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Articles tagged as antique lighting (view all)

Commercial Lighting Restoration Study: Ancaster Town Hall

09 December, 2015 0 comments Leave a comment



ancaster town hall chandelier

 

Ancaster Old Town Hall is a landmark historic building located on Wilson Ave East in the heart of Ancaster. Managed by the City of Hamilton, the 1870s edifice is a popular, versatile venue that hosts weddings, celebrations and community events. The objective was to restore the existing chandeliers, compliment them with custom designed lighting made by us, retrofit the lighting for LEDs and make it bright!

 

Consultation:

 

First we had to conduct a site visit to examine the existing lights and make recommendations for new lighting in surrounding areas. The 2 chandeliers dated from 1910 and have presided over the community for over 100 years.

 

before lighting restoration in ancaster town hall

 

Hanging 15' up in the air, detailed photos were taken and analyzed for restoration. We used our experience to determine the construction of the lights, the condition of the finish and prospective ways to increase light output through the discreet use of LED lighting. Lumen requirements for LED's were measured by calculating the total square footage which gave us parameters on which bulbs to choose.

 

Behind the Victorian arch on the main stage, there were 4 book matched locations for lighting. 2 of the locations were ideal for smaller chandeliers to provide general lighting for intimate events. The other 2 acted as spotlights meant to be used for plays concerts and presentations. Butting up against original plaster crown molding, the spot lights would be a fun challenge to design while the other 2 chandeliers had to be complimentary to to the main chandeliers. Everything was to be in made of solid brass for quality and finish.

 

 

Proposal and Quote

 

Once we complied and analyzed all of the information from the site visit, we condensed all of the information into core requirements. They were:

  1. Historic sensitivity

  2. Light output

  3. Longevity

  4. Environmental and energy requirements/savings

  5. Quality, pride and budget

 

LED filament bulb available in TorontoMultiple options were presented to the City detailing lumen requirements, restoration options and lighting fixture choices accompanied by photos and renderings. Because it's an expansive public space and the chandeliers are hard to access, LED lighting was recommended on all of the lights. They provided:

  • 70% greater brightness

  • 10x longer life from light bulbs (30,000 hours over 3000 hours)

  • 90% energy savings

  • Labour savings (do not have to change bulbs as often)

  • Warm colour temperature quality from LED filament bulbs

The City of Hamilton choose one option that incorporated high intensity COB LED's discretely placed in the chandelier along with decorative LED bulbs on the perimeter. Complimentary bespoke lighting was chosen for over the stage including LED spot lights handmade out of brass and finished to match all of the other lights.

 

 

 

Pick up and temporary replacements

 

Chandelier rentals torontoGiven that the hall was in constant use during wedding season, we supplied period reproduction lighting from our Custom Collection. They were altered to suit the hall and illuminated with the same LED filament bulbs specified in the proposal. The original chandeliers were cataloged and brought to the shop to visit the restoration doctor.

 

Restoration and Manufacture

 

Restoring lights is full of surprises. These were no different. Garland, garland.......lots of garland. It was Christmas in July with ancient remnants of decorations past.

 

Disassembling was straightforward and there were no areas of concern with dents, damages, breaks or splits. Where required, we do all necessary repairs including soldering, brazing and small sand casting to replace parts. High quality in their day, these chandeliers were commercial grade and wonderful to work on.

 

metal finishing and restoration torontoOur master finisher handled the 36” spinning's on the high speed polishing wheels where 35 years of experience was put to the test. The result was an incredible antique brass finish replicating a period finish from the era the lights were made.

brass finishing and polishing toronto

custom brass spotlights

 

Insetting the LED's was a little more challenging as we had to discreetly hide the lights, hardware, and driver in the core of the chandelier. Attention to detail, balance and functionality were key. The end result was utilizing the existing structure to mount the LEDs and accompanying heat sinks.

Custom spotlights were created from the drawings in the proposal. They were to match the finishes of the chandeliers, use high powered PAR 30 LED bulbs, be adjustable and fit in a confined space.

COB leds on antique light restoration

 

For over the stage, our Custom 5 Light Wakefield was an ideal match for the 2 chandeliers and spot lights. Handcrafted out of brass, everything was of the same finish and quality.

 

Delivery and Installation

 

Taking something down is easier than putting it up.

 

We like to make things easy to put up.

