When most of us outfit our bedrooms, we tend to stock up on classic finds like headboards, linens, and nightstands. And in the process of getting our eye-level aesthetic just right, we neglect to do something very simple: look up.
Though the ceiling may not be the first thing we see when we walk into a room, it can have a major impact on a space—and lighting fixtures can make or break the décor schemes we so carefully curated. Nothing kills the mood like a tacky lighting fixture in a thoughtfully styled room, and too often, the fixtures we inherited when moving in just don’t suit the tone of the space.
Thankfully, we’re rarely stuck with the lights we already have. We can trade our overhead lights for more stylish options, like wireless sconces and stunning table lamps, which don't even require the trouble of rewiring a fixture. Options abound in the lighting space, so you can easily curate a set-up that meets your needs, your aesthetic preferences, and your budget.
Need a little inspo? Scroll on to see 31 stunning bedrooms and modern bedroom lighting ideas worth stealing from each of them.
Load Up on Statement-Makers
Most bedrooms contain more than one lighting fixture: a chandelier over your bed, a table lamp on your nightstand, and maybe even a floor lamp in a bare corner. All of them can be as bold as you want them to be, so stock up on statement-makers and display them from floor to ceiling.
Mix and Match
Coordinating your lighting fixtures can be a great way to make your space feel balanced and cohesive, but it’s not the only option on offer. If you’d prefer a more varied approach, try pairing a sleek floor lamp with a contemporary sconce—and throwing in a woven chandelier for good measure.
If you’re worried about all that variety overwhelming your space, restrain your lighting fixture palette to 1 or 2 colors.
Make Space for Unusual Finds
If you come across a statement-maker you can’t stop staring at, buy it—and then make room for it in your space. The geometric table lamp can absolutely transform your bedroom. All you need to do is give it a little space to shine.
Commit to a Palette With Your Accents
An easy way to make your space feel harmonious? Color-coordinate your accents. Match your curtain rods to your door hinges, your door hinges to your picture frames, and your picture frames to your lighting fixtures.
Of course, these pieces don’t have to match exactly, but committing to a few accent colors can be a great way to bring your space together.
Blend Old and New
If your space is filled with a mix of contemporary and antique pieces, why not buy lighting fixtures to match? Put classic ceramic table lamps on your nightstands, and hang a bold chandelier from your ceiling.
There’s no reason all your lighting has to come from the same era. In fact, a mix-and-match approach can make your space feel dynamic and striking.
Keep Your Palette In Mind
If you’ve carefully curated a monochromatic space, don’t let your lighting disrupt it. Instead, stock up on fixtures that cement it even more.
Sleek silver scones can make your all-gray-everything aesthetic even more obvious, and since they’re metallic, they might even add a dose of dynamic texture to your space.
Stock Up on Bold Table Lamps
Don’t feel like swapping out the lighting in your ceiling? No problem. Let more flexible pieces—like table lamps—do the work for you.
A bold table lamp can make a major statement in your space, and two bold table lamps can take your décor scheme even further.
Balance Texture With Low-Profile Pieces
Modern design is known for its bold lines and sleek silhouettes—but that doesn’t mean texture is totally off-limits. If you’ve found a woven sconce you love, hang it from your wall, then balance it out by filling your space with sleeker, more contemporary pieces.
You can even bring your space together by placing a similarly textured bench at the foot of your bed.
Invest in Statement-Making Sconces
When many of us hear the phrase “bedroom lighting,” sconces aren’t necessarily the first thing that comes to mind. But, they can make a sleek addition to any bedroom—not to mention, an incredibly practical one, too.
If you’re looking to free up space on your nightstand or to forgo having a nightstand entirely, consider mounting a couple of striking sconces on your wall.
Spring for Sleek Materials
Modern lighting fixtures abound, and most of them could pass as works of abstract art. But, if you’re not a fan of these striking silhouettes, consider picking a more classic lamp that’s rendered in a sleek material, instead.
