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4 THINGS TO LOOK FOR IN A BEDSIDE LAMP, & WHY I CHANGED MINE…

Sometimes it really is the little things that make the difference to a room, but changing the bedside lighting in our Master bedroom has made a huge difference to the feel of the space, and I wanted to share a few tips that I thought of along the way which may help when you come to change your lighting in the future.

What to look for when buying a bedside lamp so that it works for you and your bedroom

To start with, our bedside lamps looked like this:-

What to look for when buying a bedside lamp so that it works for you and your bedroom

Nothing particularly wrong with them, but they were very small in comparison to the size of the bed and the chest of drawers on either side of the bed.

Just as using chests of drawers for bedside tables rather than bedside tables themselves makes more sense to me for the proportions – so too does using large lamps – it’s all about scale!.

… the added push came as my daughter needed a new bedside light in her room, and the ones we had in the Master were perfect for her.

It made more sense to buy new Master Bedroom lights that we (OK, OK, I!) was happy with and let my daughter use one from our room that she would be just as happy with as well.

Looking around at how many options were available got me thinking about how to make the choice easier to navigate through – you can frankly get overwhelmed!

So – I did what any list loving girl would do – and got my pen and paper out!

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As with anything around the house, I like to tackle it in a logical way. This usually saves me time and hassle later down the line as I end up buying right first time (fingers crossed!).

I wrote down the following things that were important for the new lights: –

  • Height – I wanted them to be more to scale in the room – and so I took a measurement of the height of the top of the chest of drawers to the top of the headboard – this was the ideal size I was looking for.
  • Width & Depth –  Ideally these were to feel quite substantial in the room – but I also needed other things on the table top, so I knew I needed a lamp that was wider than it was deep. This would leave plenty of room for a glass of water/book etc…
  • Functions – I have a “thing” for touch lamps in bedrooms. These are lamps that you simply touch the base and they come on. They usually have different settings so you touch it once and it comes on with a soft light, touch again for a brighter light, and again for the most brightness. These are absolutely fantastic in a bedroom as you can have softer light in the evenings and if I wake up in the night at all it’s much less harsh on the eyes!
  • Style – The lamps obviously had to work with the style of the room – and I wanted quite a simple style, chrome metal base and a linen shade.

Creating this list may seem like overkill for a pair of lamps, but trust me it saved so much indecision when I started shopping. I could quickly narrow down the choice and only needed to look at a small percentage of lamps to know whether any of them were right.

TIP – Do shopping searches initially on the internet as it saves time – you can search for specific criteria in most shops and then can narrow down what you actually want/need to go and see before buying.

I did my searching, and found pretty much exactly what I was looking for: –

Buy John Lewis New Tom Table Touch Lamp, Chrome Online at johnlewis.com

John Lewis New Tom Table Touch Lamp Chrome**

As Mary Poppins once said, it was “practically perfect in every way”! – apart from one, which was pretty easy to fix. That issue was the shade.

Now there is absolutely nothing wrong with the shade that comes with the base, but it was solid white and therefore didn’t fit with my room at all. Everything else was right though.

I did try and buy a shade and base separately, but touch lamps tend to come with a shade already attached. I looked at all my options and decided that simply buying new shades as well would be the best option (and I had an idea that I could reuse the shades in our guest bedroom, so nothing was going to go to waste!).

I went with a beautiful linen look shade in a small rectangle which fit the bill perfectly:-

Buy John Lewis Samantha Rectangle Shades Online at johnlewis.com

John Lewis – Samantha Rectangle Shade – Natural Linen **

It’s a softer colour with a lot more texture to it, and looks really gorgeous in the room. It’s difficult to do it justice in the picture, but hopefully you can see below the difference the right size makes to the feel of the room – (left hand side is the old lamp and right hand side is the new):-

What to look for when buying a bedside lamp so that it works for you and your bedroom

And then here’s a picture of both lights changed: –

What to look for when buying a bedside lamp so that it works for you and your bedroom

What to look for when buying a bedside lamp so that it works for you and your bedroom

I’m so happy with the choice, and although they were more expensive than I wanted to spend (I always try and get a bargain whenever possible!), I know that they will last for years. Sometimes getting it right and spending a little more is worth it to save money in the long run…

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So if you want to change lamps in your bedroom any time soon, remember the following 4 things and you won’t go far wrong:-

  • Get the right size and shape to fit the space available – measure and write them down
  • Get the proportions right – large lamps work well as a rule in the Master Bedroom
  • Look into touch lamps for ambience
  • Don’t feel you have to stick with the lamp as it comes – changing the shade may make all the difference

– – – – – – – – – – – –

What to look for when buying a bedside lamp so that it works for you and your bedroom

Do you have trouble buying things for your home? Would you like more tips and ideas like this in future posts?

I’d love to know, so please leave a comment below – thanks in advance!

** This post may contain affiliate links - to find out more please see my disclosure policy


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  • Totally agree that the chests need painting Inga – it is on my TO DO list and am waiting for the UK sunshine to get here so I can get them outside to do it! – The shades work well that size as they allow for space on the top for other things as well, but yes, the bigger the better really!

  • Sounds perfect Victoria!


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