 

Instead of being 1 unit, the chandeliers were separated so they could be installed in 2 pieces. Easier for electricians to handle and less room for error or damage.

restored heritage chandelier toronto

When installed and illuminated, they were pure magic. The center light LED's illuminated the room and having the 2 sets on separate switches meant the light levels could be adjusted to suit any mood.

ancaster town hall installation

 

 

Conclusion

 

Large scale restoration projects are a detailed process but so very rewarding. The City of Hamilton was ecstatic with the restoration, placement of LEDs and functionality of the lights. From start to finish we worked with the City to update them on the status, coordinate with the electricians and deliver on time and budget.

 

The end result was nothing short of awesome. We do a lot of retail client rewires and restorations but it's challenging commercial lighting projects like this that we love. Thank you Carolyn Samko and everyone at the City of Hamilton for giving us the opportunity to be apart of the history of Ancaster Old Town Hall!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

August Updates

26 August, 2015 0 comments Leave a comment

It's been an exciting August for us here and although we've been quiet on the blog front we've been busy in the shop!

 

Here's a teaser as to what's going on with more posts to follow soon.

 

Restoration Destination

 

Currently we have 2 large scale restorations taking place right now. The first is a commercial project in Ancaster for the lighting at Old Town Hall. A local landmark and architectural gem, the City of Hamilton contacted us to restore the existing chandeliers, add more lighting in to the hall via LEDs and design complimentary lighting for the stage area. Due to the size and historic nature of the chandeliers, we have been dutifully working away at bringing them back to life while updating them for LED lighting as part of our green initiative.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The second project is kind of a love affair as it involves beautiful historic chandeliers in a beautiful historic Toronto home. We were contacted to remove many period and original chandeliers from the clients home for restoration. In most cases clients will bring the lighting fixtures to us but in this case, due to fragility of the crystal chandeliers, we went on site to remove them. This included taking them down from the ceiling, taking apart and labeling and packing them onsite. Stunning to begin with, we can't wait to see the chandeliers restored and the reaction the homeowners have to seeing back in in situ.

 

Along with these, we are also working on some great client goods ranging from Art Deco floor lamps to a set of original European wall sconces from a Toronto house.

 

 

 

 

LEDs and Vintage Lighting

 

Our LED filament lightbulbs are a hit and we've had to up our supply to keep with the demand. And why wouldn't they be a hit? Same light quality as an incandescent, greater brightness, 90% energy savings and 10 times the longevity.

 

As our ongoing commitment to energy savings, we've been steadily retrofitting our 2300 sq ft showroom with LED bulbs. The difference is striking when you walk in. Greater light, sharper highlights and less of an environmental impact. Loving it all around!

 

New arrivals

 

New Stock abounds and we've got some great lighting in from different eras. An amazing 1870s gasolier is one of the highlights and one we have't seen for a long time. Restored with its French Bronze finish and antique shades, its a showstopper in the front of the showroom. Victorian gas lighting and Mid Century modern lighting seem to be the most popular this summer which is great. 2 distinct eras and styles all under one roof. Our new arrivals page is always updated and there's going to be a lot coming up in September!

 

 

 

New Designs

 

We've been hard at work letting our collective imaginations run wild and have some new designs to show for it!

 

 

There's more to come on that front and we're excited to debut them in the fall. All made in house, by hand, they'll add to our expansive line of custom lighting.

 

 

Exceptional Antique Lighting From Our Past

19 June, 2015 0 comments Leave a comment

At Turn of the Century Lighting we pride ourselves on quality, but also variety with antique fixtures spanning time periods ranging from 1850-1970, with a strong emphasis on pre-world war two lighting.

We are always looking to round out our collection of lights to provide choice over many styles. With so many fixtures that can fit into so many homes, we often encounter special fixtures that stand out, and leave a lasting impression in our minds. Some of the fixtures were exceptionally beautiful, and some exceptionally unique, but the common thread is that they were all exceptional.

Below are a small sample of some of the wonderful fixtures that have found great homes over the years.

Art Deco Lighting:
Art Deco Lighting can be a difficult style for us to source and maintain in our showroom. There always seems to be more demand than supply. With their geometric, and linear nature, Art Deco fixtures work wonderfully in modern and traditional spaces. It can breath new life into traditional spaces, and give personality and uniqueness to new spaces.

