Floor Lamps

Written by Serena Berger
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Floor lamps may be the main source of light in any room, but they are also an opportunity to finish off your decorative scheme with flair and unexpected details. Look for crackled eggshell finish, antiqued solid brass or bronze scrolls, or crystal details for a lamp that will be truly special. Many designers recommend that you don't try to match your lamps (especially lamp shades) too particularly to the other fabrics in a room--neutral lamps are often a choice with better longevity.

Swinging Floor Lamps

A swing lamp is always a good choice as a floor lamp, because it is more flexible than a standing lamp. If you position it to the side of a chair or couch, you can swing the lamp into the perfect position to illuminate a book or a crossword puzzle when you need it. The rest of the time, the lamp can be angled so that the room has optimal benefit from the ambient light.

Some floor lamps have multiple bulbs set up on a vertical base, giving you the choice to light different combinations and angle them in different ways. This may be suitable for a casual or sleek decorative scheme (depending on the material from which the lamp is made), but is often not ideal for a more formal or romantic room. You can look for a floor lamp with two or three bulbs under a single shade, which at least gives you the option of how much light you want, even though you won't be able to angle or focus it as precisely.

You should usually use frosted bulbs in floor lamps, as they cast warmer and more diffuse light. The right shade is also key to getting the quality of light that you want. A frosted glass shade is one way to go, but attractive fabrics with warm undertones (an ivory with a hint of pink, for example) can also make your room instantly more inviting.

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