30 Types of Floor Lamps (Plus Shade & Bulb Options)

Jessica Stone
by Jessica Stone

Floor lamps are one of the most practical light sources available and can be used in virtually any room in your home. Aside from being functional, these lamps also have an impact on the overall ambiance in a particular room. In some cases, something as simple as the light bulb that you choose can make a major difference in the effect that your floor lamp has on the space.

Due to their stature, floor lamps are often a major focal point in a room. Therefore, when it comes to choosing the right type of floor lamp, you’ll want to choose carefully. The best way to make an informed decision about which lamp is best for your space is to know your options. Some of the most common types of floor lamps include club lamps, swing arm lamps, tripod lamps, tower lamps, six-way lamps, tree lamps, pharmacy lamps, and torchière lamps. Though, floor lamps can also be categorized based on style, materials, type of light bulb, and more.

With that said, let’s take a look at 20 different types of floor lamps on the market to help you find one that is best suited for your space and your lighting needs.

Floor Lamp Lighting

Before we examine the different types of floor lamps, it’s important to understand the various types of lighting. That way, you know exactly what you’re shopping for when it comes to floor lamps. Here’s a brief breakdown of floor lamp lighting options:

  • Ambient: Also known as general lighting, ambient lighting is the most basic form. It is lighting that serves as a substitute for natural light, diffusing light evenly throughout the space.
  • Task: Task lighting is exactly as the name indicates – a type of lighting required to perform tasks. Whether it be cooking, reading, or applying makeup, a fixture that provides task lighting will direct the light to a specific spot.
  • Uplight: Uplighting refers to a strategic technique of directing light upwards to dramatically improve the mood of a space. Floor lamps that offer uplighting point the light towards the ceiling, where it is then softly reflected downwards.

Types of Floor Lamps

Floor lamps have a very simple configuration, typically consisting of a sturdy base, a tall stem that extends from the base, a light, and, sometimes, a lampshade. While there may be many different styles of floor lamps, the basic form remains the same across all types. The following is an overview of some different types of floor lamps, based on design – each with its own unique characteristics and functional advantages.

1. Club Floor Lamp

Club lamps are essentially the most basic form of floor lamps out there. They feature a very sleek design with a simple lamp on top. These lamps come in a wide array of styles, including variations in the lamp type and column shape. You can stick to something simple or opt for a club floor lamp with a more modern light fixture or decorative pole design.

Ultimately, your choice in the type of club lamp comes down to the overall look you’re going for. Whether you’re looking for something casual or sophisticated, you’ll have plenty of options available. The light from a club lamp comes from the sides of the unit. This mainly has to do with the fact that the lamp features a shade on top, which helps increase the coverage of light. Therefore, if you want sufficient illumination out of your floor lamp, a club floor lamp is an excellent choice.

Some club floor lamp models are adjustable, meaning you can easily alter the height of the lamp based on your needs. You’ll have no trouble finding this type of floor lamp in a range of designs and styles to complement your home décor.

2. Torchière

Another popular type of floor lamp and one that is widely available is the torchière lamp. The name comes from the French word for “torch,” the ancient way of lighting up a space before the invention of electricity. This floor lamp is characterized by its slender build and triangular-shaped shade that points light upward. The design looks very sophisticated and will offer a bit of vintage charm to your living space.

Its upward lighting direction creates a soft, warm, glow, and cozy atmosphere. The ambient light it produces will be further diffused throughout the room if you have white ceilings. Though the design of torchière lamps is simple, it is highly functional. Some models even come outfitted with a dimmer switch, allowing you to adjust the intensity of the light.

When it comes to choosing the right style of torchière floor lamp, make sure you choose one that is sturdy and carries little risk of falling over. For best results, opt for one with a weighted base. This will ensure that the lamp’s slender physique stays grounded.

3. Swing Arm Floor Lamp

Swing arm floor lamps consist of a traditional column base and a lampshade, just like club lamps or torchière lamps. Though, there is one small adjustment to the upper portion of the column base that lets the user swing the lamp left or right as needed. By adjusting the “arm” the user can change the illumination angle and path.

The major benefit of this design is that you don’t have to move the entire structure of the lamp to adjust the lighting. Instead, you can very easily bend the light to achieve an optimal angle. The horizontal movement of a swing arm floor lamp makes it ideal for above a desk, accent chair, or anywhere else where task lighting is desired.

4. Tripod Floor Lamp

Though somewhat similar in design to traditional club floor lamps, tripod lamps have a distinct base. The base typically consists of three columns that work together to hold both the bulb and lampshade upright – resembling a tripod. Though it’s a small modification from standard floor lamps, a tripod floor lamp can add a touch of visual interest and character to your living space.

