Lamps & Lamp Shades

Back in May, when Carly and I went to the Burlington Flea, we found this fabulous crystal lamp base that was in amazing condition, but lacked a lamp shade. Of course, I couldn't pass it up, especially once we bargained with the guy and went and looked at it three different times over the course of the morning. However, it has been sitting on the credenza, that I also purchased in May, without a light bulb or a shade just beckoning me to love it. Apparently it wasn't too noticeable, because Tyler didn't even know it was sitting there!

I thought about taking it a few places, but knew  that I wouldn't be able to find anything at Target or Home Goods, both places I frequent for lighting, so I decided I would try out a local light store Palette Studios and see what I could find and learn a little more about selecting a shade. 

Above are a few snap shots of various options I tried out before making my final decision. I loved how they used brought actual light into the lamp when testing the shades out. It can make a huge difference in the overall effect. 

Above are a few snap shots of various options I tried out before making my final decision. I loved how they used brought actual light into the lamp when testing the shades out. It can make a huge difference in the overall effect. 

Once arriving and going in the wrong door, I met the owner, Sharon, and her amazing team. Immediately, I was helped and given a few key pointers as well as a brand new harp and cord (of course for a small price, but super quick nonetheless.) After describing where I was planning to set the lamp, my style and what I was going for, we went into a large room filled top to bottom with shades! I have to say crazy how many options there were! We looked at various shapes, sizes and colors. Here are a few tips that I learned from the team that can be applied to any lamp/lamp shade combo whether you are shopping at Palette Studios, Target, Home Goods or a garage sale!

  • A Harp, or the bent metal piece above the base, is there for stability and shape. You can easily change these out if you need to adjust your shade height. The one I got was only $10! 
  • The more bells and angles, the more traditional the shade
  • Hard-lines, hardback & simple clean lines are more modern
  • Large scale drums go a bit more vintage, but can be amazing if you have enough breathing space! 
  • Try to play off the base as much as you can. You don't want to veer too much off the original look of a piece, but often you can find something that speaks to both. 

After much deliberation, I went with a shade that had clean lines, but a slight angle to play off my angular base. There were quite a few I liked, but I felt like the one I selected mixed modern and traditional together well. I love it all put together! I might have spent a bit much, but it should last forever because the shade & base are classic pieces.  Palette Studios has been doing decorative and custom lighting for the past 100 years and they are happy to help with more than just lamp shades. They are also great with fixing vintage treasures, creating lamps or chandeliers out of found objects or just doing simple tweaks like adding a lamp shade. 

Palette Studios is definitely my new found gem in East Walnut Hills, Cincinnati. However, sometimes you don't need anything special, you just need a few table lamps or a desk lamp, so I have rounded up a few of my favorites that don't break the bank. It can be crazy how much lamps cost, but if you look in the right places you can find quite a few options, some that come with a designated lamp shade while others you can mix and match. All the ones above except for a few fall under the $100 price range, which works great if you need matching lamps! You can also bring in a few smaller scale or playful lamps to add a bit of whimsy and light to the space. There are so many options out there, don't be scared, the worst that happens is you have to return it, and even Palette Studios lets you try it out at home first! 

Hope this makes the lighting section in Target a little less daunting and you don't pass on those fabulous lamp bases at the flea anymore! 

Happy Hunting! 

-a.