Shedding Light on Lamps

Lamps seem simple enough – plug them in, flip them on and you’re good to go! Except they play a bigger role in pulling a room together than you may think. The wrong lamp (or lamps — they work best in pairs!) can disrupt a design both in visual aesthetic and practicality. Here are a few things to consider when purchasing lamps.

How’s The Height? The taller the lamp, the better. Depending on their purpose, you typically want a lamp that is at least 30 inches tall. If you are using a lamp for reading light, the shade should come to just above your shoulder when you are sitting down in a chair. Also remember that if you are shopping for lamps online, carefully read through the dimensions before purchasing. Photos can often make lamps look larger than they are.

And The Shade? The color and fabric of a lamp shade can drastically affect how light is diffused in a room. Think about the day-to-day use of the lamp before settling on a shade. Black shades are cool and edgy but won’t provide as much light as a lighter color. Similarly, burlap shades are very popular right now, but the heavy fabric restricts the light.

What About The Base? Finally, consider what the body of the lamp is made of. Whether it is glass, marble, concrete or ceramic, the base can be an easy way to add color to a room and pull a space together. Glass lamps work best is smaller rooms because of their transparency but be sure they don’t get lost in the background if working in a larger room.


All good designers know the power of a well-placed lamp! This summer, we’ve been hard at work renovating several apartments on Music Row and have had the pleasure of picking out fun, unique lamps for all of them. Have a lamp question that wasn’t answered here? Send it to us on Facebook or Instagram!

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