Saturday, January 15, 2011


Brass Orient Express Lamp Repro early 1980s
Everything seems so bare now after putting away the Christmas decorations this week.

Touches of light around the house will help ease the dark, I'm already wishing for longer days and spring. I learned a lot about light the three years living in Holland.

The Dutch use lighting to evenly bathe a room in soft light. I remember visiting a frugal friend's apartment one evening. The lighting was amazing, a couple of electric cords across the room with very low wattage light bulbs every few feet. Each light had a white paper shade taped in place. I thought it was a little hazardous but it sure was nice looking. Everywhere you go there seem to be multiple lights in rooms and buildings. It eliminates the dark areas.

I grew up in mostly old apartments with a bare light bulb hanging from the center of the room, nothing charming. Now I like light in a room from several sources. I realize how important it is and wondered how my dining room would look with only the ceiling chandelier as it was when our home was built in 1997.

Standard chandelier from 1997
Above is my dining room with only the bare standard chandelier, not an upgrade. One light source is not enough.
Dimmed light, shades on chandelier, lights on buffet and two candelabra
Now, this makes everything more warm and inviting on a winter night. After several years in the house I added the shades and a dimmer to the chandelier, then the lamps on the buffet. The table is soft with light from the candelabra, a McFrugal's find in 1994.
Candlelight makes everything shine and sparkle
For years hubby and I ate by candlelight every night except in summer. Leftovers taste better by candlelight, it didn't matter what we ate, it made it so much nicer. It got harder and harder to find reasonably priced tapers so the candelabra have not been on the table regularly the last 3 winters. At Thanksgiving I had a glass chimney with one candle. One day I sat looking at the one candle burning and realized how I've eliminated something so joyful. I dug out the candelabra for the Christmas season and vowed to have them burning and warming our lives at mealtime for the rest of the winter.