Antique Light Bulbs

Antique light bulbs, sometimes called edison light bulbs, have clear glass envelopes and visible, sometimes playfully intricate filaments. Because they are very attractive and emit flattering warm light, these decorative light bulbs have become very popular for lighting places like homes, restaurants, and hotels. Edison bulbs look great hanging by themselves or in light fixtures that show off the bulb itself. Antique light bulbs now play an important role in both vintage lighting and modern lighting design.

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Tips For Using Vintage Style Light Bulbs

Where to Use Them

Antique or edison light bulbs have an aesthetic function, and, therefore, it is up to you where to use them. They are popular in restaurants, bars, cafes, and hotels, and also in kitchens, dining rooms, living rooms, and anywhere else you want a vintage look. You often see edison bulbs hanging in pendant light fixtures over islands. But they are so attractive, you also see them hanging alone by cloth-covered cables or in minimalist downlights. And sometimes in mason jars over the patio!

Restoring Antique Light Fixtures

Edison light bulbs restore beauty and relevance to your vintage light fixtures. Vintage lighting enthusiasts love these light bulbs to finish off the look of an antique lamp or chandelier. What’s nicer than a recently rewired vintage crystal chandelier with brand new edison bulbs? Safe, beautiful, restored, and luminous. Edison bulbs have helped vintage light fixtures come back into style, largely because these decorative light bulbs come in a variety of styles, from inconspicuous to vibrantly expressive. Antique light bulbs can be dramatic or just warm.

What Style of Envelope Would You Like?

The glass envelopes for antique light bulbs often come in different finishes, including clear and smoke. What does “smoke” mean? Edison bulbs with smoke envelopes have a slightly darkened finish that creates a look that many people love, and not just because it looks more authentic. The look of a smoke envelope vintage light bulb has a dramatic aesthetic. It is possible that the darkness of the smoke, juxtaposed with the warm and whimsical filament is responsible for that something special you find in the look of a smoke envelope edison light bulb.

What Kind of Base Do You Need?

Antique light bulbs come in a variety of bases, and two of the most popular are the medium base and the candelabra base. This makes sense because medium base and candelabra base light bulbs are the two most common light bulb bases in household lighting. You see medium based antique bulbs in standard household light fixtures from pot lights to table lamps to pendants. You will find slightly smaller candelabra base light bulbs in ceiling fan light fixtures, chandeliers, sconces, and pendants, etc. To replace a light bulb with a vintage one, just make sure you choose one with the same type of base as the original light bulb.

What Shape of Light Bulb Do You Prefer?

You get to be very particular when it comes to choose vintage light bulbs because they come in a variety of attractive shapes. Four of the most popular edison light bulb shapes are globe, tubular, signature (which is oblong), and A-shape, which is the shape of the traditional A-19 light bulbs used in household lamps. Your personal style and taste will guide you as you decide between globe and signature, A-shape and tubular. You have to see these different shapes to really “get it.” Feel free to use our collection of antique light bulbs as an educational resource to help you decide which shape is best for your lighting needs.

What Kind of Filament Would You Like to See?

The really neat thing about the edison bulb is its filament. You might find it to be the most exciting part of the light bulb. The three most popular filament styles are spiral, thread, and hairpin. Again, choosing the kind of filament you want for your vintage lighting look is a matter of your own personal taste. The filament is another customizable characteristic of the edison bulb, and, again, you really have to see the difference in these styles of filament to see just how drastically each one changes the way the decorative bulb makes you feel.

Antique Light Bulbs and Recent Light Bulb Legislation

Though LED antique light bulbs are now available, many edison light bulbs are incandescent bulbs, however they are not affected by legislation and remain perfectly legal. Why are they unaffected? Because edison light bulbs are not considered to be “general service” light bulbs. They are specialty or novelty light bulbs, and this means you are free to use them to take your lighting design to the next level.