Ask a designer N&O Design Team Members Offer Solutions to Readers

Update bathroom light on slim budget

April 14, 2012 

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My bathroom has gold walls, white tile floor, two separate vanities with one sink each and vanity tops of white “cultured marble.” The cabinets are tan maple with amber knobs.

What options are there for lighting around and above the vanity area? There is a can light above the vanity and sconces on each side of the mirror. A somewhat larger mirror would be nice but it can’t get much larger because of the sconces. Are there new devices out there for those can lights?

We are retired on a fixed budget, so I really can’t change the faucets, although if I could, I would probably choose burnished amber to complete the look.

Pam Hampton

Pinehurst

We asked Jephrey Scott of Village Design Group & Interior Design Center in Southern Pines to solve this design dilemma. He writes:

Three options come to mind:

Option 1 is a new item that turns a canister or high hat into a vessel for a pendant. It simply screws into the existing canister. You would need to have ample ceiling height for this one, depending on the size of the pendant.

Option 2 is a mirror surround. This is an all-in-one – a top-of-the-mirror light and lights on each side of the mirror. This would require removal of the existing sconces.

Option 3 is a canister or high hat cover. This is a simple cover that goes over the face of the fixture and then is replaced with a much purer halogen light bulb. This may be the simplest fix. Check your current wattage. If you choose this solution, I suggest you put them on dimmer switches. That will allow you to control the amount of light, depending on the time of day.

I noticed that your faucets, sconces and hardware all match. If you change anything, it would be the sconces. But bringing in a whole new finish that doesn’t relate to the other finishes in such close proximity can be tricky. I suggest you match the finish on the mirror for a more cohesive look. Speaking of the mirror, the finish and size work very well for your space. Changing the size would do nothing for you, and you have an outlet to contend with so what you gain may not be worth the cost.

One more thought: Consider changing out the knobs to a more updated look. Since the faucet looks to be chrome, take a look at solid chrome-finished knobs.

This should give you a few directions to go to accomplish your design dreams.

Village Design Group & Interior Design Center, Southern Pines.www.villagedesigngroup.com. 910-692-1000

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