Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The Problem with Ugly Light Fixtures.

I've had an ongoing battle with the ceiling lights in my apartment. I know the webs recommend just switching them out for the duration of the lease but the ceilings in this lovely old building are of a crumbling plaster sort & I'm afraid that if I try to fiddle with them, they'll massively cave.  Even drilling something as small as a little hook causes a massive blizzard of white.

So all my experimentation has been with disguising the existing fixtures.  I'm actually pretty pleased with the most recent incarnations.

In the bedroom, I moved the capiz wind chimes from the corner. I didn't cut the strands but rather looped them up and over, giving the makeshift chandelier a fuller, more even appearance.


The main room has undergone several versions.  Originally, it was the ubiquitous ugly ceiling fan lights.  It looked similar to this:

The triple light feature was a challenging de-uglification effort.
I originally covered it with a fat chinese lantern and added a pretty crystal pull for the fan.

but my taller classmates kept knocking their heads on it.

I then found a decorative brass bowl on clearance from pier 1 and fastened it with ribbon:

But it looked amateur and makeshift and showed off the practical but ugly CFLs.

This last week, when I moved the lion lithograph, I took down the ikea light that had been hanging in the corner.  I decided to replace the bowl with that square paper shade:

It's the 1st that I've been marginally satisfied! I like its simplicity & the natural color blends with my other lamps:

Saturday, June 7, 2014

The Power of a Single Mirror

I've mentioned before that I live in a little cave. I have a gorgeous expanse of south facing windows but with the thick trees outside and architectural overhang between the sun room & main room, not much natural light hits the reaches of the room. Even on sunny days, I need a lamp on when I read.

I've tried to use mirrors to maximize the light that does come in, with small effect.  Here's my latest attempt.

This mirror, originally framed in a hideous brown-gray (I really need to start taking before photos), was discovered at a thrift shop for $20.  A couple of coats of paint later et voilĂ .  It fits so well with the permanent molding of the unit and really lightens up that darkest corner of the room. Hurray!

Here's the before: 


Monday, June 2, 2014

The Wandering Lion

I treasure the old lithograph that I inherited from my great grandma but it's a bit unwieldy because of its size and the dark dark frame. It definitely dominates the wall and doesn't reflect ANY light.

So I decided to move it from the main wall.... 

to a corner spot near the shelves.  Eventually, if I spot one in a thrift shop, I may hang a mirror here to maximize the light from the window.  I feel like I live in a little cave.

I know that it's hung way too high but there was absolutely no other place to put it. I'm thinking of getting a little art light to hang over it.

Here are the befores:

Here are some gratuitous photos of my breathing little lion, Toulouse. She's practicing her world-class laziness.