Lighting Research Center NYSERDA Lighting Patterns for Homes Image Map



Sconces can be decorative as well as functional. Some sconces are referred to as wall brackets. Sconces can provide indirect lighting, downlighting, or ambient lighting. Sconces may contain exposed bulbs, or the bulbs may be concealed by opaque or translucent glass or plastics, or other opaque materials. Light distribution varies according to type and style. The energy use of sconces can often be decreased by replacing incandescent bulbs with LED bulbs or CFLs.


  • Carefully consider mounting heights, aiming angles, and shielding of the fixture to avoid direct glare because these fixtures are often directly in the field of view. Avoid the excessive brightness that may occur when high-wattage bulbs are used. Direct glare occurs when bulbs are poorly shielded.
  • These fixtures can limit the wall space that is available for furniture and artwork, so plan accordingly.
  • Be careful with mounting heights and location to avoid physical contact. If the fixtures are installed in a bathroom, on either side of a medicine cabinet, be sure the cabinet door does not swing into the fixtures.


Example Patterns


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