There is no better way to show off our personalities in our homes than through décor. While it’s fun to change some aspects of our home’s décor from season to season, or year to year, there are many pieces that we will invest in and will live in the space for the duration of our time there.
Vintage lighting is one such investment.
Though not strictly for décor as lighting is of course functional, most light fixtures – vintage or otherwise – will have designs that fit with the home or space’s décor.
In the GTA we’re lucky to have a number of retailers that specialize in vintage lighting, including:
- Eclectic Revival in Toronto’s west end. This shop offers a variety of chandeliers, pendant lighting, wall sconces, table lamps, outdoor lighting, industrial lighting as well as custom lighting options so you’re sure to find the exact right piece for your space.
- Victorian Revival in York specializes in vintage and antique lighting fixtures and décor. The family owned shop, which has been around for more than 40 years, also offers an assortment of industrial lighting, architectural finds, advertising signs and industrial lighting in addition to the vintage and antique light fixtures.
- Turn of the Century Lighting in the heart of downtown Toronto is a great store for not only buying antique and vintage lighting, but also having pieces rewired and restored, which is their specialty. This store also sells lamp shades and bulbs for your vintage lighting.
- RomEla Antique Lighting, also downtown Toronto, specializes in European vintage and antique lighting. With an inventory of lamps, wall sconces and chandeliers from 1800 to 1950, the store also takes orders for specific items that can be searched for on the store’s buying trips that occur every four months.
“When form meets function you end up with the best interior design. When decorating your home, I highly recommend that you take care to select investment pieces that will not only last, but appeal, for years to come.
We have a number of vintage light fixtures in our home including a wonderful vintage Degas chandelier in our main foyer. Warm hues penetrate the frosted glass in this piece that possesses a distinct art deco style. The light, reminiscent of a sunset, casts the perfect glow in the space, highlighting the art hung on the walls, but with the ability to stand alone as its own art piece as well.
We have other vintage lighting from The Lalique company which was founded by Rene Lalique, a jeweller, glassmaker and industrialist. He began his career in the late 1800s with a jewellery shop in Paris. He lived above the shop where he increasingly began experimenting with glass.
During the First World War Lalique’s glass factory produced such practical items as plain glass bottles and containers for hospitals and medicines. But when the war was over that same factory began producing more than 1,500 glass models for: ashtrays, seals, clocks, paperweights, decanters, pitchers, stemware, lamps, light fixtures, pendants, perfume bottles and all manner of decorative objects.
At the height of the art deco era Lalique was the most celebrated glassmaker in the world. Production in his factory ceased during the Second World War and he passed away in 1945 just days after learning that factory was liberated by allied forces and that his molds were in tact.
Not only have many of his pieces survived until today, so too has his name with a celebrated company operating and selling opulent pieces under his menarche.
New Lalique pieces, while beautiful, don’t have the vintage flair I so adore, but are highly regarded investment items that can run many thousands of dollars. Vintage pieces, when found, can also be pricey with items selling on ebay now anywhere from $750 to more than $2,000. I just caution that you ensure the pieces are in fact genuine Lalique, and not fakes. As the value of Lalique glass has risen, so too have the number of fakes found on the market. Ensure the piece is marked with a genuine Lalique signature by having it checked with an expert before investing.
Purchasing vintage lighting, from any maker, is an investment. It can be more expensive than buying new pieces, particularly from big box stores, but it’s a wonderful way to add elegance, sophistication and unparalleled quality to your home.” – Roxanne Henderson.
Tags: Chestnut Park, Chestnut Park Realty, City House Country Home, Eclectic Revivial, GTA vintage lighting, RomEla Antique Lighting, Roxanne Henderson, Turn of the Century Lighting, Victorian Revivial, vintage lighting