How To Choose Swing Arm Lighting

Practical and adjustable, swing arm lighting is the perfect compromise between bright overhead fixtures and traditional table lamps.

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Whether you want to add some light to the most dimly-lit corners without having to take up more room with a table or you simply wish to read in bed without straining your eyes, this type of lighting can revolutionize your habits and décor. That's why you shouldn't pick the first design you see! 

In order to understand your actual needs and how to complement the décor of your room, consider these points when choosing your new swing arm lighting.

How Flexible Do You Need Your Swing Arm Lighting to Be?

Do you need it to move above you when reading in bed without being too close to your head? Or to be able to shine a light onto two different chairs in your living room? It definitely wouldn't be a bad idea to physically measure this space, so that you can find a design that is extendable enough to match your needs, but not so long that it looks out of place.

As for design types, there are four main options:

  • Two arms: this is the most common design; while some are shorter or longer than others, the main difference is between those whose arms can only move horizontally and those that can go in both directions;

  • One arm: it usually only moves in one direction, but the adjustable sconce will allow you to further customize your lighting experience;

  • Three arms: it doesn't get more adjustable than this! It's ideal if you have very specific requirements or are planning on moving it often;

  • Accordion-style: do you want to be able to change the length of your swing arm lighting but don't want it to take up too much room when you're not using it? Go for this flexible option!

Simple Swing Arm Lamp
Swing Arm Wall Light
Ball Light Swing Arm Lamp
Adjustable Swing Arm Lamp
Dimmable Swing Arm Light
Stylish Swing Arm Light

Is one light setting enough for you or would you prefer to be able to tweak it depending on the situation? In the second case, look for swing arm lighting with dimmable options.

How to Choose the Color of Your Swing Arm Lighting?

Before rushing into buying the coolest hue and then realizing that it's got nothing to do with the rest of the room, identify your existing palette! 

  • The most common finishes are black, white, bronze, brass, chrome, gold, nickel, silver and copper: has that room already got some fixtures in one of those colors?
  • If there's a prominent accent color in your room's palette, why not keep it consistent and cohesive by looking for some swing arm lighting that matches it?

What Style of Swing Arm Lighting Should You Choose?

Once you know what mechanism you need and which colors you should focus on, you can start browsing away… almost! Are you trying to convey a specific feel or follow a type of décor

Here are our recommendations based on the most popular styles:

  • Choose a metal finish and sharp sconce edges for a modern and contemporary design;
Bump Swing Arm Lamp
Modern Style LED Ring
Simple Modern Swing Arm Lamp
Modern Style Swing Arm Lamp
Long One Light Swing Arm Lamp
Contemporary Swing Arm Lamp
  • For an industrial look, pick a metal or black finish and, rather than a traditional sconce, an exposed light bulb; accordion-style arms could also be a harmonious addition to this raw style;
Dimmable Industrial Double Swing Arm Lamp
Dimmable Industrial Swing Arm Sconce
Industrial Metal Swing Arm Sconce
Industrial One Light Swing Arm Lamp
One Light Industrial Swing Arm Sconce
Swing Arm Industrial Lamp
  • For a mid-Century modern look, combine functionality, minimalism and a touch of nostalgia by choosing thin adjustable arms and retro-inspired rounded sconces;
  • If coziness means everything to you and you're striving for a rustic, farmhouse or French-country décor, choose ornate sconces with details and creative shapes rather than the traditional conical design; see-through glass options also help emphasize the warmth of the light;
Stylish Lantern Swing Arm Lamp
Stylish Country Ornate Swing Arm Lamp
Double Swivel Swing Arm Lamp
Rustic Swing Arm Lamp
Ornate Swing Arm Wall Lamp
Lantern Style Swing Arm Lamp
  • Ornate sconces work well with shabby chic rooms too, but, in this case, choose white or pastel tones and shorter arms;
  • Another take on the cozy atmosphere is to recreate a cabin or lodge feel: wooden finishes and rawhide shades are the most effective way to achieve this warm look;
  • Pools of light are an essential element of hygge! For a Scandinavian-inspired décor, look for the most customizable items with long arms and a monochrome minimalist design;
  • For a stylish Tiffany décor, prioritize shorter arms and ornate glass sconces.
Simple Brass Swing Arm Lamp
White And Silver Swing Arm Lamp
Golden Swing Arm Lamp
Bulb Style Swing Arm Lamp
Simple Grey Swing Arm Light
Stylish Swing Arm Lamp

Quick Tips

  • Measure the required length and consider the level of customizability that you need
  • Find a finish that matches your other fixtures or your room's accent color
  • Complement your existing décor,so that your new lighting won't look out of place.