Sconce It Up

“Sconce It Up!”

By Corey Damen Jenkins for

In your mind’s eye, picture a woman getting ready for a formal evening dinner. She wants to make a great first impression on her peers and opts for the classic “black dress”. She makes this choice due to the dress’ versatility; she knows it can be jazzed up or dialed down depending on her accessories. Yes, the right choice of shoes, clutch and—of course, jewelry—can take this simple garment to the realm of the wow.

Black Dress, Handbag, Sandals & Jewelry

As an interior designer, I believe that wall sconces are like jewelry— for the house. They can make even the blandest rooms more appealing. With careful planning sconces can perform as sculptures or works of art. Today, there is an almost mind-blowing assortment of them available on the market, in all shapes, sizes and styles. Some are understated, while others are over-the-top. There are some sconces that look amazing with silk or glass shades, while others are most stunning with their light-bulbs exposed. And while reproductions are great, antique sconces add instant culture and start conversations.

I encourage my clients to avoid skimping on lighting–even when working with a limited budget. Like jazzing up that simple black dress, an inexpensive sconce can make a room look very posh and high-end. While sconces can be chosen to compliment a particular “period” design style, you can also have a lot of fun with them! For example, I like juxtaposing weird, abstract sconces against more serious, traditional architecture.  The end result is something whimsical, edgy and unexpected.

Decorative Wall Sconces Above Fireplace
Photo credit:

Sadly, some home-builders don’t give much thought—if any—to wall lighting while planning new construction. Instead they build these big spaces with naked walls devoid of character which later leaves homeowners scratching their heads on what to do to “fill the space”.  As a result, many are overwhelmed and either leave these walls bare, or try filling them up with under-scaled artwork. And this is particularly tragic because sconces are not only awesome alternatives to hung artwork, but they also improve a room’s functionality by providing more ambient light.

Of course, consulting your interior designer and electrician is essential for determining the proper scale, feasibility and installation of wall lighting, but such professional input is well worth it. Embrace the versatile nature of sconces and use these accessories as jewelry for your home!

Corey Damen’s Top 10 Sconces:

1) Dessau Home Antique Gold Wheat Candle Sconce

2) Currey & Company French Gold Leaf Boudoir Wall Sconce

3) Hudson Valley Cheshire Four-Light Antique Nickel Sconce

4) Corbett Graffiti Silver Leaf and Polished Stainless 2-Light Wall Sconce

5) Crystorama Brentwood Polished Gold Two-Light Wall Sconce with Swarovski Elements Crystals

6) Hudson Valley Jefferson Old Bronze Two-Light Wall Sconce

7) Currey & Company Gingko Antique Gold Fluorescent Wall Sconce

8) Currey & Company Zara Two-Light Plug-In Wall Sconce

9) Corbett Harlow Tranquility Silver Leaf with Polished Stainless Accents 2 and 4-Light Wall Sconce

10) Corbett Femme Fatale Small One-Light Silver Leaf Sconce

Author & Designer Corey Damen

About Corey Damen:

Corey Damen Jenkins
Nationally acclaimed designer Corey Damen Jenkins is known for injecting spaces with a fresh, continental mix of elegance and modernity. His creative vision has been featured on HGTV, “House Beautiful”, “USA Today”, “Charlotte Urban Home”, “The Detroit News & Free Press”, “StyleLine” and more.