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Modern Reflections 2014

 

Contemporary Flair 2014

Take a Sneak Peak at our newest Catalog!  Full of great design ideas and ways to quickly update your home, the newest Shades of Light Catalog is about to hit your mailbox. Until you receive your own personal copy, get your design fix here in our catalog preview.

The New Gold is a far cry from the shiny lacquered brass of the 70’s and 80’s so don’t be afraid to experiment with this luxurious metallic. Explore the Golden Touch.

Take a look at how one chair, in multiple colors, can fit so many settings ranged from classic to bohemian. Our color block accent chair is like a chameleon of décor. Watch it adapt in your home. Looking for that perfect chair? Come see what other options shade of light has to offer here.

Maximize a small space by using our tall window lattice mirror or any of these great reflective styles.

Modern Rustic Luxe 2014

Our new catalog cover takes us to an inviting suburban home outside the city of Richmond. Here we created a real life, no nonsense American industrial design aesthetic using natural materials like cowhide, rope, reclaimed wood, burlap and forged iron in simple forms without ornamentation. This simplicity enables the integrity of the raw materials to show, giving us an enduring design that combines function with casual comfort, the perfect mix for family living. Regardless of where your home is, you too can enjoy an urban lodge appeal with the warm industrial feel we call Modern Rustic Luxe. Here’s the recipe.

 

The color palette for the furnishings is natural and neutral. Visual interest is provided by the variety of textures used. The art and accessories follow real life themes featuring airplanes, city maps, architectural drawings, globes, decoys and repurposed vintage objects.

Over the hardwood floor, the room is grounded by a black and ivory Connect the Dots Dhurrie Rug. Flatweave rugs have become very popular floorcoverings for their durable construction, simple geometric patterns, and a huge variety of color options, all at an affordable price. For accent and softness a natural brindle Cowhide Rug adds a luxurious touch in front of the fireplace.  Layering an animal hide, sheepskin or plush rug over a flatweave adds an accent in your seating area and soft texture underfoot.

 

Large Metal Strap Globe Lantern

Large Metal Strap Globe Lantern

Industrial Rope and Iron Sconce

Industrial Rope and Iron Sconce

 

The distinguished lighting fixtures selected for the room combine earthy bronze metal finishes with simple modern shapes for refined style. Our exclusive Metal Strap Globe Lantern, has salvage yard character with an upscale candle cluster within its orbiting metal straps. The Industrial Rope and Iron Sconces featured over the fireplace add a rustic touch with rope details.

 

Keyhole Ring Table Lamp

Keyhole Ring Table Lamp

Wooden Semi-Circle Console

Wooden Semi-Circle Console

The @ Sign

The @ Sign

 

Providing additional lighting, a Keyhole Ring Table Lamp, has sculptural character with its sleek shape available in 5 finishes to suit any décor.  I am sure you noticed the lighted @ symbol; it is made of a distressed galvanized metal, that adds a whimsical note to the familiar technological symbol.  The combination of form and function is apparent in the console featured with reclaimed wood shelving supported by an arc shaped iron base.  With a durable iron base and rustic wood shelves, worries about scratches can be kept to a minimum.

 

Faux Leather and Velvet Wing Chair

Faux Leather and Velvet Wing Chair

Richmond Coordinates Pillow

Richmond Coordinates Pillow

Wood and Iron Nesting Tables

Wood and Iron Nesting Tables

 

A stately modern wing chair, invites you to snuggle in with its vintage velvet upholstery accented in antique brass nailhead trim. The curved outside chair back is covered in dark faux textured leather for easy care living. Our custom oversized lumbar pillow adds a personal touch as it defines the longitude and latitude of Richmond in chic rustic style. A set of nesting tables, made of crosscut tree sections on iron slider bases add an organic flair to the scene, offering portable chair side convenience.

 

Set of 3 Airplane Triptych Oil Painting

Set of 3 Airplane Triptych Oil Painting

Reproduction Richmond Map

Reproduction Richmond Map

 

Selected wall art personalizes the room with an interest in the aeronautical industry from our Airplane Triptych Oil Painting, and a map of our fair city over the mantle. Reproduction City Maps are also available of Chicago, San Francisco, and New York City in addition to Richmond.  The look of Modern Rustic Luxe brings warmth to industrial designs with a contemporary twist on rustic elements for a luxurious casual lifestyle that suits many personalities. Our back cover kitchen setting follows the theme with reclaimed wood and iron elements, but adds a touch of bright color in whimsical red fringe on the repurposed cotton denim flatweave rug.

 

Bayside Retreat 2014

Would you enjoy a waterside getaway right now? In fact, many of us are currently planning our summer pilgrimage to a beach, lake or mountain stream, with great anticipation. We are naturally drawn to water, not only for the warm weather activities that it affords, but there is also a calming, cleansing and restorative affect that being waterside can have on your psyche.  Part of the allure of the water is in the environment that it represents, where we step away from our busy schedules, and bring family and friends together for good times and relaxation.  Our newest catalog cover, Bayside Retreat, invites you into that environment of laid back casual living, with a nod to the nautical elements of rope, weathered wood, and sea glass to bring you into a beach house state of mind. As you will soon see, any room with 4 walls can have a water view. So join us as we explore our Bayside Retreat.

Bayside Retreat

Sunlight filters in to an inviting corner, with warmth and texture from natural materials in a palette of waterside hues.  Grounding the space is a rugged and reversible  Rustic Tweed Hemp flatweave rug. This ropelike material is a textural treat with beautifully heathered colors; available in Rust, Turquoise, or Greige.  Easy care and hardworking floor coverings are an essential element for stress free casual living.

 

Rustic Tweed Hemp Rug

Rustic Tweed Hemp Rug

Industrial Rope and Wood Console

Industrial Rope and Wood Console

Dock like details are apparent in the unique console table selected for the scene, with cleats, rope and weathered wood features. The Industrial Rope and Wood Console contrasts clean modern lines with rustic materials.  Paired with an oversized Wooden Gear Wall Clock, and Nautical Rope and Wood Starfish above, the grouping has a hand crafted sensibility that we crave in our world of mass produced products. Adding further punctuation to that theme is the Industrial Rope and Iron Sconce, with hemp rope suspending a hand worked iron arc in a matt bronze, providing accent lighting to the wall with earthy rustic appeal.

Nautical Rope and Wood Starfish

Nautical Rope and Wood Starfish

Wooden Gear Wall Clock

Wooden Gear Wall Clock

Industrial Rope and Iron Sconce

Industrial Rope and Iron Sconce

 

An often overlooked accessory to home design is lighting fixtures. Too often, lighting selection is based on the minimum necessary illumination for the room. Why not select light fixtures that enhance the personality of the space? Our Driftwood Ball Pendant Light is a perfect example of sidestepping everyday lighting for materials and styling to enhance the mood. Reclaimed driftwood pieces in an open weave sphere provide an organic touch to overhead lighting.

 

Driftwood Ball Pendant Light

Driftwood Ball Pendant Light

Demijohn Table Lamp

Demijohn Table Lamp

 

Any comfortable lounge chair needs good light for reading, offering another opportunity to select from a vast array of style options in table lamps. The Demi John Table Lamp is a perfect addition to this room with its watery turquoise glass and burlap shade. Also known as carboys, demijohn jugs were used to brew wine, beer, etc. These jars are made from recycled glass, in eight fabulous colors, and have the interesting kind of story that our retreat was looking for.  The Colorful Ikat Arm Chair breaks the serene palette with a cheerful burst of whimsy inviting you to sit and get swept away in the pages of a short novel, or chart the course for your next sail. A plump Linen and Burlap pillow, accentuates the spa blue, and a sturdy side table awaits your drink, while you enjoy the view. This Round Fir Wood Table is finished with aged black metal banding and a turned base, for a classic casual feel with easy care surfaces.

 

Colorful Ikat Arm Chair

Colorful Ikat Arm Chair

Linen & Burlap Pillow

Linen & Burlap Pillow

Round Fir Wood Table

Round Fir Wood Table

 

While a seaside getaway would be ideal, you can still enjoy a coastal vibe for laid back living with the right mix of interior finishes, even if you reside within view of a city skyline. Mixing coastal colors of seafoam, beige, coral and blues with nautical elements like rope, weathered wood and sea life can bring the water and its lifestyle to you.

Our back cover design shows the addition of gleaming silver to a two color palette of spa blue and cream for a more modern flair.  Here the Exposed Wood and Burlap Armchair and Ottoman with its exposed tacks and rustic finish is an intentional contrast to the sleek Chrome Circle Side Table and Framed Linen Shade Lantern beside it. Subtle nautical elements are added in the Coral Hand Tufted Rug and Industrial Porthole Mirror, and a touch of nostalgia from the White Silhouette Scroll Console Table with its vintage crackled cream painted finish. Proving that sophistication and informality are not mutually exclusive, our Bayside Retreat catalog covers open a porthole into designs for comfortable barefoot living with rustic chic seaworthy style.

Bayside Retreat 2014

Calm, Cool & Perfected 2014

Take a break from your spring cleaning to enjoy a few moments in the uncluttered, light and airy respite of our latest catalog cover design.  These pieces were selected for their sculptural form and exquisite finishes which create this ethereal mood. Serene circles, spheres and rounded shapes combine with warm painted gold finishes for a high style sophistication that makes a statement. Escape from the ordinary, and step into our inviting scene that is Calm, Cool & Perfected.

 

The walls remain neutral to create a gallery type back drop for each the furnishings selected. The furniture featured has classic lines in new finishes for a transitional appeal that will never go out of style.  Light reflects nicely from the mirrored front of the Silver Mirror Circle Chest (XU14009) featured for its subtle metallic finish.  Our Tufted Linen Arm Chair (XU14010) would go anywhere with its warm neutral fabric and light tapered legs. The diamond button tufting on the back gives that extra boost of timeless styling.

 

Silver Mirror Circle Chest

Silver Mirror Circle Chest

Tufted Linen Arm Chair

Tufted Linen Arm Chair 

The furniture seems to float on a cloud of fluffy natural sheepskin for further layering of neutral texture. The Natural Sheepskin Rug (XN8007) underfoot warms the room and grounds the furniture grouping to invite you in. These rugs look great layered over carpeting or sisal rugs too, adding a focal point with a luxurious touch.  The Zebra Metallic Stenciled Cowhide (XN1116) selected for the back cover has the unexpected addition of soft gold metallic finishing on the stripes for high fashion appeal.

Natural Sheepskin Rug

Natural Sheepskin Rug

Zebra Metallic Stenciled Cowhide Rug

Zebra Metallic Stenciled Cowhide Rug

Selected lighting is both timeless and out of the ordinary, featuring special finishes and grand scale. The single Spa Hues Ceramic Table Lamp (TL12022) can stand alone at 34”H and 19” in diameter, with its graceful curves and quality ceramic base finished in a cool spa blue. Adding heritage and interest to the lamp are the aged gold leaf finial and tapered wood base.  The look of an aged metallic finish carries through to the Rustic Celestial Chandelier (CH13051) overhead. The orbiting shapes of half-moons and stars surrounded by 4 candelabra arms, creates the perfect marriage of classic grace and modern flair.

Spa Hues Ceramic Table Lamp

Spa Hues Ceramic Table Lamp

Rustic Celestial Chandelier

Rustic Celestial Chandelier

The only interruption in the neutral color palette is the Moonlit Lake Watercolor Polyptych (XA14025) canvas panels with saturated hues of blues and greens simulating water and sky. This pop of color punctuates the space, but stays within the ethereal theme, like a memory of a treasured coastal destination.  Accessories such as throw pillows and vases can also be used to add a colorful touch to a predominantly neutral scheme, like the Aqua and Cream Wavy Lattice (XA13067) or the Kaleidoscope in Turquoise and Spa on Beige Linen (XA13059) shown on page 3.

 

Moonlit Lake Watercolor

Moonlit Lake Watercolor

Aqua and Cream Wavy Lattice Pillow

Aqua and Cream Wavy Lattice Pillow

Kaleidoscope in Turquoise and Spa on Beige Linen

Kaleidoscope in Turquoise and Spa on Beige Linen

A simple neutral space can be elevated from ordinary to extraordinary through the edited selection of special furnishings with high style points.  Showcasing a particular design element, like the spheres on our front cover or the golden finishes and geometric shapes on our back cover, will keep the design cohesive and uncluttered.  Try your hand this spring, at creating a garden of refined selections that are Calm, Cool and Perfected.

Mid-Century Loft 2014

The setting for our latest catalog cover is a fabulous urban loft located just minutes from our corporate headquarters. With warm wood floors, painted brick walls and soaring windows, the space is dramatic in both texture and scale. Accepting the challenge of taming the space to function for everyday living, we decided to present two different approaches for style that reflects individual personalities. The furnishings are multi-functional, while color sets the mood, being either playful and bold for high impact and energy, or soft and subtle for quiet luxury. Our front cover has a vintage vibe with an eclectic mix of retro modern furniture, rustic, industrial and traditional themes united by Boho bright colors. In contrast, the back cover design is sleek, modern and serene with a quiet blend of neutrals. In either case, the furniture and accessories are objects that speak to you, eclectic in nature and crossing over styles to reflect a comfortably casual lifestyle with urban panache that we call Mid Century Loft.

Mid-Century Loft

Mid-Century Loft

The Multi Color Tribal Ikat rug featured pulls all the colors in the room into an energized pattern with worldly appeal. The rich red, navy and yellow hues are tempered by a grayed slate blue and earthy sage to warm the space. Modern geometric elements in the rug are repeated overhead in the Metal Strap Drum Pendant, shown here in Tangerine Red, but available in 6 fun colors, including Sunshine Yellow, Snow Day White, Navy Baby, Midnight Black and Hammered Gold.

Multi Color Tribal Ikat Rug

Multi Color Tribal Ikat Rug

Young House Love Metal Strap Drum Pendant

Young House Love Metal Strap Drum Pendant

The Lacquered Tulip Table in glossy red becomes the centerpiece with a sleek modern sculptural quality, and durable fiberglass coating. More subtle side chairs in tufted gray velour play the supporting role with a comfort flex molded seat and back. Reminiscent of Eames classic designs, with tapered modern legs and steel cross supports; this mid-century modern chair is stylish and versatile in 4 color options.

Upholstered Eiffel Chair

Upholstered Eiffel Chair

Lacquered Tulip Table

Lacquered Tulip Table

For much needed storage, serving and display space, we have included two furniture pieces that are very unique in style, but companions in color and personality. The console table features an unfinished natural wood top supported by traditionally styled scrolling legs in a distressed red finish with industrial style nuts and bolts. The 3 tier metal shelving unit on casters is decorative in a distressed red finish and functional with its portability and removable tray shelves. Both pieces combine utility with style in a whimsical way from the addition of playful red finishes.

Red Scroll Legs Console Table

Red Scroll Legs Console Table

Red Industrial 3 Tier Shelf

Red Industrial 3 Tier Shelf

The off white walls in our scene create a backdrop for a gallery style display of collected art and sculpture. Highlighted by a pair of Minimalist 2 light wall Sconces, our Metal Industrial Rivet Mirror adds modern industrial flair for the urban setting.

Minimalist Edison 2-Light Sconce

Minimalist Edison 2-Light Sconce

Metal Industrial Rivet Mirror

Metal Industrial Rivet Mirror

A city map in black and white is displayed beside an architectural pediment that could be a relic from a neighboring building.  Blue print style renderings of French doorways become fresh in shades of indigo and white that plays off the navy blue in the rug. A touch of nature enters the room in a large magnolia bloom sculpted from crinkled tin, and the silhouette of a tree framed in rustic barn wood.

Tree Silhouette Print II

Tree Silhouette Print II

Reproduction Richmond Map

Reproduction Richmond Map

Tree Silhouette Print I

Tree Silhouette Print I

Framed French Door Architectural Blueprint

Framed French Door Architectural Blueprint

Framed French Door Architectural Blueprint

Framed French Door Architectural Blueprint

Large Magnolia Wall Hanging

Large Magnolia Wall Hanging

Architectural Scroll Pediment

Architectural Scroll Pediment

Lighted Ampersand Sign

Lighted Ampersand Sign

A Lighted Ampersand Sign leaning against the mirror sums up the space with its whimsical way of stating the obvious. Showing a casually collected style, we have retro modern furniture, traditional architectural elements, minimalist industrial accents and  vintage treasures all working together through the artful use of color. With a different take on color, the back cover is more refined with minimal pattern in neutral whites and gray.

A transparent ghost chair and clear glass dome let light pass through and reflect off a glossy white desktop. The Intertwined Colors Dhurrie rug in shades of gray introduces the only pattern for a quiet sophisticated air.

Clear Glass Sphere Chandelier

Clear Glass Sphere Chandelier

Modern Cylinder Ceramic Table Lamp

Modern Cylinder Ceramic Table Lamp

Modern X Desk

Modern X Desk

Acrylic Arm Chair

Acrylic Arm Chair

With furnishings you love and color reflecting your mood, you will distinguish your personal style like these two views of a Mid Century Loft.

