Lighting showstoppers! 6 ways to create surprising, dazzling focal points around your home

francesco chandelier in pink glassLighting is the best way of creating a focal point in a room, drawing the eye and creating visual interest… or better yet, drama! From sensational chandeliers to statement table lamps, here’s how to get the maximum interior design oomph from your lights…

A focal point is the first thing that catches your eye when you walk into a room, framing the space and helping to create balance, contrast and context in an interior design scheme.

With the right lighting, you can create an attention-grabbing centrepiece in each room, guiding the viewer from point to point as they move through your home – either by highlighting particular features, or by using statement lights to make focal points in their own right. To inspire you, here are six showstopping ideas…


1) A whopping great chandelier in the entrance hall

xenonAbove, the Xenon ball chandelier - and top the Francesco chandelier in pink glass

The ultimate in lighting showstoppers is, of course, the chandelier… You can actually put a chandelier almost anywhere – but for maximum impact, you can’t beat whacking people in the face and making it the first thing people see when they enter your home.

Whether you like dazzling glass, a retro brass glitter ball or a sleek modernist design, a chandelier in the entrance hall will set the style tone for your whole house. That’s a design statement, and the statement is: ‘This place is sensational, come on in and marvel at it!...’

Check out Pooky’s showstopping (and surprisingly affordable) designer chandeliers here.

2) Make a side table take centre stage – with sculptural table lamps

whinnyWhinny table lamp in amber resin

Side tables can be overlooked or underrated for their visual impact in a room (probably because they’re on the side, and rather too easy to use for dumping things on).

But if positioned prominently (for example, opposite the doorway) and dressed with care, they’re one of the most useful weapons in the interior decor-lover’s armoury: an eye-level opportunity to show off your taste. (See more tips in our blog post How to style a side table like a pro)

A really striking, colourful or unusual table lamp and shade combination – or a matching pair of lamps – is as good as any sculpture or objet d’art, and has the added benefit of providing ambient light. 

See Pooky's more unusual table lamps here.

3) Make a chimney breast sing with matching wall lights

firefly A pair of Firefly wall lights in brass and alabaster globe, styled by @mybigfat1930snest

Another way to use lighting to make a visual statement is to highlight architectural features – especially if you’re lucky enough to have a period home. The fireplace and chimney breast in a sitting or dining room is the perfect opportunity to fashion a focal point.

Place a pair of matching wall lights at either end to draw the eye to the ornaments on the mantelpiece; or fix striking wall sconces on either side of a mirror for warm, flattering light and a visual centrepiece.

4) Illuminate an art gallery wall with picture lights

clyfford picture lightClyfford regular picture light in waxed antique brass

Picture lights can transform wall artworks from visual ‘background’ pieces to room showstoppers and conversation-starters.

If you’ve invested in a large scale painting you should obviously give it the spotlight it deserves, but a set of themed prints, each lit by its own little picture light, can be a fascinating focal point in a room – whether that’s a sitting room or a study.

See our picture lights here.


5) Place a midcentury modern style floor light in the middle of the room

galore in whiteGalore floor lamp in brass with a white shade

Floor lamps bring height and character to a room. You can use them to brighten up dark or awkward areas, or to highlight furniture or architectural features.

But to make a statement, pick a standing lamp that stands out… Place a striking midcentury modern light such as the Galore or the Mo somewhere near in the middle of a sitting room, next to a seat, and you can change the whole vibe of the space into something that feels cool and confidently stylish.

6) Hang kitchen pendants at different heights

equilibriumEquilibrium triple rise and fall pendant set with Ted ceramic shades

The classic ‘rule of three’ configuration of pendant lights over a kitchen island is a trio in a symmetrical row. But rules are there to be broken….

For a showstopping approach, be bold with mismatched heights. Pooky’s Equilibrium rise-and-fall pendant set allows you to weight brass ‘eggs’ and play with the flex lengths to create your ideal balance (or stylish imbalance) between two or three lights. The results can be sensational…

equlibrium naked kitchensPooky's Equilibrium double rise and fall pendant set in the St Giles kitchen by Naked Kitchens.


Inspired? Browse Pooky's lights to find your show-stopper here.


See also:

How to light a kitchen island - inspiration and ideas for pendants and more 
Picture lights - how to illuminate your paintings and artworks 
How to illuminate your furniture with good lighting design
Mixing and matching lampshades for visual impact: 7 interior design tips
Where to place a chandelier - in any size home or space.