Thursday, January 19, 2012

Last of the Lights

Tonight, Niels and I are going to purchase the last of the lights for the house. One of our projects for the weekend is to go through and move all the lights, fans and mirrors from the garage to the appropriate room. This might normally be done by the builder, but we bought most of our own lights to save money, so we're the ones who know where everything goes!

Here's a little lighting preview.

Front Porch and Garage Exterior Lights:

Portfolio Aged Bronze Outdoor Wall Light from Lowes (6). We chose these lanterns because the prairie grid matches the design of our windows. These have been installed for a while. They might be a little on the small side for our house, but we like them. We did notice that the one to the right of our front door is cracked, so we'll have to figure out what happened with that.
Foyer and Hallway:

The first light to catch my eye for the foyer and hallway was the Portfolio 17"W Chrome Pendant Light with Chrome Shade from Lowes. I really liked the modern look of the mesh design over the pendant, and thought the silver would look nice with the gray paint in the foyer.

But then we saw the Portfolio 3-Light Painted Champagne Flush Mount,  also from Lowes.
One big consideration for us in choosing lights is the brightness and amount of light they give. My eyesight has been in decline, so the more light, the better. My practical husband convinced me that the three light was better functionally the pretty two light, but when we went to pick up two lights tonight, not only was Lowes out of stock, but they didn't even have an signage for it. I found this especially odd because the Lowes by our apartment had two of the lights earlier in the afternoon. Since we really didn't want to be driving around all night, we opted for financial functionality, and chose my original favorite and saved a bit of money.

Niels' Office:

No photo for this one yet. We're repurposing a light fixture that Niels brought over with him from his house in Belgium. As you can imagine, it's modern Euro design. I'll let you wait with bated breath.

Great Room:

Our main consideration for our great room light was the ability to use LED lights, so we shouldn't ever have to figure out how to get up 14.5 feet to change the bulbs. (LED lights last about 50,000 hours). We wanted a ceiling fan to circulate air, and we wanted one with a light kit. We have fantastic natural light in our great room, so we'll only use the light at night. We purchased the Craftmade Midora 56" Chrome Ceiling Fan with Grill from Lighting By Design in Canton. Their website is pretty challenging to navigate if you're looking for a specific light, so we linked to a different site above. However, if you're in the area, Kelly at Lighting by Design is very helpful and we were happy to work with her. (Funny aside, after we chose this fan, we realized we took a picture of an oil-rubbed bronze version of this fan at another Charis home over a year ago. Guess it stuck with us!)
This was the first light we bought. I feel in love with it after seeing it on an episode of HGTV's "Bang for Your Buck." I had to negotiate hard with Niels, but once he saw it in person, it was a done deal. It's the West Elm Large Rectangle Hanging Capiz Pendant.

One of my favorite home decor bloggers has the same fixture in her gray dining room. I am so excited to see it go up, although our dinette will be green, not gray as we were thinking when we bought the light.

The original plan was for three can lights. Since our cabinets are dark we opted to increase to nine so it wouldn't be do dark. It definitely isn't! It may be overkill, but at the time we made the decision, I had a raging headache (that took three months and three days intensive treatment with my neuro to break up) and my vision was at a low point. I don't regret the change.

We also have two cans in the command center, which is hidden in an alcove to the right in the picture above.

Under the cabinets and in the two frosted glass cabinets, we chose Kichler Design Pro Black 3.5W LED Disc Lights, aka puck lights from Lighting by Design. We wanted LED lights that would be bright and cool, and really wanted to avoid florescent lights which can trigger my vertigo--not a good idea when I have a knife in my hand! Once we chose the type of light, we need to decide between strips and pucks. We chose the small round puck lights primarily because there were quite a bit cheaper. Also, the wiring is a lot easier (read: cheaper) with the puck light. We chose black to blend in with our cabinet. Because our cabinets are not very wide, so I think the pucks will be sufficient. If we had longer expanses of cabinet, we might have splurged on the strips.

They'll look a bit like this:

Over the outer island, we chose three ET2 Fizz pendants. We found these at Whitmer's Lighting and they are really, REALLY cool. They look like solid blocks of glass with bubbles in them. There are also straight lines that are similar to the lines in the glass of the backsplash. The catalog photo really doesn't do it justice:

Here are a few of Niels' artistic shots:

Pantry/Mudroom/Master Closet/In-Law Closet/Laundry Room/Upstairs Hallway

For these utilities areas, we decided to go with a bright yet economical flush mount light from Lighting by Design. The Maxim Malibu is a popular choice with Charis homes. We chose it after seeing in the last Charis model. We bought five large four-bulb lights for the small rooms and closets. We bought three medium three-bulb lights for the hallway.
In Law Suite and "Paris" Bedrooms:
As we get to the end and the bills are coming in hand over fist, we decided to look for some bargains. We found two Casablanca Claremont 50" ceiling fans in Brushed Nickel at Tuesday Morning. They are nice basic fans with high reviews. They came with remotes and we got a great deal. I'll talk more about Tuesday Morning in a minute.

In-Law Bathroom:
We found the Urban four-light vanity light at Menards. There isn't a window in the in-law bathroom, so we wanted to make sure there was a lot of light.
Back Porch:
Our covered back porch will have two outdoor ceiling fans. Other than being usable outside, we just needed fans with light kits. We opted for the Allen + Roth Seagrass fan below because it was in stock and we liked the style better than the other options.
D's Bedroom:
Our three-year-old boy is all about planes, trains in automobile. We found this airplane blade set several months ago and quickly bought it.
We didn't realize we had to buy a specific fan until just recently. We thought he had buy a white fan, but in a happy surprise, we found out that Home Depot had the Hunter Ashlyn fan in brushed nickel.
D's Bathroom:
I discovered Tuesday Morning when I was staging our old house last year. I found lot of bargains on housewares and would browse there occasionally to get ideas for the new house and projects. Usually, I don't see the items on the upper shelves because I'm just not that tall. But, a few months ago, something caught my eye, and I realized that they often have larger housewares and appliances on the upper shelves. I found D's bathroom vanity there. A four- light silver vanity for $30. SOLD!

Powder Room:
In fact, I actually found two vanity fixtures that day. The other one only had three lights, so we decided that since D's bathroom doesn't have a window, he'd get the four light, and the well-lit powder room would get the three light vanity, which was only $20! 

Master Bedroom:
Niels picked out our ceiling fan at Whitmer's Lighting. It's a Craftmade 5th Avenue. We chose it because of its modern look. It doesn't have a lot of light, but we don't really need a lot of light in our bedroom, and Niels deserved to be able to pick one of the lights! (I like it, too!)
Master Bathroom:
We picked out our bathroom vanity lights on a rare date when my mom was visiting. Yep, we went to Whitmer lighting for our first year in a year. We love the ET2 collection and thought this vanity from the Bloc collection was really cool. We actually bought two of the two-light version since our bathroom has a ton of natural light. 

Whew! That's it! We also have a door bell and some lights on the stairs, but for the most part, these are all the lights in our finished level. We'll need to get something basic for our unfinished basement, but that's a decision for another day. 

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