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.

  • Designer Lighting - Kichler Lighting

    When you are looking for THE perfect light to make your space it can be overwhelming. There are so many designs and styles and different lights out there to choose from. Sometimes the best place to start is with a company that offers options that you know you love already.

    Transitional kitchen lighting above island with barstools

    Whether it is a modern style, traditional style, or something completely different, perusing the company catalog often times inspires the right look for your space.

    Today, I am talking all about Kichler lighting and the gorgeousness that they bring to the lighting table.

    I chose 5 favorite options and invite you to peruse the entire selection of Kichler Lighting here on Lamps Plus for more.


    #1. Polished Nickel


    I am completely in love with this gorgeous nickel pendant - it is absolutely stunning.

    The warm tones of the polished nicked is perfect for mixing and mingling with other metals. I could see this doubled above a kitchen island to make a beautiful statement.

    Polished Nickel pendant light
    #2. Birdcage

    Another pretty light from Kichler that is perfect for the kitchen or the foyer, this birdcage inspired light that is as airy as it is beautiful.

    Think of open lighting such as this one when you have a space that you don't want to overwhelm with a heavier looking fixture.


    Birdcage style ceiling light with 3 lights
    #3. Close Encounters

    For a close to the ceiling style light this ceiling light with a translucent shade is on trend and beautiful, and will light your space with style.


    Ceiling light mounted close to the ceiling
    #4. Singles Grouped

    A very on trend look right now is the Edison-type light bulbs encased in glass jars, like the Brinley pendant. This is a fun and funky and vintage look all at the same time for a kitchen island.


    8 light bulbs in glass gathered together for a unique fixture
    #5. Old World Style

    When I was little, my dad used to love to create stained glass windows and artwork and so I have fond memories of those elements around the house. Now, they remind me also of old mission style fixtures and in the right setting there is nothing more fitting.

    This stained glass foyer pendant is gorgeous and the neutral colors will blend in with many different styles and looks.


    Mission style stained glass pendant lighting
    No matter what your favorite style or look is starting with a brand you know you love and simply perusing the different pieces is a perfect place to start.

    Kichler Lighting has much more than just pendant lighting they have outdoor lighting, sconce lighting and even mirrors so much to choose from.

    I would love to know what your favorite is of the lights that I shared. For me it is the polished nickel pendant. What is yours?

  • 3 Outdoor Lighting Styles to Boost Curb Appeal

    Nothing refreshes the look of your home like new outdoor lighting fixtures. Outdoor lighting for porches, patios and landscape areas are a great way to boost curb appeal. 

     Outdoor Lighting Boost Curb Appeal

    Here are 3 outdoor lighting styles that will help you boost the curb appeal of your home:

     Stunning Outdoor Wall Light

    1. Outdoor Wall Lights 

    Beautify your outdoors after the sun goes down with stunning outdoor wall lights. Installed on your patio, front porch and entryway, or in any other high-traffic outdoor areas, these fixtures are an essential part of your exterior lighting scheme. The added evening illumination allows you to enjoy your property after dark while making sure you and your home are safe and secure.

     Motion Detected Security Lighting

    2. Home Security Lighting 

    If you're looking to improve safety and your ability to monitor your property at night, home security outdoor lighting is absolutely essential. Designed with such features as timers, motion sensors or detectors and tamper-proof features to trip the lights on when needed, these fixtures are a very effective preventative measure against intrusions and burglary.

     Landscape Lighting from Lamps Plus

    3. Landscape Lighting 

    Add landscape lighting to highlight both your landscaping and your home's architecture. Landscape lighting acts as an added security measure as well.

    Attractive pathway lighting helps light the way to your front door or through a garden and keeps people out of your flower beds! If you don't want to hard wire path lights, there are solar options available.

    You can also use landscape lighting to illuminate dark corners of your lawn as a security feature. Low voltage landscape lighting kits are a great do-it-yourself project and they come with everything you need to give your outdoor space a brand new look.

    There are numerous energy-efficient outdoor LED lighting styles available for all three lighting types we discussed above. Although the initial cost is a bit higher (although the cost of LED fixtures is starting to come down) the energy savings is well worth the investment.

