the chairdelier

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When designing a space I  love the rush of that split-second when you come up with an idea, a design, or a solution for a room and you just know that it's the right one!!    The vintage iron chandelier that I used as a light fixture in the barn mud room was one of those moments for me. 
I've found that going into a new space to decorate I will usually "see" 80% of the finished design (i.e. furniture placement, art, colors)  and the rest comes organically after living in, and with, the room.   The mud room between the barn room and the garage below is small, so I chose lighting that would illuminate the art I had planned for the staircase wall and also illuminate the stairs coming up from the garage below.  Two small lamps in the antique hutch light the path from the top of the stairs into the barn room.  Since the room is used as a pass through space I really only need ambient light, as opposed to "task" lighting.  After using the room for several months I realized that I wanted/needed a bit more light from the window area of the room.  I initially thought of putting a small table there with a lamp on it, but didn't like the idea for two reasons- one it seemed expected and two, it placed the light source a little too high for where I needed/wanted more light. 
It was during this time that I was unpacking unused antiques/accessories from boxes that had been in the attic since we moved here into the new storage room that sits right behind the mud room.   As I made one of my many trips into the storage room to unpack a box I noticed the vintage iron chandelier and then as I walked through the mud room the idea came to me to use the fixture in an unexpected way- not by hanging it, but by sitting it in a chair and wiring it as you would a lamp!  By placing the light on the chair it doesn't line up with the other light sources in the room and it causes your eye to move around the space, making the room feel larger and adding interest.




We purchased the iron chandelier years ago from White Elephant in Dallas.  I had originally wanted to hang it from one of our large trees in our backyard and light it using candles, but that project never happened.  The iron itself is really unusual- it looks like tooled leather!  The fixture was oiled, but I left the finish as I found it- with a little rust coming through.






Since the light fixture would be seen from the top looking down instead of how you usually view a chandelier (from the bottom up), and because the candle holder cups were so large I knew that I would need special candle sleeves for this piece.  I looked to a favorite source,  Lumiere Candles




I found the perfect sleeves in these large diameter solid wax candle sleeves from Lumiere.  These are real wax sleeves (though they do make a "resin" line for higher wattage bulbs) that are custom made to each order.  I have purchased real wax candle sleeves from Lumiere many times and have written about their quality products and good prices on the blog ( here.)  From all the great feedback I get from you, you love them as much as I do!! 
(In case you're new to the blog-  the owners, Paul and Lisa, have kindly offered a 10% off coupon for all my readers!   This is a permanent coupon, with no minimum purchase!  When checking out, simply enter the coupon code : FLOH in the "Coupon" box and then be sure to click "apply coupon" which will re-tally your amount.)




Look at those gorgeous drips!  Since the iron candle holders had an inch lip I specified that the drips stop an inch up from the bottom for clearance.   The sleeves are in "white" which I find works best for my Benjamin Moore White Dove trim paint color ( fyi: Lumiere's "ivory" has more yellow in it).



My very talented electrician (Dan ;) wired the chairdelier (name coined by said electrician;) using thin "chandelier" electrical wire which comes out from the bottom of the piece.  Thin wire holds the electrical wire in place.  This photo gives you a good view of the "tooled leather" look of the iron.



An old chain was added to create the illusion that I just sat a chandelier in a chair which adds a bit of whimsy to the space.






The chairdelier uses my new favorite touch-dimmer (here.) 
This 3-level (low/medium/high) touch dimmer only works on metal lamps.  You simply plug your metal lamp into a small box converter and then touch any metal part of the lamp and the dimmer activates: one tap- low, two taps- medium, and three taps- high.





gotta love the rush!!!