The Joy of Lighting by Hubbardton Forge
Handmade products crafted by skilled workers remain highly coveted by buyers, even in the age of computer-controlled manufacturing. Buyers appreciate the fact that two similar handmade products will have some slight differences owing to the craftsperson’s work. Hubbardton Forge understands the appeal of hand-made furnishing. The firm, based out of Vermont, specializes in fully handmade lighting fixtures since its founding more than forty years ago. While many manufacturers make a virtue of their products being untouched by human hands during production, Hubbardton Forge proudly stakes ownership of human skill and even offers a very generous lifetime limited warranty on all its models. In-house designers are employed to keep the idea factory humming along, providing fresh designs for the craftsmen to work on. The firm also has a specialty custom department, dedicated to making one-off light installations for demanding customers. Currently Hubbardton Forge is focusing on creating LED lit fixtures which can be easily reused even for a long time by swapping out the light element. Previously artisanal makers often preferred to leave the LED revolution alone because many fixtures seemed to be doomed to replacement if the built-in LED failed. With swappable LEDs, Hubbardton Forge lighting fixtures can now truly last for lifetimes. The firm also has design partnerships with handmade glass makers and modular switch manufacturers to propagate its hand forged pieces across new segments.
Hubbardton Forge mainly manufactures chandeliers, pendants, ceiling mounted lights, wall and bath sconces, floor and table lamps, specialty outdoor fixtures and bath accessories. Let’s take a look at the collection in more detail.
Dining Room Chandeliers
The chandeliers made by Hubbardton Forge do not fit any particular design category. Both traditional and contemporary designs can be found here. The fine quality of the metal work stands out in the traditionally designed chandeliers with their sweeping and tapered arms. Traditional pieces range from small chandeliers with three lights to grand chandeliers with eighteen lights. Modern design influences can be seen in fixtures like Corona, New Town and Orb. The chandeliers appear to be built with the aim of being impressive visually even when the lights are turned off. The chandeliers can be customized with a variety of metal finishes like Natural Iron, Mahogany, Bronze, Dark Smoke, Burnished Steel and Black and glass options like Opal, Stone and Pearl.
Hubbardton Forge’s innovative metal smiths come to the fore in the pendant light category. The firm designs its products to mold the light output using the elements in the fixture, rather than having a special reflector. So fixtures like Celesse, Folio, Triptic and Autumn innovatively use LEDs along with delicately shaped metal elements for a beautiful appearance. The smaller pendant lights can be used singly to light up reading niches or to draw attention to the decor, while the large pendants are used in kitchen dining areas and small bars to increase the style quotient.
Flush and semi-flush ceiling mounted fixtures are often installed with the aim of putting function above form, with minimal emphasis on design. Not so with Hubbardton Forge, as the firm offers fully scaled versions of its popular pendant lights for direct installation. Collections like Bento and Kirigami show the Asian influence with delicately shaped light shades. Acharn, Forged Leaves and Presidio collections are more traditionally styles with minimal metal and more space for the glass element.
Hubbardton Forge has over thirty different floor lamps on offer. These lamps have designs ranging from minimalistic, ornate metalwork to sweeping avant-garde design pieces. Simple Lines, Twist Basket and Forged Leaves are straight floor lamps with stylish metal decorative elements forged into the design. Rook, Metamorphic and Stasis floor lamps offer sweeping curves with very thing metalwork. Arbo and Balance could be called the designer’s homage to modern art and these lamps could stand alone as works of art. Adjustable models are also available like Reach, Disq and Henry.
Hubbardton Forge’s work seems well-suited for outdoor installation. The firm’s strong forged metal fixtures with treated finishes handle the onslaught of wind, sun and rain with ease. These fixtures lay more emphasis on rustic design- borrowing influences from lighting used in America before the introduction of electricity. Beacon, Halo, Mason and Meridian are some such pieces. Contemporary design is reflected in the Ethos, Twilight and Fuse fixtures which combine straight lines and minimal metalwork with a large glass area.