Antique Art Deco Lighting Table Lamp

 

Arts and Crafts Lighting:
Arts and Crafts Lighting has a timeless quality. It's always a favourite in exterior, cottage, and even modern spaces. The simple lines, beautiful craftmanship, and empasis on useable light make this style amongst some of the most versatile.

Arts and Crafts Mission Antique Lighting

 

Victorian Lighting:
Victorian Lighting can take your breath away. This type of lighting often has a grander scale to suite larger spaces with higher ceiling heights but also exquisite refined detailing.

Victorian Gas Antique Lighting

 

Art Nouveau Lighting:
Art Nouveau lighting when done well argueably has no equal with a strong empasis on line, organic yet exquisite detail, colour, and perfect asymetric balance. It can mimic nature in It's most beautiful forms.

Art Nouveau Antique Lighting

We have many amazing Art Deco, Arts and Crafts, Victorian, and Art Nouveau fixtures currently in our showroom, and online as well as lots of Tudor, Industrial, Mid Century Modern, Gothic, and Colonial Revival Fixtures.

Check out: http://www.tocl.ca/collections/new-arrivals for our newest arrivals.

Vintage Photos from our Neighbourhood: 1970s - 1990s

16 June, 2015 0 comments Leave a comment

Old Toronto is our home and we've been in the Sherbourne St corridor for over 30 years. In that time, we've seen a lot.  Factories turned into lofts, condos sprouted from parking lots and endless businesses and people come and go.

Like most of Toronto, the past 20 years have resulted in an amazing amount of change in our neighbourhood. The city has grown up, grown out and grown expensive. It's exciting to watch as it is to be apart of. Although it pains you to see certain changes or lose certain neighbours, you have to embrace it all the same. 

These are just some of the many snapshots we've collected from our Toronto base. They mainly focus on Sherbourne Street, Britain Street, George Street, Richmond and Adelaide. Mainly from the 70s, 80s and 90s, a different Toronto is reflected. There's not as much polish then as there is now and that makes it all the more interesting. Hope you enjoy!

112 sherbourne 1980s toronto
Our new digs at 112 Sherbourne St being renovated in 1988. Although we currently occupy all three houses, the first two were bought in the 80s. We were at 118 Sherbourne before in what is now the Harris Institute

 

door store on sherbourne street toronto 1980s

That's us with The Door Store and the Glass Studio at 118 Sherbourne. Was a great location and a great old factory as well. Now home to the Harris Institute.

 

Sherbourne Street looking south from Richmond St East in the early 80s. Now Studio City, those factory complexes once made pianos. Heintzman pianos to be exact! You can see the outline of "PIANO" in between the second and third story window. The fence marked "Honda" is now a condo with a Tim Horton's on the main floor.

 

 

The former home of Waddingtons Auction House on Queen St  East in 1982. Now converted into hard loft condos, the gallery was a major anchor for the Queen Street East antiques scene in the 70s, 80s and 90s.

 

The north east corner of George and Britain Street in the late 70s. Great old factory building that housed a mechanic, apartments and a photo lab. Still standing, the building is now home to Design Lab and Sarah Richardson Designs. It's altered but still there!

 

vintage toronto sherbourn and richmond

If you drove by the corner of Sherbourne and Richmond now, you would not ever recognize this photo. Looking south down Sherbourne Street, the Imperial Lofts building was yet to be converted and parking was like City TV in the 80s......Everywhere. Now two large condo's anchor the corners.

 

 

imperial lofts on sherbourne st toronto
 

Lofts from $115,990......in Toronto? Loving the 90s font on the Imperial Lofts sign.

 

queen street east in the 70s

The corner of Queen Street East and Shebourne in the late 70s. Check out those land yachts! Surprisingly. the corner still looks the same and is as colourful as ever.

 

Sherbourne and Britain Street in the early 90s. Remember the "depot" craze for businesses? Corner still looks the same but Britain street is remarkably different.

 

 

 

 

 

Timeless Beauty and Function: Antique Floor Lamps

12 June, 2015 1 comment Leave a comment

Antique Floor Lamps are amongst some of our most popular types of lighting fixtures at Turn of the Century Lighting, and it's no wonder. Many homes from the Turn of the 20th Century until even today are without a central ceiling fixture in the living room, and other common areas. 

