Someone reminded me recently of the Charles Eames quote, “The details are not the details. They make the design.” It is so true and is one of the hallmark differences between good and great. As projects come to a close, sometimes final finishing touches can be lost, as interest wanes or budgets bulge. One detail that can be overlooked is the lampshade, but it is like the jewelry in the room, the final dressing detail.
Perhaps one reason it is an under appreciated asset is that it is difficult to find a good source. Well no longer. With the recent opening of Illumé in New York City, the search is over. Steps away from the D&D building, Ronald Scinto and Mark Candido have set the standard high with their new bespoke store and workroom. Open to both trade and retail, there is an enormous variety of stocked shades. They have discovered that many customers don’t have the patience to wait for custom and now clients can “walk out the door the same day with a lamp shade that’s beyond their expectations.”
The entrance of Illumé is more like a small salon with fabulous Terry O’Neill photographs and unique furnishings.
On an antiqued glass wall hang sconces with handcrafted shades, many made in Paris ateliers, because as Ron and Mark explained, they “bring romance to light!” A lampshade store they feel unlike any other, they make shades for stock, anticipating what people want, in styles, colors and sizes, based on their 14 years of experience. While their original Accessory Store in Stamford, CT, next to the Antique & Artisan Center, which they also started, still exists, the duo wanted to do something more upscale and unique with their city space.
Fabrics are sourced from all the major houses and currently represent the rainbow of hues we are seeing both in interiors and fashion. Ron and Mark have been making colored shades for years and are thrilled that customers are finally moving beyond beige and taupe.
All of the shades from Paris feature their signature hand tied knot as above. Ribbon overlay, organza over silk charmeuse, delicate couture hand sewn details – anything is possible including of course COM.
The whole idea of selling ready made shades is so customers can see how they look made up and how they look lit. Instant gratification is a good thing. While you can find some ready made shades around, you certainly won’t be seeing these fabulous animal prints
Or this beautifully crafted Fortuny shade ready to take home!
Many customers come in thinking they know what they want, but end up going home with something more exciting and distinctive. When visiting the store, Mark and Ron recommend coming in with measurements of your lamp (overall height with and without shade) and a photo to facilitate selections. But who knows, you might fall in love with one of the many vintage lamps or examples from John Rosselli that they carry as well. And how fabulous are these high gloss hardback shades – which can be customized in any paint color?!
Or in a matte finish with the inside in a contrasting color if desired. Here the paper shade is hand painted to look like tole – but it could be any combination!
But this isn’t all – Illumé includes an alter ego, a workshop – from the beautiful side, we move to the more utilitarian, representing a bit of old New York, when things were handmade by people you knew – with an appreciation for the craft, the process, the one of a kind. With a separate entrance, the space is visible from the street.
A little bit of a decorator’s hardware store mixed with a lighting repair shop, this side of Illumé is heaven for all of us who remember being entranced by childhood trips to the neighborhood hardware store.
But this is even better, including all the little extras you might need when decorating from picture hooks, plate hangers and candle covers to silk wires and vintage bulbs.
The workbenches came from an old factory in Bridgeport, CT. Here they do rewiring, repairs and create new lamp designs.
A visit to Illumé is most definitely an illuminating experience! Whether you’re in the market for new shades, need a repair or just a little inspiration, Ron and Mark will guide you to the light side with care and expertise!
30 thoughts on “Seeing the Light at Illumé”
I would be like a kid in a candy store there! :)
Stacey, I have a great source for very Frenchy lampshades near me if you ever need it.
I liked this very much. Beautifully crafted shades. Hmmm. and lots of hardware to go with them.
Details are so important in lamps. Thank you for the tour.
I am a lampshade freak – these are fabulous – love the animal prints!!!!!
Me too! That red lacquer shade was divine! Another great find! Thank you Q.
gorgeous down to the details… shady business tho, no?! ;)
Good morning Stacey. What a gem of a place. Gorgeous shades. Brilliant of them to allow patrons to view their old-fashioned work space too.
I have been meaning to visit this shop Stacey. I swear by the Accessory Store. BTW, very best way to pick out a new lamp shade is to bring your lamp with you. Great preview.
How wonderful to know about this shop! Thank you, Stacey!
Great find! A good lamp shade is soooo important and this shop is adorable.
Nothing better than a beautiful lampshade to dress up a lamp! Great source!
Hmmm… Ilume appears to be a must-see while in NYC for Blogfest!
The list is getting long.
It so inspiring to see local shops brought into the spotlight.
I especially loved the high gloss hardback shades and love the ability to customize!
Great post Q as always,
I agree 100% with Charles Eames! This post is full of stunning inspirations. Thank you, Q!
Have a wonderful day!
Luciane at HomeBunch.com
PS: If you a minute, please drop by to enter my Giveaway! :-)
Oh my goodness! I’ve never seen so many beautiful lamp shades. Which one/ones did you purchase?! :)
I am drooling! I am bookmarking this site!
Gorgeous lamp shades! And how beautiful are their work benches?!
xo Mary Jo
Incredible find….so happy to know about Illume! I see soooo many shades that I would love to get….sometimes that’s the only update you need!
Great research, as always!
Love the jand-tied knot detail on the shade! So many choices. And what an organized workbench! Your photos are great Q!
Ron and Mark,
Looks amazing and the selection seems limitless. The little shades in those candy colors seem yummy. Can’t wait to visit the shop next time I’m in the city.
Thanks for the source! I really need someone to do custom high-end shades. I’ll stop in next time I’m in the city!
what a great source- dying over the red lacquer lampshade of course! thanks for sharing! S&A
I always love finding a good source. Thank you! The lampshades are gorgeous!!
Thank you for your visit to my blog a few weeks ago! I’m so happy to meet you and follow your beautiful blog by email!
All the best,
I just recently visited this store and was overwhelmed by how stunningly chic the space was! The shades are simply divine and the owners/staff and all about good old fashioned customer service, which is very difficult to find these days. I also love the fact that not only do they re-wire lamps but will turn just about anything you want into a lamp!
you have no idea how “enlightening” this post is stacey. every year i head to the gift markets hoping to find a company that crafts interesting shades, i am relentlessly disappointed. and……i detected the hob nail bulbs, something i have searched for for 3 years!
I love that Charles Eames quote – how absolutely true! Great writing as always : ) Happy to learn about a new resource! xx
I love the looks of this place, I’ve long been a fan of custom lacquer shades and these are gorgeous. pgt
Looks like such a cool shop- I love the shaped bulbs!
Heard about your store on the Joan Hamburg radio show and look forward to coming in. Your website is beautiful
greta addition to the Neighborhood resources, and a lovely store to boot!!
How do I order the animal print lamp shades!?!