The $55 Amazon Lamp Everyone Thinks I Spent a Lot More Money On

updated Jun 11, 2019
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(Image credit: Amazon)

After a lifetime of inheriting furniture (and shoving everything else I’ve inherited in inherited drawers), my life has finally settled down where I can finally buy pieces of my own. But after getting furniture for free (or deeply discounted), it’s hard for me to fork up the cold, hard cash (or credit), even if I really like a piece. This had led me to refurbishing my bedroom in short, cheap spurts. I’ll pick up a few knobs from CB2 on my way home from work. I’ll score a bookshelf from a Wayfair flash sale. I’ll borrow my sister’s Kohl’s credit card for extra discounts and combine with my Kohl’s cash to pick up some surprisingly luxe, surprisingly affordable bedding. You get the picture.

In my quest to live my best life possible, I recently upgraded from a full-size bed to a queen to service my two favorite hobbies: reading in bed and sleeping. That required a new bed frame that solved some problems (it was bigger) and created others (my old clip-on light no longer clipped onto my new bed frame). Though I guess I could have MacGyver-ed it onto said new bed frame, I am too lazy for that. Instead, sitting on my new queen-sized bed, I decided I would use my clip-on light in my closet and find a new lamp. Treat yourself, I thought: I had a $100 Amazon gift card burning a hole in my parent’s account that I needed to use quickly before my siblings “accidentally” got to it first.

It took me about 10 minutes searching on Amazon before I decided on the least expensive mid-century modern-type lamp. Inspired by my constant replaying of Mad Men, I ordered the mouthful of the Mia LED Tripod Floor Lamp by Brightech in a post-midnight haze for just $55, knowing full well when I opened it up two days later it would probably look like nothing in the photos I had seen online. As someone once justified to themselves when they got into a particularly self-sabotaging situation, “Old habits die hard, but everything can be a learning process, so just let yourself make the same mistakes.”

(Image credit: Amazon)

HAH. But sometimes, the best decisions are actually made in a post-midnight haze. When I opened the box two days later, the lamp… looked great. Though the wood was the standard IKEA-style light birch, it looked more Scandi-cool than college-budget chic. The wide, cylindrical lampshade turned out to be hell of a surprise, as it magically transformed from two, unassuming flat-packed hoops and a piece of cloth into somewhat of a statement shade (I say somewhat because at its core, it’s still a neutral piece and that’s why it works so well).

Cut to a couple minutes later when I’m sending pictures of my space to my friends, family and, of course, coworkers. “Look at my room!” I said to them. “THAT LAMP!” They texted back. Never one to shy away from bragging about a bargain, I texted back “Can y’all believe it only cost $55?!” Let me tell you: Compliments feel good when they don’t cost that much.

(Image credit: Amazon)

I will say, it’s not highly rated on Amazon: Other people have had problems with getting the light to turn on and stay on. I did have to turn it on a couple of times for the light switch to function, but I ended up putting in a smart lightbulb to prevent having to fiddle with it any longer. Also, I will not lie: Asking my Alexa device to turn my light on and off never gets old. Modern furniture? Cool. Modern technology? Freaking mind-blowing.