Any room needs some form of lighting, whether it is functional or decorative. Keep your light levels both effective and atmospheric by using a variety of light sources. More than just something to see by, they’re quite something to look at too.
The feature ceramic lamps of old are no longer in vogue. Either use clusters of small plain lamps for full effect or make a style statement with a statuesque lampstand or candelabrum.
Reading lamps for targeted clarity
Nobody likes to strain their eyes when working or doing the accounts. The best way to combat this is to have a nailed ledge for the lamp at a convenient height beside your work table - this frees up working space.
Lamps can either light your work or add atmosphere. Highlight the latest in figural wall paintings in the room by setting clusters of lights to illuminate the figures. The right lighting can bring them alive and really impress your guests.
Metal lampstands can hold one or more ceramic lamps or they have projecting arms with hooks from which metal lamps can be hung on chains.
Attractive bronze hanging lamps can also be hung from spikes knocked into wall uprights. They come with a safety feature - metal spacers at the rear designed to hold lamps away from the wall, preventing the flame catching any surrounding wood alight.
Lamps and candles to add focus and softness
Lamps are changing in size and price. No longer the domain of the rich, small lamps are available at very reasonable prices to suit the purse of most Roman Londoners.
Candles are still widely used but more as a cost-cutting exercise. Candle-holders or shelf spikes make it possible to move the candles around. However, lamps, although using more expensive oil, are preferable as they can be moved round the home more safely.
Where more overhead light is needed for larger rooms, an innovative style is the ceramic chandelier, an import from central Gaul - a series of small ceramic lamps linked together, moulded onto a circular hollow ring which keeps the lamps supplied with olive oil.
This light can be suspended from the ceiling for general lighting.