10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination

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The Independent Online

Statement bulbs are no longer only the preserve of hipster bars and hotels; there are a growing number of retailers making design-led lights in all shapes and sizes for the home. We looked for eye-catching, long-lasting, quality pieces in interesting shapes and colours.

Energy-efficient LED bulbs will keep going for ages, up to 50,000 hours in some cases, whereas old-fashioned globe-style numbers might not have the same illumination time but they do have serious vintage charm. Some work only with the brand’s specific holders and pendants, so make sure you check before buying. Here’s our edit.


1. Smoked LED Buster Bulb: £39.99, busterandpunch.com


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London label Buster and Punch loves the grittier things in life: think bolts and spanners, motorbikes and guitars. This LED lightbulb is its latest product, combining the long life of LED with the classic form of a standard bulb.

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2. Calex Halogen Gold Crown Mirror Globe: £8.99, argos.co.uk


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This simple globe bulb from Dutch manufacturer Calex looks like it’s been dipped in liquid gold, with a spectacular mirrored effect both on and off. It’s dimmable and has a life of 2000 hours.

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3. Plumen 11W ES Low Energy Decorative Bulb: £19.50, johnlewis.com



Our love affair with Plumen shows no sign of cooling off. The low-energy lightbulb alternative that’s sculptural too, Plumen looks good alone, in a series, or in combination with metallic pendants or coloured shades.

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4. Calex E27 rustic Gold Filament Lightbulb: £15, habitat.co.uk


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The trend for vintage style lighting, like this rustic lightbulb, started in hip bars and coffee shops but is now making its way into our homes. Its decorative filament looks best in combination with a simple black pendant.

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5. Crystal Bulb and Pendant by Lee Broom: £199, leebroomstore.com


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At the top end of the decorative lightbulb market is Lee Broom’s Crystal Bulb. Each one is hand cut with a crystal pattern that reminds us of a whiskey glass. The refined touch continues with a brushed brass pendant and gold fabric cable.

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6. Cox and Cox Vintage Amber Light: £20, coxandcox.co.uk 


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If you’ve got a lantern that needs a bulb, this over-sized vintage-looking one will give you a warm glow and add to the old-fashioned vibe, and as it’s an LED, it will last much, much longer (a whopping 50,000 hours) than bulbs from by-gone days.

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7. Nook Nostalgia Lights Industrial Squirrel Cage: £62.08, nooklondon.com



Nook’s over-sized bulbs (and we mean over-sized – 175x300mm) make an impact in a room. We’d show this one off hanging over the dining table. The size means it needs a converter so it will fit in a standard lamp holder (Nook sells porcelain or bakerlite versions). It lasts 2000 hours but much longer if you use a dimmer switch.

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8. Seletti Crystaled Lamp: £70, amara.com



The luxe-looking bulbs in Italian-based Seletti’s ‘crystalled’ range are, as the name suggests, crafted from crystal. There are round, square or hexagonal versions, available in three colours which all give off a subtle, soft light. Each bulb is designed to go in one of the brand’s lamp ceiling holders (sold separately). 

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9. Amber Carbon Filament Lamp: £6.50, ryness.co.uk



Do you want to replicate Downton Abbey-style lighting in your home? If so, try an amber-hued bulb to ape period lighting. The striking coil filament makes it a talking-point, too. It won’t last as long as LED, but you’ll still get 4,000 hours out of it.

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10. LED Light Bulb Sharp Diamond: £32, notonthehighstreet.com



A diamond-shaped light bulb is a girl’s best friend, or something. Either way, we’re fans of this one which uses a low energy LED so it will last 35,000 hours. It also comes in a ‘soft diamond’ shape with a curved base instead of a point.

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For a low-energy bulb you actually want to show off (a rare thing), we like Plumen’s design. If it’s glamour you’re after, Lee Broom’s crystal bulb is a beauty. It may be expensive, but remember you also get the pendant with it. Nook’s huge bulbs will look seriously striking in a larger space if you want your lighting to be a talking point.  


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