Let There Be Light!
I actually had someone ask for me to write this and a light went off (pun intended ;) for me about how helpful it could be to anyone that is struggling just like I did when making these choices. So here are the steps I followed:
1. I did my research online and got an idea of things I liked first. I stalked all the amazing interior design accounts out there and saved images of the ones I loved. Some of my favorites for lighting fixture inspiration are @awelldressedhomellc, @carcabaroad, and @randigarrettdesign so definitely check them out! To me lighting fixtures are the center piece of any space and you really want to LOVE each one, not just get something that works.
2. Next I went to a couple lighting stores just to see the overall look of what I was envisioning in person and even though I didn't end up purchasing the exact fixtures from the stores I visited (for specific reasons that I'll spare you) but it was still helpful to see some of these looks in person vs. just online. I think there are some things that photograph really well, but if you don't love it in person then you're the only one that is going to suffer from having purchased it.
3. I found the exact fixtures I wanted online. (A little tip that my builder actually pointed out to me- a lot of the fixtures I found online are actually the exact same as the ones I was seeing in the stores because most manufacturers will sell to multiple companies who just put their name on it and re-sell it.) I read as many reviews (preferably with pictures from customers homes) as I possibly could to make sure they were quality. And I double checked return policies in case anything went wrong. (Some companies like Wayfair will offer an option to pay a small fee for return protection so that if you don't like the fixture you can return it without covering the return shipping costs. I wouldn't do this on all fixtures, just maybe really large ones, because they generally wave the return fee if the reason you're sending it back is because it was damaged or defective.) Then if you can, I recommend waiting for them to go on sale to get the best price because lighting fixtures can get expensive!
DINING ROOM CHANDELIER:
(Note: I took this right after it was hung and there were a couple of strands out of place still, it looked flawless after it settled and I pulled the beads into place.)
The first fixture I decided on was one I actually bought almost a year ago because I loved it SO much and it went on sale for 40% off and knowing Pottery Barn, I knew I wasn't going to get a better price on it. Ironically as I'm writing this I just checked it on their website and it's 40% off right now too!
Pottery Barn also has a couple other beaded ones that I love too. I was between the one I picked and this one. But I ended up going with this one because it fit better in our space with the white beads, vs. the other one that was more a cream color.
We went with the black because the exterior of our house is white with black windows, and we thought it would be a nice look to be able to look through the two foyer windows and see this that also matched the outside of the house. This was the fixture I was the most hesitant to buy online for obvious reasons, but I'm so glad I did because we saved a ton of money! The one was saw in the store was between $2k - $2.5k. We got this one on Wayfair for $450! Wayfair actually has a ton of great options for this look depending on the size you need. Here was another one I saved a while back.
I have to say I absolutely LOVE our island pendants. I really wanted a clean look with glass and polished nickle and when I saw these I knew they were perfect. They are pretty big (12" x 12") so we only ended up doing two of them. I didn't want to room to look cluttered and even though we could have easily done 3 with the size of our island, I didn't want the room to look cluttered because of the direction of the island. Here is the link for these and they go on sale often enough that I would suggest waiting if they're not on sale because otherwise they're not the cheapest pendants. But definitely worth the price tag if you ask me! Here's another one with a similar look that are slightly less.
BREAKFAST NOOK CHANDELIER:
We have a breakfast nook table going in off our kitchen and purchased a light for there as well, although we're waiting until our table is delivered to hang the light. So for that reason all I have is the below stock image of that fixture, but I really love it so I wanted to share!
POWDER ROOM FIXTURE:
I did oil rubbed bronze for the powder room to capture more of a rustic look. The room has high ceilings and I felt like it called for a chandelier instead of traditional sconces so I went with this flush mount. It looks great in our powder room but it could really work in so many different spaces.
Moving upstairs we had to pick fixtures for each bedroom and because we really love having ceiling fans going, we chose these Hunter Douglas fans for our daughters room, and our two additional bedrooms. In bedrooms I'll always choose functionality over aesthetic but if you can have a fan that also looks nice that's a definite plus! I love these because they can have either a natural wood look on the blade, or be all white! Also we got the 42" because of our room dimensions but they also have 52" for larger rooms. One thing to keep in mind when picking out ceiling fans is if you have recessed lighting in the room and you get a fan that is too big when the blades go over the high hat lights you can cause a strobe light effect and that can be very annoying if both are on at the same time.
MASTER BEDROOM FAN:
We wanted a bigger more rustic look for the fan in our Master and when I saw this one on Wayfair I knew it was perfect. It has such a nice look in person and comes with a remote as well.
MASTER CLOSET CHANDELIER:
I actually picked the same mini-chandelier for our master closet and over our free standing tub in our master bath because it was very pretty in person and very inexpensive! I also really like this mini chandelier if you aren't a fan of the crystal look.
MASTER BATH SCONCES:
This picture really does them no justice but I didn't get to take one myself so I had to settle with a night time picture that my husband took :/ That being said I really do love these pendants. They have these in triple, double, and single sconce.
MY DAUGHTERS BATHROOM SCONCES:
Again I don't think this picture does this any justice but I saw these first in the store and absolutely loved them, and then found the exact same ones on Wayfair and was so excited because they really finished off the over all look I was going for in my daughters bathroom. They have them in a bunch of different colors and finishes too so you could probably find a perfect fit for any space.
MY DAUGHTERS READING NOOK LIGHTING:
We did a ceiling fan in our daughters room but then added a reading nook and so I took my opportunity to add some decorative lighting! This fixture looks a little more gold in the pictures on the Wayfair website but in person it's this really subtle beautiful shade of gold that you can really appreciate in the picture above from my daughters room.
Again I didn't have the chance to take any pictures of these actually up at our house but I love them so much and they fit perfect with the exterior of our house that I still wanted to share them here. They come in 3 different sizes so depending on where you're using them you have some options. We used the biggest ones in the front of the house and the medium sized ones in our backyard.
And that completes it for our lighting fixture choices for the house! I hope this was somewhat helpful for anyone looking to make choices around their lighting fixtures because I know it can be challenging. Best of luck!