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american made lighting

Fun Colors, Functional Style Highlight Elephant Barn Renovation

If you missed Monday’s post, be sure to click over and read the backstory of this interesting property in California that once served as an elephant sanctuary. Mike and Melanie fell in the love with the place and envisioned turning the former elephant barn into a multi-purpose photography studio, workshop, and office.

In today’s post, we’re heading inside the barn to see what lighting choices the couple made to complete the transformation of this incredible building.

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The garage not only serves as a space for the car, but a workbench along the wall offers Mike a convenient place for fixing things. He selected two Fargo Swing Arm Wall Sconces for their vintage flair and functionality. These wall lights are customized with a bright Watermelon finish and Black arm.

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“The versatility of the swing arm can’t be overstated!” Mike says. “We often work with bulky items on the bench so it’s handy to swing them out of the way. And the Watermelon is a cute pop of pink in an otherwise drab garage space.” These fixtures are also customized with standard black cords and a black socket with a paddle switch.

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“The black arm, socket, and cords are more utilitarian while the watermelon is fun and playful,” he explains. “We know things are going to get dirty in here, so the black, glossy cord is super easy to clean and remove endless dust from.”

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Computer chores take place in this colorful space complete with a desk, lounge chair, and two Sinclair Swing Arm Wall Sconces. Mike notes that soft greens and blues are a theme throughout the barn creating an inviting and calming space in which to work and relax.

“They’re reminiscent of the landscapes in the Nordics,” Mike notes, “with spearmint-blue glaciers, mint-green moss in the forests, and the dark blue and greens of the sea.” These adjustable wall lights feature a Mint finish, black socket and paddle switch, and 1910-era Edison light bulbs.

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“We love the tactile, vintage feel you get from turning a big fat paddle switch instead of a dinky little thumb roller or rocker switch on a wall,” he says. “The soft glow of the bulbs is just absolutely classic. Super moody at night and a kiss of warm glow during the day. A product of a bygone era!”

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This multi-purpose space, which includes a bunk and kitchenette, sports a high, sloped ceiling which Mike describes as one of their favorite features of the entire barn. He and Melanie chose the slender Alto Wooden Cylinder Pendant Light to add both illumination and elegant style to the room.

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“We wanted to add a lot of light up there but we didn’t want big bulky fixtures that compromised the airiness of the room,” Mike explains. “The Alto pendants are perfect for this! They’re elegant and delicate and fill the space perfectly. We arranged them in two lines, almost like a runway, to add depth and focus to the room. When you stand in the right spot, you get this great feeling of symmetry and movement at the same time.”

The couple customized these handcrafted pendants with Ash wood, their favorite Mint finish, and standard black cords.

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“The ash wood matches the ceiling nearly perfectly, and the wood helps to soften the space which has a lot of concrete,” Mike notes. “The black is a modern Nordic touch that is repeated throughout; in the hardware for the barn door, the cords for the Alto lights, and a few other spots. Just enough to bring in some nice punctuation marks throughout the room.”

Now that their barn is finished, Mike and Melanie are enjoying the colorful, inviting spaces they created for both work and fun.

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“The lights are absolutely perfect for the space. The Altos are gentle and light. The goosenecks playful and industrial. And the swing arms are functional and fun at the same time,” Mike says. “We love the range of products all from one manufacturer which means continuity and visual consistency throughout the entire project. Barn Light has the best looking lights and the most options for customization. Lots of junk on Amazon, but these are the real deal!”

Photos courtesy of Mike Kelley

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