Mid-Century Loft

Mid-Century Loft

Pampered Luxury 2014

“The weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful…..  let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.” The popular sentiment expressed in these lyrics invites you to forget about the outside world, relax, and take enjoyment from your current surroundings.  Our first catalog cover for 2014 draws you into such a setting, with a cozy layering of sumptuous materials, textures and high styled quiet elegance. Come get snowed in with the indulgent details and creature comforts of Pampered Luxury 2014.

 

Inspired by a winter landscape, the color palette is calm and serene with layers of winter whites, frosty blues, golden straw and sparkling crystal. The fashionable foundation for the room begins with a Quatrefoil Hooked Rug XHO133 in Slate Gray with an intricate golden quatrefoil pattern. Our Ultra Thick and Plush Shag Rug XH13031, in 100% New Zealand wool, is layered over top to delight your toes when you step out of bed and add a lush accent.

Quatrefoil Hooked Rug

Quatrefoil Hooked Rug

Ultra Thick & Plush Finest Wool Shag Rug

Ultra Thick & Plush Finest Wool Shag Rug

 

Taking center stage with heavenly details is a chic Upholstered Burlap Bed XU13070, trimmed in bronze nailheads around its regal shaped frame. A carefully selected assortment of fine pillows adds color, pattern and tactile excitement to the scene.  Accent pillows are one of the easiest ways to upgrade the mood of a room with endless colors, patterns and textures to choose from.

 

Imperial Burlap Headboard and frame

Imperial Burlap Headboard and frame

Quilted Linen Pillow with Inset Border
Quilted Linen Pillow with Inset Border
Embroidered French Trellis Pillow

Embroidered French Trellis Pillow

Linen w/ Cream Damask Applique Lumbar Pillow

Linen w/ Cream Damask Applique Lumbar Pillow

Tibetan Lamb Lumbar Pillow

Tibetan Lamb Lumbar Pillow

Framing the bed in perfectly balanced symmetry is a pair of Mirrored Circlet Cabinets.  Larger and more decorative than a typical nightstand, these chests add fashionable function with ample storage and glamorous details like reflective mirror drawer and door fronts with faceted crystal knobs.  Another well-dressed bedroom essential is the Spa Stripe bench at the foot of the bed providing a pretty perch for pillows and extra bedding.  Its silver leaf champagne finish and antique brass trim and a touch of luxe to contrast the beds rustic burlap footboard.

Mirrored Circle Cabinet

Mirrored Circle Cabinet

Spa Stripe Bench in Champagne finish

Spa Stripe Bench in Champagne finish

 

Sparkling illumination is crystal clear with sleek glass lighting fixtures.  The Silhouette Crystal Urn Table Lamps are a perfect choice for bedside use with a silky rectangular shade that will not obstruct access to the bedside table top. A Sheer Shade Crystal Ball Chandelier floats overhead with ethereal bubbles of glistening glass under a sheer fabric shade to soften the light and eliminate any glare.

Silhouette Crystal Urn Table Lamp

Silhouette Crystal Urn Table Lamp

Sheer Shade Crystal Ball Chandelier

Sheer Shade Crystal Ball Chandelier

Classic architectural renderings of French doorways add a cool blue ground for added depth to complete the inviting scene.

Framed French Door Architectural Blueprint

Framed French Door Architectural Blueprint

Framed French Door Architectural Blueprint

Framed French Door Architectural Blueprint

Remember the excitement of a snow day announcement as a child? Relive that feeling of letting go of the stress and schedule to snuggle in, watch a few movies, enjoy sweet treats or catch up on some reading. This winter scene won’t chill your spirits, but warm your heart.

Treat yourself to a snow day – with or without the white stuff – within a cocoon of Pampered Luxury 2014.

Golden Touch 2013

Our final catalog cover for 2013 brings home a chic collection of four fresh fashion forward trends. You will see gold appearing everywhere, bringing luxurious warmth to shiny metallic finishes, and over scaled geometric patterns putting a modern twist on classic motifs.  Global designs add worldly sophistication, while bold color keeps things from becoming too serious.

“Golden” is a word that brings to mind various themes; of royalty and riches in luxurious palaces, of destiny and excellence in an opportunity or favorite, and of luminance and warmth from shining light or a glowing sun.  Our cover feature displays this layering of themes with rich color, luxurious finishes, well-traveled global motifs and glowing warmth that we like to call a Golden Touch.

Rich teal walls become a receding backdrop for the display of crisp linen and colorful fabrics with highlights from shimmering gold metallic finishes.  This fashionable hue sets a dramatic mood while the large furnishings in the room remain neutral and timeless for more longevity.  The Soft Modern Petite Upholstered Sofa in a creamy cotton / linen blend fabric is versatile for any space, but remains upscale with contrast welt detailing, sculpted scoop arms and plump down blend cushions. With a simple change of accent pillows it could be fitting for any décor with an overall length of 66”.

Tables in the room are a study of global patterns, like Greek Key and Arabesque designs, executed in modern minimalist style and luxurious finishes.  Not your ordinary tables, these functional pieces do their job with sculptural beauty in painted metallic finishes paired with shiny lacquer and glass tops.  Both sleek selections are offered in warm gold or silver to reflect your preferred treasure.


The lighting continues the warm gold metallic hues with a pair of Keyhole Ring Table Lamps and a glamorous Gilt Olive Leaf Chandelier that share classic timeless themes with a modern edge.  The clean lines of the keyhole table lamps are accented with a contemporary rectangular paper shade, while the olive leaf chandelier illuminates a fashionable featherlike bowl.

The shapes from a Tudor style Window Grill appears in over scaled symmetry underfoot grounding the space in a plush textured wool rug with art silk highlights. The softer aqua tones on the floor are repeated in the Wooded Twilight Oil Painting over the sofa with moody tones of misty blue and green.

With the refined neutral palette set, now is the time to add bold pops of color and pattern play for exuberant excitement. Our Designers Favorite Accent Chair hosts a high style leafy print in 8 shades of turquoise, green, coral and brown wrapped in a vibrant painted teal wood frame.  An Orange Ikat with Turquoise Pillow added to the sofa plays off its graphic geometric pillows and brings the unexpected contrast of bold color.

The latest trends are showcased here where timeless neutral themes take center stage while bold fashionable accents add the supporting cast for distinctive style.  Trending patterns like Greek Key, Ikat, Moroccan Trellis and Arabesque collaborate for a sophisticated blend of global influence, bold color, and a modern edge.  Gold patina finishes add warm luxury and over scaled classic designs are fresh and more contemporary.  Give your home the Golden Touch with exceptional designs for living from Shades of Light.

 

 

Un-Chandeliers

For the times you want a cleaner simpler less fussy look, the un-chandelier comes to the rescue. No busy arms or too many tiny lampshades! Clear glass bowls, lattice grill shades, crystal curtains, metal geometric combinations, baskets, repurposed finds, or even wood spheres can form the shapes of these un-chandeliers to take the place of the traditional chandelier in today’s homes. in the kitchen, the dining room, the entry foyer, the master bathroom, and even bedrooms! This fresh approach works with today’s simplified lifestyle and is gaining in momentum! 

Basket

Crystal

Repurposed

Lattice

Wood

Geometric

Clear Glass

For more looks in the un-chandelier, click here!

Neo-Geometry Simplified

How to Decorate with Geometrics

When asked to write a story for our blog about the strong, dynamic neo-geometric trend we see all around us I thought, “Great this will be fun.”  -And since one of the nice things about working at Shades of Light is our sense of teamwork, I thought I would reach out to a few of my co-workers and get their perspectives. This would make the task both fun and easy, what could be wrong with that? 

Well, after about fifteen minutes of being educated about an “amorphous art movement of the late 20th and early 21st century” that borrowed from Pop Art, Minimal and Conceptual Art and how it was closely tied to certain social theories”, my mind sort of went blank. The overwhelming thought that kept surfacing to the top of my consciousness was, “You mean it is not just about the dramatic shapes, the bold clean lines and the way that these new Geometric patterns blend in so nicely with lifestyles that range from minimalism to updated traditional? It’s not just about the really great, fresh looking geometric inspired home dĂ©cor products I see coming in here every day?” Well, I’m sorry art aficionados but the neo-geometric I’m going to talk about here is that of the home dĂ©cor variety. Our neo-geometric story is about the explosion of dynamic geometric products that are available to us in interior design right now. Innovative designers are taking familiar geometric patterns adding clever twists and incorporating these geometric designs in fresh and exciting new ways. This trend is all about the dramatic shapes and bold patterns! 

If you would like to take a peek at one of the strongest fashion trends for the home and if you are looking for some tips on incorporating these fabulous geometric home décor pieces into your home read on because my intention is to keep this easy, fun and practical.  

First and foremost, fear not! It’s simple geometry! I’m going to state the obvious here: this trend revolves around familiar geometric shapes: lines, prisms, concentric circles, cubes, bold chain and lattice patterns, triangles, honeycomb, and fretwork designs. Sometimes the scale of neo-geometric patterns can be bold and dramatic but they are still shapes that we are all quite familiar with. This familiarity provides us with a certain comfort level when using geometric shapes. Here are some tips on working with these versatile geometric patterns. (If in the past you have mixed various floral patterns together in a project, you probably already know all you need to know and this will largely be a refresher.)

1) Do you want to start slowly, just sort of tip-toe into this trend and see if it suits you? Well if so, then start with a Geometric rug. Geometric patterns tend to appear less prominent when used as flooring. Perhaps, it is because we are so accustomed to seeing geometric patterns in tile, brick walk ways as well as wood and marble flooring, that they seem so very natural. Area rugs are a great way to start out! There are so many great looking rugs that exemplify the neo-geometric trend.

2) Okay, ready to kick it up a notch?  Let’s layer in other geometric patterns. These additions will add more depth, interest and sophistication to your room. You could layer in furniture, mirrors, lighting, or decorative pillows. The neo-geometric look is well represented in all these products. So, let’s add some more geometric patterns to the mix! The trick is making sure the scale or size of the patterns complements each other.  How do you do this?  Very roughly group your patterns into small, medium, and large categories.  Then, ask yourself how much contrast is there between the sizes of your patterns? When you are layering patterns, you want some of each grouping. Oddly enough, extreme contrasts tend to blend well together. Therefore, use your small patterns to add separation from your large and medium scale patterns if things start getting too busy for your taste. In much the same way, you can use soft curvy geometric patterns like circles, arches and waves to soften up a room that is starting to get too rigid and hard due to the abundance of sharp geometric patterns.

3) Do you want to go extreme without crashing? Control your super powers! Color and pattern are powerful tools. If you want to layer lots of geometric patterns into your room, you may want to consider taking it easy on the use of color.  When using a high number of patterns together in one room, think about keeping colors close to each other on the color wheel and limiting the color hues to a narrow range to keep spaces with complicated patterns in check. On the other hand, if you like color and you want a strong pop of color in your space consider keeping the number of patterns you use down a little.

4) Just do it!  Take a look at these neo-geometric lighting products, copy and paste a few into your program of choice, add wall decor, pillows, and accent furniture and see how you can manipulate your virtual room by adding or subtracting different elements as described above.

Mod Eastern 2013

As the summer season fades, our more carefree unstructured schedules vanish into a season of back to school, getting organized and taking on our fall projects. Part of this process for me, includes critiquing my home interiors for updates and improvements that will enhance how we live. I will try to repurpose or replace worn, faded or outdated pieces with fresh color and up to date style to carry us into the new season. Our catalog cover, Mod Eastern, features a welcoming sitting area with inspiring style that combines chic Eastern motifs with clean contemporary lines. Classic prep meets zesty modern in rich indigo blue energized by electric lime. Bamboo, trellis patterns and a peacock pillow infuse an appealing exotic garden theme for a fresh new look. Take inspiration for your fall facelift from the timeless themes made modern and relevant in Mod Eastern style.

Oversized Moroccan Tile Hand Tufted Rug

Oversized Moroccan Tile Hand Tufted Rug

Curved Arm Upholstered Lounge Chair

Curved Arm Upholstered Lounge Chair

Lacquered Wood Stool or Side Table

Lacquered Wood Stool or Side Table

Grounding the room in bold graphic style is our Oversized Moroccan Tile Hand Tufted Rug in Navy and Cream. The large geometric pattern on a deep sea of navy blue provides a crisp contrast to the cream cotton-linen blend upholstery on our Curved Arm Upholstered Lounge Chair. Beckoning you to come, sit and enjoy the view, this comfortable chair is made in the USA and features streamlined sleek arms and antique brass nail head trim. Nestled beside the chair is our Simple and Classy Lacquered Wood Side Table in spring Green. Available in 7 color options, this versatile table is sturdy enough to use as a stool when company comes, and adds a pop of color with sculptural style.

Any comfortable seating area requires good lighting for reading and conversation. The designer lamp selected, Modern Glamour Mary McDonald table lamp in Navy, provides good light and glamorous details. Rich gold natural brass trim on the base is repeated inside the glossy custom color drum shade.

Modern Glamour Mary McDonald Table Lamp

Modern Glamour Mary McDonald Table Lamp

Bamboo Tower Chandelier

Bamboo Tower Chandelier

Bamboo Stick Sconce

Bamboo Stick Sconce

 

Overall illumination and ambiance is provided by our exclusive Bamboo Tower Chandelier and coordinating Bamboo Stick Sconce in White. Available in several hot fashion colors, the traditional exotic bamboo theme becomes modern again with the infusion of bold color. We selected electric lime Drum Chandelier Shades LS13071, for this shot but the Seagrass Chandelier Shades LS08026A are equally stunning for a more coastal flair. You can totally customize your look with all the color options available.

Accessories and accent pieces provide the jewelry that completes the look in any room. A Chinese Chippendale Mirror in an updated glossy blue finish becomes a focal point statement piece with chinoiserie detailing and its garden pagoda design. The intricate detailing of the mirror is balanced by a simple open weave drum shaped demilune table below. The Demilune Drum Studded Console Table adds a patina gold finish with unique stud detailing but does not become too heavy with its beveled glass top. A posh Peacock Accent Pillow pulls all the colors together with a nod to the exotic Eastern theme completing the fashionable space.

Chinese Chippendale Mirror

Chinese Chippendale Mirror

Demilune Drum Studded Console

Demilune Drum Studded Console

Peacock Pillow

Peacock Pillow

 

An inviting haven can be created in your home this season by establishing an up to date color palette that you will enjoy living in and removing or upgrading items that don’t add to that vision.  I am reminded of an advertising campaign from the early eighties featuring a woman, with too much on her plate, that was stressed out by the obligations of her job and family as she would utter the words  “Calgon take me away!”. In the next scene we find her enjoying a relaxing Calgon bubble bath ­– a quiet oasis removed from the chaotic scenario. Create your own “Calgon escape” before your schedule becomes any more packed this season. Plan now, to create a room that whisks you away from chaos and rejuvenates your senses like the luxurious exotic mood of our Mod Eastern 2013 cover.

 

Weathered Woods

 

“Respected, mature, confident, having gracefully aged to the point where they make everyone around feel comfortable and at ease.”  Are we describing a beloved Hollywood icon or admired elder statesman?  No, we are talking about “weathered woods,” a mainstay in many of today’s home decor styles.  Weathered woods with reflections of a past life (even if they aren’t necessarily old) are “worn” wood gems, treasured for their complex finishes and their solid wood construction. This “lighter” look is replacing dark-stained traditional designs:

Wood Turned Baluster Console Table

Wood Turned Baluster Console Table

Three Ring Pendant Light

Three Ring Pendant Light 

Pickled Wood Round Keystone Mirror

Pickled Wood Round Keystone Mirror

Chicken Wire Basket Ceiling Light

Chicken Wire Basket Ceiling Light

Remarkably adaptable, these aged woods are a natural choice for coastal homes and updated lodge looks. However, these softly-weathered woods are bursting into urban and suburban decors, since they effortless blend with virtually any color scheme, and work well with natural and minimalist decors as well. The raw yet sophisticated look of weathered wood creates a nice contrast for today’s tile floors and upholstered furniture. From console tables to sconces, table lamps and chandeliers, weathered wood accents continue to increase in popularity.  The relaxed quality of weathered woods adds familiar warmth, distinctive character and fit quite comfortably into rooms that otherwise might appear stale or stark. A chandelier in a weathered wood look can be a great choice for a great room or 2 story foyer light.

Wood Rings Orbit Chandelier

Wood Rings Orbit Chandelier

Double Sphere Wire Chandelier

Double Sphere Wire Chandelier

Wooden Wine Barrel Stave Chandelier

Wooden Wine Barrel Stave Chandelier

Whether your style is industrial, coastal or vintage shabby, weathered woods give interiors depth and interest. Add a few crystals or other luxurious elements and these weathered woods evolve into the chic Rustic Luxe look. Weathered woods are a joy to work with, since they can be added to existing decors and their finish ensures that they will look like time-honored favorites from day one, as these woods blend seamlessly into existing decors.  Here is a collection of some of our favorite weathered woods, view these for inspiration.

See more Weathered Wood Looks Here!

