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An interior designer has plenty of options in their toolbox when it comes to making a dramatic impact on a room. Over the last few years, we’ve seen dark wall colors and bold patterns make a resurgence, as well as statement sofas and colorful art. Lighting, however, remains a powerful tool when it comes to making a room really … shine. The effects of lighting shouldn’t go unnoticed, and these six Nashville designers and store owners share with us some of their favorite projects where lighting makes the statement or the light fixtures they recommend to make it. Read on for their expert insight!

Sara Ray Interior Design

Sara Ray shares with us three projects where the lighting was intentionally selected for the space. You can see how each light fixture fits in neatly, complementing its surroundings instead of dominating the room. Her versatility as a designer is highlighted by the three diverse rooms, and it illustrates just how impactful the right lighting can be.

“For this Morgan Farms client’s dining room, we selected a statement fixture that is both modern and classic. I wanted a large scale fixture for the space but one that wasn’t visually bulky. The minimal brass details added to the other brass touches in the space.” Image: Alyssa Rosenheck

“Our goal for this Westhaven client’s living room was a light fixture that would complement the Asian art and aesthetic of the space. I love the way it provides soft up-lighting, as I didn’t want harsh lighting in the room. The fixture becomes a sculptural, illuminated element in the space.” Image: Kristen Mayfield

“We selected a light fixture that was edgy and cool to go with the juxtaposition of modern eclectic art, furniture and fabrics in this historic East Nashville home. I sought a piece that would make a statement while complementing the art, not distracting from it. I love the strong lines and angles of the light fixture with the custom shelves and architectural details of the space.” Image: Gieves Anderson

Ironware International

The experts at Ironware International know a thing or two about the impact of lighting. Their specialty is customizing pieces to fit seamlessly into a room, perfectly complementing the space. The Eden chandelier, $5,500 at retail, can be customized in plenty of different ways that you can find here.

Karin Eaton, founder of Ironware International, tells us, “I love the versatility of our Eden chandelier. It has been used in kitchens, dining rooms and entryways. The key to making this piece work in rooms that range from elegant to playful is the finish selection. In this photo of a sunroom in a project by Barbara Gisel Design of Haverford, Pennsylvania, her choice of a pink custom finish with gold leaf detailing generates and responds to the bright and cheerful personality of the room.”

This light fixture pulls the entire space together in a cohesive way. Image provided by Barbara Gisel Design

Harpeth Gallery

Harpeth Gallery’s owner Walton Estes implements her own advice as she uses a lovely chandelier above her dining room table in her home. She tells us, “This European-styled ‘Trio of Finishes’ chandelier with crown-like bobeches — the glass collar on a candle socket to catch drippings or on a chandelier to hold suspended glass prism — can transcend any decor. It has volume but not mass, so it won’t overwhelm a space and will only add to the beauty of the room.” With a dining room on the smaller size, the scale of this piece perfectly lights the room without taking it over.

Walton’s beautiful chandelier fits in with the timeless design of her home, and its scale is pleasing to the eye.


The Epiphany team describes that touch of lighting well. “Lighting is jewelry for your home, and we believe it is the most important accessory.” That accessory can totally make or break a room, and in this case, it certainly makes it. The unique shape and design of this light fixture are eye-catching and interesting, a conversation point in a room of clean lines and modern finishes. Schuylar Goad exclaims, “These bubbles are a charming contrast to the stark modernity of this home. We love them!”

The bubble light fixtures are a playful touch in a modern home — juxtaposition at its finest! Image: Epiphany


Bandywood’s AshBlue is a destination for all things home decor, and they have a particular penchant for lighting. They carry Visual Comfort fixtures, including this one, the Cristol Tiered Chandelier in hand-rubbed antique brass. “We love this fixture because it can be used in both a more traditional design to bring a modern touch to the room or in a design that has a clean, modern aesthetic overall. It is available in both hand-rubbed antique brass, which has a warmer appeal, or in a polished nickel finish. We have seen it installed in living rooms, dining rooms and even stairways. It looks fabulous no matter the location.” It’s the versatility that allows it to shine in most rooms or designs, adding to the overall aesthetic of a room rather than distracting from it.

The Visual Comfort Cristol Tiered Chandelier is available at AshBlue for $2,025. Image + design: Steffanie Danby

Beth Haley Design

Beth Haley of Beth Haley Design shares that lighting selection should be intentional as it really can change the feel of the room. “I love lighting and the impact it has on a space. The right lighting can set the mood of a room, emphasize interesting features or define a space and should be a thoughtful consideration in the room’s artistic design. Using layers of lighting completes a space, but often the crown jewel of any room is that one special fixture.” In this room, Beth chose to use unique sconces along the wall, lending a calming, ethereal effect. She shares, “The beaded sconces in this master bedroom set the tone for relaxation while adding a bit of mystery and curiosity to the room.”

It’s the lighting that makes this room feel soothing, perfectly paired with moody design details. Image: Andrea Behrends


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