See How Flipping a Light Fixture Instantly Makes This Room Feel Larger

published Feb 24, 2024
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Plant filled bathroom.

Creative designer Kara Lauren Kirchhoff, who owns this colorful home in St. Louis, Missouri, can’t remember when exactly they started flipping their bathroom lights upside down — only that it was a good decision. If you read that last sentence and are a little hesitant about jumping on board, that’s understandable. You might be wondering if the lighting looks as bright. (Spoiler: It does!)

“Flipping bathroom light fixtures is just something that I have been doing for a long time… I noticed that bathroom light fixtures are often incredibly intrusive to your mirror space,” Kirchhoff says. “Maybe because I am a little bit on the tall side and have many very tall family members, that I think about some of these things a little bit differently.”

When Kirchhoff was decorating their (and their kids’) bathroom, they put this tip to the test. Both original light fixtures were dated, likely from the ’80s or earlier, so they installed new allen + roth mid-century modern lights. 

The mirrors in Kirchhoff’s bathrooms were already small, and the original light fixtures made them feel even more compact. The previous lights only had two bulbs, so Kirchhoff was intrigued by the three bulbs in the new lights. “I love the fixtures; they are black and have a great industrial mid-century kind of look, and they provide super-bright light which I like in a bathroom,” they share. 

Kirchhoff’s bathroom ceilings are eight feet tall (which feels “a bit short” to them), so they wanted to find a way to make the room feel larger. 

“I like the fixtures flipped because it provides more room for your mirror space; also, this way, you don’t have lights shining down directly in your eyes,” they explain. “Painted ceilings are very popular right now, but nonetheless, most people have white ceilings still, and when you shine the light up, it reflects on that white ceiling, which makes the whole room brighter instead of just shining down over the vanity. Also, I just like how it looks.”

With Kirchhoff’s trick, the room looks larger than it really is. (The fixtures look chic upside down, too.) But this isn’t the only cool part of their home. To see more, visit the full home tour.