This section is from the book "The Practical Book Of Interior Decoration", by Harold Donaldson Eberlein, Abbot Mcclure, Edward Stratton Holloway. See also: The Victorian House Book: A Practical Guide to Home Repair and Decoration.
Candelabra and other standard lights have always played-an important part in interior furnishing and they are of equal use today. They are especially appropriate with floors of marble, mosaic and tile, and decorated or sand-finished walls (Plate 100 B).
The ubiquity of the standard piano lamp has rather discredited all varieties of the floor lamp with people of individuality unless it and its shade are unusual. Certainly the candelabrum with several candles, or with electric fitting, or with the lanthorn top, possesses far greater distinction.
The suggestion of employing these for dining-rooms has already been made
They Are Of equal use for the illumination of desks and study tables, and for the bringing into additional relief of some special feature of decoration, such as an unusually handsome cassone or chest, a valuable tapestry or picture In a rather dusky corner of a library, such a light with electric bulbs, quickly switched on, would prove of value in consulting the volumes.
Such standards, whether of metal or wood, plain, painted or decorated, may either be simple and attractive or highly wrought Appropriateness in the use of the latter is of course necessary; i.e., a magnificent lighting arrangement naturally should not be used to illuminate an inconsiderable desk or table.
The principal requisites are that shades should be in harmony of likeness or of contrast with the lamp and appropriate to the surroundings.
Such a variety of styles, shapes and materials are illustrated that one may easily find a good model for any lamp, but a few words of caution are necessary.
The pattern, scale and spirit of lamps and shades must not be incongruous - if one is conventional in design and the other naturalistic, the spirit in each is opposed and the divergence will annoy; or if the pattern in one is larger than in the other, this will prove equally exasperating.
Shades should not come down too low on the lamp. In the group of lamps in their environment note the rather clumsy appearance given by this fault in the second example as compared with the others. Nor, on the other hand, should they stand too high, as a skimpy appearance will then result. The lines of shade and lamp together should make a graceful and pleasing contour.