 

Simple Luxuries 2013

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times”… it is the season of summer; it is a time of fun and frolic followed by a need for respite. It is the season for Shades of Light. Sorry, Mr. Dickens (and literature lovers everywhere) but that’s how I feel about the summer. An absolute love of the outdoor recreational opportunities somehow makes me relish the comforts of home all the more.

Our newest catalog cover, Simply Luxuries offers you relief from the summer heat and a host of home comforts.  Enjoy a moment of relaxation as you view our latest catalog cover of tranquil gray tones against clean whites. The inviting look is crisp, uncluttered and modern, with luxurious details providing interest and comfort. When the weather outside is steamy, your oasis can be found in these muted hues and simple modern silhouettes with a touch of luxe. We have set the scene for an intimate dinner party to share some quality time in the theme of our Simple Luxuries cover.

The dining room featured is awash in neutral tones of gray to create a nice backdrop for the crisp contrast of white.  Our Wood Dining Table, crafted from oak, is finished in white paint with just enough transparency to allow the beauty of the wood grain to come through. This sleek table design is well sized with the option of removing an 18” leaf when you only need to seat four. Tufted back Dining Chairs invite you to linger at the table a bit longer and enjoy the comfort of the upholstery. The tufting detail and large silver ring on the chair back give a luxurious touch that makes these chairs special.

Wood Dining Table

Wood Dining Table

Tufted back Dining Chair w/Silver Ring

Tufted back Dining Chair w/Silver Ring

Great lighting in a room can make a big difference in the way we look and feel.  A pair of simple Glass Jug Lanterns gives overall illumination and creates a focal point over the table, while Swag Sconces flanking the fireplace provide accent mood lighting. It is important to surround yourself with pieces that put you and your guests in your best light.

Glass Jug Lantern

Glass Jug Lantern

Swag Sconce

Swag Sconce

Also key to a room’s success is the flooring that grounds the space.  Our Zen Ripples Hand Tufted Rug is an example of art underfoot, with its organic pattern resembling reflections in water.  The soft tufted wool is highlighted with shiny viscose threads that catch the light for added elegance.

Zen Ripples Hand Tufted Rug

Zen Ripples Hand Tufted Rug

A Decorative Ceramic Deer Head wall hanging makes a suitable conversation piece as a modern twist on a traditional classic motif.  The open holes allow you to add antlers comprised of twigs, flowers or lighted branches to reflect your own personality.  To complete the harmonious blend, a Lacquered Modern Petal Mirror hangs over the fireplace with a stylized flower design frame in a contemporary finish.

Decorative Ceramic Wall Deer Head

Decorative Ceramic Wall Deer Head

Lacquer Modern Petal Mirror

Lacquer Modern Petal Mirror

Take a break from the intensity of summer heat, vibrant colors and noisy patterns, to envelope yourself in Simple Luxuries. This tranquil retreat will pamper you in clean modern style with elegant textures and details to delight your senses. Perhaps, enough to have you say,” “It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.”

Hamptons Hideaway 2013

For most of us, Memorial Day weekend at the end of May signals the unofficial start to our summertime activities.  Enjoying the outdoors, near water if at all possible, is a big part of this summertime kickoff. Meals and get-togethers with friends and family move us out onto porches, patios and pool sides and talk of summer getaways will fill the air.  One iconic vacation spot is the group of towns, hamlets and villages on the south fork of Long Island, NY referred to as “The Hamptons.” Containing one of the oldest towns in America, East Hampton was established in 1648 with humble beginnings in farming and fishing but evolved into a fashionable retreat from the busy city. The name brings to mind images of luxurious traditional estates with well-manicured grounds inviting you outdoors to enjoy lawn games, a swing in a hammock or a dip in the ocean. Our catalog cover titled Hamptons Hideaway invites you to enjoy the chic style and breezy feel of this beloved vacation spot of celebrity status.

Hamptons Hideaway 2013

A color palette of marine blues with natural elements of wood, linen and rope sets the scene for relaxation with a coastal flair. A pair of Suzani armchairs in beautiful shades of navy, turquoise and sea foam awaits you.  The sturdy wood frame features dimensional embroidered upholstery in the popular Suzani style, complemented by a fine leather seat for years of durability. Luxurious details include nailhead trim, leather upholstered armrests, and a custom color finish. This chair is also available in Turquoise with Orange and Yellow with Putty. Our exclusive designed Chippendale Trellis Dhurrie rug lays underneath with saturated color and crisp geometric style.

Suzani Arm Chair

Suzani Arm Chair

Chippendale Trellis Dhurrie

Chippendale Trellis Dhurrie

The rug reflects casual style for today’s interiors, with the added bonus of being reversible for long lasting wear. Colors available include Shrimp, Kelly Green, Spa Blue and the Mediterranean Blue shown. The perfect side table sits within arm’s reach to catch a book or serve a refreshing drink. The compact Lacquered Drink Tray Table in high gloss turquoise lacquer has a removable tray top for your convenience.

Lacquered Drink Tray Table

Lacquered Drink Tray Table

Seaglass Curtain Ceiling Light

Seaglass Curtain Ceiling Light

 

Overhead you will find a canopy of seaglass strands dripping from a pair of pendant lights. Our Seaglass Curtain Ceiling Light can be mounted at different heights for a variety of effects. You can almost feel the breeze whispering through the serene textured glass as your mind drifts to a peaceful day of beachcombing.

Standing as a contrasting counterpoint to the blue hues in the scene is a Wood Drawer Chest with Rattan Accents. Offering clean style for storage and serving, this chest features a fine rattan weave panel inset on top, sides and drawer fronts accented with bronze ring drawer pulls. Also available in a rich Walnut finish with natural rattan, this versatile piece could move throughout the house from the foyer, to the living or dining rooms, or even a bedroom.

 

Wood Drawer Chest with Rattan Accents

Wood Drawer Chest with Rattan Accents

Modern Buoy Glass Table Lamp

Modern Buoy Glass Table Lamp

 

Perched on top of the chest you find our Modern Buoy Glass Table Lamp with a coastal chic vibe. A vintage green glass buoy encased in rope netting rests on an acrylic base with a modern cylinder burlap shade. The look is clean and up to date nautical without being overdone.

Even if our summer plans do not include a visit to the Hamptons, we can still enjoy the state of mind that it suggests, and create our own oasis at home. We all long for a relaxing retreat to renew the spirit and refresh the mind. Visit your “Hamptons Hideaway” as you enjoy the simple pleasures of time spent taking in this season.

Devine Wood Ball Chandelier

Outdoor Lighting

Outdoor house lights should be compatible with the look and lines of your house. Wall lights beside doors should be approximately 1/5 the height and width of the doorway, including trim. (For example a 100″ high by 60″ wide entrance would require an 20″ high x 12″ wide fixture.) Place your electrical box for your exterior light so that the top of the fixture is 20% lower than the top of the molding. Allow for the side door moldings also.

Modern Shelf Outdoor Light

Modern Shelf Outdoor Light

 

Open bottom fixtures are better for down lighting an area, and glass-topped lanterns are the better choice for accenting architectural elements above and around the door. Fixtures with several low wattage candle bulbs are superior to those with a single bulb since they provide more light with less glare. Wall-mounted fixtures with arms or brackets can fit into tighter spots in areas between moldings. If there is no room beside the door, use one light above the door.

Georgian Garage Door Outdoor Light

Georgian Garage Door Outdoor Light

Post lights should be as large or larger than the lights at your front door.

Richmond Outdoor Post Light

Richmond Outdoor Post Light

Outdoor hanging lanterns are another solution when space on the sides of doors is not available or you have a high enough porch ceiling. Occasionally you will need to add wires to secure these from swinging when in highly exposed open porch areas.

Exterior Charleston Lantern

Exterior Charleston Lantern

And don’t forget about landscape lighting to provide drama, interest and extra security for your home! Use your landscape lighting to add focal points, draw the eye around the yard, and emphasize architectural elements of your home’s façade.

Spring Garden 2013

Aaaahhh…..SPRING, a season of renewal, fresh energy and hope. We take our inspiration from nature’s ability to come back from its winter season of dormancy with new growth and vitality.  As we enjoy the beauty of fresh spring green leaves budding on the trees, early blooming flowers pushing up from under the earth, and milder days that invite us outside to watch the transformation taking place, our homes can take on new life as well.  Our Spring Garden cover invites you to enjoy feathering your nest with renewed energy, fresh ideas and inspired style.

Spring Garden 2013

The color palette for the Spring Garden cover is created with a nod to the season. Neutral, natural tones of beige linen, grasscloth, and warm woods are punctuated with cheerful spring green and inviting aquamarine. Our Chain Link Dhurrie Rug with its interlocking diamond pattern anchors the room in a pool of aqua from which the other elements grow.  Made from 100% wool, and reversible for longevity, this exclusive design brings a fresh geometric sophistication. We offer this design in 3 other inviting hues including Salmon Orange, Spring Green and Yellow Chiffon.

Chain Link Dhurrie

Inviting you to come, sit a spell, and ponder your next project or just gaze out the window is our Carved Wood Upholstered Loveseat. In classic European style the finish is a painted white with slightly worn edges for a vintage appeal. The neutral hemp tone linen fabric is accented with a pair of pop color empire pillows. The X Foot Stool in front serves to hold a tray for refreshments or provide extra seating when guests join you.

Carved Wood Upholstered Loveseat

Carved Wood Upholstered Loveseat

The X Footstool

The X Footstool

Bringing the garden inside is the Terrace Ironwork Console with a distressed oak wood top atop an iron base with a distressed cream finish. Reminiscent of an antique relic garden gate or railing, this versatile piece of furniture has many possibilities as an accent table for your entry, dining sideboard or bedroom accent. We selected a unique mirror above to reflect a view of timeless style. The frame of intricately carved mahogany is inset with burlap for rustic appeal and then finished in a neutral gray for an updated vintage appeal.

Terrace Ironwork Console

Terrace Ironwork Console

Gray Linen Texture Mirror

Gray Linen Texture Mirror

The essence of budding spring leaves appearing amongst the weathered winter branches is our exclusive Pop Modern Ceramic Table Lamp. Bringing welcome color with a high gloss lined drum shade; this lamp is available in 10 designer color combinations.

Pop Color Modern Ceramic Table Lamp

Pop Color Modern Ceramic Table Lamp

A Wooden Wine Barrel Stave Chandelier tops off the room with the appeal of a repurposed vineyard find. The bent wood frame is accented with bronze metal and illuminates the space with 6 candelabra bulbs.

Wooden Wine Barrel Stave Chandelier

Wooden Wine Barrel Stave Chandelier

Let nature inspire you this season to grow, evolve and breathe new life into your surroundings.  Like the birds preparing their nests, we can create spaces that will nurture and bring pleasure in the warmer months ahead.  Distinguish your lifestyle while incorporating time tested classics in fresh new ways with cues from the renewing cycles of the natural world.

Spring Garden 2013

Spring Garden 2013

Classic Elegance 2013

Our cover look entitled “Classic Elegance 2013” illustrates a growing design trend: a look that combines sophistication with rustic warmth.  Natural finishes that have a comfortable time worn appeal are occasionally punctuated with subtle luxurious accents like the sparkle of crystals, crisp linen, nail head accents and vintage mercury glass.  The soothing color palette combines textured neutrals with calming shades of a pale blue sky. Furnishings are rich in character, presented in carved woods that evoke a sense of history, while up to date accents keep the look relevant for today.

Classic Elegance 2013

Classic Elegance 2013

 

The French Carved 2 Drawer Chest featured is crafted in solid mahogany with darkened brass hardware and feet. This chest offers both style and storage that could be at home in a hallway, living room or bedroom setting.  Our Keyhole Mirror above hosts a pair of built in sconces. This focal point piece blends clean lines and a traditional motif with the added bonus of stylish wall lighting.

French Carved Front 2 Drawer Chest

French Carved Front 2 Drawer Chest

Keyhole Mirror with Sconces

Keyhole Mirror with Sconces

Flanking the chest on either side, you find a pair of  X base footstools, upholstered in an elegant brush script fabric that is accented with nail head trim. A pair of these versatile stools can be used in place of a cocktial table for a softer look, as extra seating to pull up for guests, or a place to rest pillows and bedding at the foot of a bed. Bringing pretty to practical, you will find 5 color options to fit in any room. See our website for white

Cream with script

Cream with script

Chocolate

Chocolate

Ivory

Ivory

Natural Burlap

Natural Burlap

Shedding a welcoming glow in the room is our exclusive Quatrefoil Shaded Chandelier. A cloverleaf shape shade transforms a chic distressed cream chandelier with crystal droplets. 

Quatrefoil Shaded Chandelier

Quatrefoil Shaded Chandelier

The rugs below bring layers of sophistication to the design with a natural albino cowhide over a Bohemian pattern Dhurrie rug. Flat weave dhurrie rugs are easy to live with and easy to afford, making them a good choice for any room.  Layer a hide on top for a touch of luxe appeal.

Quatrefoil Shaded Chandelier

Albino Cow Hide

Bohemian Market Dhurrie Rug

Bohemian Market Dhurrie Rug

Accessories make the final style statement in any room.  The set of botanical prints selected here are traditional black and white sketches that take on a new mood when mounted on a burlap mat with distressed black frames. I particularly like to use sets of art  to create a unified look in hallways and stairwells or across a large wall over a sofa or bed.  The rustic painted ladder that leans to  the side of our  cover adds a touch of whimsy that keeps the room from becoming too formal. Decorative ladders  can add style, while displaying  blankets, magazines, towels, belts, scarfs, heels, etc.

Set of 8 Framed Burlap and Botanical Prints

Set of 8 Framed Burlap and Botanical Prints

Antiqued Leaning Ladder

Antiqued Leaning Ladder

The look of Classic Elegance reflects timeless elements presented in fresh ways. Heirloom pieces are restyled to create a comfortable retreat with luxurious style. Escape into a style that promotes relaxation; surround yourself with soothing neutrals and rich textures of classic elegance and distinguish your lifestyle.

Classic Elegance

Classic Elegance

City Loft 2013

Happy New Year to you from Shades of Light! As we transition our calendar to a new year, our thoughts often turn to changes we can make to improve the quality and enjoyment of our lives. We clean out closets, organize work spaces and evaluate our surroundings. After I take down the Christmas decorations, I enjoy the calm, less cluttered feeling it brings. I find myself going through the rooms of my home editing accessories, removing tired pieces and rejuvenating with a new pair of throw pillows or a lamp shade. This is a refreshing process that energizes me with a positive outlook for the year ahead. For our first cover design in 2013, we have highlighted a style that exemplifies this fresh new start with the trending title of City Loft.

City Loft

The look is clean and uncluttered, with modern elements grounded by vintage finds. Characterized by geometric designs, raw materials, earthy metals and sleek industrial motifs, this style is rooted in urban living, but has spread to living rooms in the suburbs as well. Our City Loft cover design allows you to feel the daylight entering the room through a large cityscape window to warm an interior filled with casual textures and modern style.

The wood floor and brick walls of our loft setting blend naturally with the bronze and copper metal fixtures featured in the room. Our exclusive Steam Punk Lanterns float overhead with a sculptural quality created by geometric circle straps of darkened copper that wrap a hand blown glass globe.

Steam Punk Indoor and Outdoor Hanging Lantern

Steam Punk Indoor and Outdoor Hanging Lantern

To provide good task lighting for reading, our Superior Bronze Gallery Floor lamp is standing at the bedside. With its clean lines, weighted base and adjustable height, it performs an important function with style.

Superior Bronze Gallery Pharmacy Floor Lamp

Superior Bronze Gallery Pharmacy Floor Lamp               

18"x18" Quatrefoil Trellis Down Filled Pillow 4 colors

18″x18″ Quatrefoil Trellis Down Filled Pillow 4 colors

The tailored bed linens are accented with our Quatrefoil Trellis Down filled Pillows, embroidered on Charcoal Gray cotton in a trendy quatrefoil pattern for interest and texture.  Vintage city maps on canvas further bring home the urban theme adding texture to the layering of natural materials.

Vintage Style Chicago Map Wall Art

Vintage Style Chicago Map Wall Art

Vintage Style New York Map Wall Art

Vintage Style New York Map Wall Art

We have highlighted the wall art with our Cone Pivot Wall Lamp. This versatile light fixture can be used over a bed, sink, or shelving to illuminate any wall. The sleek metal cone shade will direct the light just where you want it.

Cone Pivot Shade Wall Lamp

Cone Pivot Shade Wall Lamp

Standing below is our Bronze Metal Paw Foot Table, providing a perch for reading material, and a striking Pop Modern Ceramic Lamp in Oxblood Red sporting a White shade with Silver lining. The glossy smooth lines and sleek acrylic base of this lamp create an edgy contrast to the surrounding raw industrial finishes.  This red accent color introduced here is repeated in the wool flat weave rug grounding the room.

Bronze Paw Foot Table

Bronze Paw Foot Table

Pop Color Modern Ceramic Table Lamp

Pop Color Modern Ceramic Table Lamp

Our Regatta Dhurrie Rug features bold wide stripes in an affordable floor covering that is reversible for longer wear. We have layered a Metallic Cowhide over the dhurrie, adding a touch of rustic luxury, which is soft underfoot at the bedside. Our Lounging Dog Statue seems to enjoy the resting spot as well as the view.

