegant mini pendant lights from the ceiling to illuminate the mirror.

    A traditional bathroom that has crystal pendants instead of sconces next to mirror
    Bathrooms aren't the only spaces to benefit from more delicate lighting. Mini pendants can also be used as accents in the bedroom, kitchen, or living room to complement the main fixtures that perform the task of providing brighter light.  

    Add a touch of glamour to any room with mini pendants that are made of crystal. The Possini Euro Pantheon Pendant dazzles with its sophisticated shape.

    The distinctive sphere of the ET2 Brilliant Chrome Mini Pendant will take the spotlight in any space, while the Elan Rockne Chrome Mini Pendant sparkles with a sculptural body.

    Crystal mini pendants from Lamps Plus
    If modern is more your style, find contemporary appeal in sleek geometrical shapes. The Sliver Satin Nickel Mini Pendant offers minimalist modern style and the black finish of the Bronx Black Pendant Light is very on trend.

    The Lite Source Tendril Aluminum Pendant with its sliced design is a chic urban accent.  

    Contemporary mini pendants in satin nickel and black from Lamps Plus
    Transitional style lighting works for most interiors from traditional to contemporary. Mouth blown glass and chrome accents make the Possini Euro Portico Pendant the perfect addition to any kitchen or bathroom.

    The handsome matte black and brass combination found in the Feiss Cadence Pendant makes it an appealing choice.

    Classic but never boring, the Vesper Glass and Chrome Pendant combines an opal glass diffuser with clear outer glass.

    Transitional mini pendant lights in glass and metal from Lamps Plus
    Find hundreds more unique mini pendant lights on the Lamps Plus website where you'll find the perfect lighting accents for your space.

    Images: Lamps Plus

  • Modern Paint Colors

    Picking modern paint colors is ultimately subjective, but the experts do plenty of research into what’s hot and “on point” for home design so that we can direct people in the right direction, especially if they are unsure. I thought it would be fun to highlight some modern paint colors through contemporary lighting.

    Color Plus table lamps in a range of modern colors from Lamps Plus

    It’s fun to shop the Color Plus line of lighting that has virtually every color lamp you can dream up with mix and match shades and bases.

    It seems soft pastels are becoming modern again, so try to think of them in a new way. By all means don’t think of them as Gran’s bedroom, rather, a soothing backdrop to a cool mid-century styled room with low slung wood furniture and nubby fabrics. It’s amping up the cool factor for colors that have been pushed to the back of the drawer for far too long.

    I also selected some classic colors that are naturals for modern interiors. The new neutral is gray. That is represented in the first lamp, as are basic white and gray/brown. You will never go wrong with these contemporary basics.

    I have also selected a sage green. Why you ask? It’s for people who may not want to go as monochromatic with their interiors. A sage green can read traditional, but if you have warmer modern furniture (wood versus chrome and leather), it’s a simple tone that also is a great backdrop for crisp black and white photography.  

    1. The ideal gray is captured in the Spencer Table Lamp in the color Software

    2. This under-the-radar color, Rose Pink, looks heavenly on this Ovo Table Lamp.

    3. Stay timeless with this white pendant chandelier that is ideal for halls, kitchens, and game rooms.

    4. Blue Sky is another shade that is stealing the show this year, especially in this pale blue Apothecary Table Lamp.

    5. Warm yet crisp, the Carafe colored Ovo Table Lamp would be fantastic in a white living room or bedroom. Pair the two and watch things pop.

    6. I like this sage colored swing arm wall lamp flanking a bed or sofa.

  • Chandeliers That Bring a Touch of Elegance to Your Home

    I have a slight crush on chandeliers. And a belief that every room can benefit from having one in it. I think a chandelier is a perfect way to add sophisticated charm and elegance to any space - even ones that you may think they don't belong in.

    Crystal chandelier reflected in mirror with ornate gold frameAnd when it comes simply to chandelier style - my favorites are the ones that are elegant and romantic with a lot of pretty crystals and personality. And that doesn't mean they need to be over the top - simple is sometimes the best kind of elegance to add to a room.

    Today I am going to share a few favorites in small and large sizes to fit your space perfectly.

    Dining room with two crystal chandeliers, large chalkboard and French-style furniture

    Starting with chandeliers that are small on size - but not small on pizzazz -mini chandeliers are perfect for adding to a small space like a closet or even using as bedside lights.

    In my closet, I used a simple small glass chandelier similar to this Vienna Full Spectrum Glass Chandelier.

    Small crystal chandelier inside of a walk in closet

    And in my bedroom - I chose to go big or go home with a large chandelier. I used another similar in style chandelier but definitely not similar in size.

    This glass chandelier is draped in crystals and is a knockout in a room where you want big impact but not something that takes up a lot of visual space.  

    Large crystal and gold chandelier in a bedroom
    The James Moder Maria Teresa Chandelier is similar and a perfect fit for the bold and beautiful look as it is draped in pretty crystals that are sure to reflect the light and create a huge amount of ambiance.

    No matter what style of light you have right now, replacing an ordinary light with a chandelier in your room not only makes a beautiful design statement whether the lights are on or off - but it also creates interest and a little bit of drama where maybe there wasn't any before.

    And designers love to put something in a room that gets people talking.

    What about you~ which style is your favorite? Do you prefer big and bold - or small and charming?

    Images: French Country Cottage

  • Happy Labor Day 2016

    Happy Labor Day from the Lamps Plus Blog Team!

    Wishing everyone a very cushy Labor Day.

