Moody lighting: an old-fashioned library style picture light for my vintage Vanguard

When the well-informed associate at the local lighting store says to you, sort of worriedly, “That is really old fashioned,” you know you’re making a good decision. That’s what I heard when I tried to buy a library-style picture light to illuminate the Vanguard painting behind the bar in my Mahalo Lounge.

I plan to hardwire some spotlights in the ceiling to shine on the larger pieces on the larger expanses of wall in the Lounge. But for this space, I just wanted a bit of light on the painting of the pirate ship. Plus, I like having different styles of lighting throughout the room, all with very dim bulbs.

Plus, I wanted to get something done. Today I am launching my 12 days of Kitschmas: Finish what I started! Mostly stuff in the Lounge, but other projects cluttering up my life — and my mind. 12 days from now should put me right before Christmas — weebit will be home — and we’ll have a clean and tidy room in which to to put up the aluminum Christmas tree and decorate it with our very very best most precious vintage ornaments. Hooray!

The picture light is from House of Troy — made in Vermont — and you can also get it on Amazon — (cheaper on Amazon than what I paid in the store, too, but that’s okay, I am happy to pay my lighting store, they are helping me rewire stuff too, and their prices — and service — are great). Note: I earn a wee commission if you click through to Amazon via links on my blog and end up buying anything.

Bracket you put on back of painting. The picture light slips into it. The whole thing was super duper easy.

To size the picture light, my store recommended I one about 1/2 the width of the painting. The light is adjustable both up and out — the more you pull it forward, the more of the picture you light. That said, it is not a flood light — I can’t/don’t illuminate the entire ship, only the sky. That’s okay with me, too, I like the mood — moody.

The light also seems to have two settings — low and high. I turn it to low. Again: Moody. When the whole room is dark, and I get all the low-wattage lights on, it looks great, gives the space depth.

On the 1st day of Kitschmas: Painting lit, old-skool.

  1. Joe says:

    Same thing happened to me when I refreshed my bathroom and later, when I redid my kitchen. It’s so cool when, after it’s done, all the people who didn’t like my ideas now want to copy them!

  2. Linda says:

    I always do the happy dance when someone looks at My kitchen or something I probably bought at an estate sale and exclaims oh my aunt or my grandmother used to have one of those!

  3. Mary Elizabeth says:

    What a great compliment–the buyer wanted your lava lamp collection. The special wiring probably added to the appeal. Or else he or she thought, “What am I going to do with 12 oddly placed wall sockets?

  4. Mary Elizabeth says:

    Ineffable, I know what you mean! I was tempted to buy another $400 pink toilet to have in case it needs replacing, but I thought, “Oh, this is the beginning of the pink retro bathroom craze, so it will surely be around for years.” Of course, now they have gone and discontinued it.

  5. Marie Gamalski says:

    Hi Mary Elizabeth! It WAS crazy…. we told the realtor we’d (I mean my Gary!, hahahaha) would remove, and repair the room…. she said, “NO!! That’s why they want it!” They had teens, and I believe they used the space for a “hang out” room????….

  6. Marie Gamalski says:

    I’ve had those impulses too…. I HATE it when I pass on something, and it really is the last one…. I kick myself, and think …. great, now I have to come up w/and acceptable “hack”…. sometimes every time I look at whatever it is…. I think,???? I could’ve gotten the “real” thing!!!????

  7. Robert says:

    Wow great story and fantastic look Pam! Love your style. So happy to have found your site.
    Could you tell me where to begin looking for a Vanguard ship like the one you have in your Mahalo Lounge? Would be so perfect!

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