My husband really loves me. The two chandeliers under so much contention last week ultimately went to me without any fight at all. I cannot hold back this photo much longer, nor can I bring myself to share a smaller thumbnail…our shining glory:
This is the fixture that will hang in the foyer, and there is a larger version that will hang in the stairwell that will be somewhat visible from the foyer, so it made sense to match them. However, we had the opportunity to go grander with the stairway landing since the ceiling is higher in that space. Both fixtures hang near windows and should reflect natural light further into the house during the day (because…PRISMS!) and cast sparkles of awesomeness at night (or late afternoon during winter…just around the corner).
I meekly brought up the conversation on these chandeliers when we were about 15 minutes away from the showroom. We chose our lights from BBC Lighting in Milwaukee—which is just over an hour drive, so you’ll notice that I put off the conversation for the majority of the drive. At that time, he said he was 85% with me. I had to contain my zeal because 85% might as well have been 100% to me. Even so, we talked chandeliers with Michael, our all-things-lighting guru. I think that Michael’s added enthusiasm about the fixture gave him confidence that his wife wasn’t completely design-impaired.
Due to this MAJOR compromise of his, I gave him the light fixture over the dinette to choose without any help from me. That didn’t really go as planned because my husband is a really good guy. He so wanted to make sure that I liked whatever he selected that his eyes slid to my face every time Michael showed us a new fixture so he could get a read on me. In the end, it came down to two drum-shaped semi-mount lights.
Since Michael could see that Nick wasn’t going to make the decision 100% alone, he gave us each a vote (I was going to let Nick win no matter what). I, to even my own surprise, voted for the simpler, less expensive fixture. Nick voted for the much prettier, much lovelier fixture with a larger price tag. I knew that fixture caught his eye last week when we did our walk through, so I am happy that we found a place for it in our home.
Being that we had such distinctive fixtures so far, we decided to go more neutral on the pendant lights over the kitchen island. We identified a pendant light that melded our styles well last week, but the style clashed a bit with the new light fixture over the dinette, and Michael advised that the light output from that model was pretty dim—something that we did not consider and that would have been impossible to discern in a lighting store because it’s filled with…well…light. I couldn’t get an interesting picture of the pendant light, but trust me that it’s quite handsome in its simplicity. (That’s Michael’s hand in the photo…say, “Hello, Michael!”) I love that we’ve been able to continue the oil-rubbed bronze tones throughout the entire house.
Before we go too much further, I should point out that I really connected with Michael. I had an immediate affinity with him when we first met last week and we had similar tastes (plus, he was unafraid to give us his honest opinions…I always appreciate that). During small talk this morning, I learned that he is a chronic pain sufferer too. It’s weird, but I felt much more at ease with him than I normally do on any other day with anyone else because I knew that he gets it. He understands that it’s something you have to accept and slap a smile on your face so that you can maintain your positive outlook. Meanwhile:
- Constantly acting like nothing is wrong is exhausting
- The medications make you feel like a forgetful zombie (not to mention the stigma that follows people who take controlled substances regularly)
- You’re always THISCLOSE to feeling really sorry for yourself because you miss your life before pain (even if you can barely remember what it was like anymore)
We were at BBC Lighting for three hours. This is a long time for me to be on my feet, and it was a relief that I could let the pain show when I needed to sit down. Something so little, but it actually made my day…so thank you, Michael.
But back to light fixtures. Since we had so many “statement pieces” on the first floor already, we decided to go more neutral on the office light too. The office is just off the foyer and flows through a set of double glass doors with a transom window—so the fixture would be highly visible. So as not to compete with the chandelier, we went with an understated drum with a cover made of pretty, shimmery gossamer material…again, trimmed in oil-rubbed bronze.
To finish out the fixtures on the first floor, we have a ceiling fan in the great room and the screened porch. I don’t have a lot to say about ceiling fans. I’m sorry if I’ve offended you ceiling fan aficionados. I had high hopes that we could save some money by going with less expensive fans, but it wasn’t meant to be.
Oh goodness! How could I forget the little powder room on the first floor!? I’m hoping that this is going to be a swanky little room when it’s all said and done. We chose the nicest (in my opinion) vanity lights for this room, and I think they will go nicely with the plumbing fixtures and cabinetry we’ve already selected. In the picture below, the fixture is the set of three lights with Michael holding the tag. (He and I also agreed that there’s something special about sets of three rather than an even number…Nick simply shook his head at the amount of crazy spewing from our mouths.)
The powder room will also have a light/fan combination, and there will be a smattering of can lights in the tiny entryway from the garage, the kitchen, and great room. We are also adding rope lighting to the tray ceiling in the great room, so I think we will be able to achieve a nice ambiance there.
With that, I am going to call it a night. There’s an entire second floor worth of lights to get through yet, so stay tuned!