    If you're looking for a way to introduce new styles and patterns into your decor scheme, there's an easy and affordable solution that doesn't require repainting walls or reupholstering your favorite pieces of furniture.

    The answer is soft, stylish and simple: decorative pillows! 

    Pile up, and personalize decorative pillows with very little labor involved this holiday or any day. 

  • Choosing the Perfect Table Lamp for Your Style

    When it comes to a lamp for a bedside table - do you struggle with choosing one that is as unique as your style?

    With so many, many options for colors, sizes, styles and details - deciding which table lamp is THE ONE can be a bit overwhelming. Thankfully, Lamps Plus has them narrowed down into categories which can definitely make it easier to find a place to start.

    Try  transitional table lamps, or crystal lamps - see for yourself.

    Gold lamp with crystals next to vintage books and flowers

    When I am shopping for table lamps - such as those for bedside tables - I keep three things in mind.

    Style. Height. Color.

    Bedside table lamps are often times better being either a little taller or a little shorter than the average lamp height - depending on what your bedside table look likes. And as far as style? Well that is a personal choice of course,  but I picked out five  beautiful, elegant, timeless and unique table lamps for using in a bedroom to share with you today.

    #1. Elegant Romantic Charm

    I am a huge fan of all things covered in crystals - and this  Parisian Hand Painted Table Lamp that resembles the Eiffel Tower is just absolutely perfect for a romantic inspired bedroom.

    I can see a pair of these in a room with breezy curtains, a canopy bed, and piles of squishy pillows on the bed.  Available in two colors - it is easy to choose the perfect one for you.

    Gold and crystal covered lamp in a sage green antiqued finish

    #2. Traditional Country

    What if you have a bedroom that is covered in layers of classic country charm - such as buffalo checks and ticking stripes?  A lamp with a bit of pattern and personality is perfect.

    I love chinoiserie-style lamps and patterns - they are timeless. And the Norham Blue and White Table Lamp updated with gold detailing is perfection next to a bed covered in toile.

    Classic blue and white chinoiserie style table lamp with white drum shade
    #3. Classic Elegance

    This might be the most amazing lamp I have discovered yet for a cottage style bedroom. Absolutely stunning in silver - with the thin elegant handles and the fact that this beauty will wear a gorgeous patina before long makes it an amazing choice - and one that will only get better as the years go by.

    It is safe to say that I am slightly obsessed with the  Arteriors Home Thornberry Antique Silver Table Lamp.

    Silver trophy lamp with white shade
    #4. The Midas Touch

    What do you do when you crave a sprinkling of gold elegance and the charming feeling of an architectural piece?  You mix it up. 

    The Uttermost Latina Gold Column Table  Lamp is the perfect mix of both worlds - and will add a collected and warm feeling to your room.

    Antiqued gold column table lamp with white shade and finial

    #5. Gold and Bold

    And for those looking for the pizzazz of gold - with a little more bold - I am loving the mirrored Odyssey Quatrefoil Table Lamp in an antiqued bronze finish. 

    With the classic, time honored quatrefoil pattern, this lamp won't go out of style anytime soon - and with the touch of gold and simple shape - it is sure to bring a gorgeous touch to your bedroom.

    Gold and mirror quatrefoil rectangular column table lamp with rectangular white shade

    No matter what style is your favorite - there are so many options for beautiful elegant table lamps at Lamps Plus. And by doing a little browsing, you are sure to find the one that is perfect for you.

    Which one is your favorite?

    For more advice, check out our post How to Find the Perfect Table Lamp!

    Image: French Country Cottage

  • Decked-Out Deck Design

    Although we are starting to begin the summer wind-down, it’s not too late to create a decked-out deck design. Enjoying your home both inside and out is one of life’s treats, and making sure both match your needs and style is important.

    A Contemporary Deck with a Designer Style Outdoor Kitchen

    I love this deck/outdoor kitchen because it’s compact yet packs a real punch. I’m not saying you need to install a full-on kitchen, but it’s nice to be able to cook and socialize with guests during the summer months.

    Most bases are covered in this deck, from functional cooking elements and stylish outdoor seating to lighting. I like how there is task lighting for cooking, safety (along the steps) and decorative and functional landscape lighting  (washing the plants).

    This lighting is layered and allows you to maximize the space after dark. I can’t see the overall extent of seating, but I would also include outdoor wooden benches to match the chairs and a table for dining.

    Call me exacting, but a truly decked-out deck design would include decorative water fountains for home and garden. I love the sound of trickling water outside and not only is it soothing, it can also mask unwanted noises like traffic.

    So, although there are only a few more weeks of summer, make the most of it with the best deck yet!

    Classic Outdoor Lighting and Accessories from Lamps Plus

    1. The Bayport Dark Sky-Rated Outdoor Wall Light  is ideal to illuminate the deck on a traditional home.

    2. Go bold and add soft seating on your deck with this wasabi Green Chevron Stripe Outdoor Pouf.

    3. Match the wall light above with it’s matching Dark Sky-Rated Outdoor Post Light. This might be just perfect at the junction where your deck and stairs meet.

    4. I like the simple design of the Benton Outdoor Stacking Chair in natural Eucalyptus. Great for dining or casual lounging.

    5. This Natural Acacia 2-Person Glider Bench is ideal for relaxing outdoors on a deck or porch. Nobody likes to admit they love what seemingly appears to be for the older generation, but they should.

    6. Nothing is more relaxing outside than the sound of water and this Orbital Pedestal Floor Fountain with LED Light is a modern way to add soothing sounds and a contemporary focal point.

    Image: Lamps Plus

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