    We realize that there are many outdoor lighting options from which to choose, so while you are designing your outdoor lighting scheme you should definitely keep these 3 outdoor lighting categories in mind to boost the curb appeal of your home.

    Which will you be using? Leave us a comment below, or tag us (@lampsplus) on social media.

    All images shown are from Lamps Plus

  • How to Design the Perfect Bedroom

    Your bedroom is your personal sanctuary, whether it's for winding down after a long day, or for spending lazy mornings with the paper on the weekends. There are several ingredients that are absolute necessities when designing the perfect bedroom and the right bed is only one of them.

    A calming bedroom design

    The Bed

    Obviously, the bed is the centerpiece of any bedroom's design. I'm a big fan of beautiful upholstered headboards and beds, they bring a layer of softness to a bedroom, not to mention a comfy place to lean back when reading or enjoying a delicious breakfast in bed. 

    Side Tables

    Any bedroom will look naked without stylish side tables! I'm a big fan of having two different tables - I try to avoid being matchy-matchy whenever possible! At least one of the tables should have drawers so you can put away all the flotsam and jetsam that can take over the top and not leave room for the essentials. Like lighting...

    Lighting

    The right lighting in your bedroom (as in any other room) is key.

    Bring more style to your bedroom design with a pair of table lamps - make sure the lamps are the right size or risk the design looking off balance.

    If you don't have room for table lamps, try using a pair of wall lamps. If you are renting (or just don't feel like dealing with the hassle of hard-wiring) there are lots of plug-in styles to explore.

    Another nice designer touch (and space-saving solution) I've seen recently is to hang  mini-pendants on either side of the bed in place of table lamps. The pendant should be hung at about the height of your eyes when you are sitting up in bed. Any lower and they are of no use, and any higher they will cast shadows. 

    Bench

    A bench at the end of the bed is the perfect place to put your pretty decorative pillows when it's time to turn down the bed at night. A stylish bench is also a great place to put on/take off your shoes too.

    Area Rug

    A lovely area rug visually pulls your furniture arrangement together as well as adds a layer of visual interest and texture into a room. Area rugs are essential in a bedroom with hardwood floors - who wants to put their tootsies on a cold hard floor first thing in the morning? Area rugs can be used in rooms with wall-to-wall carpet as well.

    Making sure you have the right size area rug is very important - the rug should extend at least 12-18" on all sides of the bed. If the rug you have your eye on is smaller, place it perpendicular to the bed under the bottom two-thirds of the bed, making sure you have the aforementioned 12-18" extending from the sides and end of the bed.

    Wall Art

    Nothing's sadder in my opinion than blank walls. You can use wall art to complement your existing color scheme or to inspire a new one. Choose a piece that is about two-thirds the width of the headboard or bed or risk the arrangement looking out of balance. You can use a grouping of prints in place of a single piece as well.

    Accessories

    I'm sure you've all heard the trope "it's all in the details" before, but it is 100% true. Fresh flowers are always a nice touch - if you are of the black-thumb variety, realistic-looking faux florals are always an option. Use pretty picture frames of your loved ones (human, feline, canine or other) to add a personal touch.

    I love putting a classic clock on my nightstand as well. Yes, it might make me a dinosaur, but there are all kinds of studies coming out that talk about how bad it is for your quality of sleep to look at screens before bedtime. I prize my sleep and am not about to sacrifice a precious moment of it!

    Putting a water carafe next to your bed is a nice touch too - it saves you a walk to the kitchen or bathroom when you wake up parched in the middle of the night.

    When you bring all the above elements together, you'll have the bedroom design of your dreams!

     

  • My 5 Favorite Kitchen Pendant Lights

    Interested in a mini kitchen remodel? If so, I think lighting is a good place to start. My five favorite kitchen lights are all pendants because they give you the biggest bang for your buck. 

    Decorative pendant lights tend to be visible anywhere in the room and can be the perfect stylistic jumping off point.

