How do I Choose the Best Table Lamps?

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  • Written By: Sheri Cyprus
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 13 September 2019
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Choosing the best table lamps is a matter of deciding on the style, size and shape for your furniture and type of room. The kind of table lamp you select is also going to depend on your budget. Some lamp materials such as plastic are usually inexpensive, while fine crystal or quality metal can be much more pricey. Viewing a wide range of table lamp options in your price range can help you choose from the designs you love that best fit your home.

Small lamps in plastic materials are typically the cheapest. The benefit of a well-made plastic lamp is that it isn't easily breakable; they're also available in many different colors. When choosing these kinds of lamps for children's rooms, make sure they meet safety requirements. Also, you should never exceed the recommended wattage when you insert light bulbs in the lamp. By adding stenciled designs or other whimsical touches to a bought plastic table lamp, it can look much more interesting.


Medium size lamps in neutral colors are most versatile and practical; they are usually moderate in their cost as well. You may want to look for interesting, yet neutral materials such as clear acrylic lamp stems mixed with metal for interest. Many of these types of table lamp designs can mix in well with modern decors as well as give traditional interiors a style boost. Wood-turned, rounded lamp bases tend to work best for traditional or rustic decors, but not so well for more modern ones. A good way to add interest to medium sized table lamps, depending on how they'll coordinate with your decor, is to choose square or less expected shade and stem styles.

Large lamps can be stunning in ceramic materials as they can almost serve a dual purpose as decorative pottery as well as a light. Ginger jar ceramic lamps are a classic look that can be used in a wide range of home interior decors. If your home is decorated in a mixed, or eclectic, type of style, these types of table lamps can be a good choice. When choosing a large table lamp, it's important to remember to not let it look like it overwhelms the furniture by its size. A large lamp needs a substantial sized table to create a balanced, in-scale appearance.

A tall, narrow table lamp is often much easier to decorate with than a large, wide one. A great feature of tall, thin table lamps is that they are space-savers that can create a lot of style in a room by filling up otherwise blank wall space. For example, a tall dark metal, wood or ceramic lamp placed on a night table on each side of a bed can add some drama and interest to lighter-colored bedroom walls, as the design is vertical and draws the eye to the wall. Two tall lamps can also stylishly flank a headboard or picture hung above the bed.


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