The Quest for Lighting {Ugly Duckling Dining Room}

Did you realize there is no ceiling light fixture in my ugly duckling dining room?

dining room before

Several years ago, I had an electrician look at this problem and we discovered there is no wiring in the ceiling of this room.  It used to be a little-used living room before it was designated as my dining room, and apparently the builder (back in 1986) didn’t think any overhead lighting was necessary.  Clearly a man, no?

The long and short of it was that it would be terribly expensive to add wiring and a junction box plus having the ceiling and at least one wall torn up and repaired.  So here we sit, with no over head lighting.

I’ve longingly pinned gorgeous dining room light fixtures over the last year, determined to get creative with my solution.


Source: via Heidi on Pinterest

Source: via Heidi on Pinterest

Source: via Heidi on Pinterest

Source: via Heidi on Pinterest


I might DIY an entire fixture similar to this one…


Or modify a beautiful fixture like this one…


Now I’ve decided that this lovely lady needs to take center stage in my dining room, so I’m leaning toward a very clean and simple look with the lighting.

dining room buffet

Yesterday at Home Decorator’s Collection, I spotted these…

Home Decorators Collection Capri light

Helloooooo, lover!

Home Decorator Collection Capri light

I love the very simple lines of the Capri fixture, don’t you?



This quest is by no means over, so I hope you don’t mind being along for the ride! Care to weigh in?? 🙂


  1. Weird not to have overhead lighting…in our fourth house (built in 1979) there were two HUGE rooms with no overhead lighting–the living room and the den. The den in particular was a bear–it was 11 x 2o–ambient lighting just didn’t cut it. I feel your dilemma.

  2. That is strange!! But I’m sure you’ll come up with something great. The Capri fixture is so simple and stunning!!

  3. I say even if you can’t “electrify” the fixture hang one you love above it anyway. The only time it would matter would be at night when you can’t actually turn it on.


  4. Debbi in Texas says

    Hi there, and any of those fixtures would look stunning. My thought first of all is get a second opinion and maybe a third on the wiring situation. We have found that is very easy for someone to say it can’t be done if 1. they don’t want to do it, and 2. they don’t know how. The expense could be worth it? Your alternative solution would also be fantastic and sometimes is more flattering and useful.

  5. Susan Tofteland says

    Pick out your favorite chandelier and replace electric with candles.

  6. those last ones sing to me! and i think they would suit your room well.

  7. I have a similar problem in my dining room. The previous owners actually had the original ceiling fixture removed and covered the spot with a (not very well done- as in you can totally see it) patch. I have been longing for a chandelier over my dining table. I am lucky that the wiring is still there…I think! Love the fixtures you found…good luck!

  8. Nicholle Olores says

    Great transformation and I really love the idea of unique decoration and I am impress with your great ideas. Love the photos as well it looks stunning!

  9. Oh wow! I sorta liked them all… and that is my problem. I can never decide 😉

    I have never been in a Home Decorators Collection? Looks yummy.
    Those were gorgeous fixtures. Look forward to seeing what you pick!!!! 🙂

  10. Maybe you might need a real candelabra? Or perhaps you can make a modified capri with some battery operated lights? Or battery operated flames?

  11. So no electrical box in the ceiling now but you are still looking at lights … if you have some magic solution about how to have electric lights without needing extensive wiring updates I can’t wait to hear about that 🙂 I love the idea of the modern and clean lined capri fixtures with the elegant traditional sideboard you are going to feature in the room; that would be a chic combo.

  12. You could do a hook of some sort in the center and then a long cord from the outlet… My mom has a set up like that in her house, and if you work it right it looks nice.

  13. Oooh I love that fixture!

    But seriously, NO overhead wiring?! Come. ON.


  1. […] also popped into Tuesday Morning, as part of my ongoing quest for lighting for the dining room and lo and behold I came across these fresh shades for the buffet lamps on my grandmother’s […]

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