    A Selection of Contemporary Kitchen Pendant Light Fixtures from Lamps Plus

    One great outcome of the new look in kitchens is that virtually everybody who can has either an island or peninsula. These are perfect spots to illuminate with some form of light.

    Obviously I’m a fan of pendant lights. but if there is very little headroom you may also want to consider a stylish flushmount fixture. Flushmounts can offer the same designer look, but will not break up a sight line, especially if your island or peninsula overlooks a family room where you may need to keep an eye on the kids.

    Here are some of my picks when it comes to pendants.

    1. This slim and minimalist clear cylinder frosted glass pendant light would be ideal in a tight space or lined up along a long and narrow peninsula.

    2. I love the look of this polished nickel pendant by Hudson Valley for over a breakfast room table. It has a mod, almost Palm Springs look.

    3. A classic modern barn look is evident in this chrome pendant light by Possini Euro Design

    4. If you like an industrial vibe for over your islands and counters, think about this bronze pendant light by Kichler. Like the minimal light, this pendant is also great for smaller spaces.

    5. Rustic lighting can also be stylish like this bronze mini pendant also by Kichler. The sophisticated lodge look is extremely chic and doesn’t exhibit that classic heavy, rustic vibe.

  • A Refined Industrial Living Room

    If you are thinking about making a change to your interiors, you might want to consider a refined industrial living room. I know the term "industrial" can potentially evoke images of steel rebar tables and wooden crate tables, but industrial style is not necessarily cold or uncomfortable.A Loft Style Living Room with Comfortable Seating and Elegant Decor

     There is a movement to make this loft style approachable and dare I say, elegant?  It’s true and I chose this living room image in particular because I wanted to show how industrial interiors can speak to both men and women and still be an attractive alternate design scheme.

    I think the main takeaway is that rough hewn materials can be manipulated and combined with more delicate items to create a perfect balance. Who would have thought to surround a sparkling crystal chandelier with a bronze steel frame and come up with something fabulous? Whomever thought that up should win a metal, get it?

    This marriage of materials is dynamic regardless of scale. I also like placing decorative gilt mirrors against a brick wall or adjacent wooden beams like in the image above. Whether you live in an urban setting or not, industrial interiors are a full fledged, legitimate style that may be just what you’ve been looking for. 

    Industrial Decor with Elegant and Luxe Materials from Lamps Plus

    1. I love the elegant jewel tones of this concave round wall mirror by Howard Elliott for over a chest of drawers, bar or console table.

    2. This glass and gold cylinder table lamp is fillable but looks stylish just as it is.

    3. The Solaris bronze chandelier marries industrial metals with beautiful and feminine crystals.

    4. I like the modern lines in conjunction with the rough luxe leather of this modern mahogany chair by Arteriors.

    5. The Arteriors Home swivel counter stool may have a metal base and rustic seat, but the materials look rich.

    6. Industrial style decor should embrace the essence 20th century functionality which is fabulously exhibited in the Dimond Farmhouse brass floor lamp.

  • Keeping Your Cool with the Perfect Ceiling Fan

    Ceiling fans have gotten a bit of a negative feeling over the years - mostly from their lack of style or  looks that didn't really add to a space. But in a lot of climates - a ceiling fan is a necessity in a room comfort wise - and all of that not-so-attractive design and style has changed.


    outdoor seating area with wood walls and ceiling fan
    If you haven't shopped for a new ceiling fan in a while - you might be surprised at the amazing amount of styles that are available today.

    From outdoor fans that make you feel like you have escaped to a tropical island, to vintage style fans that keep that older home charm while keeping your cool on those hot summer days, to simple clean contemporary styles that add a gleam of metal and play an important part in the look of the room.

    Today it is all about stylish and functional ceiling fans and the many options to choose from.


    I love a lighting element that adds to the overall feeling in a room - like this tropical style fan that makes me want to relax and grab a pina colada.


    Oversized leaf tropical ceiling fan
    For a streamlined look - there are stainless steel and thin blade fans like the Aviation Ceiling Fan that do the job while keeping a minimalist look above.