Floor lamps are often the work horses for illumination in living and common areas. Less architectural and permanent than ceiling or wall lights which cannot be moved, Floor lamps can be used where you need light the most.  Beautiful, versatile, and portable, we often perform a great number of rewires on these types of lamps, as they travel with their owners from home to home.


The two types of lamps that we tend to see could be categorized as Floor Lamps for Task Lighting and those for Overall Room Illumination.

 

Task Lighting

Bridge Arm or Reading Types lamps look great and provide task lighting. Positioned beside a Chair or beside a desk, they give perfect directional light whether reading or sewing etc.

Below is a catalog image of some bridge arms sold in the 1920s.
antique bridge light 1920s catalog image

We fully restore these types of lamps with new wiring, and fit them with timeless handmade or antique shades that look great today.
antique nouveau bridge floor lamp shade antique art deco bridge floor lampcustom handmade lampshade

 

Overall Room Illumination

Torchiere or Trilight Lamps are fantastic at giving overall room illumination, and can create a beautiful focal point in a space. The light quality is fantastic on these lamps, as they accept trilight bulbs, and are taller to cast a greater arc of light.
antique torchiere floor lampantique turned wooden floor lamp

 


Sofa Lamps - Task Lighting and Overall Room Illumination!

Some types of lamps served both purposes. Sofa Lamps are amongst the most popular as they are great for overall room lighting with a central “torchere style” uplight for room illumination, and candles below to give softer task lighting for those sitting underneath the lamp. Below is a great 1930s catalog image with a sofa lamp, and explation of how these lamps served these multiple needs.
antique floor lamp catalog image
We fully restore Sofa Lamps with new wiring, refinishing as necessary, and pairing them with a variety of shades that work well in contemporary or tradtional spaces. Below are a few of the restored sofa lamps we currently have in the showroom.
antique sofa floor lamp brassantique sofa floor lamp cast iron
In addition to restoring floor lamps for ourselves, we love rewiring, or fully restoring client lamps too. Feel free to bring in your Floor Lamp to get it working again.

Check out the Antique Floor lamp section of our website for all of our selection, and keep checking as many new ones are currently being restored!

http://www.tocl.ca/collections/antique-floor-lamps-1

R.F. Wilton Electric Co 1929: Bit of Toronto's Lighting History

26 May, 2015 0 comments Leave a comment

Featured in this post is the 1929 R.F.Wilton Electric Co. Catalogue from Toronto, Ontario. Located at 124-128 Richmond Street West in what is now an awe inspiring parking bay for the Sheraton Hotel, the R.F. Wilton Company was a prominent retailer and distributor of electric lighting in Toronto. They occupied 3 addresses of prime retail space in Toronto’s downtown core and directly competed with large companies such as Simpson’s and Eaton’s located a bit further east along Yonge St.

 

Wilton offered a wide variety of lighting as seen in the 1920s pan lights, Tudor revival lighting and modern Art Deco designs. Strictly a retailer, they would have ordered their lighting from factories in Canada and the US to sell locally. We’ve seen many of the same fixtures from other company catalogues as wide spread as Philadelphia to Los Angeles. Inside the catalogue is an order form as well which would allow consumers to select the finish, quantity and length of the fixture they desired. With prices ranging from $3.00 for a hallway fixture to $15.00 dollars for a dining room fixture, the lighting carried appealed to a mass market and middle class. We make joke about the prices then, but $15.00 was the equivalent of $300 now.

 

Over the years many of these lights from the R.F.Wilton Co come into our showroom from old homes all around the city. They’re usually covered in white house paint or worse, and are in definite need of a refresh. We love working on them as they provide instant links to a homes past and homeowners are really pleased to see what would have been in the house in 1929.

 

In my mind, the most interesting part of this catalogue is not necessarily the lighting inside but the link to Toronto’s past. The catalogue was printed in 1929; the tail end of the roaring twenties and the birth of the great depression. Electric lighting was a huge technological innovation that everyone scrambled to acquire and the twenties were the true age of electricity and innovation. From lighting fixtures to light sockets, its fascinating to see what was modern at the time and the selecting of lighting people had before them. When I’m walking around the city and see a nice cast iron porch light that’s been there for 90 years, it doesn’t look tired or dated. Instead it looks proud and stoic. A small but illuminated link to both the home and Toronto’s past.