While designers set the trend, it comes at a price. But these days the high street is quick to follow with affordable replicas so there’s no need to feel left in the dark if your budget is tight.
Follow the lighting lead of the Prime Minister’s wife, Samantha Cameron, who recently paid only a couple of hundred pounds for a reproduction of a classic Arco floor lamp, shunning the £1,600 price tag for an original. “Samantha Cameron’s not alone in choosing a reproduction of a classic,” says David Gutfreund, managing director of Iconic Lights which sells the reproduction version. Many interior designers and architects specify reproduction products, particularly during these challenging economic times.
“Only people with more money than sense would pay as much as six times more for the same thing. I believe if the designer Castiglioni was alive today, he would approve of our reproduction, and find it hard to tell the difference.”
Here’s my guide to the best designer buys and their money-saving equivalents on the high street. Floor lamps languished in the shade for years, but they’re enjoying huge popularity again because they’re so versatile and decorative. A design classic, the dramatic Flos Arco Silver Floor Light, with its white marble base, designed by Achille Castiglioni in 1962, is £1,615 from Heal’s.
Samantha Cameron bought the Arco Floor lamp, £250 from Iconic Lights. Oversized Anglepoise-style floor lamps are also ultra-fashionable.
Autograph Extra Large Task Light Floor lamp, £199 from Marks & Spencer. Or try the Orlando Adjustable floor lamp, £39.99 from Homebase.
For full-on glamour, nothing beats a chandelier as a focal point in a room. A glittering vintage-style crystal or glass creation does not have to be confined to a period setting – it can add a touch of decadence in a cool, contemporary space.
The Helena large ceiling spiral pendant, £850 (currently on offer at £595), is a stunner from Laura Ashley. Mimic the sparkle with a mini Astoria easy-fit pendant, £39.99, from Homebase. Alternatively, the new kid on the block is the Shadelier: a shade incorporating delicate hanging crystals. It could suit any setting.
A Leo Black Easy-fit ceiling beaded pendant, with frosted glass droplets and a metallic gold lining, available in black or white, £80 from Laura Ashley (on offer from £56).
What about a Shadelier, £39.50, with a tiered droplet display handing from a black or red shade, Marks & Spencer have them.