Shabby chic furnishings are so-called because they show signs of wear and tear, but when it comes to choosing a light for your shabby chic themed room, it’s best to choose reproduction. The wiring in authentic old light fittings will be inadequate and will not pass the rigorous safety tests that modern day electrics have to stand up to in order to achieve electrical certification. On this page I share some of my favourite shabby chic style lighting finds that will help you complete every room in your house in style – and safety.
Very important: If you do choose a genuine old light, please ensure you get it rewired by a qualified electrician to achieve modern safety standards – otherwise you are putting your life and that of your family at risk!
1. Cookie cutter lights
These absolutely adorable little lights would look amazing in any room of the house but especially charming in the kitchen:
I absolutely love the colour – they are copper plated and the soft LED bulbs give a lovely, homely glow. Choose battery powered (£21) or mains powered (£35) (Buy them here).
2. Lovely lacy lampshade
I’m madly in love with this sweet lacy lampshade with its daisy border but need to mention up front: it’s also battery powered! So okay, it’s not a great choice as a main room light, but it’s perfect for hanging over a small table or to brighten a dark corner. It’d also work brilliantly outside, hanging in a gazebo or from a tree. Battery powered pendant lights are pretty rare – but a fantastic idea if you have a dull area in the home and you don’t want to spend money on getting new wiring for an electric light. If you’re planning a shabby chic wedding, a few of these beautiful light shades would look gorgeous in an outdoor tent. Price: £25.00 (Buy it here).
There’s also a version of this light with a rose border:
Both are just as pretty and both cost the same (click here for the Rose border version).
3. Cookie jar lamps
Can you resist these charming cookie jars in beautiful ridged glass? A charming twist for any shabby chic room, they come in a choice of rose gold or antique silver. Price: £58 each (Buy them here).
4. Dutch pickle lamp
If like me, you err on the quirky side when it comes to picking furniture and accessories, you’ll love this bizarre but beautiful lamp made from an upcycled pickle jar all the way from Holland:
You can pick from a red and white or black and white flex to meet your decor, and the company that sells these quirky lamp jars also does very cool vintage bulbs that make the jars look even better. Price: £49.00 (Buy it here)
Whenever I advise people about shabby chic lighting in the bathroom, I always suggest putting a candelabra above the bath, if ceiling height allows. A chandelier in the bathroom looks fabulous above the bath, but you won’t find any that meet electrical safety requirements. Water and electricity aren’t a good mix!
Fortunately, there’s a happy compromise in the way of a candelabra, giving you the look of a chandelier without any safety concerns – and you can use modern lighting elsewhere in the room to ensure you have sufficient light when you’re not relaxing by candlelight.
This beautiful candelabra would be my number one choice for above the bath – it is weighty and has the perfect shabby chic aged appearance with a limed finish:
It would look equally beautiful in other rooms of the house of course, and would make a perfect addition to your dining room or kitchen above the table, or to the conservatory. At just £65.00, I think it’s a bargain (Buy it here).
6. Jam jar wall light
I really want these fun, upcycled preserve jar wall lights in every room of my home, but they would look fantastic in the kitchen, going down a hallway, up a staircase or in the dining area:
The ‘jar’ features old-fashioned writing and has so much character:
You can buy these amazing lights for £49 from Rose and Grey (click here to buy them).
7. Old bulbs
I love the look of old fashioned bulbs – of course, they don’t meet current safety requirements, but you can get the same look by buying a modern day reproduction:
These are both simple and at the same time, stunning – perfect for adding light in a dark corner of the room. They have a grey cable although other colours are available, and you can choose from a copper or antique screw fitting to match your decor. Price: £42 each (Buy them here)
8. Cheap chic – chandelier
There are a thousand and one gorgeous shabby chic chandeliers on the web and I have no doubt that you can track down one without my help – but I’ve included this gorgeous one in my collection because it’s not only a really pretty light but it’s also such ridiculously good value for money:
My own house has a chandelier in almost every room – 2 in some rooms – and I spent anything up to £300 on each individual light. This beautiful 5 bulb chandelier is just as nice as quite a few of my lights, and is only £34.99. It is available on online which means you also get free delivery if you have a Prime account. It is creamy white and features pretty shiny acrylic droplets. It’s also adjustable which is good news if your house doesn’t have insanely high ceilings like mine does. Wondering if it’ll be a bit cheap looking? Just read the reviews – I think you won’t be disappointed (Click here to buy).
9. Pretty bird cage light shade
This is another amazing find – a pretty bird cage decorated all over with acrylic beads and droplets for less than £20:
This ornate piece is a light shade rather than a lamp so it fixes over a standard light fitting, softening the light and adding a pretty sparkle to any room of the house. 25.5cm x 14cm x 14cm, suitable for bulbs up to 60 watts. At £17.99 and with Prime delivery available, it’s a bargain (Buy it here).
10. Teapot lamp
Can you imagine anything sweeter than this gorgeous ceramic teapot lamp, lighting up a dull corner in your kitchen?
This sweet white lamp is perfect for a table or a kitchen worktop. It has an inline switch and takes a 25 watt G9 Halogen bulb. At just £19.99 with free UK delivery, it makes a cheerful addition to any home (Buy it here).
Of course, one of the best ways to light any room is natural light. Rather than covering the windows with blinds and nets, opt for blackout style curtains that can let the full light in during the daytime, and darken the room in the evening. Place ornate mirrors close to or across from a light source to help reflect the natural light around the room. In dull attic rooms, consider installing roof windows to bring more light in. These don’t have to look modern and tacky – companies like Fakro manufacturer a gorgeous range of roof window styles and designs, including beautiful arc roof windows and top windows – both of which would look beautiful in a more traditional style property.
You can find more shabby chic lighting ideas in the shop.