Industrial lighting is not a trend. It’s a way of life, echoing the past designs of utilitarian efficiencies that have been re-imagined for contemporary homes.
Over recent years, we have seen this look gain popularity. As can easily happen, this once unique style has snowballed and picked up other key looks. This may well have caused confusion with the conglomerate effect, with key trends being referred to in a variety of ways. However, I feel that each of them deserves to be recognised in their own right, so I’m going to explain the key looks we associate with industrial. Whilst they look great together, they can standalone for a look that’s true to our urbanised heritage. These looks can be summarised as:
Let’s start with the obvious one!
1. Relating to or characterised by industry
Synonyms: manufacturing, factory, warehouse, business, trade
2. Very great in extent or amount
“Tax avoidance on an industrial scale”
This style was born in an exciting era of economic growth teamed with a need for increased efficiencies. Re-purposing items, utilising a raw aesthetic in open plan spaces, this is now a look that has revitalised many modern interiors.
So, what are the key features of industrial lighting?
Factory Style Pendant Lights:
Instantly recognisable as lights utilised in factories and warehouses, the wide base of the shade providing a wide spread of illumination.
Due to the locations these industrial lights were used in, some came complete with a cage that protected the fragile bulbs from being knocked and broken.
Bare Bulb Lights:
Seeing the bulbs as one of the main focal points of the light, is a throwback to the austerity of the design. It works, so why change it?
What is the perfect backdrop for industrial lights?
Exposed pipes and brickwork
This is a strong look that gives the impression of carefree design, perhaps a little unfinished and haphazard. That said, because this is an iconic look, it therefore looks like it’s all been pulled together for maximum impact on the eye.
Metal and wood
The use of these materials adds to the grey/brown neutral colour scheme whilst maintaining the simple aesthetic.
Open plan spaces
With inspiration from industrial’s heritage in warehouse conversions, industrial styling works perfectly in open plan spaces. Remember to zone the spaces if you don’t want it to feel too large and echoey.+
Reclaimed furniture, tea chests used as occasional tables and plain, simple, honest pieces in woods and metal. No fuss, fringing or unnecessary ornamentation.
1. Relating to or donating wine of high quality
Synonyms: high-quality, prime, quality, choice, select, superior, best
2. Denoting something from the past of high quality, especially something representing the best of its kind
“A vintage Sherlock Homes adventure”
You’ll be more likely to see a more refined finish on vintage lighting, generally enamelled or painted. Slightly more eclectic, you can mix and match with clusters of lampshades with an influence of style from Shabby Chic. It’s a bit ‘mend and make do’ with a slightly more feminine look, creating a homely effect.
1. Of or concerning navigation, sailors, or the sea; maritime
Synonyms: maritime, marine, naval, seagoing, ocean-going, yachting
Fisherman style lighting, bleached woods and natural marine inspiration is key for this look. Taking elements of industrial design but giving it a nautical soul, we still see the metals and protective cages, the rustic finishes with seafaring inspiration.
1. beginning anew and in a transformed way.
“the new architecture”
Synonyms: reinvigorated, revived, improved, refreshed, reborn
1. districts and small settlements outside large urban areas or the capital.
“the airfield is right out in the country”
Synonyms: countryside, green belt, rural area, farmland
A contemporary take on the traditional, somewhat rustic country style. It encapsulates all that we like of country styling with the texture and warmth, now teamed with a smarter approach to the relaxed, informal style.
1. imitative of a style or fashion from the recent past .
“retro 60’s fashions”
Synonyms: in period style, period, nostalgic, evocative, familiar
Retro style lighting evokes the vibrancy of the swinging sixties, with shiny, colourful pops of colour within simple, curvy shapes. Mixed colours used together is a strong look for this style.
1. characteristic of or occurring in the middle of last century
“mid-century modernist architecture”
Mid Century style takes it’s influence from the 1940’s through to the early 1980’s. Embracing the fashions of the time, this trend thrived on using modern materials (such as plastic) and form from the inspiration of the moment (such as the sputnik design). Often teamed with pop art colours, this is a striking look.
1. the decade of 1970 to 1979
” decade, decennary, decennium. a period of 10 years”
1. having glamour.
“one of the world’s most glamorous women”
Synonyms: alluring, beautiful, attractive, elegant, chic, smart, well dressed, stylish, fashionable
70’s glam is all about retro but glamorised! Playing with scale, luxury materials and pipework style lighting, these lights look great used with candy pop colours and wood furniture.
So, now you’re in the know, enjoy adding your favourite trend to your home!