Regatta Dhurrie Rug

Regatta Dhurrie Rug

Metallic Cowhide Rug

Metallic Cowhide Rug

Lounging Dog Statue with silver accents

Lounging Dog Statue with silver accents

Let this City Loft cover be your inspiration to create a space in your home that celebrates the simplicity of form with function, and the contrast of sleek modern against raw vintage materials. Our best wishes to you for a fresh start to the new year, as we strive to continue providing you with unique products to distinguish your lifestyle.

City Loft 2013

 

 

Exotic Infusions 2012

A classic look never goes out of style. One of my favorites is Chinoiserie Chic, a Chinese art influence mixed with classic European style. In other words an “infusion” of exotic that takes traditional to another level. I wanted to create this chic look with a modern update of crisp pops of color for our latest cover look.

 

I selected red as my accent color to pop against cool aqua for a fresh contrast. Golden yellow is the third color that completes the palette. The splashes of red that travel from the shades on the wall sconces to the red coral beads in the chandelier to the red in the fun Suzani print chairs invoke that classic Chinoiserie appeal.

Mary McDonald Hollywood Glam Sconce

Mary McDonald Hollywood Glam Sconce

Semiprecious Beaded Basket Chandelier

Semiprecious Beaded Basket Chandelier

Louis Regency Arm Chair

Louis Regency Arm Chair

 

Mixing the reds with cool aqua in the wall color as well as the frame and fabric on the classic Louis Regency chair creates a fresh contrast that keep the look light.  The whimsical Suzani print is a fresh spin on the traditional pattern and makes the room fun and youthful.

To finish the color palette, the warm Golden yellows in the rug and the brass sconces make the room glow with warm sunshine hues.

Grecian Maze Dhurrie Rug

Grecian Maze Dhurrie Rug

To keep the look light and fresh I chose furniture that had a lighter finish while still embracing traditional Chinoiserie inspired lines.

Eastern Inspired Carved Base Dining Table

Eastern Inspired Carved Base Dining Table

Turned Leg Storage Console Table

Turned Leg Storage Console Table

The key to making the classic Chinoiserie style Chic is updating it with today’s fresher color palette, keeping the look lighter with lighter tones of wood, and recreating classic motifs like Greek Key and Suzani prints in a cleaner and more youthful way.

Let our latest cover look inspire you to infuse your home with some Exotic flair, mixing classic traditional with Asian Infusion for the Chinoiserie Chic effect that designers are talking about.

Modern Moroccan 2012

How do you jazz up your beloved neutral palette? Answer: with a bit of color and some ethnic flair! Our latest catalog cover look takes “neutrals” which if left alone can border on boring and lifts them up into a lovely and rich space.  Neutrals are the perfect restful backdrop to a vibrant room,  the key is to mix in pops of color and rich and reflective metallic tones to keep the space from being boring.  For this room I decided to combine the ever popular neutral “gray” with a lively and warm yellow and a twist of the increasingly popular Moroccan trend. The final look was breath taking, inviting and still classic.


I started with a deep hue of warm gray for the walls and a rich walnut finish flooring. To keep these dark tones from closing in the room, my answer was mirrors. I chose our Architectural Wooden Leaner Mirror to keep the warmth in the room. The warm and worn tones of the rich wood instantly opened up the room! The authentic architectural elements they add to the space make the room feel like it has age and a “time loved” elegance.

Architectural Wooden Leaner Mirror

Then I added color and pattern. In order to keep the color and pattern from overwhelming the space I kept all the hues of yellow in the same range and all the patterns in a simple geometric. Our Curved Back Wooden Frame Arm Chair upholstered in cream linen on the front and a yellow lattice pattern on the back is framed in a yellow finished hardwood to give a modern edge to this classic chair. Our matching Half Round Nailhead Accent Ottoman adds function and a bit of casual coziness to keep the room from feeling too stiff.

Half Round Nailhead Accent Ottoman

 

Our fabulous Ironwork Trellis Dhurrie Rug layered with our Gray Cowhide Rug combine our color palette together and create a rich layered look.

 

Gray Cowhide Rug

Ironwork Trellis Dhurrie Rug

Ironwork Trellis Dhurrie Rug

 

Now it was time to turn up the volume, so in came the shiny metallic Moroccan inspired pieces such as our Hammered Metal Moroccan Hourglass Side Table , Pierced Moroccan Lantern , Pierced Metal Moroccan Table Lamp and our Hammered Metal Pendant. All of these shiny polished metals instantly gave the room a jewel-like glisten and added an ethnic flair.

Hammered Metal Moroccan Hourglass Side Table

Pierced Moroccan Lantern

Pierced Metal Moroccan Table Lamp

Hammered Metal Pendant

The keys to keeping your neutral room far from the boring zone is to add color, pattern, authentic architectural elements and some “jewels” like metallics or crystal.
I hope our latest cover look “Modern Moroccan” inspires you to jazz up your neutral color palette and be confident with color, layering looks, and adding some world traveled appeal like this popular Moroccan style.

Industrial Chic 2012

As we all know, industrial chic is all the rage. You see it everywhere, in every room, and mixed with every style. Why has this trend become so universally popular? Well that is simple, because it is relaxed, easy and unintimidating. So how do you make your space stand out among the rest while still embracing this trendy style?  As you will see, the answer is with unique and unexpected details that add a twist of “you”.

Here at Shades of Light we make it easy for you to find unique pieces that will make your space “SING” by designing products that embrace the authenticity and spirit of trends such as Industrial Chic. With that point of view in mind I designed our latest cover “Industrial Chic”.

I wanted to show how to create that popular industrial chic kitchen, without having it look cold and sterile. Since the kitchen is the hub of the home I wanted the look to feel warm, cozy, and inviting while still saying, “I’m unique and stylish”. There is no better way to add that warm, cozy feel to a space then through lighting. Lighting is one of the most important parts of designing a home, yet it is so often undervalued in the home building process.

I created warmth and drama in our “Industrial Chic” kitchen scene by layering the lighting. Starting of course with the work space task lighting, I choose two lanterns with a rusty texture to create that “salvaged” appeal. The lanterns provide lots of light above the rustic butcher block island. The lanterns and the butcher block also bring a bit of eclectic style to the look with softer feminine lines showing that industrial chic doesn’t have to be masculine and hard. You don’t have to have stainless steel counter tops and shiny metal finishes.  The look can be more about salvaged textures and exposed bulbs and hardware then looking like the back of your favorite restaurant.

Still working on layering the light, having provided enough lighting for a functional kitchen while still keeping it cozy and inviting; I now chose our popular “Industrial Chic Work Light Sconces” to flank the wall shelving. Whether your kitchen is open and lofty like our cover shot or you have tons of cabinet space, the layers of lighting around or under your storage area or cabinets are important in starting to create that layered, dramatic look. Having your lighting all from only one large source in the kitchen (or any other room) will make your space look flat and cold. This layer also provides more concentrated task lighting in the perimeter areas of your kitchen. I added the warm glow of our vintage style “Edison” bulbs to the sconces to really bring home that “industrial chic” appeal. You can also shop our website for the latest in LED under-cabinet lighting, where we hand-selected only the best LED lighting that will not look blue and are made to last.

Industrial Chic Work Light Sconce

3500K LED Undercabinet Light Kit Plug-in

I also added the adorable chalkboards above the shelving to give a personal touch to the room. You could use these for a menu board, grocery list, or to leave nice notes to surprise your family and friends. You could hang these chalkboards on a wall, lean them on the wall (like shown), or stand them up on their own easel style. The corbel wall shelves are also great for adding storage space where you need it while adding a bit more rustic texture and “salvaged” appeal.

Easel Blackboard

Corbel Wall Shelf

With some warm touches like a bowl of fruit, a cozy rug like our French Feedsack Stripe Rug in warm red stripe, a bar stool to pull up to the butcher block island for a bit of chit-chat in the kitchen and the look was really coming together.

French Feedsack Striped Rug

Vintage Kitchen Barstool

I felt good about the look and how I brought industrial chic into a warm and cozy kitchen; however I felt I needed just one more layer of light to really pump up the drama. This one was easy; I added our “Vintage Style Sign Letters” to the wall, spelling out the word BAKE. This added a cute and unexpected element to the room, still with that exposed bulb look that screams “industrial”. I designed these letters so that anyone could add them to their space without an electrician. They simply hang on the wall and plug in. I simply hung the letters with picture hooks, ran the wires down the back of the letters keeping them neat and straight with matching zip ties, and plugged them in. You could spell anything! I toyed with spelling the word EAT, SOUP, or even COFFEE. The great thing about these letters is the sky is the limit and you can spell whatever unique word you like that makes it your space.

I hope you found inspiration and insight in our latest cover “Industrial Chic”. The kitchen is one of the most important rooms in the home and the lighting is one of the most important elements in that space. The lighting must serve as task lighting but also make the space inviting and fun, because we all know that a kitchen is not just for cooking. I also hope I helped you find your unique voice in this popular design trend “Industrial Chic”. My goal for you would be to have a little fun with it; don’t be afraid to be eclectic, and be sure to find that unique piece that will make your space “SING”

 

 

Seaside Sanctuary

Escaping to a fabulous seaside sanctuary doesn’t necessarily have to mean packing bags, loading up the car, loading up the family and all the stress and shuffling it takes to make it to a distant destination. You can create an oasis in your own home that will take you away to a favorite coastal getaway instantly. All you need is the right color palette, some comforting textures and a few objects that evoke fond memories from your favorite trips and you can recreate that calm relaxing sanctuary in your own home.

I wanted to create a relaxing “Seaside Sanctuary” for our summer catalog cover because I know so many of us need that special place to relax and unwind. -That is what the beach is all about to me and before I was done I could almost hear the ocean on the photo set. Let me tell you how I did it.

Seaside Sanctuary 2012

I started with a clean neutral palette as my base. I wanted an airy feel to the room so I chose a classic white bead board wall treatment and grounded the space with a classic “beachy” texture, a sisal rug.   Our exclusive Coral Chenille Border Sisal has the large neutral field I wanted and its border added just enough of a jumping off point for my color palette without overwhelming the space with pattern.

Exclusive Coral Chenille Border Sisal Rug

Spa Blue & taupe

Seaglass with Seaweed Green

Seaglass with Seaweed Green

Gold with Coral Red

Gold with Golden Beige

Then I started adding my color. I wanted warm like the sand and cool like an ocean breeze so I chose a warm coral matched with a cool aqua as my color palette. One of my favorite pieces, our Pop Color Modern Ceramic Table Lamp, perfectly expressed the color scheme with the glossy “candy shell” coral color of its base and shade combined with a crisp aqua lining in the shade for a bit of surprise.

Pop Color Modern Ceramic Table Lamp

Continuing the mix of warm coral and cool aqua, I added a fun pop of color with our Café Colors Dining Chair and balanced that with our Batik Floral Print Drum Shade on the floor lamp. A few decorative pillows and some fun sea life pictures and the color palette effortlessly flowed around the room.

Cafe Colors Dining Chair

Colorful Embroidered Floral Pillow

Chenille Swirl Down Filled Pillow

Batik Floral Print Drum Shade

Set of 2 Curiosity Frame Sealife Prints

To add more interest and seaside feel without losing that relaxing sanctuary feel, I mixed in pieces that added textures that remind me of the beach instead of continuing to add more color and pattern that could have made the room feel busy. The Natural Pine Desk has a beautiful natural wood texture with a gray wash that reminds me of old boards from a pier that have been bleached by the sun for years. It keeps the room light and fresh while adding function.

Natural Pine Wood Desk with Extensions

And for even more function and texture, our exclusive Slipcovered Linen Bench serves as extra seating or a place to kick up your feet. The fabric is heavily textured linen that almost looks like burlap without being rough to the touch. I trimmed it in a fun mini-pleat plaid fabric that included our aqua and coral color scheme for an unexpected detail that makes the piece look custom, just one of those designer details that really finish a room.

Slipcovered Linen Bench Ottoman

Finally for a bit of whimsy I used what would traditionally be thought of as an “outdoor light” inside as picture lights. The galvanized metal and nautical feel reminded me of lights on the boardwalk.

Farmhouse Outdoor Light

The key to creating a sanctuary in your home is to start with a base of classic neutral and build a color scheme that is calming but still fun. Add some texture to keep it interesting and then accessorize with familiar objects that bring fond memories.

I hope our Seaside Sanctuary cover look inspires you to create an escape in your home. Whether it be the often neglected home office, your bedroom, living room, or even an outdoor space, find a place that you can call yours because we all need a bit of relaxation from time to time.

 

 

Shades of Light Bulb Selector

Be prepared for those light bulb jokes to return. You know the ones: “How many (pick your favorite target) does it take to change a light bulb?” These chuckles will be returning because once again changing a light bulb will be “comically simple.”  Have you ever been faced with finding a replacement for this

40 Watt G-10Q Base Double Circline Fluorescent Bulb

or this?

27 watt Verilux Full Natural Spectrum Replacement Bulb

27 watt Verilux Full Natural Spectrum Replacement Bulb

 

Knocked the smile off your face didn’t it? Well, thanks to our new Bulb Selector, a free application found at www.shadesoflight.com/SOL_bulb.php selecting the right light bulb for your light fixtures is once again simple!

Never again will you need to wrap up your defective light bulb, tote it into the nearest hardware store and hope you can find someone to sheepishly ask: “Do you have one of these?” Use our free application and you will be empowered with all the information you need including manufacturer and part number. With nearly 3,000 light bulbs in its data base, the Shades of Light Bulb Selector not only makes it incredibly easy to identify the correct replacement bulb, it can also help you identify newer more energy-efficient options.

Homeowners and lighting professionals alike will find this program easy to use thanks to the intuitive design of this copyrighted program. Shades of Light has designed the program to work nicely on desktop computers, iPads and other mobile devices. Find the free application at www.shadesoflight.com/SOL_bulb.php  save it to your favorites, and never again let replacing defective bulbs darken your day.

 

 

Reclaiming with Style

One of my favorite hobbies is hunting in salvage yards. I just love the thrill and adventure of finding something promising in a pile of junk that otherwise would have been thrown out. It is a creative challenge to think outside the box to reinvent, reclaim and repurpose found objects into fabulous dĂ©cor for your home.  At Shades of Light, we have focused that passion into an Eco-Chic look that is out of the box and full of interest, charm and the unexpected. That look is exactly what we wanted to present in our latest cover “Eco-Chic.”

This cover was all about earth-friendly yet fabulous! Being “green” and “eco-friendly” doesn’t have to be boring and I set out to prove that. I challenged myself to use either renewable, earth-friendly products or reclaimed and repurposed products only. What a fun challenge, right!?! The earth is full of beautiful color and natural texture from renewable resources that help our earth’s eco-system, and of course reusing old things that are headed to already over flowing landfills is “oh so green”! So I started with my inspiration from our beautiful earth to create the color palette of leafy green with warm tones of browns and beiges. The room was warm and inviting with all the natural texture and the cool green walls contrasting perfectly to create a feel that almost makes you think you are dining in a beautiful forest.

Eco-Chic

I chose all reclaimed wood for the furniture. Every item is made from 100% reclaimed wood and the coolest piece, the reclaimed Railroad Ties Bistro table, was my favorite find. The naturally aged texture of this wood is perfect and the unpolished marble top continues the natural look.

Reclaimed Railroad Ties Bistro Table

Reclaimed Railroad Ties Bistro Table

The Reclaimed Wood Bistro Chairs I loved so much I actually purchased them for my own home.

Reclaimed Wood "X" back bistro chair

Reclaimed Wood "X" back bistro chair

I wanted to keep the texture flowing as I designed the light fixture for above the table. I picked hemp fabric to create the open-weave drum shade pendant. ,Unlike other plants used for fabric making, hemp is naturally eco-friendly because it requires no pesticides, herbicides or any other harmful chemicals to be grown and harvested. I loved the open weave of this fabric because it shows the bulbs, giving this pendant a cool industrial feel.

Hemp Netting Drum Pendant

Hemp Netting Drum Pendant

I dressed the wall with driftwood framed mirrors, no trees harmed here! I picked our popular demi-john table lamp because of the color (obviously) but also because it is made from recycled glass, SCORE!

Driftwood Square Mirror

Driftwood Square Mirror

Demijohn Table Lamp

Demijohn Table Lamp

Finally, I wanted a rug that was not only eco-friendly but hip and cool. I designed our Concentric Stripe rug made from un-dyed wool as to not harm the earth and to keep the naturally beautiful hues of nature untouched. I made the stripes extra wide and chunky because fat stripes are all the rage! I fell in love with this rug and guess what; it also made it home with me!

Eco-Friendly Concentric Stripe Braided Rug

Eco-Friendly Concentric Stripe Braided Rug

Not finished yet,  I wanted to carry our Eco-Chic style to the back cover as well to showcase our reclaimed style that Shades of Light has made extremely popular but also easily accessible for the home owner. We featured our reclaimed Rotor Pendants that are not only “green” but so industrial chic, a WIN, WIN in my opinion.

