What Are the Lighting Trends for 2020 and Beyond?

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Lighting is an important element in a custom home.

14 Louis Poulsen OE Quasi Pendant
March 24, 2020

One of the most underrated elements in a custom home is the artificial lighting, but it plays a huge role in the day to day lives of your clients.

Good houses have many things in common— a thoughtful, efficient floor plan, pleasing elevations, and well-executed details, to name a few. Another similarity is good lighting.

The American Lighting Association (ALA) says the best lighting in a home is done in layers that each have different jobs to do. For example, ambient lighting—the overall lighting in the room—provides glare-free brightness. Ambient lighting can come from various sources, including ceiling-mounted fixtures, recessed cans, or wall-mounted products. Other types include task and accent lighting, and products for art or photos.


Designed by Dima Loginoff, Cloudy is a true luminous sculpture that dominates the space with its presence and diffuses a soft and cosy light. Five spherical elements of different dimensions wrapped in a semi-transparent elastic fabric form the light.


But ALA says builders and architects need to determine the priorities of consumers and homebuyers. In a 2016 consumer lighting preferences study, ALA sought to do just that, hoping to gain a better understanding of how consumers think about, shop for, and buy lighting. Specifically, ALA wanted to know where consumers find lighting ideas and inspiration and which product attributes are most important to them.

The study found that 49 percent of respondents agree lighting should be used to add an element of design to a space. In addition, 50 percent of respondents strongly agreed that design is the most important lighting attribute, followed by quality.

Perhaps the most important event for contemporary lighting is Euroluce, an Italian trade show that is held every other year in Milan, Italy. The show gives the industry an idea of the trends that will dominate in the architecture and design for the coming years. At the show’s last edition in 2019, extra large pendants, adjustable fixtures, and lighting that doubles as art will be big this year and beyond.



Big One is a large-format light collection that consists of a glass bubble suspended within an outer glass sphere. It comes in two sizes.


Emerging this week are several pivotal lighting trends that designers and manufacturers say will be huge in the coming year. One of these is scale—make that large scale. Many brands, including Flos, Artemide, Louis Poulsen, Hudson Furniture New York, and Marset, introduced over-scaled ceiling and wall sconces that are intended for large spaces, great rooms, or homes with high ceilings. This upscaling of lighting follows in lockstep with other products that have recently increased in size, including patio doors, windows, and tiles.

Other manufacturers at the show took a different approach toward the same goal. Instead of one large pendant or chandelier, some brands introduced modular programs where smaller pendants can be grouped and presented based on the size of the project.



WireLine is a new suspension lamp that doubles as an art piece. It uses the power cable as one of the main design features. Flattened to resemble a belt made of rubber and hanging from the ceiling, the cable holds a ribbed glass extrusion containing an LED light source.


Another trend that stood out at the show was lighting that can be adjusted up or down or configured to meet the needs of the space. New programs from Artemide and Flos allow designers to add elements, choose sizes, or field-adjust products based on the needs of the room or project.

Sculptural lighting that doubles as art was heavily represented at the show as well. The most extreme case of this movement was Arturo Alvarez’s Artwork Series. “Arturo Alvarez embarks on a new artistic period using light as a guiding thread, with a new language,” the brand says. “It delves into a deep exploration of the human being and its relationships and ways of communication. Listening to other person, the importance of conversations, solitude and the irruption of technology make their way into his artistic work resulting in different reflections.”


Firmamento Milano

Cono is a painted steel pendant measuring 4 feet across.



MM Lampadari

Whale represents the gesture of transforming a symbol of natural power into something useful. It comes in white and matte gold paint + Glossy brass.



Natural Alabaster

Copper draws inspiration from the molds used to make maritime buoys. Combined with alabaster, the line comes in different types and sizes.



DCW Editions

Here Comes the Sun pendant takes visual inspiration from the setting sun. The designer, architect Bertrand Balas, drew upon his memories of watching the sun set beneath the Garonne River.




The Bohemia pendant looks like it was made from blown glass, but it is actually constructed from polycarbonate.



The IRUPè suspension lamp was inspired by the Victoria Amazonica, one of the biggest water plants in the world and originated from the Amazon river, the manufacturer says.


Louis Poulsen

OE Quasi features 12 LEDs embedded in the inner vertices of the geometric frame that are connected to light guides along the inner edges, creating an even illumination towards the reflector in the center of the lamp. It’s made from recycled aluminum in a dark pickled finish.

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