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Monday, March 21, 2011

We're bringing swing-arms back!

It seems like these days, pairs of colorful, oversized gourd lamps and ginger jar lamps are all the rage in bedrooms. We certainly love this look, but not everyone has enough space in a bedroom for two large tables and two large lamps. I recently ran into this problem myself when decorating my new bedroom- I wanted to free up space on my bedside table and have light more directly over me when I'm reading in bed. So I decided swing arm lamps on either side of the bed would be just the ticket.

Luckily the brass swing arm lamps were free to me- my parents had them left over from a room they just redecorated. So I was able to go to Gaylord's (a great lamp store in Bethesda) and splurge a bit on a pair of shades, which really can make all the difference in completing a look. The bedroom is still a giant work in progress- for instance, the orchid print in this picture needs to be hanging, not leaning. But here's a peek- I'm loving the contract of the black shade against my ballet-slipper peach walls.

And here's a few more of our favorite bedrooms featuring pairs of sconce and swing arm lamps. They really run the gamut in style- they can be glam, rustic, cozy, minimalist- and in addition to their aesthetic appeal they can also solve logistical issues in certain bedrooms where a bedside lamp just won't work.

 These are so unusual and set a very sophisticated tone- and solve the problem that it looks like a regular lamp just wouldn't fit beside the bed.

 A casual minimalism.

A rich, library-like feel.

Very traditional.

 This lamp blends well with the room's tonal colors.

 Maybe our favorite room thanks to the greek key chest! But love the trim on the shade.

Again, here we have a more traditional room. Having the swing arm lamp probably helps since the coronet would likely block light from a regular lamp.

In looking at these pictures, and in my own experience, I think that shades are KEY to modernizing sconces or swing arm lamps. Since the lamp itself tends to be plain, the shades are the real statement. Buying more modern shades in an interesting shape or a luxurious fabric will keep this style from looking too dated. 


christine {bijouandboheme} said...

I just love this look and am thinking about it for my own room- thanks for all the inspiration!!

Mr. Goodwill Hunting said...

I like the look of swing arm lamps. I think I bookmarked a DIY arm lamp project some months ago. I must find it.

Mr. Goodwill Hunting

Anonymous said...

Loove your idea! Do you know how high they should be mounted? I got a pair hanging around too and wanted to reunse them.

Baylor Love said...

I love this and hope to use swing arm lamps in my new bedroom. My bed is in front of a window and I think I will have to wait until I see how far out the drapes will hang. Wondering if it would be weird for the 'arm's to be kind of long? Widely spaced away from the bed? Hmmmm......ponderings.

traci zeller designs said...

Did swing arms ever leave? ;-) I'm looking at putting some swing arm lamps in a client's living room right now, actually. And my very first experience with the swing arm lamp was when I installed them in my freshman year dorm room. Combined with the closet system my father put in, it was quite an improvement! ;-)

Life of Style said...

I love them and have some I adore in my bedroom from Visual Comfort!

ArchitectDesign™ said...

funny you mention these -i was just thinking last week how so many of our clietns are requesting these lately. They are practical -freeing up space on the nightstand.

Sundresses and Smiles said...

your bedroom is lovely! those swing arms would be perfect for my late night reading! good work!

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