Rotor Pendant

Rotor Pendant

Lastly, I chose reclaimed Vintage Patchwork rugs, vintage rugs that have been spared from the landfill to be stitched together to make large rugs. Now they have that sought after “worn” look of antique rugs updated in hot new fashion colors but at a fraction of the price!

Reclaimed Vintage Patchwork Over-Dyed Rug

I hope you find our Eco-Chic cover inspiring and decide to find ways to decrease your carbon foot print while increasing your style impact! Visit our website where we have an entire category devoted to “Green” products as well as our popular and ever changing “One of a Kind Finds” category where we feature all of our reclaimed lighting products, some of which I have found personally during my salvage yard explorations.

Check out all of our Green Products Here!                    OR                 Explore our One of a Kind Finds Here!

 

Eco-Chic

P.S. Worried about all the new light bulb regulations and want a better understanding of what is to come for our beloved light bulb in this new era of “going green?” Click here where our experts explain the upcoming changes and how Shades of Light will be there to walk you through the ever changing legislation while still offering lighting options that you will love and enjoy in your home.

Paris in the Springtime

There is nothing more inspiring than Paris in the springtime. Soft hues of gray/blue skies and cherry blossom blooms in pale whites and soft pinks mix with the elegant architecture of the Paris streets. This is what inspired our latest cover look. We wanted to bring the look of Paris to your home with subtle hues and flea market inspired finds creating a soft elegance that speaks of tradition yet is clean and sophisticated.

Paris in the Springtime 2012

The centerpiece of our cover look was our Je T’aime chandelier. This elegant chandelier is aptly named because I love it! The heavily textured finish looks like an authentically aged antique, while the elegantly curved arms and delicate dangling tassels create an airy look. I also love it because it is so affordable at only $399!

Je T'aime Chandelier

We also flanked our Cherry Blossom Canvas Print with the matching Je T’taime sconces which also embody the sophisticated elegance of the chandelier.

Je t'aime Sconce

Cherry Blossom Canvas Print

The large Cherry Blossom Canvas Print was my inspiration for the color palette with its soft smoky blues and creams that reminded me of Paris in the spring. So I painted the walls the soft blue and chose our Robin’s Egg Blue and Cocoa Soumak rug to enliven this space with a fresh hue of blue that blended perfectly with the slightly deeper wall color. The rug carries the color palette to the floor perfectly and grounds the space.

Robin's Egg Blue and Cocoa Soumak Rug

I grounded the wall art with our Turned Leg and Vintage Wood Console Table which also has a finish that blends creams and blues in a distressed painted finish. The console is the perfect size for hallways or behind a sofa as it is not too deep but large enough to hold your décor or lamps.

Turned Leg and Vintage Wood Console

To keep the feel light and breezy, I chose two chairs with clean lines then upholstered them in a textured “linen-look” stripe that was inspired by vintage French burlap feedsacks. The cream with taupe gray stripe creates a subtle and clean accent. These chairs practically speak to you in French! Of course the French inspiration would not have been complete without including our Fleur De Lis Round Tufted ottoman.

French Feedsack Wingback Arm Chair

Fleur De Lis Round Tufted Ottoman

I hope you were inspired by our latest cover to keep things fresh and bring a little of your travels home with you to stay. Remember your favorite hotels, your favorite café, or any other favorite place or space and use that inspiration to recreate the look in your own space. Decorating doesn’t have to be hard if you use what inspires you!

Parisian Chic

Status of the Residential Light Bulb

What’s really happening with our beloved 100 watt incandescent light bulb? Here is the new law simplified, the exemptions, and what we recommend you buy for the 100 watt incandescent bulb replacement!

The new law

The legislation is meant to improve the efficiency of lighting. The new law does not mean the old-style 100-watt bulb cannot be sold after Jan. 1, only that it cannot be manufactured. Most retailers are still selling the 100-watt incandescent bulb until supplies run out. Beginning Jan. 1, 2012, the traditional 100-watt incandescent bulb has to be more efficient. The 75-watt incandescent bulb is banned as of January 1, 2013, and the 60-watt and 40-watt on January 1, 2014.

The exemptions

Not included in the “ban” are candle bulbs up to 60 watts, rough service (outdoor shatter resistant), 3-way bulbs, colored bulbs (such as pink or yellow bug bulbs), appliance bulbs (stove & refrigerator), plant lights, black lights, and some heavy-duty commercial bulbs. If sales of any of these types double, then restrictions will be placed on them, including maximum wattage and single-pack packaging requirements. California and Nevada will adopt the new federal incandescent bulb standards in 2011 instead of 2012, but the phasing intervals must be maintained.

What are lumens?

Lumens measure brightness (watts just indicate energy use). The standard 100-watt incandescent bulb emits 1750 lumens of light.

What is the best replacement bulb for my 100 watt incandescent bulb?

    1. The halogen hybrid light bulb is our top recommendation since it has both a halogen filament and an incandescent filament. Halogen bulbs are similar to incandescent bulbs, but they produce much more light per watt (about 28 percent more efficient). They contain no mercury like fluorescent bulbs and cost a fraction of what an LED costs. They provide a warm white light with a bit of the incandescent feel, are more efficient and cost a couple dollars per bulb.

72 Watt A-19 Frost Halogen Hybrid Bulb

72 Watt A-19 Frost Halogen Hybrid Bulb

    Other alternatives include:
    2. Pure halogen A bulbs (without incandescent filament): the 72-watt halogen lamp bulb provides at least the same light as the old 100-watt bulb but the light is “whiter”, meaning that you don’t get the “warm” yellow glow of incandescent but do get truer color. And halogen bulbs remain brighter than CFLs. Besides brightness, halogen bulbs are dimmable and warm up instantly.

75 Watt A-19 Frost Halogen Bulb

    3. CFL: Even more efficient are compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs, are the spiral-shaped fluorescent bulbs that are commonly seen now). If you get the 2700K (see note c below) version in the A-bulb shape, it will look so much like the former 100 watt incandescent bulb, you can only tell the difference by its size (slightly larger than the incandescents they replace).

15 watt CFL fluorescent light bulb shape

13 watt mini spiral compact fluorescent bulb

    Cautions: Make sure to get a dimmable version (if you use a dimmer) and they still do contain minor amounts of mercury.
    4. Full spectrum “daylight” bulbs: These are a special fluorescent bulb with bright Natural Spectrum light to lift spirits, sharpen concentration and improve energy levels. They activate your body’s own energy enhancers to make you more alert and productive. (5000-6000K).  See Note C below to learn more about the “color” of light.

60 Watt A-19 Medium Base Happy Bulb

    5. LED (light-emitting diode) bulbs: These bulbs have no dangerous ultraviolet (UV) wavelengths and are ultra-efficient and very long-lasting. The 14 watt dimmable LED A19 bulb is the 100-watt replacement but still costs approximately $40-$50 each.

5.8 Watts LED Regular Shape Bulb

 

Other important facts

    a. None of the new bulbs are as inexpensive as the traditional bulbs that we are used to, but each of them, including the halogens, use less electricity and last far longer than the old bulbs.
    b. Brighter is not necessarily better! Brightness becomes especially important as you age, when the lens in your eye becomes more rigid and then cloudier. When that happens, more light is needed to provide contrast. But most people prefer a lower-wattage halogen over the higher wattage CFL.
    c. The color temperature of a bulb (how “white” or “yellow” the light appears) is just as important as the lumens that it emits.  Higher “Kelvin” bulbs emit a whiter light, whereas lower “Kelvin” bulbs emit a more yellowish light.  Whiter light will be in the 4000K-5000K range, bluer light is 6000K and up and 2700K is equivalent to the yellowish warm light you are used to from the incandescent bulb.
    d. d. Other lighting terms: Radiance measures brightness released from the source and luminance measures brightness at the object. Footcandle is the amount of light of one candle on a surface one foot away.

 

© 2012 www.ShadesOfLight.com

Why Buy Hand Knotted Rugs

Are you looking for a traditional style area rug? Why not treat yourself to a fine hand-knotted rug?  The making of hand-knotted rugs is a “technology” that’s over 2500 years old.  The ancient art of hand knotting “Oriental rugs” was born in the mountainous regions of modern day Turkey, Iran, Pakistan and China by nomadic sheep-herding tribes. Whereas minor changes have occurred over time, the weaving techniques have remained virtually unchanged. The region is blessed with the finest wool in the world for rug weaving. Skills passed from generation to generation are employed as weavers painstakingly tie the Turkish or Persian knot over and over again. Skilled weavers will tie between 10,000 and 14,000 knots a day and it takes several weavers working as a team to complete only one or two inches of a carpet per day. The finishing process after the rug is removed from the loom requires nearly as much intensive labor.

French Medallion Oushak Rug

French Medallion Oushak Rug

Surely our modern machine made rugs are better, right?  Well, not really. Aesthetics aside (and yes, I know that I am dismissing perhaps the greatest strength of these beautiful hand-knotted rugs) and truth be told, today’s modern technology has not enabled us to make a better-quality rug. The tightness of the weave on hand-knotted rugs gives them a “weight” and feeling of plushness that simply isn’t duplicated with machine rugs. Hand-knotted rugs simply lay better on the floor.  Inherently flame retardant, hand knotted rugs are naturally both difficult to ignite as well as self-extinguishing. Wool absorbs dyes more deeply, uniformly and directly without the use of chemicals.

Coral and Golden Sand Traditional Oushak Rug

Wool is more crush resistant than synthetic fibers, giving them superior durability. Hand-knotted rugs simply do not show the wear and tear of everyday use as quickly as their machine-made counterparts.  In fact, rather than deteriorating, hand-knotted rugs actually appreciate in value.  As time passes, the dyed natural fibers of a handmade oriental rug will age gracefully to a wonderful patina. This sheen, caused by use over time, is highly prized by collectors, and actually increases the value of these rugs.

Katrina Oushak Rug in Aqua, Sand & Butter Cream

Want a real treat?  Visit our antique rug category to view great examples of fine hand-knotted rugs. Interested in learning about a hot new trend? Take a look at our Reclaimed Vintage Patchwork Over-Dyed Rugs. These vintage Turkish Oushak hand-knot wool rugs are salvaged and then restyled into exciting new organic and charismatic floor fashion. These reclaimed patchwork rugs are over-dyed in current fashion colors for a fresh contemporary flair.

Reclaimed Vintage Patchwork Over-Dyed Rug

Dhurrie rugs come of age!

Dhurrie rugs are a hot designer choice for nearly any room. The rugged and durable flat-weave of dhurrie rugs makes them a natural choice in casual settings.  Additionally, with today’s decor tending to be more flexible, dhurrie rugs are being utilized in more formal settings as well. This versatility, as well as their transitional appeal, helps make dhurrie rugs a favorite for all ages.

Dhurrie Diamond Soho Trellis Rug

Dhurrie Diamond Soho Trellis Rug

Bohemian Market Dhurrie Rug

Bohemian Market Dhurrie Rug

However, that has not always been the case. With the reputation of being affordable and rough, dhurrie rugs were relegated in the past solely to high traffic areas, kitchens, student apartments and the like. Certainly, not the stuff designers were likely to tackle! So obviously, the fabulous dhurries you are seeing today are not your mother’s old rugs.

Ironwork Trellis Dhurrie Rug

Ironwork Trellis Dhurrie Rug

Coral Design Dhurri Rug

Coral Design Dhurri Rug

Quatrefoil Dhurrie Rug

Quatrefoil Dhurrie Rug

What happened? Largely hand-loomed in India, dhurries or “dhury” rugs have as rich a history as any of their hand-knotted Turkish brethren. Dhurries have been long respected as the “workhorse” of area rugs with origins that can be traced all the way back to ancient Ajanta cave paintings. However, only relative recently have dhurrie rugs come to fully mature largely under the direction of the western design world. Highly regarded as a leading expert on rugs, David Black was at the forefront of this transformation with his London exhibition “The Underappreciated Dhurrie.” This Exhibition, held in 1982, went a long way toward helping the world recognize the exceptional beauty and practicality that dhurrie rugs could achieve. Having rediscovered the virtues of these rugs, the design world has done more than merely give dhurrie rugs its stamp of approval. The dhurrie weave was adopted and then practically reinvented. Today the tight, fine weave of the dhurrie allows for clean geometric patterns so coveted by style mavens. With these new updated designs and significantly higher quality materials, such as fine quality cottons and wools, the ancient craft now expresses a contemporary design sensibility that fits in perfectly with today’s decors.

Damask Vine Dhurrie Rug

Damask Vine Dhurrie Rug

Soho Dhurri Rug

Soho Dhurri Rug

Dhurrie rugs, long admired for their durability and cost effectiveness, have grown in stature and are now the perfect combination of fashion and practicality to match up quite nicely with our modern eclectic lifestyles. Today, dhurries are fashion “must haves” and can be found in a large variety of designs, from classic stripe patterns, now in updated colors…to more intricate graphic designs.

Dhurrie Ticking Stripe Rug

Dhurrie Ticking Stripe Rug

Regatta Dhurri Rug

Regatta Dhurri Rug

Coastal Stripe Dhurri Rug

Coastal Stripe Dhurri Rug

Modern Geometric Dhurri Rug

Modern Geometric Dhurri Rug

Grecian Maze Dhurrie Rug

Grecian Maze Dhurrie Rug

As always, dhurries are reversible and easy to clean, making them so very practical for busy households and especially those with children and pets. True to their heritage, dhurries continue to be more budget friendly than most rugs. Combining their historic practically with this new design sense; all in all, dhurries seem to have come of age quite gracefully. For more information read: Nada Chaldecott in her book Dhurries: History, Technique, Pattern, Identification

Red Hot Style 2012

It is the New Year! It is time to clear out the holiday clutter, throw out the piles of wrapping paper, bows, boxes, and fruit cake. As we all go through this inevitable process of cleaning and clearing, our homes start to reappear from behind what was once a beautiful display of glistening lights and shiny baubles. The rooms are no longer filled with family and friends and the feeling we get is sort of, well empty, RIGHT?!?

Well I don’t know about you, but it is at this moment I always feel most inspired to start reinventing my decor. I might rearrange the furniture, pick a new paint color, or add some new pops of color to enliven my space. It is with this positive attitude about the New Year and fresh perspective, that I designed our latest catalog cover. I named it “Red Hot Style” because here at Shades of Light we have dubbed 2012 the year of color! This look is about adding edgy details and fresh color to classics that embrace a sophisticated essence.

I began with classic pieces with an edgy update for the space like our ever-popular Springfield Linen Shade Chandelier

Springfield Linen Shade Chandelier

The shiny polished nickel and modern drum shade update on an otherwise traditionally shaped chandelier. Our entire Springfield collection makes this look an easy transition from room to room as well.

Springfield Sconce

Springfield Linen Shade Bath Light

Springfield Linen Shade Ceiling Light

Then I layered in more classic lookls like our crackle Procelain Triple Sphere Table Lamp which sits on our Quatrefoil Marple top side table. The neutral hues of creamy whites and the soft curves strike a contrast with the shiny metal to perfectly transition from classic to modern without even blinking.

Crackle Porcelain Triple Sphere Table Lamp

Quatrefoil Marble Top Side Table

Our beyond classic Louis Regency Arm Chair updates the look with its creamy white wooden frame and solid charcoal gray upholstery.

Louis Regency Arm Chair

To finish the look I wanted to really make a statement of modern edge. I chose to create a graphic chevron rug but with the unexpected twist of shag. This city chic look instantly grounds the space and says no fear for the New Year!

Chevron Stripe Shag Rug

Not to go unmentioned, my choice of wall color really brings this look to completion. The hot red is the perfect hue, not too orange and not too harsh! It is rich and deep yet still fun and fresh. It is the kind of color that draws you in, enlivens you and raises your spirit!

Red Hot Style 2012

I hope our latest cover inspires you to embrace a new edgy style for 2012, with hot colors, updated classics, and a no fear attitude for the New Year!

Red Hot Style

High Point Market Trend Spotting

The High Point market was full of fun new and trendy looks so here is a summary of what is coming:

 

Big. Bold. Graphic

Prints are back! Geometric prints and bold florals continue to dominate rugs and pillows (and thus lampshades)! They are trending towards more abstract. Silhouette prints and white on one color background for a fresh perspective. Grecian motifs (Greek key, Corinthian columns, arches) grow in demand.

Ironwork Trellis Dhurrie Rug

Retro Honeycomb Drum Shade Pendant

Amy Butler Vibrant Damask Rug

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ethnic Eclecticism

Ethnic prints such as ikat, susani, shibori (tie-dye effects), and paisley lend a worldly quality to home furnishings. Done in blues and in a larger scale to update the look.

And southwest patterns are making more appearances in rugs and upholstery.

18″ Ikat Drum Shade

Suzani Side Arm Chair

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Color

Once again, color was everywhere…and I mean vibrant reds, purples, yellows, and fuchsia.

