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Interior Design and Lighting Glossary

3-Way Floor Lamp

A floor lamp that allows for 3 levels of light.
6-Way Floor Lamp
A floor lamp that takes 4 individual bulbs (one that consists of a 3 way light that dims and 3 regular) and allows for 6 levels of light.
Accent Lamps
Portable lamps that are generally smaller than table lamps and have more embellishments.
Accent Lighting
Lighing in which an object or architectural feature is highlighted by the light source.
ALA (American Lighting Association)
A trade association representing the lighting industry.
Ambient Lighting
General lighting that illuminates the space and helps create an inviting environment.
Arm
A horizontal extension from the body of the lamp that allows for better direct lighting and utilizes space.
Bobeche
The piece that the candle cover or glass bowl sits on and adds to the decorative feel of the light.
Body of a Lamp
The most decorative part of a light fixture and is the main focal point.
Boudoir Lamps
Smaller than a table lamp, boudoir lamps are more feminine and used on bedside tables and vanities.
Buffet Lamps
Small lamps that sit on both ends of a buffet table and are commonly sold in sets of two.
Candle Cover
Hides the wire from the socket to the arm and can extend for a candle effect.
Canopy
A decorative piece of hardware that is used as a cover for the wires and a junction box for ceiling fixtures.
Center Pipe
A pipe that can be decorative or hide wires from the separate lights to the top of the fixture.
Chandlier
Hardwire fixtures which hang from the ceiling.
Dark-Sky Lighting
A new concept which directs an outdoor fixture's light only to the ground and decreases light pollution.
Decorative Lighting
Can be any type of lighting that makes it a glowing, functional piece of art. Usually has decorative shades and accents to draw attention to itself.
Desk Lamps
Lamps that have an abundant light source for better task lighting.
Energy Star Lighting
A government supported program that concentraites on saving energy to protect the enviroment.
Finial
A small ornament that sits above the shade of a lamp or at the bottom of a ceiling fixture and finishes the look.
Floor Lamps
Portable lamps that sit on the floor for extra ambient light.
Fluorescent Lighting
More efficient type of light that uses ultraviolet rays and is easier to dim, produces more light, and lasts longer than a normal bulb.
Hardwire Lighting
A fixture that is mounted and wired through the walls or ceiling.
Harp
Metal frame that bends around the bulb to secure the lamp shade to the lamp.
Lamp Stand
Provides the body of the lamp with support and allows the cord to exit from the bottom.
Lampshade
A decorative cover to diffuse the light of the light bulb. Can be made of stone, fabric, or animal hide.
Mounting Hardware
Hardware that connects the fixture to the junction box.
Pin-Up Sconce
This style of sconce is hung on the wall, not mounted and hardwired but rather uses a regular electrical outlet.
Socket
The area which houses the switch to turn the lamp on and off and holds the bulb.
Spider
Connects the shade and harp.
Swing-Arm Lamp
A specific floor lamp where the lamp has an overhanging arm swings for direct lighting while the body of the lamp stays stationary.
Table Lamps
A portable fixture that is usually stationed on a piece of hard furniture.
Task Lighting
Lighting that is used for specific tasks, such as reading, writing, computer work, or cooking. Task lighting is directed into a certain area to decrease strain on the eyes.
The Chain
Hides the wire and determines how long a hanging fixture is from the ceiling.
Top Loop
A piece of a chandelier that swivels to prevent the chain from tangling and provides stability.
Torchiere
A floor lamp that has a glass bowl which faces towards the ceiling to shine light upwards.
Transformer
An electrical device that moves energy through wires and can change the amount of voltage it sends out in an electrical current.
UL
A certification that guarentee public safety on products and their components.
Voltage
The rate at which energy flows between two point is measured in volts.
Wall Lamp
See wall sconces. Can be mounted to the wall or hung.
Wall Sconces
A bracket attached to a wall that can hold candles or electric light sources.
Wattage
The amount of power used for an electrical device to function.