    Modern style ceiling fan with metal blades 
    There are traditional looks and styles with elegant details and charm for a more antique feeling. The Napoli Ceiling Fan is a perfect example.

    Traditional detailed fan with metal scrolls and amber color light

    One of the best inventions might be convenient remote controlled fans. No more reaching up to pull a string or flipping a switch to turn it on unless you want to do that - and they come in all shapes and sizes.

    And you can even design the perfect custom fan for you right here at Lamps Plus. Choose your size, style, color and how much motor you need to keep cool and comfortable - and voila!

    So no matter what your look and style is - you are sure to find a ceiling fan that fits you perfectly- and that can do the job while looking amazing.

    So do tell, what style ceiling fan is your favorite?

  • Stylish Spring Stoops

    You can’t blame me for trying to force a change in the weather. Spring is near and with that it might be time to think about stylish spring stoops. 

    A Traditional and Welcoming Front Porch

    Now, this doesn’t mean you need a picture perfect front porch situation or adorable city townhouse stoop. Regardless of where you live, you can always improve the look of your home’s entyway, even if that home is in a city apartment building. 

    A great way to update the look of your entryway is by changing out or cleaning your light fixtures. Matching outdoor wall lights are a perfect starting point. They will not only dress up a front door but be functional at night when entering your house or as basic home security by illuminating the main access point of your home.

    Another often neglected aspect of an outdoor entryway is subtle landscape lighting. Whether it’s pathway lighting or uplighting for trees and planting beds, they will certainly add dimension and additional security to the front yard.

    If lighting is covered, consider decorative touches like a new door mat, planters or seating. These are inexpensive touches that will spruce things up and start to embrace the enjoyment of outdoor living.

    Stylish Exterior Lighting and Accessories from Lamps Plus

    1. This maze design gray and orange decorative outdoor pillow will brighten up outdoor furniture and soften seats.

    2. This bronze outdoor hanging light is great for covered porches.

    3. Welcome your friends and family with this printed coir doormat.

    4. I would hang the Minka Ladera alder bronze outdoor wall light on either side of a front door for a classic and traditional look.

    5. Create a relaxing and old time atmosphere on a patio or porch with this teak brown wood rocking chair.

    6. I love this bronze outdoor post light if you have a path or walk to your home. I would also make sure it matches the outdoor house lights.

  • International Style: Amsterdam Architecture

    It did not take long for me to fall in love with the city of Amsterdam in the Netherlands - truth be told it was about 3.5 seconds in all. The city is so stunning, and so visually inspiring that the short weekend I spent there (in the rain) was definitely not enough to get my fix.

    While Amsterdam is known for its beauty in the spring, don't discount the winter months, where the brisk air is perfect for long walks and warm cups of fresh mint tea.

    Amsterdam architecture in the Canal District

    I immediately wanted to do a blog post about Amsterdam architecture since it was so captivating to me. The briefest of histories is this: The 17th century saw the Dutch Golden Age which brought immense wealth to the country, along with a boom in construction of tall, narrow and heavily ornamented homes along Amsterdam's many canals that are reminiscent of the Italian Renaissance style. This came to be known as Dutch Baroque Architecture and is amazingly preserved even today.

    Because the homes were built during a time of wealth and prosperity, each is uniquely different and ornate in its own way, which is rare for a crowded city with such history.

    This difference is visually stimulating and extremely beautiful. We spent most of our time in the canal district of Amsterdam which is packed with regal homes, tiny shops and lots and lots of bicycles.

    Examples of Dutch Baroque style homes along the canals of Amsterdam

    When thinking about translating this very unique style in your own home you have to think of three things:

    1. Less is certainly not more. Detail, decoration and ornamentation are important aspects to achieving true Amsterdam style.

    2. Color is not very prevalent. Brick, browns, creams and blacks reign supreme throughout the city.

    3. While the homes are grand, their scale is quite small. Think about packing a major punch into a compact piece if you want to emulate this city's style.

    Furniture from Lamps Plus inspired by Amsterdam Architecture

    Here we selected a few pieces that have that same ornate feel of beautiful beautiful Amsterdam architecture.

