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2017 has been an exciting year with a focus on the stars and planets. A total eclipse of the sun this past summer visible in many parts of the U.S. had star gazers in a tizzy with excitement. Many of us donned special glasses so we could gaze at the sun. Outside of this event, we continue to spend a good deal of time looking up, which is why celestial chandeliers are so popular.
It’s because we do look up so often we want to see something that is a reflection of who we are and what we hold to be beautiful. Space, the sun and the moon, and planets are great influences when it comes to modern lighting. Colorful orbs, metal frames fashioned after the planets and contemporary structures that resemble spaceships are trends that are taking off, as are other fixtures connected to Mother Earth and therefore more organic in nature and feel.
Regardless of whether your heart is firmly planted here on the ground or you dream of the universe beyond, the choices for what you hang in your home to shine down on you are abundant.
Let a showpiece light takes center stage. Image: Luxe Design Studios
The planets and stars align
One of the most interesting things about watching the eclipse was witnessing the patterns of light as the moon moved in front of the sun, with various effects such as a starburst. World Market has created its own exclusive chandelier resembling that effect. The Brass Starburst Collin Chandelier, priced at $199, is both affordable and memorable. Made of iron with a matte brass finish, this fixture includes nine type B 25-watt light bulbs, offering rays of light that extend across the table.
For those who remember the space race, the Paige 12-Light Sputnik Chandelier from Wayfair is reminiscent of the Soviet first satellite in orbit in 1957. With so many bulbs visible, this piece may require softer and lower wattage bulbs to overpower a room while still remaining a focal point. With a price of $349, this fixture is more than just a functional piece; it’s one that will remain a timeless reminder of man’s pursuit to conquer space.
The means by which man travels through space has held particular interest for many. For the former kids who built spaceships out of Legos, Lampsplus.com has a fantastical yet simple chandelier. The Elan Starship LED Pendant Light, priced at $1,118, can be considered an investment for those who crave something out of the ordinary. This fixture is energy-efficient and uses 1,782 lumens (with 85 CRI), comparable to a 100-watt incandescent bulb. The overall effect is one of a softer light, creating a quiet yet modern ambiance.
Earthly influences make a home feel grounded. Image: Susie Miles Design
Honoring Mother Earth
Water is the Earth’s life source and 2017 has been a year for record-breaking rainfalls in some areas. Why not pay tribute with a light fixture designed to resemble rain?
Target sells the Kenroy Home Rain Drop 3 Light Pendant Ceiling Light for those who want raindrops above, but not necessarily falling on their heads. Made with iridescent amber glass shades, the piece has a warm amber finish and is priced at $199.80, making it budget-friendly and stylish. Requiring three bulbs, the fixture must not take anything stronger than 60 watts.
Organic shapes and images make us feel closer to the Earth, and online emporium Ballard Designs taps into that desire with a light fixture that recalls both the sea and the Earth. The Airlie Coral Pendant has a genuine seaside flavor and was cast from real found coral, creating a realistic, natural texture. The striking pendant works in both contemporary and traditional settings. Priced at $599, it looks luxurious, belying its more moderate price point.
One singular fixture resembling Mother Earth makes a strong statement, and contemporary manufacturer Moooi has created a specific piece that pays tribute to our planet. Designed by Bertjan Pot, the Random Light is huge in size, yet light as a feather. What began as a simple craft project has bloomed into a timeless and widely recognized staple for retailer Design Within Reach. Ranging from $675 to $2,696, and offered in sizes small, medium and large, this fixture is often installed in groups of two or three for a dramatic effect.
Retro design feels fresh with contemporary lighting. Image: Mark Lawton Architecture
A new take on tradition
Of course, traditional tiered crystal chandeliers never go out of style and some manufacturers are adding a modern twist on the idea by creating pieces made of more organic materials such as wood or substituting wood beads for crystals. Many retailers, including several mentioned above, offer such chandeliers starting at less than $150.
The Ceiling Lights Wood from Threshold, available through Target, manages to be both contemporary and traditional. Priced at $147.28, this chandelier is an easy and affordable way to bring a modern and rustic feel to any room. Find this look in several of today’s top design magazines; a sign your choice is on trend and on point.
A trio of lights makes a significant impact in a large space. Image: Marc Mauldin Photography
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