Decorative Vintage Sconces for Wall Decor

by WriterArtist

Decorative vintage sconces are key to illuminating spaces and wall decor where aesthetics and lighting go hand in hand.

During Victorian era and prior to this era, the common people's humble lighting requirements encompassed candles, oil lamps and fireplaces lit by wood. Common masses used candles and lanterns to light their homes. The lighting was restricted to night, the medieval period had no luxury to have lights in the daytime. The oil lanterns would be lighted after sunset. Elite class were the ones who used decorative candelabras and sconces to light their mansions.

Sconces were mounted on walls and could be held with hands too. Mostly chandeliers and fixed on ceilings to illuminate the bottom space. There are however some rare instances of sconces mounted on ceiling.

Image Credit – Pixabay, Author : Quehoe
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Usage of Sconces

What are Sconces

A well-lit house looks like a dreamland whereas a dull, dim lit home doesn't look like an enjoyable space.  Design of lighting is a science that requires some degree of knowledge and an inherent taste of common sense and aesthetics. It can be complex and yet so simple. Needs have led into the discovery of fire and the requirement of containing it by humans. This is where sconces have an important role to play in the history.

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Medieval sconces

History of Sconces


Sconces are essentially harnessing agent for fire and light. Medieval sconces were made of wood, stone and metal alloys designed in such a way that they could hold and harness fire without spreading it in a controlled manner.

Prior to sconces, candles and lanterns were popular because they were portable. The fuel was wax and oil. Later lanterns could use gas and the designs used glass and metal fixtures. Medieval era in Europe saw classic sconces used in churches and ceremonies. Elaborate designs of beautiful sconces dazzle in the limelight with variations to swing the light in directional, vibrant patterns. Design elements made the decorative aspect of sconces a thing to behold. The antique designs usually were with glass and metal. Glass was a perfect choice for the reason that it reflected light maximum. Small portable sconces were beginning to be designed to hold torches and accompany the troops while traveling.



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Decorative Lighting with Sconces

Essential lights make the house bright, however; decorative lighting is the key to do a complete makeover of illumination in the house. Everybody uses decorative lights during festivals; however, a home can use decorative light in all seasons and all 365 days in a year. Sconces can provide all the three layering functions of light. Namely ambient, accent lighting and task lighting depending upon the requirements.



It is a pleasure sitting in the evening in a warmly lit room having tea in the evening. A decorative light gives an immense pleasure to family get together, dinner times and other meals. If one likes to enjoy coffee outdoors in the garden, a vibrant corner in the evening can serve the purpose. Sconces can serve the purpose and many a times, they are cheaper than the exorbitant, lush, expensive chandeliers.

Stylish Sconces for Home

Blend of Modern and Vintage Style Sconces

The discovery of electricity made our homes brighter. Twenty first century houses not only have the necessary lights but also a layer of decorative lighting over the essential lights. This in nutshell means we are not only concerned with the quantity of light but with overall quality of light.


Sconces are nothing but light fixtures on a wall. They were used mostly for decorative lighting. Evidence of it is there even in early eighteenth century. Candles and lanterns were within reach of common men’s expenditures. Today, they serve both purposes general lighting as well as decorative illumination.

Sconces in Style Today

Wall Sconces Vintage Style


There are many versatile, variants in sconce designs that will suit your home and aesthetics. Avantgarde designs with state-of-the-art technology can leave you puzzled with the choices. Many contemporary designs are available to suit the modern needs, antique and traditional designs are also available if you love Victorian era sconces. These sconces would go with shabby chic and vintage décor themes.


Sconces make good candidate for illuminating to light narrow passages, hallways and alleys. They are well suited for task lighting if you wanted to do a reading job. They serve well to illuminate a centerpiece like a painting too. Bedside sconces are a great example of bedroom decor.

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Updated: 08/08/2021, WriterArtist
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DerdriuMarriner on 08/18/2021

WriterArtist, Thank you for pictures, practicalities and products.
In particular, I appreciate the Tiffany product line, so impressive here and likewise in other domains, such as stained glass windows.
Do you know of any modern-day representations of the hand-held lantern with a bucket-like, pail-like handle (hangs down when not carried, raised upward when used)?

blackspanielgallery on 08/08/2021

Nice lighting fixtures, but there is so much more to wall decoratins. Not every decorative feature is lighting. Think of shelves, shadow boxes, and plaques, and then paintings cannot be overlooked. I have even seen decorative metal, such as copper that is splattered when molten into artistic pieces. Nice article, and it presents an opportunity to become one of many, each with a different focus. Will there be others following?

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