Sizzling Colors Geometric Ceramic Table Lamp

Convertible Ceiling to Wall Color Pop Sconce

Outdoor or Indoor Summer Trellis Hooked Rug

Modern Spindle Table Lamp Base

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Neutrals have not gone away:

Not to forget the hot updated neutrals: latte, bronze, and warmer grays.

Silver Gray and Gold French Medallion Oushak Rug

Mary McDonald Metropolitan Leopold Sconce

Pale Slate Blue & Beige Antique Oushak Rug

Wavy Stripe Dhurrie Rug

Vine Tibetan Hand Knotted Rug

Modern Art Dots Hand Knot Rug

Gray Mottled Urn Table Lamp

French Gray Wire Basket Chandelier

16″ Trellis Linen Drum Shade

Vintage French Gray Console Table

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eco natural ingredients

Natural wood, stone and burlap are taking on modern shapes. Leather is embossed with bamboo, tree trunks and reclaimed wood are used for table and lamp bases, and semi-precious stones are put on display. Eco fashion goes back to natural elements with feathers, shells, twig, and bark.

Hemp Netting Drum Pendant

Reclaimed Wood Buffet

Eco-Friendly Concentric Stripe Braided Rug

Teak Wood Urn Table Lamp

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vintage vibe meets modern

Mirrored finishes have gone from antiqued to clean and contemporary.

Parisian vintage has become a timeless classic.

“Made in America” is being featured everywhere.

Retro-inspired furniture and lighting seem to be on the rise.

 

Industrial lightens up:

Wood finishes moved from the dark side into the light, and painted surfaces took a neutral stance in pale grays and white. Industrial fixtures are reinvented in shiny metals for a more sophisticated stance.

Industrial Luxe Cone Pendant

Industrial Wooden Folding End Table

Industrial Saucer Sconce

Industrial Galvanized Bucket and Pipe Pendant

Industrial Work Light Clamp Desk Lamp

Industrial Retro Semi Flush Ceiling Light

Clear Glass Globe Industrial Pendant

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glam goes sophisticated:

Gatsby-inspired glamorous design, lavish fabrics, and stunning “jewels” with trendy accents, spurred on by the re-release of the movie. Diamond-encrusted furnishings and designs reinvented so well by Mary McDonald.

Mary McDonald Regal Swag Table Lamp

Mary McDonald Hollywood Glam Sconce

Mary McDonald Regal Swag Sconce

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artsy Origami Inspiration:

Asymmetrical designs and 3-D art forms are showing up in lighting, furniture and fabric designs.

Modern Twisted Twig Sconce

Laser Cut Geometric Sconce

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Soft Contemporary

Brush strokes and soft contemporary art forms dominate the market. Curves on upholstery and furniture soften up the austere squared shapes of last year.

Multi-purpose furniture was everywhere: coffee tables that open to desks, islands that have folding leaves, tables that fold to store in closets.

The new rules are to mix and match with what you already own! Layer, balance and display your treasures!

Next year, it’s all about tangerine. Pantone, the design world’s authority on color identification, today announced its much-anticipated color of the year for 2012 —Tangerine Tango, a dramatic reddish orange with a positive energy and warmth. Although it can be intimidating at first, this attention-grabbing orange is a surprisingly flexible hue.

Chevron Stripe Shag Rug

Sizzling Colors Geometric Table Lamp

Tibetan Hand Knot Starburst Rug

Rattan Cage Floor Lamp

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Ashton Harrison
Bath Dreams 2011

Bathroom remodeling has taken on special emphasis these days; driven not only by the current housing market but also somehow bathrooms have become a “status symbol” within today’s well appointed homes.  Whatever the cause, it is undeniable that bathrooms are garnering more attention these days. So it was only fitting that I put together a catalog cover shoot focusing on the bathroom.

Bath Dreams 2011

Bath Dreams 2011

Whether the goal of your bathroom remodel is resale or you are updating for personal use, lighting is one of the most important elements to consider in these makeovers.  Obviously, you need good “task” lighting in your bathrooms (make-up, shaving etc.) but these days people are putting more into their bathroom remodels. They are putting their own personality into these rooms as well.  Master baths, guest baths, even half baths are being decorated in concert with the rest of the house. For relatively little money you can make your bathroom look really special by making it personal.

In creating my “Bath Dreams 2011” theme for our current catalog, I wanted something luxurious yet simple.  The dripping crystal chandelier  and matching dripping crystal wall sconce  express perfectly the mood I wanted to create. They look fabulous and they give me my “layers of light” which as you know, is so essential for a good lighting design.  And while these lights look so undeniably rich, they are actually exceptionally well priced!

Dripping Crystal Shade Chandelier

Dripping Crystal Shade Chandelier

Dripping Crystal Shade Sconce

Dripping Crystal Shade Sconce

Continuing on with this theme of a dream bath that was luxurious, simple and uncluttered, I added just the barest of essentials:  a fabulous hand-knotted Ousak rug (link).  This rug has all my spa colors: turquoise, a soft sand color and a buttery cream color. Not only is this rug gorgeous, it is luxuriously plush and feels so good under foot. It is just about the only thing that could get me out of this dream bath!

Katrina Oushak Rug in Aqua, Sand and Butter Cream

I added a very beautiful and versatile Zen garden stool and to help me relax, a water inspired painting by a local artist, Fran Reidelbach. I finished things off with my favorite oversized soft towels under the watchful eye of my guard dog! And now I am oh so ready for a good relaxing soak!

Large Zen Garden Stool

Large Zen Garden Stool

So go ahead, make yourself a dream bathroom!  Make the bathroom look more spa-like and less utilitarian. Do it for yourself, creating an oasis that you can escape to after a long hard day; or for your guests because let’s face it; most of your guests are going to ask to use the bathroom eventually!

City Chic

Creating your own City Chic space:

What is City Chic and how do you get the look? Terms like this are tossed around by design gurus all the time and may seem a little intimidating to your Average Joe. So, I thought I would help you out with some inside designer perspective on the topic.

City Chic 2011

City Chic 2011

City Chic is the name for our latest catalog collection and the look is defined by a global style with a “well-traveled” eclectic appeal finished with clean lines and classic touches. Picture the apartment of a world-traveling city dweller who has collected beautiful elements from their travels and combined them with a classic and clean foundation to keep the look sleek and not busy.
So the question still remains, how do you create this look in your own space? Let me walk you through a few quick steps that will put you well on your way to City Chic and that much needed update you have been wanting for your home.

1: EDIT! I am sure you have some prized collections of your own that you have picked up from traveling, memorable holidays, etc… but the key is to not display ALL of them ALL the time. Edit your collections down to a few pieces at a time and rotate them out to keep things fresh. This step is a quick easy dash through the house with a box to store your edited items away, EASY RIGHT?!?
2: Think CLEAN AND CLASSIC! Your foundation of furniture in the room should be proven design elements that never go out of style. For instance our City Chic cover featured a basic black console with clean lines and a very faint Asian appeal.

Asian Inspiration Wooden Console Table

Asian Inspiration Wooden Console Table

I chose this piece because of its classic style that can transition from room to room and trend to trend with ease. Also on the backcover of our City Chic catalog you will find the same look in the bathroom with our simple black Demilune Storage vanity.

Black Demilune Storage Vanity

Black Demilune Storage Vanity

The idea is to keep it simple!
3: Add some Global Appeal! Maybe you are saying to yourself this is great but I am not a world traveler! Well that is ok because we have brought the world to you with our City Chic collection. Add our “Out of Africa Cowhide” to your space as a simple scatter rug for a bold graphic element that will bring your space to life! Or add our natural Long Horn table lamp which combines modern metallic Polished Nickel with Mother Nature’s unmatched beauty in the natural horn. The soothing grays and whites in the horn add a spa-like environment that will sooth the senses! There are tons of globally inspired products on our website to choose from in all prices so you are sure to find something to complement your space!
4: Let is Shine! Our shiny polished nickel lighting adds the “jewelry” to your space and will bring the look together just like your favorite pair of earrings makes your outfit complete! Our “Pencil Arm Modern Chandelier” is the perfect sleek chandelier for this look with clean lines and an exquisite nickel that shines like glass!

Pencil Arm Modern Chandelier

We also added our Starburst mirror for another shiny element on the walls.

Starburst Mirror

Starburst Mirror

Then we took the look to the bath with our “French Twist Sconce”

French Twist 2 light Sconce

French Twist 2 light Sconce

It is all about adding that finishing touch of metallic sparkle to the room that would otherwise feel flat and dull!
Well, I hope these quick tips help your update your space and give you some insight into the elements of a “City Chic” space and I truly hope you were inspired by our latest catalog collection!
Until next time,

Katrina

Mary McDonald Lighting…Saw it, Loved it, Bought it!

My newest addiction is Bravo’s latest hit show Million Dollar Decorators. The show is funny, visually inspiring, and has all the quirky elements of a hit reality show! I am in love!!

Photo courtesy of hulu.com

My favorite part of the show and why I am so addicted, Mary McDonald. A famous designer in the heart of LA, Mary is extraordinarily talented and fashionable. All of her designs are rich and glamorous. As she put it on the show, “Glamour sticks to her”. She is not only fun to watch and be inspired by but I am most excited because I was able to meet her at the Fall 2010 High Point market where she debuted her new lighting collection.

I fell in love with the lighting collection by Mary McDonald immediately, before I even knew it was her collection! The colors and finishes as well as the fluid lines and glamorous elements were not to be matched! It was the most exciting line I saw at the show!

Mary was kind enough to have a meet and greet at market and it was the highlight of the week!

Photo courtesy of bravotv.com

That is why I am so excited to bring her lighting line to our customers!

Mary McDonald Regal Swag Table Lamp

If you are looking to glam up your space instantly, this collection is for you! All of the pieces are designed in intricate detail down to the perfect hue of fabric for her shades.

Mary McDonald Hollywood Glam Sconce

Mary is known for her striking color combinations of including pops of cherry Reds with Black, White, and Gold.

She also picked my favorite hue of gray for the shade on this wall sconce. I must have this!

Mary McDonald Hollywood Glam Sconce

Search for Mary McDonald on our website or click here to shop her lighting collection. More to come soon!

Enjoy, Katrina

Summer Garden

One of the things I love most about my job is visiting the merchandise markets. They are so inspiring as you get to see the latest upcoming trends and products that will soon be hitting the market. I was so inspired by the latest 2011 spring markets as pops of crisp colors emerged from neutrals which have been popular for awhile. It was like a breath of fresh air. Showrooms and booths were lively with excitement about the new enlivened color schemes. We saw lots of turquoise mixed with pops of warm colors like red, yellow, and orange. The two contrasting tones of cool turquoise and hot reds woke you up. It reminded me of a beautiful field of summer poppies.

Summer Garden 2011

Summer Garden 2011

 

As always you can count on me to bring the latest trends right to your front door and I did with our new Summer Garden catalog. The collection features exactly the feel we found at market and I couldn’t have been more pleased with how the mix came together. My favorite piece, our new Birds of a Feather French Bergere chair I designed myself.

I chose the oversized bird fabric because of the fun it brings and the neutral background makes the colorful birds pop. I matched it with a silk plaid for the back and sides of the chair and matched the painted wood finish to the cool turquoise in the fabrics. I added a Robin’s Egg Blue table lamp to the mix because it had such a classic look as well as our Modern Classic sconces in Matte Gold.

I chose gold metallic tones for our collection because the feel I wanted to achieve was warm and cozy, but I think this collection would mix just as well with silver metallics. I added accent furniture and mirrors in glossy white to keep the crisp appeal flowing from wall to floor.

Finally I finished the collection with an indoor/outdoor striped rug with all the trend colors. Our Indoor/Outdoor rug collection is growing because I love the versatility it gives our customers to use a beautiful rug inside or out with no worries. I only choose rugs that are beautiful and cozy enough to go inside for all our indoor/outdoor rugs and the striped rug on our latest cover fits the bill.

I hope our latest Summer Garden collection inspires you to add a little bit of color to your life. Just a little pop of color can refresh your space and give you a whole new perspective.

Summer Garden

Summer Garden

-Katrina

Copyright Shades of Light 2011

Layers of Light for Dramatic Result

Providing lighting at different heights and directions not only adds visual interest and drama to a room, it also provides light for tasks and functions. I like to design lighting “backwards”. I start with the drama and accent pieces (sculpture, wall art, plants, architectural elements), then add for tasks (reading, TV watching, cooking, laundry, office desk, etc.) and lastly add “ambient” (general) lighting. Considering the ambient lighting last allows you to make sure not to “kill” the effects of your accent lighting and make sure you don’t “overlight” the room in this age of energy considerations!

I like to remind designers to consider where the source of light is (height in the room) and which direction the light points (up, down, out into the room, etc.). Varying the height and direction of lighting in a room keeps the room from looking “flat” and unexciting. For example, if you have table lamps on either side of the sofa, use a reading floor lamp beside a chair (gives down light from a different level), plant lights in the corner(s), picture lights, uplights on the mantle, sconces with opaque shades, etc. In the kitchen, use undercabinet lights to illuminate work surfaces, a chandelier over the eating area, cover lighting at the ceiling, soft recessed lights on a dimmer for traffic areas, and uplighting somewhere in the space (sconces or chandelier). This combination of up and down lighting and light sources at different levels in the room produces rich lighting design that brings sophistication and ambiance to your home.

Copyright Shades of Light 2011

How to create a theme without going “kitchy”

How to create a theme without going “kitchy” is the question. Don’t you just love that word “kitchy” and how it is always said with finger quotes? It is such an undesirable idea to have “kitchy” décor yet so many of us fall into that trap or run so far away from it that we forget to have fun.

Coastal Chic 2011

Coastal Chic 2011

Our latest Coastal Chic catalog cover demonstrates how you can actually have a “theme” décor yet steer clear of “kitchy”. The key is a few large, unique, and quality items that carry your theme without cluttering. Notice my three descriptive words LARGE, UNIQUE, and QUALITY. Those three words are what I will focus on as I give you my designer tips on how to create a fabulous theme room.

ch_tlDe Vine Wood Ball Chandelier, Curled Vines Floor Lamp

Let’s start with the word LARGE. Larger items make a clear and concise style statement in your space. Take our Coastal Chic cover for example. We have featured our fabulous De Vine Wood Ball Chandelier and our tall and ultra-cool Curled Vines Floor Lamp as the statement pieces in the space. The driftwood look of these pieces says “Coastal” while the size of these fixtures creates drama. What you don’t see are a lot of knick-knacks or small beachy items to create the theme. They aren’t needed because the “coastal” theme is clearly stated with just two pieces.

Next let’s cover the idea of UNIQUE. Venturing outside the box is always a great way to create impact that makes your neighbors say, “WOW, I wish I had that kind of taste and creativity!” I dare to say there are few things as unique as our De Vine Wood Ball Chandelier and in this setting it fits perfectly and creates great interest in the space.

xu_xrCoastal Stripe Dhurrie Rug, Nailhead Accent Ottoman Stool

Finally, QUALITY is what brings your theme home with high style. The idea of QUALITY goes in direct opposition of the idea of “kitchy”. So if you implement quality finishes and textures into your space you are sure to create a look that is highly styled and desirable. For example, our hand-knotted Coastal Stripe Dhurrie Rug grounds this cover look with a durable texture that says “casual yet sophisticated”. Our Nailhead Accent Ottoman Stool also adds a rich texture that without might leave the space lacking. Finally, the texture and color of both Vine lighting fixture fills the space with Mother Nature’s unmatchable style. With the idea of “less is more” in mind, purchasing a hand full of quality items instead of a cluttered room full of cheaper, lesser quality items may actually save you money while giving you the fabulous home you have always wanted.

Coastal Chic

Coastal Chic

I hope with these easy tips you will not be afraid of the word “kitchy” and know that you too can have fun and create a fabulous theme room that has sophisticated style.

Until next time,
Katrina

High Point Spring Market Trend Report: Bright Horizons

Author: Ashton

1. Bright happy colors were bursting all over High Point at the 2011 Spring Market. These were confident colors, colors that say: “I have once again proved to myself and others that I can weather whatever (economic) storms come my way; and furthermore, I am stronger for the challenge.” Pantone’s Luminous turquoise (2010 color of the year) and Honeysuckle Pink (2011 color of the year) led the parade, starring against neutral backgrounds of linen, white, and gray. Orange, yellow, red, peacock, and deep purple closely trailed the “winners” as robust accent colors.

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Beaded Basket Chandelier, Colored Seeded Glass Pendants, Jonathan Adler Colored Glass Bottle Table Lamp

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New Modern Spindle Table Lamp, Indoor/Outdoor Summer Trellis Hooked Rug, Sassy Ceramic Table Lamp

2. Gold leaf and metallics continue to grow stronger and more luminous, gold less antiqued, silver going shiny, and bronze going high gloss.

