Much excitement in The Mad House this week as the lights have arrived for the loft. I mean there isn’t actually a wall to put them on yet but hey, that’s a detail. They are the Jielde lamps and it’s the French version of an Anglepoise. But rounder and curvier and, if it doesn’t sound too obvious, less angular.
The plan is to have one double arm wall light at either end of the desk, which runs the full width of the room and is a piece of reclaimed school laboratory worktop. Then, there will be two desk versions (still with the double arm) in the middle of the desk pointing away from each other so, hopefully, the whole desk will be lit.
They come in several different colours and either a matt or a gloss finish but we have opted for black gloss. The windows will be painted in black and the walls in a chalky white colour with some exposed brickwork. The rafters will also be on show to add to the lightly industrial feel and remind you that it is, after all, a loft.
Jean Louis Domecq (whose initial pronounced in French are: gee ell day – hence the name) was a mechanic in 1940s France who was unable to find a light suitable for his work. He started to make sketches of what he needed and by the end of the decade had worked out the design.
Like its British cousin, the Anglepoise, the lamp had to be simple, strong and fully articulating so it would light whatever was required and by 1953, it was in production.
There are various different versions from floor lights with lots of arms, to simple wall lights. You can see the variations here. Mine came from Holloways of Ludlow where there was an offer of 30 per cent off on the white and black desk versions.
You will see that there are two sorts: Loft and Signal. The Loft version, which is significantly more expensive, is slightly bigger all over – longer arms, bigger shade. Just a bit more generally fabulous, but pricey. I have the Signal version. I still love them. As I say, I just need a wall to put them on.
For those of you who like the idea but want something a little cheaper then may I introduce you to Tommy, from Habitat. There is a wall version (shorter arms) and a fabulous twin armed desk light, which is actually what I would have bought had the black not sold out and been discontinued. It comes in yellow (a colour that irritates me – see here) and chrome, which I didn’t want. You can, however, as you are probably handier than me, spray it whatever colour you like. It costs £50.