tiny difficult hallways

dowbrightDecember 20, 2012

I have this odd little hallway that needs lighting. A lady who's good a decorating is helping me, as I'm clueless. She suggested brightening this small space up with a bling-type light. I have to admit the light looks and sounds pretty to me! But I fear putting something so noticeable in a place that is so oddly shaped and cramped will look crazy.

This is the light. http://www.lumens.com/bling-sconce-by-robert-abbey/uu235049/product

What do you think? One day i think it sounds terrific, the next day I'm afraid! Oh, one important point is I'm getting if for HALF-price if I get it. Is she trying to get me to take it because it was a mistake from another client and she sees me as a way to unload it, or do you think it could be a good idea? ( the picture, there's one more door on the right.

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I think it is adorable!

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 2:59PM
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Fori is not pleased

I guess if you like it, it would be fine for the space. I don't like it though. I think you can put in a fun or fancy or over-the-top fixture in that space, but I'd personally prefer a different one.

And just to be annoying, I have to say to paint the walls and make the crown molding and ceiling stand out--it's not a weird hall. It's interesting. :)

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 3:25PM
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laura mcleod

I like it - I think it leans more whimsical and less over the top blingy. But if you don't love it, I would not get it. Changes are you can find a light that you absolutely love.

I agree with fori to paint - but maybe go low contrast with the white trim so the walls don't seem chopped up. I think it's a great little hall with a lot of character.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 3:35PM
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while i agree with changing out the existing light...i am not a fan of the light your friend selected (just personal perference)....here is a very similar style (only faceted 'bulbs') from overstock at about the same price as your half discount, so i'm not so sure you are getting such a deal...

if you do with the blingy design (which i think would be cool) i agree with fori, paint your walls...i can't tell if the floors are wood, but maybe a much more saturated color to give something for the bling to sparkle against

Here is a link that might be useful: Similar bling light from overstock

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 3:42PM
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It's not one of those things that can stand alone very well. If you were going blingy-conceptual with the entire hallway it could be the statement piece to cap it off. But if it is going to stay a relatively plain passageway from place to place, I think it's out of place.

You might do well to get some inexpensive track and run it down the hall with the individual heads aimed at the wall spaces where you could hang pictures.

I would also not be afraid to paint this hallway a saturated color. It's never going to be a light and bright hallway so unless you need to keep it a light colored paint for visual reasons, why not go a little dramatic with color?

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 5:27PM
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My thanks to all for the responses! You guys and this home forum are the best. :D

One reason I am worried about a more "statement" type color is that there are 4 different colored rooms that branch off this hall. 2 bedrooms, a bath, and the main living area. What do you think? Still add color to it?

-powder blue
-light green
and the living area is a grey-white, because my art pieces add the pop out there.

I looked up saturated color and got a ton of different meanings. So i'm not sure I understand it. Can those of you who recommended it explain a bit?

palimspsest, do you mean like blingy picture frames? I was planning a picture collage for the side of the hall without doors. I'm a bling-liker!

fori, thanks for the "interesting!" That changed my whole view of the hallway. :D

laurainlincoln, I do love it! Just worried it would look out of place.

desert_solitaire, yep, absolutely I must change the current light. It's just a bulb hanging down! The contractor is waiting on me. ;) The floor is a large tile that's brownish & beigeish ceramic.

cearbhaill, I think it's adorable too!

You folks are a tremendous help. I'm so grateful for your advice. :D

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 6:16PM
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I have to echo Desert-Solitaire. Yes, I can see how changing the light is a good idea, but I don't like the one suggested. It looks too busy. Part of what makes the hallway challenging is that it has a LOT going on. I think a busy light fixture will make that effect seem worse, not better.

I would look for a simple light, maybe a milk glass shade? Something that is pretty and has nice lines, but doesn't demand attention. I am linking to one that is extremely simple and reasonably priced (I wish the base was a little simpler, but this was the first one I saw that looked like what I was trying to describe).

Just please avoid the "boob light" if you can :)

Editing to say: our posts crossed in cyber space. If you love the bling light then go for it.

Here is a link that might be useful: very simple light

This post was edited by EngineerChic on Thu, Dec 20, 12 at 18:28

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 6:26PM
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The lighting in the link is a sconce. Is there a matching ceiling fixture that you're considering or are you going to change to a wall fixture?

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 6:38PM
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I'd fling myself out there and find wallpaper that has some depth of field to the pattern, and includes the colors of all the rooms that you see from the hall. I'd paint the ceiling in the background color of the paper.

Then I'd put in a (yes, I'm going to say it) modern track light along the ceiling, with one fixture to flood each wall space between the doors.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 10:37PM
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I decided to throw any caution to the window and take my dark, windowless hall and stairwell and do this:

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 10:45PM
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I don't think that fixture is the best choice but that may be because I really don't like it. I also suspect it is overpriced for what it is and you can do a lot better with another fixture. Please don't feel obliged to help this woman with a mistake when you are undecided. IMO one should buy things one loves instantly and not have to wonder.

Have you posted other pics of your house or described your decorating style? Difficult to advise you without knowing what the rest of your house looks like or your fav style.

I do like bronwynsmom's idea of wallpaper with depth and *I* might even be tempted to paint the doors as well as the ceiling the background color. I'd also do a track light as she suggested for the art you are going to put on the walls. Even a small hallway can be used as a small gallery.

IMO decide first on how you want to decorate the hallway, then find a light to go with that - or do the track light which is functional to highlight the art.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 10:59PM
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Unless it is in stock, it takes a minimum of six weeks to get Abbey lights, and they are not returnable. If you decide to order an Abbey light, talk to the sales people first to find out if you can return it, and how long it will take. I just discovered this by ordering one for Christmas which will not be here in time.

That particular light seems to be a bit much for the space to me, and as Chibimimi notes, it is a sconce and will not attach to the ceiling.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 11:06PM
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Usually I like Robert Abbey lamps - I have one - but this one is a bit crazy for your space. Choose a simple but modern fixture.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 11:21PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

The hallway already feels very tall and narrow. Attracting your eye upward with a fancy fixture will only make it feel more so.

I like turning small hallways into gallery areas. I would replace the light with a track light fixture where you could put pools of light on various spaces in the hallway and hang pictures to highlight them. This would bring the source of light lower and make the hallway feel a little less like a chimney.

I would also do something to richen the wall color so the art is really standout. One of my favorite museums, the Wadsworth, uses very rich and saturated colors in many of their galleries and it does wonderful things to make the art stand out. So either paint or wallpaper in a rich color, offset by the light from the fixture would really change the entire feel of the space.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 9:07AM
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Yes, if you don't like the wallpaper idea, I agree with Palimpsest and Annie that a rich, deep color that makes the walls recede and makes the space interesting would be good.

Doing that follows a convention in interior design , which is to make a transitional space deep and rich so that you create vistas into the other rooms through the doors, and you get the sense of being "released" into the larger spaces.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 12:35PM
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That light seems oddly formal for what appears to be a simple hallway. I don't particularly love the light anyway, but I don't think I would like it in that hallway. With all the doorways, it seems like adding a sconce that sticks out would feel more busy but not make the space as a whole more interseting. Yes, you may be getting a good price, but it seems like you're basically wasting the money if you don't really like the light but are just buying it because of the deal and what sounds like a slightly pushy decorator.

I absolutely agree with what others have stated: some interesting paint or wallpaper would really liven up the space.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 12:46PM
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