3. Furnishings everywhere had a story, a story of how we are more than ever so very interconnected with each other in both time and space. Whether it was a story that reconnected us with past history (reclaimed floors made into furniture, antique ship’s pulleys made into pendant lights, or old dressers repainted), or perhaps the story was one of our ongoing eco-responsibility to each other, with a continued focus on renewable resources (bamboo, seagrass, copper, etc.). At times the stories were more emotional that intellectual, as there were many stories about exotic travels and fabulous finds. All these stories had one common ingredient; they provided a reason for the consumer to be engaged with the product. The stories showed how the products were already a part of the end users life whether they yet knew it or not. Shop our Reclaimed products here.

reclaimed
Reclaimed Industrial Grid Lens Pendant, Rustic Chic Ironwork Table Lamp, Rotor Pendant

4. Made in America: These vendors have a “story” too but the overwhelming pride I saw in these companies led me to give it its own category! This is a growing request from the consumer and thus with the manufacturers! Shop our Made in America products here.

madeinamerica
Chic Indoor/Outdoor Rugs, Richmond Outdoor Hanging Lantern, LED Pencil Head Pharmacy Floor Lamp

5. Giving back is a rising theme. In these economic times when all charities are feeling squeezed, we are seeing prospering companies donating a % of sales to their causes, not just for marketing purposes but because they genuinely want to give back.

Pop Mod Color

Ever wonder how designers make a room flow while mixing and matching patterns and colors? I have been asked so many times how I can be so brave with colors and not be so “matchy” with patterns. Our spring cover exhibits this idea exactly. I mixed pops of color and multiple patterns while still maintaining a fluid design with cohesiveness. How did I do it? Well it really isn’t hard with just a few tips from the trade to follow.

Pop Mod Color 2011

Pop Mod Color 2011

 

First, you have to realize that mixing and matching is a good thing. “Designer” rooms feel like they have evolved piece by piece and are not just a matching set of something from a local “big box store”. Maintain this mind set as you add each piece to your space.

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Second, let’s talk about pattern. Mixing patterns is easy. I have one simple tip to follow. Mix patterns of different scales. For example our fabulous Amy Butler Vibrant Damask Rug designed by famous designer Amy Butler has an extra large pattern with several colors. I pulled the green and chocolate from the rug and choose another pattern for our super cute Button Back Egg Wing Chair. The paisley print on the chair is a smaller scale than the rug with complimenting colors to make the patterns cohesive. The two patterns together are much more interesting than a solid and a pattern would be, making the scene fun and exciting.

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Third, mixing colors is always fun. My tip, you can create any color combo as long as there is at least one element in the space that features all the colors together. You can mix red and yellow, purple and blue, green and pink, etc… as long as you have a piece of art, a pattern, an accessory that has all the colors you wish to feature. Again I was inspired by our Amy Butler Vibrant Damask Rug. Who wouldn’t fall in love with this exciting pattern with popping colors? The cool tones of the apple green, turquoise blue, and sunny yellow in the rug float beautifully on a sea of soft white. The white background makes the colors “pop”, which brings me to my second tip about mixing color. Choose a neutral to consistently break up your color combo, giving your eye something to rest on along the way. I choose white accents like our Flowering Stalk Floor Lamp in gloss white, our Oval Ring Drum Shade Pendant in white, and our glossy white Laquer White Greek Key 2 Drawer Dresser. These bright white accents give your eye a rest as it flows from the bright rug to the patterned chair, and then finally to the bright turquoise wall with our exclusive Beautiful Mansard Mirror designed to complement our entire spring collection featured on pg. 2 and 3 of our Pop Mod Color catalog.

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Follow these very simple tips and you too can create a “Designer” space all your own. Mix any color, mix different patterns and have fun with your space. My hope is that our Pop Mod Color catalog inspires you to be fearless in your designs and embrace color for spring 2011!

Pop Mod Color

Pop Mod Color

Until next time,
Katrina

Behind the Scenes: Our Rustic Revival Catalog

Author: Katrina

Does the word “rustic” make you think of deer antlers and bear motifs?? Well, as much as I truly feel that those things find their place in a lodge home, rustic décor has evolved into so much more than “theme”. Apply named, our latest cover “Rustic Revival” demonstrates the newest level of sophistication that “rustic décor” has reached. The key elements to the evolution of this new look are rich textures, repurposed materials and warm hues. Rustic is no longer for just the mountain retreat you visit for your winter vacation. It finds its place in lodge homes, city lofts and place in between. An added industrial edge has taken rustic in a new direction where creative minds break all the traditional rules and repurpose items to fit their needs. This is where my story begins.

Rustic Revival 2011

Rustic Revival 2011

This covers story begins with a trip to one of my favorite antique shops. I love to walk the aisles hunting for inspiration and treasures. I found the most interesting set of wooden beads, probably an old necklace, strung on rope. The hand-carved texture drew me to them as well as the soft gray hue. I thought, “Perhaps these were a handmade gift from a father to his daughter. What a fun story!” I had a moment of true inspiration and the result was our latest exclusive chandelier.

ch10094gyBeaded Basket Chandelier

A traditional basket chandelier, usually comprised of crystal strands, was recreated in rustic style with “my wooden beads”. The texture of the grayed wood bead looks hand-carved just like the original and the rope strand adds a unique and unexpected detail. I wanted the beads to glow with warmth so I designed the chandelier with lights on the inside as well the outside. I was so pleased with the results and find that this chandelier would be perfect for rustic as well as city dwellings.

I took my inspired chandelier and created our cover room setting around its warm texture. I chose a cool blue wall color to contrast all the warm textures in the space. I wanted to carry the “repurposed” theme throughout the room so I thought of using one of our many wooden pallets we have lying around as a headboard. I also had our design team create an entire wall using reclaimed wood from our pallets for the back cover setting (click here to read that story). The headboard brought to life the industrial element I desired for the space as well as the rustic texture.

mw10012_bcover
Round Cowhide Mirror

I added our Round Cowhide Mirror above the headboard along with two iron horse shoes for that “whimsical” element and again more layers of texture. Burlap fabrics in complementing neutrals continue to warm the space wrapping it in soft texture.

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Distressed Leather Steamer Trunk Side Table

As the room came together, I felt the need to ground the space. I chose our Distressed Leather Steamer Trunk Side Table to continue the thread of deep bronze flowing through the space which started with the chandelier. The warm leather texture of the side table strapped with wood and nail-head trim again added even more interesting texture to the space.

xr1100bl
Dhurrie Ticking Stripe Rug

Finally, I pulled it all together with the hues in our durable Dhurrie Ticking Stripe Rug. It combined the wall color with the warm tan burlap hue from the bedding and curtains. It grounds the space with color without making the room seem heavy. Its flat woven texture gives the room its casual appeal. The result was a room I felt I could truly snuggle up in to relax with my favorite book. Don’t we all want a space like that?

My hope is that you can use our “rustic revival” products to create that new rustic look in your space. Just remember my three simple elements to creating this look: repurposed, textured, and warm hues.

Until next time.

Our Rustic Revival Back Cover

Author: Walter

There is something different about this fashion trend we call “rustic revival”.  People seem to natural fall into step with its basic principles. People cross generationally have embraced it. This look is precise and clean. It’s comfortable and comforting; liberating and carefree at times but never sloppy. There is real sense of craftsmanship wedded to it. The look is at times downright nostalgic and yet it is forward thinking. There is a real sense of responsibility for our future at the very core of this look. And everyone seems to appreciate its values. All this was revealed to me as we started to build “the wall.”

cover_b_back

And don’t you just love it when a plan comes together. You see, we needed a photography back drop to show off some of the products on the back cover of our new “rustic revival” catalog. And right from the start you could see that the spirit behind this fashion story had possessed the entire company. There was a lot of energy. The idea sprung up from Katrina, our buyer, that we were going to build a lodge-look wall. However, it wasn’t going to be made from just any old rustic looking wood we could get at the lumber yard. No, in keeping with one of the fundamental principles of the “green repurposing” look, we decided to make “the wall” from trucking pallets that arrive daily at our distribution center. No problem there, we get plenty of them!

Shortly afterwards, while making a trip out to the distribution center, I walked out to the piles of pallets our distribution team was “grading”. They were commenting on the quality and condition of the wood, on the grain, the knots and position of the knots, the color of the individual planks and the “tones and highlights within each plank. There was talk of how the different shades of color from plank to plank would play off one another. The guys were into it.

Next, the carefully selected planks were sent to our photography studio. Joey and Corey were going to construct the wall and they are quality craftsmen. Joey heads up the department that does a lot of the really special custom work we do here at Shades of Light and Cory does everything from driving our truck back and forth to Virginia Beach to monitoring our trucking bills.  Each and every already edited board was now once again carefully and critical examined and then precisely and artistically placed in just the right spot. When they were done, “the wall” stood proud. It was a work of art and the perfect backdrop for the look and the buyer Katrina had envisioned on our back cover. Thanks guys, the wood tones really did accent the natural birch console and industrial tractor seat!  In fact, the wall looked so good we sort of got carried away and used it to accent some of the organic pieces on the top of page three as well.

img_0042 img_0043 img_0045

As you go through the catalog, check out the details that are intrinsic to this “rustic revival” look. Like the wall, there is nothing slipshod about the pieces that make up this look. Check out the Victorian details on the legs of the Adjustable Industrial Tractor Seat Stool on this back cover. The Slate Tile Sconce with Perforated Shade just slightly above the tractor seat is beautifully crafted and as the copy says: it’s the perfect marriage of modern and natural design elements.

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It is not just the covers, look throughout the entire catalog for the “green” message within. My personal favorite is the De Vine Wood Ball Chandelier shown on page four. It’s beyond green; beyond renewable, beyond “eco-friendly” even.  It’s an absolute “eco-hero.” This chandelier is actually made from a fast growing invasive vine. (Think kudzu only meaner, my Georgian friends.) So after it has been harvested the ecosystem from which it came is actually healthier than it was before the harvesting!  Oh and one more thing before I go, I just thought you should know, Joey has a hand in making each and every one of those De Vine Wood Ball Chandelier.

ch11001De Vine Wood Ball Chandelier

**A word to the wise is sufficient. “Use caution: Discarded wooden pallets should not be used for fire wood or crafts unless it has been determined that the wood in these pallets has not been treated with wood preservatives, fungicides and/or pesticides. Various pyrethrins and propiconazole are commonly used to treatments wooden pallets. And even if they weren’t treated initially, imported goods palletized are routinely fumigated with highly toxic pesticides. while in use, harmful materials or chemicals also may spill on the pallet wood and be absorbed.”

How to Determine the Correct Lampshade Size

Are there any good rules of thumb for choosing the right size shade?

Lampshade Selection Guidelines 

  1. The more basic the shape of the body of the lamp, the more varied styles of shades it can take.
  2. Repeat the shape(s) in the lamp body in the shade shape; i.e., a round lamp on a square base can take a shade with a rounded top and square bottom.
  3. The diameter of the bottom of the shade should not be greater than the height of the lamp body (to the bottom of the socket).
  4. Match lampshade colors to the trim color in your room and the tones in the lamp body. Don’t be afraid of black or color as an accent.
  5. Consider your wattage needs! The lampshade (not the lamp body) determines maximum wattage allowed.
  6. Consider the style of the lamp when selecting a shade. A busy lamp generally calls for a plainer shade.
  7. For DRAMA, break the rules! Try “extreme” shades! Put a deep cone shade on a short round ball base, a glossy white shade on a beige stone vase, a cube shade on a stacked ball lamp, a red or black shade on an Oriental base, etc.

How do you determine shade height?
The height of a table lamp shade should be approximately the height of the base (to bottom of socket) x65% up to 80%.. The height of a floor lamp shade should be approximately the height of the base x47%. Measure shade height along the slant.

What about diameter?
The diameter (width) of a table shade should NEVER exceed the height of the base (to the bottom of the socket) and should be within 2″ of this dimension. Floor lamp shades should clear the widest part of the bulb by at least 3.5″ on each side of the bulb (unless using compact fluorescent bulb). Lampshade size is usually expressed in terms of its diameter (16″ shade has a diameter of 16″).

Are certain shade styles better for certain base styles? If so, do you have any pointers for matching the two?

  • The more basic the shape of the body of the lamp, the more varied styles of shades it can take.
  • Repeat the shape(s) in the lamp body in the shade shape; i.e., a round lamp on a square base can take a shade with a rounded top and square bottom.

Are there any “no-no’s” when it comes to choosing a shade?

  • For every “rule” (see rules), there is a talented designer who can successfully break it with success! Your eye is your best guide.
  • ALWAYS consider your lumens

If you’re debating between two similar shades, is it safe to go bigger or smaller?
Just like outdoor wall lights, it’s better to go larger to allow more wattage (click here for wattage and shade size guide).

Is there a shape of shade that flatters most bases?
Choose a shade with a shape that follows the general contours of the lamp. Square lamps look best with square shades and round lamps look best with round shades. A shapely lamp can take a shapely shade. An interesting alternative is to repeat the shape of the vase stand (as opposed to the vase shape) in the shade. For example, try a square shade on a round ginger jar with a square wood base.

Are there any shade shapes that are particularly hard to get right?
The more slender the body of the lamp, the shallower the shade can be. Extremely-flared shades are sometimes tricky to get right. Often you will need to change the size of the harp on your lamp when you change the lampshade. The more flared the shade, the shorter the harp you need. Lamps with more than one socket need to have wider and shorter shades and you may need a salesperson’s guidance.

Should the shade kiss the top of the lamp’s base? Should we see a little of the harp/hardware part of the lamp?
The bottom of the lampshade should come to the top of the body of the lamp so that no mechanical parts except 1/2 the neck show. The bottom of the shade should also fall at the eye level of the user. Most harps are interchangeable so you may need to purchase a new harp with your new shade. Harps come in regular and heavy (higher end lamps) and are usually imprinted in the top with their size in inches.

©2011 Shades of Light. All Rights Reserved.

Bye Bye Light Bulb?

Author: Ashton Harrison

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The government has passed measures to prohibit the sale of incandescent light bulbs, thus encouraging the use of more energy-efficient lighting alternatives, such as compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and LED lamps. However, you don’t need to panic or stock up on bulbs! In response to the fact that the federal government enacted the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, the industry has been hard at work coming up with energy efficient options.  This law will require all general-purpose light bulbs that produce 310–2600 lumens of light (greater than 30 watts) to be 30% more energy efficient than our current incandescent bulbs by 2012 to 2014.  The efficiency standards will start with 100-watt bulbs in January 2012 and end with 40-watt bulbs in January 2014. Exempt are Light bulbs outside of this range; historically, those less than 40 watts or greater than 150 watts. In addition, several classes of specialty lights such as appliance lamps, rough service bulbs, 3-way bulbs, colored lamps and plant lights are also exempt. By 2020, a second tier of restrictions will become effective. This next tier requires all general-purpose bulbs to produce at least 45 lumens per watt (similar to current CFLs). Exemptions from the Act include reflector flood, 3-way bulbs, candelabra, colored and other specialty bulbs. California will phase out the use of incandescent bulbs by 2018. They mandate a minimum standard of 25 lumens per watt by 2013 and 60 lumens per watt by 2018.

Incandescent light bulb production was expected to end in the coming years as regulations come into force banning their sale. However, manufacturers are now making more efficient incandescent bulbs and should have compliant versions available before the “official ban”. There is also currently a high-efficiency “hybrid” version of the halogen light bulb that looks just like your regular incandescent bulb! Meanwhile, LED bulbs are now coming in familiar shapes and sizes and color rendering has improved. And prices continue to fall, making them more affordable every day.  In many cases, the LED alternative might make more sense because they are so efficient. You will be able to use a 3-watt LED where you currently use a 60-watt incandescent bulb and a 17-watt LED where you currently use a 100-watt bulb and you will get the same amount of light!

What this all means to you is that there is good news! Bulbs that look JUST LIKE your regular household incandescent bulb in every way will be available to you by the time the incandescent bulb goes away (-And remember, there is also the chance that a high-efficient incandescent bulb will be developed!), so you definitely don’t want to stock up on the high energy-consumption bulbs that we all use today! WE will keep you posted.

The chart below compares Incandescent, Fluorescent and LED wattages and their corresponding Lumens:

Incandescent Watts

Fluorescent (CFL) watts

LED Watts

Minimum Light Output Lumens

40

9-13

4-5

450

60

13-15

6-8

800

75

18-25

9-13

1100

100

23-30

16-20

1600

150

30-55

25-28

2600

Links to our special bulbs:

Our compact fluorescent bulb virtually indistinguishable from your current bulb: 15 watt CFL fluorescent regular light bulb shape
Our LED household bulb: 5.8 Watts 2700K LED Regular Shape A Bulb Medium Base
Our Halogen Hybrid:  43 Watt Clear Eco-Friendly Halogen A19 Bulbs, 2-Pack
Our Best LED Chandelier Bulb:  2 watt Best LED Candelabra Light Bulb

©Shades of Light 2011

Parisian Chic

Author: Katrina

I hope all of you had a fabulous holiday season! I did; busy but fabulous all the same! One of the wonderful things that happened to me this holiday season was that I received my copy of the newest Shades of Light catalog. I am so proud of this catalog! It was so incredible to physically hold in my hand the culmination of months and months of hard work. I sure hope each and every one of you gets to experience this type of joy after completing your next project.