Just about anything looks modern when it’s crafted from textured cement, sleek plastic, or shiny metal. Balance things out by keeping your materials modern and your lines a little more traditional.
Pair Bold With Bold
Once you’ve sprung for a statement-making chandelier, you may be tempted to keep the rest of your lighting fixtures pretty simple. But, there’s no reason they can’t be bold too.
Pair a striking overhead light with some equally striking table lamps. To keep your space feeling cohesive, look for pieces that match similar colors, shapes, or textures to balance out your space.
Keep Your Lines Consistent
If you’ve decided to stock up on statement-making finds, look for ways to keep them in harmony. Are there lines in your chandelier that you could echo in your table lamps? Even pieces that are crafted from totally different materials—and rendered in completely different colors—can look coordinated if they boast similar lines.
Ground Your Space With Black Lamps
Black can be a tough color to decorate with, but try not to shy away from it—especially if you need to ground your space. If your bedroom is filled with light colors and those black-and-white photographs above your bed are standing out a little too much, use a couple of black bedside lamps to bring the room together.
Play With Contrast
Lighting can be a great way to cement the aesthetic of your space, but it can also be a great way to make your space feel more dynamic. Don’t be afraid to play with contrast. If your rustic bedroom is feeling a little too classic, balance out the room with a couple of surprisingly sleek table lamps.
Score a Stunning Floor Lamp
Often, an overhead light and a bedside lamp will be enough, but if you have the space to add more lighting to your room, consider bringing a striking floor lamp into the mix.
The right lamp can transform a bare corner into an idyllic reading nook—and it can also upgrade the lighting situation in your space. Take advantage of your more expansive than average bedroom, and fill it with bold décor.
Frame Your Bed With Matching Lamps
Most of us don’t need more than one nightstand. I mean, really—how many bedside necessities can one person have? But, framing your bed with matching nightstands and adorning those nightstands with matching lamps can make your space feel balanced and luxurious.
If you’re not a fan of precise symmetry, you can always vary the décor on each nightstand or hang an unbalanced work of art above your bed.
Create Consistent Motifs
Lighting fixtures tend to put the finishing touches on a space. So, use yours to add cohesion or contrast—depending on what your bedroom needs.
If your space is feeling unwieldy, look for ways to add consistency. Black lamps could echo an accent color in your palette, and their gold details could mimic the stripes on some of your pillows. And if your space is feeling too matchy-matchy, add contrast by picking lamps that will bring new textures or colors into your room.
Add a Pop of Texture to Your Space
Just about everyone has heard the phrase “pop of color,” but it’s not the only surprising accent that deserves a spot in your home. A pop of texture can be just as striking and a great way to bring a contrasting aesthetic into your space.
If your bedroom is veering a little too antique, consider balancing it out with a sleek metal sconce. Spring for an option that echoes some of the colors already in your space, then let its sleek material and striking silhouette do all the talking.
Go Classic, but Contemporary
“Modern” doesn’t have to mean “over-the-top.” If you want to add a touch of contemporary design to your space, there are plenty of ways to do it—and not all of them are wildly statement-making.
Consider swapping out your go-to bedside lamp, and replacing it with a slightly sleeker option. Look for something that has a geometric base and a low-profile shade and that comes in a sleek color. Streamlined pieces like these can make your space feel more modern without feeling noisy or overwhelmed.
Add Function and Form
Décor isn’t just about decoration. Ideally, you’re adding something to your space because it genuinely improves the room both aesthetically and functionally. Keep your lived experience of the room in mind as you curate.
Would you prefer a lower-profile fixture, or would a swing-arm sconce better suit your needs? Focusing on how you’ll use the light and then considering aesthetics is a surefire way to end up with a fixture you’ll love.
