Use a chandelier, pendant, or similar fixture for ambient and mood lighting, as well as desk, table, or directional lighting for tasks.

A plucky fellow named Jack Weinstein took a long shot in launching wholesale electrical distributor Globe Electric in Montreal during the precarious 1930s.

The bet, as it turned out, was a good one, because the business spawned a brand that’s now so big most Canadians have used it in some form at home or work — fixtures, cords, bulbs, smart lighting, outdoor fixtures, sensors/door cameras — you name it.

Weinstein’s entrepreneurial spirit lives on in the 91-year-old company, according to product development manager Diana Cedeno. For her, that means it’s easier to get good-quality, contemporary lighting to market.

“Managers are given the opportunity to take an idea and run with it,” says Cedeno, citing a situation in which her team was examining their vanity lighting assortment when someone came up with the idea of a bathroom in a box — a light, towel rack, towel ring, robe hook, and toilet paper holder.

It would affordable and easy to install. The product was designed and produced, adding to an already extensive product range.  “It was such a hit!” laughs Cedeno.

Daily to-do lists include identifying design and style shifts, and then interpreting them in functional, aesthetically-appealing lighting fixtures.

As an example, Cedeno points to sconces, which she says are a favourite designer trick for good reason. They work as both task and ambient lighting, and don’t take up much space.

Globe Electric has handsome wired sconces for indoor and out. For those don’t want to or can’t install junction boxes, there’s an equally good-looking line of plug-in models.

Several incorporate nature-inspired elements like rattan, one of the many organic materials Cedeno says was prominent at fall 2022 design shows.

Still, she says she wasn’t prepared by how quickly they took off. “Fast forward a few months and everyone has a twine accent on their sconces or lamps.”

The appeal, says Cedeno, is understandable. “With Covid, there was a shift to people spending so much more time inside. But they still felt the need to connect with nature and natural elements.”

Cedeno also favours burnished finishes on lighting for the warmth they bring,  pointing to the plated-brass finish on Olivia , their 12-inch mushroom table lamp. (For a full review of it, go to )

“I do not get tired of a brass finish, ever, and these days I’m very much into a mix of brass and natural materials,” she says.

Olivia is one of several pieces from a collaboration with design firm Novogratz , which includes sleek matte-black fixtures, eco-inspired faux rattan and a ribbed frosted white glass shade. Similarly well-designed options are found across multiple other house lines of standing and table lamps, both decorative and functional.

Cedeno encourages homeowners to create layered lighting, because “it’s not very appealing to have one flush-mount with a cool white light for the whole room.”

Instead, she suggests a room plan with functional lighting overhead — ideally recessed, in my opinion — that illuminates the entire room at a comfortable level.

There should also be a chandelier, pendant, or similar fixture for ambient and mood lighting, as well as desk, table, or directional lighting for tasks.

To further customize lighting, I’d use the company’s tri-light bulbs and dimmer products that transition from daylight to sunset. I’d also take Cedeno’s advice to consider the colour temperature of  bulbs, and to choose appropriately by room. There’s lots of helpful information about that on the Globe Electric site.

Looking ahead to 2024, Cedeno is keeping an eye on textured ceramic materials — especially ribbed — for  lamp bases and other accessories. At the same time, she expects the craze for modern farmhouse will evolve into a taste for lighter woods and more streamlined rustic elements.

Whatever’s ahead, Cedeno seems to be betting that her team will deliver the company’s signature style and performance. I think Jack Weinstein would approve of her chutzpah.

Vicky Sanderson is the editor of Around the House, www. aroundthehouse.

ca. Check her out on Instagram@athwithvicky, Twitter ATHwithVicky and


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