Lighting is one of the most important elements of bathroom decor – decadent, layered bathroom lighting can really make the difference between a so-so design and something really stunning, purely by virtue of the warm, inviting feeling of lots of lighting. That said, once you’ve figured out what kind of functional lighting you need, there’s still plenty of room left to find fun, stylish fixtures that will not only serve the purpose, but look good while they’re doing it. Chandeliers are a great unexpected addition to a bathroom in just about any decor – they’re a little bit decadent, a little playful, and all class – the perfect signature finishing touch no matter what your style.
The most traditional use of a chandelier is in a truly vintage style bathroom like this one. The repeated Lena Chandeliers give the room a parlor-like feel, creating a sense of sophistication and a little extra touch of formality. The soft satin finish echoes the silvery gray tones in the vanity and tile, and the warm candle-shaped lights illuminate the whole room. The grooming adds more layered lighting, supplementing the chandelier with a trio of wall sconces and a pair of recessed lights for good face lighting, but the twin chandeliers provide the perfect amount of light for the larger, open spaces.
But vintage style bathrooms with antique style chandeliers don’t have to be super formal. This bathroom has an almost grunge feel to it, using weathered antique elements in aged gray shades to create a delightfully derelict take on a vintage design. The hardwood floors and oriental runner are all sophistication, but the weathered antique mirror and tub, and the antique finishes on the Accent Table and Cast Brass Sconces bring out the cracks in the marble inset, and make the posh Strass Chandelier look like it could have been hanging there for a hundred years – the perfect finishing touch for an opulent “found” look.
This bathroom uses many of the same elements – dark wood floors, steel tub, silver mirror, and big picture windows – but here everything is polished to a perfect shine, and the simpler, less assuming Scandia Chandelier brings out the clean, simple lines rather than emphasizing opulence. Even turned off, the crystal teardrops catch the light, echoing the shine in the mirror and the tub and giving the relatively minimal space a little sparkle.
Chandeliers work well in a cottage style bathroom, too. The high beadboard wall paneling and the whitewashed plank ceiling are all beachside summer retreat, and those big beautiful windows fill the space with all the bright, airy light you could desire. But the floral-inspired Southport Chandelier adds a little touch of nature that softens all the straight lines in the room, making an excellent accent piece even when it’s turned off and illuminating the room with a softer, warmer light in the evening.
In a very bright space, extremely lavish, crystal-laden chandeliers like this Ornate Cast Brass one are especially eye-catching. You might not need the bathroom lighting, but whatever the decor (and this one is pretty minimal), all those crystals will light up in the sunlight, casting gorgeous little rainbows and making a spectacular centerpiece. In a room like this, even the most over the top chandelier is simplified to a nice place to hangs some pretty prisms, giving the room a light, airy feel rather than necessarily an opulent one.
Though a lot of these fixtures pair really nicely with Victorian clawfoot tubs, chandeliers aren’t just for vintage style bathrooms. Dramatic hotel-style shaded chandeliers like this Brentwood are stunning in a modern style bathroom, and a smaller Cylindique Pendant can actually replace the more traditional wall sconces that would usually frame your vanity mirror, giving the same lighting and symmetrical look but with a little unexpected opulence.
Modern twists on classic designs are great, too – this bathroom makes all the right motions for a classical style, with the wood paneling on the walls and simple crown molding on the vanity, but the high-gloss finish and white-on-white design is all modern. In true modern style, this bath uses many different textures of the same color to attract the eye, and the Wet White Chandelier and matching Parisian Sconce complete the whitewashed elegance, with frosted glass flames, flat white body, and hazy white crystal pendants, combining the classical decadent design with minimal modern coloration.
No matter what your bathroom lighting needs, a chandelier is a stunning, surprising lighting choice that can really make your bathroom shine – literally! What kind of design do you have in your bathroom, and what kind of chandelier are you considering? Let me know in the comments!