    In the bathroom, ornate bathroom vanities can really bring a lot of design to a small space. This dark cherry bathroom vanity incorporate the brick color as well as the attention to detail of the building facades.

    In the entry, a compact oak console table is delicate and strong at the same time.

    In the bedroom, the curvy lines and small details of this chocolate upholstered bed have an authentic, antique sensibility that, like the city, relates to the present as well as the past.

    In the dining room, this small scale weathered pine dining table starts small (one of our rules above) but can extend if need be. The detailed legs of this table mix together sweeping shapes and angles beautifully.

    Images: Allison Rosenberg

  • Pink or Blue for Your Spring Interiors

    I have never understood why people are always forced to choose between pink OR blue. Yes it can be a little confusing when you dress a newborn baby girl in all blue, but after that I don't think you need to decide. Both pink AND blue are so beautiful in interior design and bring their own beautiful point of view to a space.

    When thinking about spring interiors I don't want to make you decide between the two, but I am going to. You will see how designing around beautiful pink or blue spring-inspired wallpaper can create two very different, yet somewhat interchangeable looks that are perfect for the warm months to come.

    Two spring-inspired interior design vignettes with either pink or blue wallpaper

    The beautiful pink living room vignette on the left leans more towards an antique, delicate chateau look while the blue vignette on the right has more of an english countryside cottage feel. 

    In the pink room, dainty details like fleur-de-lys accents, antiqued mirror, and glass table lamps pair perfectly with a traditional side chair and a beautifully detailed chest.

    In the blue room, a traditional accent chair sits atop a rustic sisal accent rug, while clusters of accessories create a collected, lived-in look. The stacked storage boxes, gallery wall and oversized wall clock make the space feel warm and cozy.

    Which living room vignette would you choose? Pink or Blue?

  • Color Palette Inspiration Series - Reds

    For our final installment of the Color Palette Inspiration Series were talking about bold, bright, vivacious red. Red is a hotly contested color in interiors because it can go so wrong so quickly. It takes a keen eye to understand exactly how to implement it with out it becoming tacky or brash.

    Since we have already covered blues last week, I chose an inspiration image that includes a few cheeky pops of blue in case you want to mix the two together in your home space.

    After all, I am not strictly advocating a monochromatic palette, but offering ways to incorporate beautiful color palettes into your home decor - where you take it from there is your journey!

    Library bookcase full of red books with pops of blue

    What you need to remember when using red as an inspiration is that a little goes a long way, so unlike neutrals and blues, you don't need massive texture, material and pattern mixing to make this saucy color stand out.

    Some variation is of course necessary so that the room doesn't look like a flat paint platter, but exercise caution and an editing sense to make sure your room remains beautifully stylish.

    I am choosing to focus on the bright reds from my inspiration image, but remember that red hues and saturation run the gamut as well, from faded dusty rose all the way to burgundy, so play around with tonality and have fun with it.

    Red furniture, lighting and accessories from Lamps Plus

    For me, smaller pieces are better in red. Accessories, lighting or accent seating makes a grand statement in a bright red color without feeling too overwhelming for yourself or your guests.

    This red armchair with railheads is a classic chair that suits almost any style preference. Its fun and flirty without being too overt.

    If committing to a red accent chair is too alarming for you, adding a red velvet ottoman to your space can accomplish the same effect. Add a pair to the end of your coffee table for portable and stylish seating that is full of color.

    Your walls are a great place to inject some red into your home decor. Gallery walls are perfect for having fun with color and scale, from framed family photos to interesting wall art and unique wall mirrors the options are endless for personal expression.

    This intricate red wall mirror is a statement piece that could pop in a gallery or stand alone as an entry way piece.

    Without going too "red light district", red lighting can be interesting and expressive if done properly. A red glass wall sconce like this one has art deco, streamlined edges that make this wall sconce classy and not trashy. A library or den would be perfect for a rich, dim light like this since these room tend to be more intimate and don't need as much task lighting.

    What was your favorite color palette inspiration? What have you seen out in the world that has inspired your home decor?

    Image Source: Allison Rosenberg

March, 2016