Torchère in Today’s Design

Torchere, torch lamp, light, design

A pair of carved wooden torchères flank a doorway in this elaborate Louis XV style room.

torchère or torch lamp, is a lamp with a tall stand made of wood or metal. Originally, torchères were simply a candelabra, usually with two or three lights. When it was first introduced in France towards the end of the 17th century, the torchère mounted only one candle. When the number of candles were doubled or tripled the improvement was regarded almost as a revolution in the lighting of large rooms.

torchère, torch lamp, lighting, design

A stunning torchère.

What made a torchère different from your average floor lamp is that at its top, it was usually shaped like a bowl or an inverted cone, throwing light up toward the ceiling.

Screen Shot 2014-07-25 at 11.50.33 AM Today, a torchère could be a pedestal with a candelabra perched atop, a tall candlestick, etc.

torchere, torch light, candelabra, design

This room lights a dark corner with a lovely candelabra torchère.

Torchères do wonders for dark corners, niches, recesses, or any other spot in your home that seems perennially in the shadows. These standing lamps are often used in pairs against a wall, their strong presence illuminating walls in a more substantial way than is possible with overhead or recessed lights.

torchere, torch light, candlestick, design

A tall candlestick serves as the torchère in this room.

Not looking to make a statement but desperately need that extra uplight, there are many models out there today that are beautiful. One thing to consider if you are planning to put a torchère(s) in your home, make sure that your ceiling and your walls are in great shape. Otherwise, your floor lamp will only exaggerate every flaw and blemish.

A sleek torchère by the great Ralph Lauren is a great example of how some are designed today.

A sleek torchère by the great Ralph Lauren is a great example of how some are designed today.

What are your thoughts on a torchère? Have you used one in your design or home that you would like to share? I would love to see pictures. Feedback is always appreciated as well.

Thanks as always for reading. Stay well 🙂

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