Field trip Friday: Lighting places on the Bowery

 When it comes to furniture and lighting, o

ne of the biggest challenges in New York City is finding places to 'try before you buy'  in person. While it might seem like there's lots of places to see things, as soon as you want to sit in a specific sofa in the exact size you'd like, it turns out they either don't have one on the showroom floor, or they only have the chair version. Clients are always asking me where they can see lighting in person, and there are a few places where that is possible. One of them is at Lee's lighting showroom, and the other is amongst the string of lighting stores on the Bowery in lower Manhattan.  There are a lot of places to choose from, but if you need to just pick a few, I suggest you start at Lighting by Gregory, which is one of the largest (and still growing) stores, amongst the many in the area. What makes it different is the sheer quantity of lighting on display in their expanded showrooms  and the incredibly helpful sales staff.  Where Gregory's used to be a dark (I know, how can a lighting place be dark) jumbled, sometimes hard to deal with place, it now is spacious, bright, and a great place to find what you are looking for. There's a full Artemide Tolomeo display -- with all the incarnations of this modern classic.

And future classics like the gorgeous Silva light from Cerno below (not available online)

They have the elegant ET2 Hydrox and the budget friendly and customizable Lights Up series where you can actually compare the samples to your paint and fabric (which I know you'll bring with you to the store!)

One of the hard things to figure out online is the scale of a light, so it's great to see things like the Global Lighting collection. The orange sconce is actually a lot bigger than expected!

I also liked seeing the quality of the Hudson Valley series in person. Some great details. Here it is on the site:

And here it is with a close up in person. I really like the industrial knurled detail and never would have seen it from the site photo.

Lendy's Lighting is a great place to buy as well. I was able to see several under-cabinet lights in person, and happily purchased some WAC LED fixtures for a project. I was initially hesitant to go with the LED's because some look kind of 'spotty', but this had a plastic lens which diffused it and the effect was almost indistinguishable--BUT I never would have known unless I saw it in person.

If you are looking for some great inexpensive lights, BP Lighting has some really good finds. This floor lamp is well-made, beautifully designed,  and a fantastic bargain at $289

This lacy pendant reminds me of the Mooi random light (shown on the right) -- except it's only $180 compared to $650!

One of my resolutions for the New Year is to get out more to see things in person, because that's when you make the greatest discoveries, and I do believe in supporting the local economy. Please share any local stores where you have made some happy discoveries!