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Holiday Gift Guide

Lights for Sore Eyes: The Top 10 Ugliest Fixtures Ever

2011 March 16
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by Sarah

Last month we reached out to our customers, Facebook fans and beyond and asked them to bare it all for a chance to win a $500 gift card to Lumens.com as part of our “Show us Your Ugly” contest. And we saw some of the most hideous and unsightly ones out there.

We are, of course, talking about lighting. Our entries spanned the United States, proving that bad taste knows no region. There were DIY failures, track home travesties, and quite a few chandeliers that offered much more eeeek! than chic.

Here are our top 10 gasp-worthy fixtures, as voted on by the Lumens community:

10. 25+ Year-Old Chandelier from Rachel
This beauty has been in Rachel’s dad’s apartment for more than 25 years.

9. Oil lamp chandelier from Luz
Late last year, Luz bought her dream home but said dream came with a tiny sliver of nightmare: this old time-y lamp that looks better fit for…camping? Spelunking?

8. Green Wrought Iron Chandelier from Lisa
“Ugly” is clearly subjective, as Lisa’s entry came with several comments that all it needed was a can of paint and a little love. But Lisa wasn’t quite as smitten over this chandelier, which was custom-made for the previous owners in her house. “It looks like something that you would find in a saloon in the old west with barmaids swinging from it during a fight,” she said. Ha!

7. Kitchen light from Carolyn
“My husband’s expression says it all. He’s actually very attractive, but the lighting is so bad in our kitchen that it makes everything else ugly,” says Carolyn, of her hubby who serves here as the object of illumination for the fluorescent fright happening behind him. Carolyn reports that the plastic diffusers are cracked and yellowing, but worst of all, trap stink bugs in the fall and winter.

6. Bedroom light from Justin
Ah, we’ve all had one of these once or twice in our lives, haven’t we? The standard ceiling light of many homes and apartments, often unchangeable and creator of unfortunate shadows.

5. 1970s pineapple bronze monstrosity from Kylee

Kylee’s 1974 home came with the original everything, including this chandelier in the living room. She gave it the name above, not us, but we think it’s a pretty apt label.

4. Outdoor light from Diana
I can’t quite tell if the light itself attaches to the bar above it, or if the two are separate monsters. Either way, it’s a worthy entry indeed, and the brick would lend itself well to a new outdoor fixture.

3. Ugly dining light from Diana
Folks compared this fixture to a UFO swooping down into Diana’s dining room. We come in peace!

2. Dingy dining room light from Victoria
I’m 87% sure that my grandma had this same fixture over a brown and orange couch when I was younger. At more than two decades old, this style may have overstayed its welcome, no?

1. Eco-light from Jennifer—Our big winner!
A big congratulations from Jennifer of PA, who is our grand-prize winner of a $500 Lumens.com gift card, and it looks like she needs it, no? Rather than have a bare bulb hanging down, her fiancé fashioned a diffuser out of a DVD case lid in an effort to be eco-friendly. The light sits in their living room, one of the most used spaces in their home, so an upgrade to something just a smidge more fashionable is right up Jennifer’s alley.

They just moved into their home last fall, and are slowly and surely making it “theirs,” with lots of redecorating and renovations underway. We have no doubt that a lighting refresh will make a big difference! Since there is an identical light (minus the swanky cover) on the other side of the room, Jennifer is thinking upgrading to a pair of pendants, but is open to ideas, so tell us what you might suggest for her!

A big thank you to all of our entrants and voters during our contest! We can’t wait to do it again.

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