As milennials, we love open floor plans and combined living spaces. While it is perfect for our lifestyle to have the kitchen, dining and living space within one central hub, a challenge arises in how to visually define individual areas within a large, single space. Strategic decorative lighting is one of the best solutions.
Lighting, depending on the size and intensity, creates a focal point and designates certain areas for certain tasks. Lately, it is immensely popular for designers to use large scale pendant shades to achieve just this. Today I’m sharing some amazing examples of how lights with oversized shades can be effectively used in residential, commercial, and hospitality design. Not only does it bring a refined, contemporary look, overscale shades draw your eye to a location, make a big spaces feel more intimate, and provide an abundance of glowing light. The key is the balance of color and material to make sure it isn’t visually too heavy.
Hilton Garden Inn, Charleston, SC – designed by J Banks Design. Seating areas in a 2 story lounge are made more cozy with groupings of drum shades mounted midway down on each column. To add a sense of place in the hotel, images of downtown Charleston street signs line the interior of each shade.
Suzanne Kasler’s design studio. A wonderful example of defining workspace with large pendants. Since the white shades blend with the white walls, it doesn’t feel heavy at all.
Zara in Soho, NYC. This is enormous in relation to human scale. Ironically, since the opening is so large and the material is white, it is not at all overbearing when standing underneath. Instead, a soft halo of light beams down and surrounds you.
I took this picture at Anthropologie in Center City, Philadelphia. The large shades bring the very tall ceiling down to a more human level at the checkout counters.
Club Monaco in Dallas
2 large pendants define the kitchen in this apartment. The exteriors of the shades are painted to blend with the walls, letting the warmth of the brass interiors create a beautiful accent.
A minimal, contemporary design. In this palette black elements pop, letting the dome shaped light pendant designate the dining area. Designed and built by Altereco.
rustic reinvented ~ painted tin buckets transformed into focal point lighting for an event.
Tall transparent drum shades create a light and elegant feel in dining room. Rather than using the typical chandeliers, the shades make it contemporary and unique.
Urban, chic and inventive, these floor lamps are the perfect light source for a group dinner.
This blog post would not be complete without examples from iconic designer Marcel Wanders, a master of integrating oversized elements into interiors. Marcel’s lighting is sculptural, dramatic, and over the top – purposefully an “Alice in Wonderland” effect. Talk about completely transforming your experience as you walk through the space!
Villa Moda retail store in Dubai