Chandeliers are floating pieces of jewelry that sparkle like diamonds and drip with sophistication. Your mind goes straight to those breathtaking Schonbeck chandeliers. To refer to them as “rustic” in any sense of the word would seem like a blatant error. But are “rustic chandeliers” really an oxymoron? Or, could they be a smart choice for your home’s lighting needs?
Rustic Chandeliers: An Oxymoron or Outstanding Choice?
On their own, the words have clearly opposite meanings. ‘Rustic’ relates to all things rural or country, while ‘chandelier’ is derived from the French word ‘chandelle,’ meaning candle. Yet, when you put the two together, there’s an undeniable force of attraction. Here’s why…
“Rustic” is exactly how you would describe the very first chandeliers. They were simple constructions made of two wood beams that crossed in the center. On the edge of each beam was a spike or nail that held a candle (hence, the origin of ‘chandelier’).
Of course, in the 9th century, quality candles were a luxury item, which made chandeliers an exclusive accessory. Only the clergy and royal figures could afford to create these large, suspended lights. Over time, the prestige only grew, as designers created chandeliers from gold and Venetian glass. It didn’t take long for everyone to forget where chandeliers got their start.
The moral of the story is this: Chandeliers may still be a symbol of luxury and wealth, but they will always be rooted in ingenuity and resourcefulness. In fact, that is exactly what makes rustic chandeliers so appealing. They are smart, stunning and suited for any style home.
The Charm of Rustic Chandeliers
Thanks to their warm, grounded features, rustic chandeliers will instantly make your home feel cozier. But if you aren’t sure what you’re looking for, this cheat sheet should give you a good overview. It goes without saying that wood and other natural elements are key components of all rustic lighting, however, there are several other elements that make rustic chandeliers such a charming accessory.
- Nature — specifically the sprawling countryside
- Craftsmanship and the notion of quality over quantity
- Wood — usually weathered or grainy
- Wrought-iron and other heavy metals
- Glass accents that have some heft to them
- Warm neutrals, particularly dark browns, black and Heather gray
- Round as either an open-air orb or thick, horizontal hoop
- Long, rectangular boxes
- One-dimensional, elongated frames
- Occasionally abstract, especially when inspired by nature
- Curvy candelabras
- Bell or jar-shaped light shades
9 Rustic Chandeliers That Will Bring Warmth to Your Home
Lucky for you – and your home – there are endless combinations of these charming elements. You can see some of our favorites below. From abstract antlers to white-washed woodwork, you’re sure to find the right rustic chandeliers to accent your home décor.
You don’t have to sacrifice modern lines for old-world charm. The Allier five-light chandelier offers the clean, geometric shape that you’d find in today’s minimalist abodes. With its dark, weathered oak, this orb will pop against white-washed brick in your farmhouse-style foyer. Or, bring it into your crisp, contemporary kitchen and let it match the roundness of your eat-in-table.
Like a true Generation Lighting design, this fixture is an exquisite exhibition of craftsmanship – from the distressed oak rings to the textured metal arms. Even the wavy glass hurricanes make those vintage light bulbs crackle like real candles. It’s those simple touches that offer such a sweet reward, which, in this case, is warmth and style.
Between the vintage filament light bulbs that emit a yellow glow and the rectangular frame with a pitched roof, this fixture is sure to make you feel right at home. The open-air design is every bit inviting. Plus, the white-washed wood is a universal finish. It would look just as bright in a coastal cottage dining room as it would in an industrial loft.
Nature subtly takes hold in this delicate iron candelabra, where the arms wind through its wood branches like roots breaking ground. There’s even a small, pear-shaped finial at the bottom, which not only adds a touch more elegance but mirrors the overarching form. If you have the ceilings for it, hang the Middlefield chandelier in a naturally lit foyer or anywhere else you wish to bring the outdoors in.
With its aged metal hoop and black chain suspension arms, the Sawyer hangs like a chandelier from a medieval castle. You can almost see the horses come to a halt, as this 12-prong crown lights up your grand entry or outdoor living space. If you prefer something more natural, the Sawyer also comes in a Sequoia wood finish.
The Marimount’s black metal accents are a stark contrast to the auburn-stained wood-look body, which helps accentuate the rectangular shape. In fact, it’s almost as if this chandelier is a three-dimensional fireplace with five perfectly arranged flame candles warming your space. Suspended in mid-air over a long dining table, this fixture will surely bring people together.
Sometimes, simplicity reigns supreme, and that’s no truer than with the Shire. It has a classic chandelier silhouette, which is outlined by five faux-wood lines. Each line connects in the center with rustic black metal hardware, which is carried through in the candelabra ring. With only five candle-shaped bulbs, this enchanting fixture belongs in your master bedroom with other dark wood furnishings and soothing color palettes.
The Journey is clearly an artistic ode to the wild deer that roam rural areas – and it’s a rather realistic one, at that. Made of resin, these abstract antlers have remarkably lifelike detail – from the textured roots to the tailored horns. The black metal ring around the outside simply contains the sporadic spikes, while adding a more rustic quality to the finishing piece. With its lighter finish, there’s no reason this chandelier can’t hang in a contemporary living room.
Who needs a real plant when you have the Auburn candelabra? Its wrought-iron arms snake up like ivy and even curl at the top, just below those blooming candle sleeves. Instead of opening up to a flower, the blooms give off a warm glow from their classic incandescent bulbs. Everything about this chandelier – including its candlestick turns and rich walnut finish – says it belongs in your traditional dining room.
Seeing is Believing
When you’ve thought of chandeliers in one light for so long, it can be hard to look at them in any other way. But thanks to all the best lighting brands, today’s rustic chandeliers are far more sophisticated and elegant than that original cross design. You can see it in these nine examples and many more when you shop our growing selection of rustic lighting.