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schoolhouse lighting

Handcrafted Lighting, Furniture & Artwork Create Eclectic Dining Atmosphere

Walking into The Lede feels like you’re entering a hip and colorful art museum rather than one of Oakland, California’s favorite eateries. This funky neighborhood bar and restaurant was born from a group of creative types who believe in the power of nourishing and strengthening communities through food and partnerships.


“Our space was designed and built by an amazing group of local artists,” explains Becki Couch-Alvarado who owns The Lede along with her husband Joaquin. “The wooden tables were hand built for the space, our vases and ceramics are all handmade, and the mural that covers most of the walls was designed and painted by a group of artists.”


To create this cozy and magical space, Becki pulled colors from the mural for their branding scheme and selected fixtures to complement the artwork. For lighting, Becki sought out fixtures where craftsmanship was key. Having used Barn Light Electric fixtures on her own home for years, she knew where to turn.

“I appreciate that these lights are American made with attention and care,” she notes. “They are beautiful quality and we love the customization options which allow us to create a unified space with color and shape across all fixtures.”

bar The Lede commercial interior bar restaurant lighting Drum Schoolhouse Sconce Opaque 480 Blush Pink Four Painted Band 100 Black

Behind the bar, Becki chose the Drum Schoolhouse Sconce customized with opaque glass, a Blush Pink finish, and four painted bands of Black.

“I was looking for something unique, functional, and fun,” Becki explains. “It’s a highly visual spot and I wanted a signature look. These lights, specifically the stripes and pink, really capture the personality of the space. The stripes on the opaque glass give the space a nice light with a defined look.”

Over the bar itself, Becki chose The Original™ Warehouse Pendant Light customized with 12″ handspun shades, a White powder coat finish, and standard black cords. Becki notes that these pendants are clean and simple, and work well with the sconces but don’t detract from them.

dining2 clifford thelede commercial interior bar restaurant lighting Bowie Wall Sconce 8in 480 Blush Pink

Continuing with the splash of Blush Pink, Becki mounted 8″ Bowie Wall Sconces along the outer walls of the space. These handspun wall lights, mounted on strips of rustic wood, bring the perfect touch of downlighting to the dining room.

“I was looking for something that would add some light but not overpower the area,” she notes. “These lights are a great size, and I could get them in the same pink which works well with the sconces in the bar. It gives a more cohesive look overall.”


Accenting the main dining area are eight Drum Schoolhouse Pendant Lights. These handcrafted pendants are customized with opaque glass, a Textured Black finish, and standard black cords.


“I love these lights!” Becki says. “I wanted something that works with the wood and natural aspects of the space but carry their own unique quality. The opaque glass allows for a softer light, and the black works well with the black steel elements on our staircase and bar.” A single Drum Schoolhouse Pendant hangs upstairs in the mezzanine and can be seen from the front door. Becki customized this fixture with a Blush Pink finish and four painted bands of black which, again, ties in with the bar sconces below.


“I wanted something that connected the downstairs to the upstairs,” she explains. “Seeing this light fixture with the bar sconces and other pendant lights is perfect.” Since the restaurant opened last spring, it has met with rave reviews for the staff, the chef, the ever-changing menu, and the atmosphere.

“I love the personality and character that the lights add to the space,” Becki says. “We get so many compliments on them!”

Photos courtesy of The Lede

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