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A guide to: Wall Lights

14 August 2020

Thinking of adding wall lighting to your home? Read our latest guide to help decide on the best style, fixture and placement for you...
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Lighting in any home is an important consideration, key to enhancing the look and feel of the overall space. Wall lights create an inviting atmosphere and their higher-level illumination helps to create a homely space that is versatile at any time of day. Often placed to brighten darker corners and long narrow spaces or highlight walkways within the home, wall lights are a practical addition that save space, yield ambience, and can be controlled via dimmer switches to determine the mood of a room.

Our Noctis Hanter Wall Light puts the lustre back in illumination and brings sophistication into any space.


Wall lighting is a valuable addition to any room of the house. Some of our favourite places to include the fixtures are hallways or landings to create a welcoming entrance to the home and provide necessary illumination into other rooms. Likewise, wall lights look fantastic in living areas when combined with ceiling pendants, table lights and floor lights to create a ‘lightscape’ ensuring there’s always lighting to suit a certain task or mood. Furthermore, utilising wall lights in bedrooms instead of conventional table lighting not only saves bedside table space but also creates a playful, modern aesthetic.

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Warm light gathers between strips of wood. Flexed to the brink then fixed into an organic sphere inspired by sandcombed shells, our Urchin Wall Light brings atmosphere in abundance.


The placement of wall lights is key as there are several things to consider prior to installation:

Height – it is best to avoid installing wall lights at a height where you are going to walk into them or be eye level with an exposed bulb. Mounting lights approximately six feet from floor level can be used as a rough guide - although the height of your family members, ceiling and the size of the fixture will come into play when determining this!

Spacing - one fixture every six to eight feet should be adequate, although you may want slightly more or less space between lights depending on the lumen output of the light bulb you are using, or size of the room. Open plan spaces may require more fixtures to create a similar impact and lighting effect. It’s also worth considering the line of the wall lights prior to fixing – sometimes staggering fittings so that they purposefully don't line up symmetrically or horizontally across a hallway leads to a more natural configuration, but equally, having a pair of wall lights in a small space that don’t line up can look odd. It’s all about personal preference and important to consider the fitting you’ve specifically chosen for your intended space.

Location - narrower rooms, halls and stairwells with heavy traffic are best lit by mounted fixtures that keep a low profile and don’t protrude too far into the space – be sure to measure the depth of a fitting before purchasing to ensure it’s going to work well. 

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Tracing from crest to trough, a single piece of sustainably sourced walnut wood seamlessly intertwines to form our enigmatic Neap Wall Light.
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The Neap’s elegant form carves a perfectly balanced path of light to brighten above and below. An intuitive lighting design that sweeps a soft ambient glow to far corners and suits an array of spaces.

Creating a statement

Due to the decorative nature of many of our steam bent wooden wall light designs, they can be arranged in groups or clusters to create a feature in your home - giving you more options when coming to design your space.

For example, designed to capture the imagination with nature’s formations, our Arame Wall Light produces a transfixing display of geometric shadow. The Arame mimics organic shapes, inviting you to put nature back in the spotlight. Available in ash or darker walnut wood, our Arame Wall Light can create an impact and start a conversation in any interior.

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When illuminated, an abundance of golden glow diffuses from the Arame Wall Light's steam bent core - casting an aura of light that's truly transfixing.

Material and shape

Ensuring that the wall lights you opt for coordinate well with and blend seamlessly with the rest of your interior scheme is key to creating an effortless look.

Choosing a shape that mirrors the curves of furnishings, marries with other fixtures in the same area or is made from the same material as other assets in the space is a good way to ensure a wall light will look at home in its intended area. Our modern wall lights come in an array of wood types to ensure there is a guaranteed match with your interior and our wide range of contemporary designs will suit an array of property styles.

Flush wal light
Introducing: our Skipper Small Wall Light. A unique wall light design that celebrates natural materials and handcrafted skill, the Skipper Wall Light produces a golden glow that diffuses softly around any interior and adds drama with it's bold, eye-catching shadows.
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A taut arc of steam bent timber clings to a solitary filament bulb. Refreshing in its simplicity, surprising in its design, our oak Hanter Wall Light turns heads.
stem wall light
Dropping splashes of light from its Helix shade to bring focus from the shadows; the Stem Wall Light is the ultimate balance between form and function.

Lighting effect

Perhaps the most important thing to consider when choosing wall lighting is the effect you would like the fixtures to have.

Wall lights that have exposed light bulbs tend to create a warm, ambient output and cast light in every direction, whilst designs that obscure the bulb create down or up-lighting effects and more shadow on surrounding walls.

For example, our Hanter Wall Lights feature suspended filament bulbs that illuminate a space without casting any shadow just bright, direct light. Alternatively, our Urchin and Cape Wall Light designs have wooden shades that cover the bulb and therefore produce more shadow and directional lighting. 

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Cape Wall LightHandcrafted timber peaks and barrels. In its folds, light gathers and shadows are cast, creating focus and atmosphere. Sustainably sourced ash, oak or walnut loop in layers to compliment, emphasise or elevate the space it claims.

Hard wired or plug and switch?

A number of our wooden wall light designs can be purchased as ‘hard wired’ or ‘plug and switch’ variations, but what does this actually mean?

We refer to ‘hard wired’ wall lights as lights that will require wiring into your mains supply by an electrician. In other words, they are not plugged in to a plug socket and do not have a trailing cable with a flick switch (like a table light would).

Our 'plug and switch' options come ready to be plugged into a main electricity supply (no terminal block) with grey fabric flex, an inline switch and a UK plug. No electrician needed.

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Wheal Wall Light hardwired option - comes with terminal block (without a plug or switch) ready to be hardwired into mains electric.
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Wheal Wall Light plug and switch option - plugs into the mains (no terminal block) ready to go.

What are the benefits of each?

The difference between our 'hard wired' and 'plug and switch' wall lights is mainly aesthetic. The benefit of our ‘hard wired’ wall lights is, that once installed, there is no visible flex attached to the light that requires plugging into a socket. The ‘hard wired’ wall lights are operated by a wall mounted switch or dimmer switch of your choice.

The benefit of the ‘plug and switch’ option is ease of installation – no electrician is required to install the fitting and the wall lights can be mounted anywhere they reach a plug socket. They are operated by the inline switch already attached to the flex. A 'plug and switch' wall light is also well suited to rented properties.


Whilst some designs such as our Neap Wall Light and Cape Wall Light include light bulbs specially chosen to complement our sculptural lighting range and their energy-saving credentials, most of our other wall lights do not. It’s important to choose the right bulb for your space and opt for a style of light bulb that you like the look of, as well as yielding the right type of light in which to carry out daily tasks.

We offer an array of LED bulbs - some of our favourites to pair with our wall lights include:

Tala Elva Filament Bulb – a unique playful design of interlocking filament diamonds, coupled with a beautiful, soft, warm glow make the Elva a perfect choice for exposed wall light fittings.

The Porcelain II light bulb has been covered in a phosphor coating to control glare usually produced by filament bulbs and illuminates interiors with a comfortable and soft ambient white light.

Discover our light bulb collection

Explore our wall light collection

Explore unique, curved wooden wall lights from Tom Raffield, including mounted versions of the Urchin, Skipper, Arame and Stem range of wall lights. Choose plug-in-and-go to instantly bring your living room, bedroom or hallway to life.

Posted: 14.08.20
Updated: 01.05.24

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