Mayflower London

HOME LIGHTING – Freestanding / Fixed Lighting Fixtures and Purpose Lighting

So, you’ve decided to totally revamp your household lighting but you don’t have the foggiest idea of what’s what. If that’s the case, then this blog from Mayflower London is just for you.

So, you’ve decided to totally revamp your household lighting but you don’t have the foggiest idea of what’s what. If that’s the case then this blog from Mayflower London, along with our blog that describes different types of bulbs and switches, is just for you.

Types of Freestanding Light Fixtures 

Table Lamps 

The classic and conventional go-to for secondary lighting, table lamps essentially work as a back-up or to compliment your main light source. Perfect for task lighting across a desk, as a convenient light source on your bedside table, or a way to create a more intimate atmosphere in your lounge, they are also a great way to freshen up your household décor, coming in a plethora of styles and near unlimited varieties that can compliment any aesthetic.

Floor Lamps

The larger, taller sibling of the table lamp can brighten up dark or forgotten corners in more ways than one. Filling a generous portion of vertical space lets them act more as decorative items in their own right, making them ideal for areas that feel a little sparse whilst at the same time keeping any nooks and crannies free from shadows. Of course, they’ll also cast welcome pools of light for a well-lit read from the homely comfort of your favourite armchair.

Balanced Arm Lamp 

Defined by their adjustable folding arms and perfected by the classic Anglepoise line, you can consider balanced arm lamps as table lamps with greater purpose in life. Practicality is the name of the game, with the directional head casting clear, direct light over working surfaces. Beyond their function-focused nature, balanced arm lamps nicely complement a retro or ultra-modern aesthetic.

Gooseneck Arm Lamp

A little more casual than the balanced arm, gooseneck arm lamps can be directed hither and thither at will using an adjustable shaft. Available as freestanding table lamps or wall-mounted, goosenecks deliver spotlighting that can be shifted in seconds without introducing the complexity of a balanced arm. As a general rule of thumb, they tend to be a little cheaper – could be a good choice for children’s room or occasional study.


Stalwart guardian against boogeymen and things that go bump in the night, the nightlight casts a comforting glow of constant twilight. Though clearly no stranger to children’s bedrooms, and with plenty of kid-themed designs as a result, nightlights can also serve a practical purpose by preventing accidents in the pitch black or the dead of night.

Types of Fixed Lighting Fixtures

Ceiling Dome (Open and Enclosed)

Sometimes known as pendant lamps, domes hang down from the ceiling, providing a focal point for the room and casting a large amount of light from one or two central areas. You’ll commonly use just one in a smaller room, such as a dining room, or one or two across a larger room, such as a living room. Essentially a modern dressed-down version of the traditional chandelier, ceiling domes can be open, with the bulb exposed, or enclosed, with the bulb sheltered to provide softer illumination.

Recessed Light 

Discrete, clean, and contemporary, recessed lights are the seen-but-not-heard of the lighting world. Built into the ceiling, they maintain a neutral tone to decorate around and work well in groups to provide even illumination across larger rooms without one central focal point. Turn to recessed lighting when you want your décor to speak for itself.


Less noticeable than ceiling domes and yet more conspicuous than recessed lights, surface-mounted lights are something of a hybrid option. Installed flat across the ceiling, surface-mounted lights can be relatively small or span wide areas. Exposed edges provide a way to bring a dash of extra styling. In a modern bathroom, try chrome. For a traditional kitchen, edge with wood.

Outdoor Lighting

From much-needed illumination when exiting or entering to much-desired lighting for late night get-togethers in the garden, outdoor lighting covers a lot of ground, and you’ll find plenty of styles available. For an inviting aspect, it’s hard to hold a candle to the lantern-style bracket, while flush-fitted wall lights make sense in narrower areas. Or even just go the whole hog with motion sensor activated flood lights to scare away any uninvited animals or people.

Types of Purpose Lighting

Accent Lighting 

Used to draw deliberate attention to certain items or areas, accent lighting layers in additional texture, shape, focus, and depth. Unlike task lighting, which aims to illuminate for a practical purpose, accent lighting is more aesthetic, using spotlights, downlights, uplights, and tracks to add an extra dimension. 

Ambient/Background Lighting

‘Ambient/Background lighting’ in a sense, forms the bedrock of your lighting or acts as a stand-in for daylight. Simply put, ambient lighting is the general mood lighting, or overall illumination, of a given room. You also may want to consider a dimming switch that can help you alter the general mood of the room at any given moment. .Think basic central light but with an undramatic yet far-reaching effect, or ceiling fixtures, recessed cans, sconces or torch-style fixtures. Unlikely to make a room standout, but ambient/background lighting acts as the blank canvas for the lighting effects that do.

Task Lighting

Task lighting is usually formed by combining ambient/background lighting with some well positioned accent lighting. So when it’s time to read or write, cook or assemble that Ikea furniture, task lighting comes to the fore. Aim for a pool of light that is double the room’s ambient lighting. Hanging fixtures and lamps work well, and in kitchens, think recessed can lighting or under-cabinet mounts that will project ample light onto the counter where you’re working. In the bedroom, wall-mounted swing-arm lamps are perfect for reading and keep floor space uncluttered.

Black Lighting

Emitting mostly long-wave ultraviolet light instead of visible light, the black light can bring a sense of psychedelic chic. In the home, they’re usually needed where low-level lighting is desired. Let’s say you have a home cinema – adding black lights would light the way without disrupting the show.

Event/Party/Christmas Lighting 

The untangling season comes but once a year. Christmas lights are fun, festive, but not particularly long-lasting or bright. Try looking for sets with independent circuits to prevent the failure of one bulb/LED bringing down the entire length.

Flood Lighting 

Steadily penetrating the residential market as well as the world of business, floodlights blanket a set area with clear, bright illumination to help keep intruders at bay. Nine times out of ten, the home flood light is going to be activated by an attached motion sensor detecting movement, but obviously you can pick up a model that responds to the flick of a switch or a dedicated mobile app instead.

One of Mayflower London’s time honoured specialisms is the design, supply, installation, and maintenance of automated SMART Lighting control systems. With over a decade of experience in designing and installing some of the most innovative, functional and energy efficient bespoke lighting control systems across the UK and beyond, Mayflower London always strive to make use of the most energy efficient lighting fixtures as well as selecting  lighting fixtures that are in total harmony with the chosen aesthetic.