Photos courtesy Capital City Lighting

How to mix traditional with trendy when it comes to lighting

It has been said time and time again that history repeats itself. While sleek and clean-lined interiors have been around for a while—and are likely here to stay—styles of centuries past are making a comeback in 2021. And with every distinct style comes the magnificent light fixtures to illuminate the space and tie everything together. For this week’s Designer Tip, we reached out to Bridget Tate, co-owner and lighting curator of Capital City Lighting, for her take on the newest lighting looks of 2021.

“A trend we’ve been seeing a lot of that isn’t so ‘trendy’ is a resurgence of traditional styles and spaces,” says Tate. “Several of my latest projects have been old-world European-inspired designs that mix traditional with a twist.”

Of course, interior designers are still frequently incorporating the popular minimalistic look in the lighting department. Black light fixtures with gold finishes and modern gas lanterns still prove to be stylish choices for the modern home.

However, as you can see in the architecture of newly built homes, aspects of the classical European style are coming back strong. Tate points out that the elegance of new homes also seems to have a historical vibe. “We are still seeing the lean to a modern and minimal clean design but with the mixture of an old world and French provincial feel,” says Tate.

And as the architectural style changes, the light fixtures follow suit. “Lighting design that works in most spaces is timeless, simple, traditional, has lots of brass and delicate curves,” says Tate.

Instead of a complete resurgence of the artisanal ornamentation and richness found in many centuries-old homes, today’s updated traditional-style interiors often incorporate natural materials with an unfussy approach.

“When I am working on lighting for these spaces, I have to consider the design of the home: lots of plaster, sacked brick, natural stone, natural beams,” explains Tate. “It’s a minimalistic throwback to when artisans were simple but detailed. There is no crown molding or trim but the techniques to finish a home are flawless.”

For more on Capital City Lighting, visit And if midcentury style is more your thing, check out this lighting tip from Tate from the inRegister archives.