LEDs and the Art of Inflatable Lighting

balloonfinal1 LEDs and the Art of Inflatable Lighting

Think LEDs are just for your TV, remote control or cell phone? Guess again. Once the tireless workhorse of the electronics industry, LEDs have become the darling of the design world — making inspired appearances in modern day chandeliers, textiles, furniture, and multimedia art. And guess what? Some modern offerings are actually affordable — like this cluster of blow-me-away Balloon Lamps by Japanese design studio Kyouei Ltd.

Did I say affordable? These mood setting lanterns are available for $30 each at Charles & Marie. The lamp arrives flat, ready for you to give it some life. Snap the balloon on to the fixture, and blow into the valve until the lamp has reach your desired dimensions. Suspend them individually, or in a constellation designed by — why, you.

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Paperclip Lamp | Not For Craigslist

paperclip lamp 001 Paperclip Lamp | Not For Craigslist

You may have heard of Kyle MacDonald, the guy who traded a red paperclip for a house on Craigslist. It was last year’s light news day darling: “We’ll leave you with an incredible tale of… blah, blah.” Well, after 14 trades, Kyle now owns a house in the town of Kipling Saskatchewan (wherever the hell that is). The point is this: that guy missed the point. The paperclip is a thing of beauty. If you ask me, he should have held on to it.

Luckily for us, the visionaries at Seattle-based Teague Design saw the inherent beauty of this everyday object. Born from an innovative internal program designed to nurture creativity, the paperclip lamp debuted at the Seattle DWR Lighting Exhibition and after gaining recognition internally shone at the Korean Gwangju Design Biennale, a festival which puts 21st century design trends under the spotlight.

paperclip lamp 002 Paperclip Lamp | Not For Craigslist

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LED Leaf Light From Herman Miller

herman miller leaf lamp LED Leaf Light From Herman Miller

What’s the best accessory for the modern green home office?

Designed by Yves Behar and more than three years in the making, the Leaf Light from Herman Miller is a sensually designed LED table lamp that, according to Behar, fuses “technology with humanity.” And while I would normally dismiss such an assessment as highly portentous, in this case I think it’s entirely fitting.

While most lights simply illuminate their surroundings (let’s face it: you turn it on and you turn it off, it either lights up the room or it doesn’t – there’s not a lot of gray area there), the Leaf actually enhances your personal space. Dimmable by a simple hand move, its thin, compact design allows for maximum lighting concepts: the lower part swivels 180 degrees, providing a wide range of local coverage, while the upper part can be folded down to light up your desk or raised up and aimed at the wall to create an ambient mood throughout the room.

herman miller led leaf lamp LED Leaf Light From Herman Miller

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Rockefeller Center’s Green LED Christmas

rockefeller center led christmastree 01 Rockefeller Center’s Green LED Christmas

Every year in New York City’s Rockefeller Center, an enormous Christmas tree lights up the night sky, enticing tens of millions of locals and tourists into the spirit of Christmas.

This year’s tree, however, has an added message. For the first time since the tradition began in 1931, the illuminated towering evergreen will be greener than ever. Last Tuesday, a 365 panel solar array was unveiled on the roof of one of Rock Center’s buildings. These panels will help power the tree’s 30,000 lights, which have been switched to energy efficient LEDs.

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