Take a Risk on a Striking Fixture
Modern design is known for its bold lighting fixtures, so if you find one that’s up your alley, give it a try in your space. It isn’t every day that we stumble upon a piece that’s both striking and suitable for our home’s aesthetic, so recognize that you’ve done the décor equivalent of striking gold and embrace the opportunity.
Keep It Simple
Upgrading your lighting setup doesn’t have to involve investments in massive chandeliers or splurges on striking floor lamps. A lot of the time, a thoughtfully chosen bedside lamp will go a long way.
Spend a little time searching for a sleek piece that meets all your needs, then, confidently commit once you’ve found it. Remember, your choice doesn’t have to be particularly out-of-the-box. Focus on finding a sleek lamp you love looking at, and you should be good to go.
Mount Your Lights on Your Wall
Putting holes in your wall is always a big commitment, but if you love the look of sconces—or you don’t have any nightstand space to spare—building lights into your wall may be worth the extra effort.
Often, this process will involve a little wiring work, as those sconces have to hook up to something. But, if you’d prefer a lower-maintenance approach, you can score a couple of sconces that have exposed wiring the same way ordinary lamps do.
Embrace Negative Space
When you have high ceilings, it can be tempting to fill all that space with a massive lighting fixture, but remember that you don’t have to. If you find a smaller chandelier you love, hang it, and embrace the negative space it creates.
Wide, open spaces play a big role in modern design, drawing the eye to the few pieces that are in the room, so don’t feel the need to fill space arbitrarily.
Add a Sleek Spotlight
Depending on your bedtime routine, it may not be necessary to find a bedside lamp that produces a ton of light. Sometimes, a more targeted spotlight will do, especially if you’re big on reading. Consider what you need from your bedroom lighting, then stock up on fixtures that offer you just that.
Hang Lights From Your Ceiling
If you need to free up space on your nightstand, mounting sconces on your wall isn’t your only option. You can also hang pendant lights from your ceiling and mount them to hover just above your nightstand.
You can snag two matching pendant lights and frame your bed with them, or you can opt for one and drape it just above your bedside table.
Make a Subtle Statement
Your lighting setup doesn't have to be complicated to make a statement. A couple of sconces can go a long way—especially if the rest of your room is incredibly pared-down.
Focus on making your space feel the way you want it to, and don't worry about making it fit some prescription of what a modern space should look like. The most important thing is crafting a space you’ll love, and staying true to yourself is a great way to get there.
Play With Sleek Takes on Old Favorites
When most of us hear the word “sconce,” we envision torches hung on castle walls. Okay, that might not be what most of us think of, but sconces can be traced back to the Middle Ages. Don't worry: there are plenty of contemporary sconce options on offer.
If you want to pay homage to the sconce’s classical origins without making your bedroom feel totally medieval, look for options that blend old with new. A dual-pronged sconce can look a little traditional, but when rendered in sleek black metal, it can feel contemporary enough to introduce to your space.
Echo Elements That Are Already in Your Space
Looking for a bold fixture that won’t feel out of place in your space? Focus on the shapes, colors, and lines that are already in your bedroom, and find ways to reflect them in your lighting.
A pleated pendant light can echo some of the texture in your bedding, while a bedside sconce can highlight some of the shapes in a nearby work of art.
Don’t Be Afraid to Take Risks
Outfitting your space with striking lighting fixtures can be a very involved process, but the end result is worth it: you’ll have a space that looks exactly the way you want it to.
When you find yourself tempted to take a risk, do it. It might seem scary but now’s the moment. Odds are, you won’t rewire your built-in lighting again for a while, so don’t let that stunning chandelier you saw become the one that got away.
Have Fun With It
Design inspiration goes a long way. It can help us clarify what we want from our spaces and understand what’s even possible in a given room.
But, don’t worry too much about creating something you’ve seen before. You’ll be happiest in a space that meets your needs—and that's filled with things you love looking at. If you’re going through all the trouble of upgrading your lighting setup, it’s worth ensuring that you’ll end up with a space that’s uniquely yours.