a masterfully designed home is more than a curation of objects — it’s an immersive experience. a play of interesting textures and materials to pique your senses. bespoke details invite your eyes to linger… or devour. colors and shadows should shift magnificently with the sun’s passage, made sharp by cool morning hues and soft in an amber-streaked sunset.  

then, at nightfall, the lights come on and your home’s alter ego emerges. does it feel chic and stunning? does a sparkle catch your eye and pull you in closer? do the worries of the world drop away, leaving only the moment and its promises? yes and yes.

that’s a professionally designed interior. (if you don’t believe me, stop reading right now and go visit that friend who just had their home redesigned by an expert. design is more than words; it’s something you feel!)

every aspect of an interior plays a role in the experience it creates, but today, let’s focus on just one of the pivotal elements in immersive, indulgent interiors… decorative lighting. how does decorative lighting transform the way you experience your home? let me count the ways…

1. chandeliers and pendants are the jewelry of the home.

if the description above didn’t convince you that light fixtures are transformative, think about it like this… decorative lighting is the jewelry of your home. 

for me, an eye-catching, moment-making light fixture is like a woman in a tailored outfit with an amazing statement piece of jewelry: it isn’t the only element you notice, but it’s why you noticed in the first place… and couldn’t look away! this is true whether the lights are slumbering or twinkling.

DarciHetherNY, Upper East Side, Interior Design, Refined, Luxury, Master Bedroom, Chandelierphotographer: jean allsopp

like jewelry, lighting doesn’t have to take itself so seriously… or cater to the expected. this stunning chandelier by circa lighting proves that unusual can be beautiful, with its plume-like crystals, warm brass frame, and nod to traditional candle mounts. can you picture this space without this chandelier in the room? not nearly as grand, intriguing, or enjoyable. now imagine turning it on at night… swoon! (from our watersound beach new construction)

2. decorative lighting doubles as sculptural art.

chandeliers and pendants don’t have to be illuminated to make a statement. they are works of art that have an eternal hovering presence in your home. (pun intended.) it’s also important to remember that chandeliers and pendants rest within your daily sightlines, and not just in the room the piece occupies. many times, your light fixtures can be seen from neighboring rooms and contribute to the ambiance of both spaces. 

this is why it is so important to not only consider the style and feeling of the piece but also its silhouette. how does it interplay with the shapes in the room and the vicinity? here’s a great example: 

this handsome, branched fixture by lindsey adelman oozes drama, movement, and (if i may be so bold) a thrill of danger. paired with the rounded edges of the furnishings and the dark herringbone floors, this chandelier is a sculptural masterpiece perfect for our art-collecting client. (from our bespoke bachelor pad on 5th ave.)

3. decorative lighting inspires gathering.

beautiful, intriguing lighting not only draws people closer purely out of interest, it also creates a “zone” in your space where people are designed to gather. a stunning chandelier or set of pendants marks it as a spot of interest, and i would even go so far as to say that humans are hardwired to interpret them as such. (imagine our primitive forefathers huddling around a cave fire…)

of course, we have come a long way since then, but i would say that lighting’s ability to create community is still strong in modern-day homes. here’s a great example…

DarciHetherNY, Upper East Side, Interior Design, Refined, Luxury, Modern, Globe Pendant Lighting
suspended in time and space, this glass globe chandelier adds elegance, playfulness, and a touch of wonder to meals between family and friends. can you imagine if we had put recessed lighting here instead? not nearly the same appeal or as compelling of an invitation to gather. (from our chic 5th ave. apartment)

4. chandeliers and pendants turn mundane into memorable.

if you have ever become so acclimated to your home that you hardly notice it anymore, creating points of interest and visual impact will change your experience entirely. instead of a space where post-work relaxation feels static and self-motivated, you will have a home that delightfully captures your attention and effortlessly engages your senses. 

this is why i love creating areas where the architectural silhouettes of the space and the lighting allow the eye to be drawn to a show-stopping point of interest. it transforms the mundane into the memorable. 

DarciHetherNY, Upper East Side, Interior Design, Refined, Luxury, Kitchen, Modern Pendant Lighting
amid a kitchen in neutral, muted tones of tan and greys, these brushed brass pendants infuse the space with warmth and shine, creating a focal point that feels engaging and lively. their triangular shape also draws the eye down… to this stunning countertop or, if the occasion strikes, to the charming host entertaining his guests. (from our financiers pied-à-terre in tribeca)

5. chandeliers and pendants can set an irresistible mood.

i saved my favorite for last: mood-setting. it’s no secret that lighting sets a mood. imagine your go-to cocktail lounge or sushi bar. i guarantee dimmed lighting sets the stage for a more intimate, relaxed, and luxurious experience. but dimmers aren’t the only aspect of lighting that sets a mood. the composition of the fixture itself is an equally contributing factor.

the best way to illustrate is with the perfect example, one that will always be close to my heart no matter how much time passes…

DarciHetherNY, Upper East Side, Interior Design, Refined, Luxury, Moody Dining, Decorative Lighting
ahhhh… dimmed lighting isn’t what makes this sexy stunner so striking. 200 strands of gems threaded through a gorgeous bronze metal canopy? that will do it. this arresting creation infuses a dark, handsome dining room with moody light, the elegance of an exclusive gala, and a hint of the forbidden. every occasion in this space is a special one. (from our two-story duplex on central park west)

combine all 5 of these incredible effects of lighting, and the answer is clear. splurging on a statement chandelier or pendants is well worth the final result: elevating your home from a simple dwelling to a sensory experience you live each day. 


ready to start your home transformation? let’s talk, my friend

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*all photography captured by emily gilbert photography