Something’s A Little Off

If this post were a fable, its moral would be – when something in your home just doesn’t feel quite right, do something about it. Or wait for it to randomly die on its own accord and take it as a sign. We’ll use this light hanging in our living room as our story’s lead character.

You may remember that there’s always been something “off” about it – it’s the only permanent fixture in that huge room, and it’s placed awkwardly in a corner (which is why Sherry tried to distract us from the annoying placement by adding a bit of color to the glass shade to cheer things up while I was out for a run).

But soon enough we both agreed that was not the solution. The blue tint was nice and soft in “real life,” but whenever we snapped photos of that side of the room (which is often thanks to this ol’ blog), it would cast an odd blue tint over that half of the room. I affectionately called it our alien invasion corner. So I eventually nagged convinced Sherry to wipe off the paint, which is why many of you noticed that it was naked again. Three cheers for reversible projects.

Returning it to its natural state was a big help, and we even talked about spray painting the chain oil-rubbed bronze (to match the curtain rods that we’ll eventually bring in and Karl the sectional’s legs) but we always ultimately admitted that it wasn’t our style. In other words, we’d eventually like to replace it with a nice drum pendant or maybe even recessed lights that we’ll get installed throughout the room. So we wondered how much effort and time it was worth to keep attempting to pretty up something that we eventually wanted to replace or remove.

Then the light fairy took care of everything for us. Because the light stopped working. I’m not even kidding. It just up and died about seven days after Sherry’s big wipe-down. At first it flickered a bit. Then it wouldn’t turn on at all. We futzed with it a few times (changing the bulb, etc) but had no luck – it had given up on us. Maybe it could hear us complaining about how oddly it was placed (you can see just how randomly it was plopped into the ceiling in this house tour video that Sherry shared a few weeks back) and just lost the will to live. Poor guy.

We definitely weren’t devastated by the premature death but it was kind of a surprise. How dare it die (the nerve!) before we had a chance to nix it on our own terms. But since fixing the wiring wouldn’t fix the whole off-center placement issue (it’s neither centered in front of the window nor between the ceiling beams), or the fact that it just wasn’t a light that we’d pick for ourselves (and eventually wanted to replace) we decided to call off any further resuscitation efforts and let the darn light rest in peace.

As I began to remove the light once and for all, my autopsy uncovered the cause of death. It appears that a wire had torn or became disconnected right near the base. Which is something I probably could have fixed, but by this point we were set on removing it entirely. Smell ya later good for nothing not centered old broken brass lamp in the corner of the room.

We took the fast route in terms of concealing the junction box and installed a white plastic ceiling cap over a metal junction box cover to the tune of $2 (50 cents for the metal cover and a buck fifty for the white cap to help it blend in). We’ll get the whole junction box removed, or more likely shifted a bit to a more centered location in front of the window by an electrician at a later date).

Not the prettiest thing ever, but it’s certainly less intrusive and noticeable than the oddly-placed, non-functioning, outdated fixture that preceded it.

The best part is that we now get an unobstructed view out the window. No more gazing at the backyard and being distracted by thoughts of “I really wish I could yank that light two feet to the right so it made sense in front of the window instead of dangling over the left corner of the view.” Seriously, it takes a lot of energy to lament bad lighting placement. But now our ol’ pendant light is in a better place. Literally. All light fixtures go to heaven, right? Either that or the Habitat For Humanity ReStore (which is actually where we sent it).

It does make that corner a bit dark at night, obviously. But that will be remedied once our this-thing-is-taking-forever console table is finally completed and we’ve got a table lamp on that side of the sectional. And someday we’ll probably get an electrician to wire some new lights in all the right places (maybe some recessed ones, perhaps a crisp hanging pendant that’s centered in front of the window, etc).

R.I.P. Weird Light. You will be missed. Okay, not really. It just sounded like the polite thing to say. And speaking of lights, here’s Sherry’s all time favorite light related commercial ever:


Anyone else have serious issues with light placement in their house? Sherry’s BFF was telling us how much she despised the location of a hallway light that practically brushes against the wall on one side of the hall in her new house. So strange! What’s up with that? Who can we blame for all of these strange light scenarios of the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s?


  1. says

    definitely better! That light was no good, but I CANNOT believe that it up and just died like that! Sudden shredding of wires… what?!?!?!

    Glad to see it’s gone and cannot wait to see what you guys come up with! Very exciting (in a weird way, I know)!

  2. CandiL says

    I don’t have sound on my work computer, so I couldn’t hear it. But, the commercial actually made me feel sad for that lamp! Your corner looks much much better by the way!!

  3. Jen says

    You can buy six recessed lights for $55 at Home Depot right now, and they are easier to install than you would expect!

  4. says

    I have a supporting beam running through the ceiling of my apartment, and because of this my lights dont light up the other side of the room… really annoying, specially in the rooms where they have spot lights, but no light the other side of the beam! argh

    Your living room is so huge still, even considering how its pushed forward infront of your console table! love it!

  5. Nancy Morrison says

    LOL at the lamp commercial!

    And I agree that sometimes you have to remove something without a planned replacement. No sense in keeping something around if it annoys every.single.time you see it.

  6. says

    RIP. We have a plethora of bad lighting in our home that we just bought. One by one we have plans to remedy them, but nothing bugs me more than our dining room chandelier! It is completely off-center! Not centered with the window. Not centered in the small dining space. It has me completely perplexed as to what someone was thinking. The good news is, we are definitely changing it anyway.

    Check it out a few of the bad lights we inherited here.
    The dining room chandy is the top right. (ugh)

  7. Krystal says

    When I walked through my current apartment for the first time it was daylight, and I never realized that it had no overhead lighting whatsoever. Seems like something I would have noticed regardless, but no, I did not. So strange. My light comes from lamps, and there’s no switches to turn them on with so I have to go around to each one and manually turn them on. It can be a bit of a headache. And it’s odd for decor purposes as well.

    • julie says

      You can buy a kit where you plug the lamps into this little plug that goes in the outlet and then you have a remote that will turn all the lamps on at the same time. Works great!

    • Kate says

      The same thing happened to us! We didn’t realize our apartment had no overhead lights (well, the bathrooms and kitchen and an oddly placed ceiling fan/light in the dining nook, but none in bedrooms or living room). Luckily a bunch of our plugs are wired to switches. But we did have to make a run to Target on our first night to buy a lamp because all of our things were still in the truck with the movers (and we had just moved 7 hours away)!

  8. says

    Oh goodness! I totally felt horrible for that little lamp in the commercial. It was all “Brave Little Toaster” for me, sitting out there in the rain. But the end was pretty great, lol :)

  9. says

    our 1960s beach house has a ceiling fan that isn’t remotely close to centered over…anything… in the dining room. it just kind of hangs there, dejected and dusty, over the left side of the table.

    just a rental house, though, so we can’t move the location!

  10. Ted says

    OOhh…wow…I’ve never been first.
    During the daytime it seems brighter in that room without the lamp blocking the window…strange, huh?

  11. Sarah says

    Ugh, off-center lights. We have a 1 1/2 story house, which means the entire upstairs is our master bedroom. Awesome, right? Sorta. The previous owner added a bathroom upstairs, which is super convenient, but left the original boob lights. Three lights that used to be evenly spaced down the center of the very low ceiling are now located immediately outside the door to the bathroom, three feet off-center in the middle of the room and over the stairs, which is eye level once you’ve reached the top of the steps. lovely. And there’s no attic above the bedroom, so this is definitely an electrician down-the-road project. yay.

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