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10 ways to add colour with lights

how to add colour in a scheme with lights

For those who are feeling less adventurous with colour and don't want to (or cannot) paint a wall, there are still plenty of ways to introduce pops of it around a room in a way that will not overwhelm you or cause you trouble with your landlord. Yes, it is through colourful lights. There are many ways to achieve this especially if you think about materials and fabrics that could be used. You might use a pendant light, a wall sconce, a table or floor lamp. Let's have a look at how to choose some of the hottest lights out there to make a statement in your room.

1/ Create contrast

Let's start in the living room. I am currently researching lights for a Hermes-inspired scheme (see below) and I am planning to use grasscloth on the walls. It is likely to be dark in colour (with warm chocolatey hues) so instead of mixing up too many colours, I thought that WHITE will actually work well against the dark background. Creating a contrast is key in this look.

Think white against black, yellow over blue, green over grey, orange against green.

Above: Mairi Helena Thistle lampshade

2/ Blend them in if you can

This little gem from Pooky (Aurora in Orange) blends with the rest of the decor with its orange resin base and IKAT shade. The exact opposite of standing out like the white lamps above. This is a great idea if your decor is generally quite full on (especially in a home infused with antiques and a lot of warm wood colour).

3/ Make a statement with size

If your room is big enough, go bold and go big. The giant Anglepoise lamp is an excellent example and strikes a balance between being an instantly recognisable design (and possibly a great investment) but also a 'gentle giant' that will add colour and in a very elegant way (I just love everything about this brand really).

4/ Spend it on lights

A mouth-blown made to order glass lamp is the epitome of luxury and they come in so many colours too! Curiousa&Curiousa have table lamps that come in 3 different sizes, each with 3 free blown sections, making each lamp absolutely unique. And yes, they are blown to order. Piece of art.

If your taste is a little simpler, check how elegant the work by Anna Jacobs is (which you can find on AMARA by the way, here). The lamp base turns into a vessel for a colourful cable which is seen through the clear glass, making the lamp playful as well as colourful. And with shades like these, colour is not going to be an issue. The hot pink one is my favourite.

5/ Work with what you have

Seriously, why do some rooms not have a central light - our dining room is like that. Still, if you have 2-3 wall sconces to work with, then you have an opportunity to make a statement in numbers.

6/ Over the dining table - single coloured

Pendant lights over a dining table. Yes. Remember that, if this is going to be your only source of light in the room, it should not be too low down over the table; otherwise the room will feel too dark. Otherwise, the lower over the table, the more intimate it will feel.

Try a Paper mache lampshade like this Mizuko Yellow (£180). Mizuko in Japan means “daughter of water”. The minimalistic shape and light weight of the lamp recalls the association with a drop of water. It will look great against a grey backdrop.

This is the IKONO pendant light by Normann Copenhagen (£249.90). Think about the contrast again. Red against the light green looks sharp.

7/ Over the dining table - multi

You can also use the same concept over kitchen islands by the way! When adding multiple pendant lights over your dining table, you should best go for a trio of lights and use them either in a straight line, all one colour (top left); or a straight line in multiple colours (top right); all tied up together (bottom left); or in different heights (bottom right). You can also use the same concept over kitchen islands by the way!

Another example for you to swoon over, if budget allows it, is the Curiousa&Curiousa glass pendants as they do come in the most exciting colours and look great when combined together.

Curiousa&Curiousa pendant lights pink

Curiousa&Curiousa pendant lights pink and blue

Photo: Curiousa&Curiousa

8/ Colour pops in the bedroom

In the bedroom you can be even more daring if you like, as this is the place where you spend a lot of time, but with your eyes closed! So my first example is from this beautifully relaxing design by Australian Greg Natale who has combined a white headboard and patterned wallpaper with a yellow ceramic lamp. Accents from the wallpaper (the limey yellow) echo on the lamp for a flow in the styling.

9/ And in the office

Most of the desks I come across are white. Set against white walls. Well, hello! Time to add some colour! The Anglepoise lamps spring to mind again - their Paul Smith collaboration edit is perfect for trendsetters. For those looking for an investment piece, this brand has been selling their 1227 model (further below in red, in the Seasons in Colour home) for decades!

10/ Styling a kid's room with colourful light

How can we leave the little ones out, when their lights are usually the most colourful! As most kids furniture is white, use yellow, red and blue. Think of lamps next to the bed, night lights or the main pendant. In our kid's bedroom, a mustard yellow lampshade by HOKOLO London is combined with a Vita Copenhagen white lamp base. The 'Fun This Way' Canvas is actually also illuminated (£59.95 from Letteroom via Notonthehighstreet)!



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