The lighting industry is always changing to accommodate new styles, energy efficiency, and safety. Electrical contractors can keep up with these trends by staying aware of what’s happening in the lighting market and how it may affect their customers.
Lighting designers are combining digital and traditional designs and construction to create high-concept pieces that are at once sleek and handmade. For example, the Wave Form collection from Look Book participant Forma Rosa Studio of Brooklyn, NY was designed on a computer and then handcrafted by artisans in Peru. And this Troupe ceramic pendant by Oakland, CA, design studio Brave Matter is inspired by dancers in the Bauhaus-era Triadic Ballet.
Another growing trend is a return to simpler silhouettes from influential design periods. This translates to more organic, sculptural shapes and an overall simpler look. In particular, brass is a hot finish right now. Its warm, antique look is an antidote to the more industrial and retro styles that have dominated the past few years. This style pairs particularly well with classic silhouettes like a chandelier or linear pendant.
In terms of color, whites, soft grays, and blonde woods—all popular paint colors—are starting to make their way into lighting. This is also a great choice for homeowners who want to create a clean, modern space with a light, neutral palette.
Decorative, sculptural forms are another big lighting trend, especially in one-of-a-kind materials like blown or smoked glass and specialty finishes. These pieces are not only functional, but also make a statement about the homeowner’s taste and style. A good place to see this trend is in kitchens, where a fixture that looks more like a piece of art than a standard light fixture is becoming increasingly popular.
Wall sconces are another great place to see this lighting trend. Whether they are a small pair that flanks a bedside table or larger groupings that serve as the focal point of a living room, these fixtures help free up floor space and add visual interest to the room. Adding to this trend is the use of multiple metals, such as brass and gold, which can coordinate with the faucets, hardware, or appliances in a space.
LED bulbs are also continuing to become more popular. Not only do they provide better light quality than conventional incandescent bulbs, but they are more efficient as well. They convert up to 95% of their energy into actual light, while fluorescent and incandescent bulbs only turn over 5% of their energy into light. Plus, LED bulbs are a lot safer to handle than their mercury counterparts.
This is an important trend that will continue to gain popularity as homeowners and businesses become more educated on the environmental benefits of LED lights. Additionally, consumers are looking for ways to save money on their energy bills while still having the convenience of smart technology. Many LED lights are available with built-in smart features that allow you to control them with an app on your phone.