Our Kitchen Renovation: Brass Sconces + Flush Mount Light from Schoolhouse Electric

We are so close to wrapping up the final few details on the resources used in our kitchen renovation! It’s been such fun sharing the journey with you; and writing about it after the fact, turning the spotlight on my amazing design and brand partners, has really helped me shift into gratitude for how beautifully this project turned out. It’s so easy to focus on the bumps and hiccups that come with any renovation—and the component I’m sharing today definitely had its share of them!

The Studio McGee folks and I knew from the start that we wanted to feature repeating sconces on the wall above the open shelving; sleek, contemporary sconces were all over my Pinterest board for kitchen inspiration. The design team’s original product recommendation was backordered, so in my infinite wisdom I chose a similar piece from another supplier…without looking at the dimensions. When the sconces came, they were beautiful but so large that they spanned the entire distance from the ceiling to the shelf, rather than delicately punctuating the space as we’d envisioned. Definitely not ideal! Our shoot was scheduled for a week hence, and I was dying to wrap up the renovation once and for all, so I took to the Internet in search of a quick-ship option that would arrive STAT. All I can say is thank goodness for Schoolhouse Electric! Whereas many lighting companies sell mostly made-to-order pieces (a great option when you’re not on a deadline), Schoolhouse offers tons of ready-made sconces, pendants, and flush mounts to suit any style. Their Eduard Sconce was exactly the right shape, size, and material—and hallelujah I could have it in my hot little hands in just a few days! Seeing them installed, so compact, modern, and elegant, made me excited to realize exactly how close we were to completion on the kitchen. They’re the ultimate finishing touch. Plus, they’re a slightly deeper and more burnished shade of brass than my first failed sconces were, which adds depth and matches perfectly with the unlacquered brass of our faucet. Serendipity!

Meanwhile, on the other side of the room, I was facing a similar version of the same conundrum. We’d ordered a handmade ceramic flush mount fixture to install in the entry nook, but when my electrician installed it on the same day he wired the sconces, I knew it simply wouldn’t do. Again, it was lovely for the right space, but in our space it didn’t jive. Against the cool white of our ceiling paint, the warm white of the ceramic was jarring. Plus, it was from a different manufacturer than our ceramic over-the-sink pendant, meaning that the two fixtures’ warm white hues were a close-but-no-cigar match—which I knew it would bother me every time I looked at them. So as with the sconces, it was back to the drawing boards! I figured the odds were low that I could find a replacement flush mount from the same retailer as the replacement sconces, but once again Schoolhouse delivered! Their Beacon LED is brand new for this season, and not only does it have a clean, low profile that is practically made for this little nook, it has a clean, green mission: it’s equipped with an integrated LED module that has the capacity to last for more than twenty years! The fixture shipped out with the sconces the very day I ordered it, and it arrived in plenty of time to install before our shoot. The touch of brass unites this section of the kitchen with the main area; the glow of the frosted shade is warm and welcoming; and the overall effect is buttoned-up, chic, and considered. In the trial-and-error game of renovations, I definitely came out on top!

P.S. Get all the details on our herringbone tile floor and subway tile backsplash, modern wood cabinets, brass faucet and farmhouse sink, over-the-sink pendant and brass cabinet hardware, custom wood blinds, and alternative to marble countertop! Photos: Monica Wang Photography.