Perhaps, my favorite part of this job is to create the covers that wrap our Shades of Light catalogs. I always try to make a style statement on the cover. Something beautiful that makes you want to dive right in and places our customers right on the cusp of today’s designer looks. So I wanted to share with you the designer secrets behind our latest catalog look “Parisian Chic”. Preview the new catalog here.

 

Parisian Chic 2011

Parisian Chic 2011

Recently the design world has seen a return to classic design. However, there is a new hip modern way to go classic! We admire quality craftsmanship and love the feel of those classic elements that are built to last. We desire quality finishes and textures that truly speak of a time when things were done right. We want to own beautiful prized heirlooms that were made to be passed down from one generation to the next. This look is not fussy; it’s about combining chic clean lines with heirloom elements to create an updated classic space with a restful, airy feel.

Complimenting this return to quality classics, we have seen a shift in today’s color palette. It is dominated by a restful neutral palette of grays, taupes, and soft whites. These have become the hottest colors on the market. Why? Well, simply because these neutrals are restful, elegant, and will go with anything. It is so easy to feel at home in these colors. Instead of the striking collision of bright, bold colors, we see a softly flowing dance of closely related colors that bring the heart rate down and create a peaceful, elegant, spa-like feeling. Ironically, wrapped in this feeling of luxury there is a practical side: no need to repaint or redecorate your home if you decide to make a few changes in the future. You can make subtle or even significant changes to your space without breaking the bank every 5-10 years on a total redo. Sounds smart huh?!?

Why did we call this look “Parisian Chic”? Well, because Paris is the place where chic and classic have lived happily together for years. The city embodies this “heirloom elegance” while still maintaining its status as the world’s center for chic fashion. Simply put, our cover is all about combining chic and classic.

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Elegance Crystal Swag Chandelier

I started with the Elegance Crystal Swag Chandelier to be the center piece of our cover setting because the crystal creates an added dimension of texture. Its light delicately bouncing around the room adds depth and scope to the space without weight. I selected this particular chandelier because of its clean lines and its airy feel. It simply embodies classic elegance. Below the chandelier is a fabulous Reclaimed Elm Wood Trestle Dining Table. I chose this rustic table because the rough texture plays in perfect contrast to the crystals’ smooth texture. The rustic table creates a pleasant architectural surprise but the neutral color palette it shares with everything else in the setting prevents it from being an overwhelming shock. In fact, I’d say these elements complement each other “unexpectedly.” Paradoxically, the heft of this table grounds the space and yet it adds an air of whimsicality. It gives the setting a “time-loved” appeal.

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High Back Settee
, Damask Dreams Hand Tufted Rug

Continuing to design outside of the box, I added this High Back Settee for dining seating. The high back, button detail, and clean pattern of this settee add an element of high fashion. I must say I am truly in love with this settee. Not only is it beautiful, but it is quality constructed and comfy. Remember unmistakable quality is one of the essential ingredients in this new modern Parisian chic look! On the other side of the table I decided to contrast the high back of the settee with low seating. I chose garden stools. Not just any garden stools though, I chose an elegant Large Zen Garden Stool in a soft creamy white. The dance of colors between the chandelier, table, settee and stools is simply chic.

Further grounding the room setting in the middle of my space, I picked yet another hip take on a timeless classic: a gray and cream Damask Dreams Hand Tufted Rug. The hand-tufted quality adds that modern element to a classic damask pattern. The soft neutral palette lightens the dark floors and opens up the space. Again the colors of the rug are closely related to all the other elements in the room making the space feel restful while adding quality texture.

mw10079cmAntique Lighting, Crest Relief Trumeau Mirror

Finally, because we are known for our beautiful Antique Lighting, I just had to use two of our antique sconces to add the “heirloom” element to the space. Placing these on a dark gray wall, along with a beautiful white washed Crest Relief Trumeau Mirror creates yet another element of contrast. The antiques create a level of aged sophistication that the space otherwise might have lacked. There is nothing that speaks more of quality and classic fashion than a beautiful antique element in the proper place.

When all was selected and set into place for our big cover shoot, everyone in the house agreed that the look was totally chic; yet, classic , airy and restful. All the elements delicately balanced with each other. The space became our Parisian chic respite.

catalog_a_storyKatrina, Ashton & Towanda setup our Parisian Chic cover shot.

I hope you enjoy flipping through the Shades of Light catalog half as much as I enjoyed working on it.

I know you’ll find something within its covers that inspires you to update your space. Furthermore, I hope I have given you some insight into one of the very strong emerging fashion trends today: Parisian chic. As always, send me your thoughts and if you would be so kind send me pictures of your space. I love to see our customers take on our designs!

Parisian Chic

Parisian Chic

Thanks again for reading, and happy decorating!

Katrina

Do-it-Yourself Holiday Decorating

Author: Katrina

Thanksgiving is almost here and most of us are thinking ahead to the dreaded tornado of Christmas decorating.

For some,  it may not be that big of a deal.  Pull the tree out of the attic, throw the same tired old ornaments on it and then plop back down with a hot cocoa to finish watching the game. Done deal.  However, for me this just won’t do.  And I am guessing that if you are reading this blog you are much more like me than not.

So for those of you who love the end results, who get joy from a beautifully decorated home keep reading because I am about to make your life much easier. I am going to share with you some of my decorating secrets as well as tons of great ideas to spiff up your home in a jiffy.

So let’s get straight into it:

Secret #1: To make your home feel like a winter wonderland you have to decorate more than just your tree.

This one is pretty simple but does take a little bit of creativity. As you flip through magazines to get inspired for your holiday decorating you will notice one recurring thing, they decorate the entire house or at least the entire room. Ideas to help you do this: cut some greenery from outside, rinse and dry it and create a mantel garland, a table center piece, or stuff some different sized vases with greenery and place them all together on a hall table to create an entryway masterpiece. So far you haven’t even spent any money and you have already began to decorate your entire home. Add some ornaments, some fake snow, and some of our fabulous LED candles (so you don’t burn your house down) and bam you have yourself a winter wonderland.

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Cordless Real Wax LED Candle with Remote

Secret # 2: Decorate your tree with unusual items.

One of my biggest secrets when decorating my tree I picked up from my mom. She is a genius when it comes to creative decorating. She takes white-poly pillow stuffing you can buy at your local fabric store and feathers it out in thin whisps, lays them gently among the branches of the tree to look like snow. Sprinkle and little glitter on top and it truly does the job. My unusual item, floral picks. You can buy a ton of them at the craft store for next to nothing and stuff the tree FULL. Add a few of your precious (more costly) ornaments and you have a full tree that looks fabulous. Here is a glimpse of my tree as an example.

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Secret # 3: Create a fabulous tree topper

Tree toppers aren’t tricky; you just have to not be afraid to make a statement. I like to stuff long floral picks around some frosty looking branches. I wish I had our new White LED willow branches for my tree last year. It would have taken my tree to the next level. But there is always this year right!?!

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Secret # 4: Decorate your chandelier

This has become a huge trend among creative decorators over the last few years and I am loving it. Adding holiday chandelier shades, some ornaments, and even a little greenery can take your dining/entertaining area from ordinary to HOLIDAY FUN easily. If you are having a party you don’t want to leave your table hum-drum. So jazz up the chandelier and let the lights in the room work for you.

Since we have tons of chandeliers here at Shades of Light, I decided to give this one a shot myself. I took our fabulous rustic chic Twig Chandelier and transformed it into a whimsical holiday “treeland” themed work of art. I started with our new Peacock Feather Chandelier Shades.

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Peacock Feather Chandelier Shade

Added our LED willow lights for more sparkle

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LED Lighted Willow Branches

then stuffed the chandelier with peacock feathers and glittery berry picks. I was quite pleased with the results.

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Here is another version of the same chandelier.

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I call this my “winter wonderland” chandelier. I added our White Crochet Chandelier Shades.

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White Crochet Chandelier Shades

Again, our LED willow lights.

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LED Lighted Willow Branches

And some flocked evergreen branches and some sparkling sequin branches from the crafts store. Presto chango.

Want some more ideas? I knew you did. Ok, I can oblige.

Take our fabulous white shaded chandelier. Add our Holly Berry silk chain cover.

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Organza Shade & Crystal Chandelier, Silk Chandelier Chain Cover

Hang some red and white ornaments from the chandelier arms and you have created a masterpiece worthy of Macy’s on West 34th St.

Try our red of green Provence Acanthus French Iron Chandelier.
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Provence Acanthus French Iron Chandelier

Plus one of our fabulous Christmas shades and some whimsical chandelier candle sleeves.
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6″ Handpainted Metal Chandelier Shade, kaarskoker 4″ Polka Dot Candle Sleeve Covers

And you have a fun, whimsical Christmas kids and adults would both love.

Want an elegant silver and gold Christmas?

Try our French Knot Chandelier. Which is featured in a fabulous polished nickel finish.

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French Knot Chandelier

Add our Gold silk chain cover and Fleur-di-Lis Chandelier shades in gold and cream.

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Silk Chandelier Chain Cover, 5.5″ Handpainted Fleur de Lis Chandelier Shade

Hang some silver and gold ornaments from the arms. Lovely huh? I like it!

Add our LED willow branches to your garland, centerpiece, or anywhere else you might want to add a touch of light. You can put them where you want easily because they are battery operated!

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LED Lighted Willow Branches

Finally don’t forget to add some comfy holiday pillows to your sofa,

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Hooked Snowflake Pillows

And a welcoming holiday mat to your front door for guests.

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Poinsettia Holiday Hooked Rug, Paula Deen Snowmen Rug

And you’re finished!

Don’t forget to send me your holiday decorating pictures. I want to see your creative ideas too and share them with our readers!

Before & After Photography Contest. Enter to win a $250 Gift Certificate.

Author: Katrina

With the holidays approaching and parties to plan, it is time to make a change from last year’s tired décor. I know, I’ve gotten you all worked up now but it’s going to be ok. I am here to help you with some tips for simple changes that can make a world of difference.

Thinking of changes I need to make in my own home I decided to present our design team with a challenge. Transform a room without redesigning the whole thing. Use the elements already in the room and simply add a rug, switch the chandelier or add lampshades. So we did, and this is our story.

I took a team on location to a local customer’s home to perform the transformation. What a lucky customer huh?!? The room we choose was the living room, the holy grail of spaces in the home and a place lots of people struggle to make a change. We left everything just how we found it and simply changed out the rug. We chose several looks from our extensive collection of rugs (click here to check them out).

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Even I was amazed at each transformation. We created three totally different looks just by adding a rug.

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The first look we choose for this room was a “vintage chic” feel. We chose one of our fabulous antique rugs (click to shop our antique rugs) in soft neutral tones to create a time-loved, “bo-ho”, city chic style. Mixing clean-modern elements with aged-elegant beauties is all the rage now. It is about having a love and respect for pieces with a story to tell, while still staying current for practical living. I love this look and I was so impressed with our first transformation attempt.

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The next look we went for was straight-up fun and funky. Adding a brightly colored rug with a fun print brought this room to life, a much needed addition to an otherwise drab space (click here to shop out hip/contemporary rug collection).  It was funny how everyone on the set automatically had a new burst of energy. Hmmm, do you think it might have something to do with the rug…I do!

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Finally we landed somewhere in the middle with a clean yet classic hand-tufted rug in a soft smoky teal (click here to shop our new rugs). This rug gave the room the feel of a downtown lounge with its smoky color and shimmer (the shimmer is created by mixing viscose threads in the wool tufting). Giving the room a relaxing yet “oh so cool” feel, I felt like curling up on the chaise and sipping coffee while reading my favorite book. Umm, after that bit of daydreaming I was sure it was time to go. We had accomplished our mission.

But wait, now we want to hear from you!

I know our customers are greatly talented, so I want to see your transformation stories. Send me your story along with picture of how, with our products you were able to transform your home. By sending your story & pictures, full name, a valid home address, phone & email address to awharrison@shadesoflight.com by December 31, 2010 you will entered to win a $250 Shades of Light gift certificate! A winner will be selected by a panel of our judges and notified no later then January 25, 2011. For complete rules click here. I will feature several of my favorite transformations on the blog. What a great way to impress your friends at your holiday parties. You just happened to leave the computer on at the party with your lovely home featured on the screen. Love it! See the rules and details below and happy transforming!

Hi, I’m Katrina…

8927_147327597042_636682042_2764863_6196475_nHi, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Katrina and I am the buyer here at Shades of Light. I have been in love with the world of home design since I owned my first Barbie Dreamhouse. Now I am living out that love through my dream job. I am so excited to share all my exciting adventures in the world of lighting and home décor with you! I search the globe for all the latest trends in order to bring them right to your door. I infuse my love of exquisite things into every selection I make. I design exclusive pieces just for Shades of Light to bring you unique looks you can’t find anywhere else.

I will be keeping you posted on all the latest trends I am seeing in the market place. I’ll share the most impressive pieces I find at designer markets, the next must have look for your home, and what to look forward to from Shades of Light. I will share tips and tricks I have learned through my industry experience. I will even personally answer your design questions right here from our Inspired Spaces blog. Who needs a personal shopper when you have me just a mouse click away! Be sure to visit our blog regularly so I can help you stay ahead of the design game! I’ll be seeing you.

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. Sundays 8/7c on ABC

On one of those 100 degree 100% humidity days last summer, my daughter and I visited Baltimore to join the awesome crew for Extreme Makeover’s Maryland Project. The sizzling temperatures did not slow down any of the film crew, designers, TV hosts or volunteer workers at all! It was a miraculous display of teamwork and sweat! Only I couldn’t figure out why the celebrities never looked like they were melting— a special breed? With a film crew in one corner, my daughter & I painting a stairwell in another corner, designers frantically adding last minute touches, and volunteers bringing in more merchandise, the basement room came together in record time! They REALLY do complete those huge projects in a week! It all worked like clockwork with nobody even getting upset! We are honored to have provided the lighting for the project. Watch Extreme Makeover, Home Edition this Sunday 8/7c on ABC to seen the completed project!

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Tiffany on Display

We have a world-class art museum right here in Richmond, Va. and I was so excited when the Tiffany Color & Light exhibition came this summer. During my musical stroll through the galleries, I was awed by the dimensional aspects of Tiffany Glassworks: the depth of colors; the breadth of glass types; the layering techniques used; and the 3-D effects of the stained glass windows. Louis Tiffany’s trademark magnolia stained-glass window exhibits all of these!

Rainbow-like iridescence, golden luster (known as Favrile), and lava-like cypronite glass are just some of his specialties. Inspired by nature, Louis Tiffany developed ways to make glass look like feathers, draperies, confetti, water, jewels (cabochon), granite, lava, ice, and more. One of his famed “Tiffany girls”, Claire Driscoll, designed many of the well-known classic lamps such as the Wisteria and the Dragonfly stained glass lamps. The mark that Tiffany and his glass-making studios made on the stained glass industry remains a strong influence today, over 100 years later!

To read more about Tiffany Studios, click here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiffany_Studios

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts:
http://www.vmfa.state.va.us

Shop our Tiffany style lamps:

tl09127mu-01Dragonfly Tiffany Table Lamp

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Wisteria Tiffany Table Lamp

After the Transformation Part II

How lucky to be coming out of a major structural renovation on our house to have such a great choice of products for our house from our cover shoots for Summer 2010.
For the Family Fun/Media Room see After the Transformation Part I

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As you can see our bath off of the  main room was screaming for a “makeover” and our design team rallied!

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Started the project choosing Reclaimed Pickled Wood Side Board and worked the room around this charming piece.

Teamed up with husband Dave to choose the sink with hardware & the lighting fixture; sure he wanted bronze & I wanted nickel but aside from that ( and you see who won….) must say pretty smooth sailing as these things go!

mirror1Recycled Wood Mirror

Found the green filigree wallpaper & had to have it; really complimented the new cabinet & I love the feeling it gives the room.

afternew

The mirror was the last piece. Since with the 7.5 foot ceilings, space was limited! See our collection of smaller mirrors on the web for tight spots!

 

Outside In

So it’s summer time where we long to spend endless hours relaxing in the summer breeze…Here not so much; it is hot, sticky, humid & downright miserable. Hoping wherever you find yourself it is more pleasant but for now; we are moving inside to the comfort of AC & away from the bugs.

Check out our great products made for the outside & look scrumptious inside.

How about these outdoor lights on a brick fireplace or used in an entranceway. Cool; uh???

outdoor

Slate Outdoor Light, Tavern Outdoor Light,  Hammered Copper Outdoor Light

Perfect in kitchens, baths or foyers where a flush mount is the only way to go;

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Federal Ceiling Light, Fleur-De-Lis Ceiling Light, Nantucket Ceiling Light

In need of nautical décor for that beach getaway great room???  Look no more!

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Charleston Harbor Outdoor Light, Beacon Lantern Outdoor Light, Ships Watch Outdoor Light

From our outdoor rug collection in easy care polypropylene making them perfect for active rooms, from kitchens to mudrooms.

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Vera Bradley Indoor/Outdoor Rug, Indoor/Outdoor Braids Rug

Now I am ready to crank up the AC & sit back on the chaise & watch an oldie but goodie movie Body Heat and be thankful I am inside.