Illuminations: Tracking trends in lighting

Illuminations: Tracking trends in lighting

Eurofase offers modern, colored glass lighting options in its Caledonia collection.

There’s lots to love in lighting this season.

The industry is gearing up for Lightovation next month — a show postponed from its usual January timeframe to March 23-26 this year. Many companies participated in Dallas Market Center’s Virtual Lighting Show in January or released product on their own, so there is a bevy of introductions to explore and consider.

Trends in the category have also evolved, and designers Libby Langdon of Libby Langdon Interiors and Shay Geyer of IBB Design shared their observations in a video on DMC’s website.

Langdon outlined the trends she sees in fixtures:

Eco-Style Mix

A curved black frame complements the airy open weave of the mocha-colored rattan shade of Progress Lighting’s Lavelle pendant.

This trend is all about grounding one’s self in nature, Langdon said. Think twine and jute rope in varying thicknesses, bamboo and wood as frame materials, and burlap and other chunky-textured linens being used to soften the visual feel of the fixture and the light itself. They key to this trend is the mix of natural materials on a single fixture.

Colored Glass

Colored glass in lighting has gotten a little bit of a bad rap because it seems dated (like your grandmother’s Tiffany-style lamp). But new uses of color in lighting are modern and well-suited for today’s interiors, Langdon said. “Workhorse finishes like silver, brass, copper and black may feel safe to the consumer, but they lack a little zip and personality that a fixture with color can really inject into a room.” She said to look for fixtures with multiple colored spheres in circular chandeliers and glass shades that are tear-shaped or elongated. Colors can be bright and bold or toned down and subtle. The glass is smooth, not textured or seeded. The show stoppers will be the two- and three-tier chandeliers that make a big statement in entryways and other large spaces.

Oversized fixtures

Although it seems contradictory, an oversized fixture can double as a design solution in a small space, according to Langdon. It draws the eye upward, makes the room feel bigger and adds drama (lower ceilings call for wide, rather than high, fixtures.) Large globes and lanterns come into play here, along with elongated arms or linear designs. They are usually finished in silver or brass so they are not too busy or overwhelming.

Vintage Chic

Speakeasies and eclectic, cool vibes are what come to mind with the Vintage Chic trend, which offers a mix of alloy materials and metals, sometimes combined with frosted glass or updated with leather, black shades or dark-stained wood for a clubby feel, Langdon said. It’s a masculine, tailored look, not to be confused with Industrial Chic, which tends to be heavy on the metals. “It’s a fresh look because of all the materials mixed together,” she said.

White and Gold Combos

White combined with brass or gold and used in spherical or globe shapes brings on the bling yet works in a number of settings.

Geometric Shapes

Honeycomb designs, such as The Hive fixture from Kingshaven, will be big this year, according to designer Libby Langdon.

Geometric shapes in lighting have been popular for a while but they are taking on a new look with clusters of balls, spherical structures and honeycomb designs (expect to see a lot of honeycomb designs, Langdon said.) Cone and cubic shapes are in, as are spiral chandeliers of varying lengths.

Geyer shared what she views as the top trends in portable lighting:

Natural stone

Materials such as malachite and quartz mixed with brass and polished nickel lend a timeless look.

Mixed finishes

Mixed finishes create a collected look, said Geyer. Mixing warm and cool tones is encouraged.

Colored bases

The Fitzwater Table Lamp from Currey & Co. has a faceted aqua glass base reminiscent of an antique blue sapphire ring.

“To see color in lamps is so exciting,” said Geyer. “It gives depth of contrast to a space.” She said she is seeing blues and jewel tones and is getting lots of requests for various shades of pink. She is also seeing more black lamp bases mixed with neutral upholstery.

Texture

Texture layered into a design adds visual interest, particularly in a monochromatic space, Geyer said. Materials like shagreen, stone, cement and petrified wood offer texture. One-of-a-kind, artisan-quality products are particularly desirable.

Functionality

Functionality in portable lighting has come a long way, Geyer said. Features like built-in plug outlets and USB ports, once the province of hospitality products, are now more available for residential settings.

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