Flash of brilliance
This year's international design fairs have been dripping with decorative lighting creations. Designed as stand-alone art installations that really command a room, there was everything from life-size horse lamps by Moooi to shades brandishing Missoni's unmistakable print. It won't take long for the style to trickle down to Irish homes - it's now, easier than ever, to get a high design look that won't blow your budget.
We all know that lighting is one of the most important aspects to consider when decorating any room. Whether you go for plenty of drama or prefer low-key lighting, the most important thing is to get the scale right and ensure it is fit for purpose.
"There's nothing worse than a beautifully decorated room with a teeny tiny pendant, in the centre, that looks completely out of place," say Sarah Drumm and Lisa Marconi of Irish online store dust.ie.
"I always go large scale because it is difficult to get that 'Ta da' effect with a small light," agrees interior designer Suzie McAdam.
"In terms of pendants, I would always go for one big beautiful light [for any room], with the exception of a dining table or long kitchen island. In these spaces, two large pendants will work really well to create a strong sense of balance." As a general rule, aim to have a central pendant of at least 40-50cm in diameter.
If you do choose to go big and beautiful, then you have to consider your new purchase as you would any other large piece of furniture in the room - your lighting will be just as important to the overall finish as the sofa or dining table you choose.
"A statement light can be used just about anywhere. But think about where you want to create impact.
"The important places to splurge are your entrance and your living room; the most public spaces in the home," Lisa and Sarah add.
Think of statement lights and we automatically visualise a pendant shade, yet there are so many brave floor, wall and table lighting options available - Abigail Ahern's table lighting range for Debenhams is the perfect example.
"Don't limit yourself to pendants when you're thinking of statement lights," Sarah and Lisa say. "You can create smaller statements throughout your house and they create little pops of surprise that make you smile with delight. That's what statement lighting can, and should, do."
This type of addition to the home can really draw attention to an area you might be particularly proud of, says Suzie.
"An eye-catching pendant is transformative it becomes the focal point, giving the interior a striking centrepiece. Statement pendants in unusual places, like over a bath or a bed, will draw the eye to the piece in question" - ideal if your bath or bed has some interesting design details that you really want to show off.
Above all, choose a statement light that will complement your existing interior. Look at the finish and style of your furniture for that extra 'wow' factor that you won't tire of any time soon.
Anna Shelswell-White is editor of House and Home magazine