5. Tower Floor Lamp

The tower floor lamp is designed very differently than the rest of the options on our list. It is usually composed of a singular width column, or “tower,” with a shade that spans the entire height of the lamp. There are multiple bulbs inside the shade that helps to diffuse light both up and down the column. Some models include shelves at varying heights along with the tower for additional storage, instead of having a full-length lampshade.

These types of floor lamps come in a wide variety of styles, some of which can even look like an abstract sculpture when not in use. They offer a very gentle glow that lights up the structure, while also emphasizing the lamp’s design elements.

6. Floor Table Lamp

A floor table lamp is very different from your traditional table lamps in that it is a multi-purpose lighting structure that includes a small table that is attached to the pole. This type of floor lamp is one of the latest inventions in home décor, with an impressive concept. The lamp seamlessly combines both a table and a lamp, offering both functions. A floor table lamp is an excellent option for those who may be limited on space, as it performs two jobs in one sleek design.

It is an unobtrusive design that can be tucked away in a corner or placed next to your favorite accent chair for ample illumination and a place to rest your coffee mug. In some cases, these lamps feature additional shelves below the main table for extra storage space. They also can be found in a range of materials – from wood to glass – depending on your design preferences.

7. Multi-Way or Tree Floor Lamp

Commonly referred to as both a multi-way floor lamp and a tree floor lamp, these units are characterized by their multiple bulbs. They have a unique construction that is commonly used in common spaces and dorm rooms. Though, there are many sleek and sophisticated options that will pair well in a modern home. Generally speaking, tree floor lamps offer three or more light bulbs, with miniature shades, closely resembling the branches of a tree.

The greatest advantage to tree lamps is that you can reposition and alter the angle of the lamps to your lighting needs. However, not all models offer this capability, as the shades may be fixed in place. If you’re looking for a unique floor lamp design, a multi-way lamp will look great and also serve all your lighting desires.

8. Six-Way Floor Lamp

Similar to multi-way floor lamps, six-way lamps feature multiple bulbs. However, this design has all of the lightbulbs underneath a single lampshade. It is the perfect choice if you’re trying to light a large room and need all the additional light you can get out of your floor lamp. Also referred to as a mogul lamp, this unit is outfitted with a three-way bulb and is supplemented by three more surrounding bulbs.

The example pictured above features a six-way switch and six output levels, offering maximum customization and convenience. In most cases, the core light has a higher wattage than the surrounding bulbs and each can be operated individually. So, you can use all of the lights, or just the three-way fixture – depending on your needs.

9. Candelabra Floor Lamp

Candelabra floor lamps are a great option for anyone with a love for traditional décor. These lamps are classy, timeless, and look amazing if you’re aiming for a vintage appeal in your living space. Similar to a tree lamp or six-way lamp, a candelabra features multiple bulbs. Though, the lighting output is much lower since the bulbs are smaller and have a lower wattage.

These types of floor lamps are ideal for accent lighting to brighten up a space. They come in a range of different styles and designs – some with and some without lampshades. Regardless, candelabra floor lamps are typically very decorative and will become a focal point in whatever room you place them in.

10. Down Bridge Floor Lamp

A type of task light, the down bridge floor lamp stands upright but the base curves at the very top of the structure. This causes the lampshade to dip slightly lower than the height of the lamp. Their design makes down bridge floor lamps ideal for bedside reading, or for placing next to a desk or accent chair. They will work well in virtually any situation that requires the light to be directed to a much lower level than normal.

Depending on the particular model, you may be able to adjust the angle of the light to your needs. That way, you can move and point the light directly at the task you are working on.

11. Pharmacy Floor Lamp

Pharmacy floor lamps tend to be more about function, and less about aesthetics. They are similar to down bridge lamps in that they direct the light downwards, though pharmacy lamps are often more adjustable both horizontally and vertically. In most cases, you can alter the height of the lamp, thanks to the adjustable pole, and swing the head forward and back based on your needs.

These floor lamps offer versatility and convenience in a relatively small design. As a result, pharmacy floor lamps are an excellent choice if you’re limited on floor space in your home and need something that is both efficient and compact.

12. Arc Floor Lamp

A staple in mid-century modern décor, the arc floor lamp is a unique and visually appealing type of floor lamp that is slowly seeing a revival in contemporary interior design. This lamp is characterized by its long, arching frame – hence the name. The arching body ends with a light bulb and a shade at the end. One of the most common applications of the arc floor lamp is above a sofa. Though, more recently, it is being used in dining rooms.

Of course, you’re going to need quite a bit of space for this type of floor lamp as it will look a little awkward in a small living room. Most arc floor lamps are outfitted with weighted bases to ensure that the arch will maintain its shape without toppling over. If you’re looking for a floor lamp that will make a dramatic statement in your home, an arc floor lamp is a great choice.

Floor Lamp Styles

Now that you have a greater understanding of some of the most popular types of floor lamps available, let’s categorize them based on style. The style of floor lamp that you choose is important to ensure that it pairs well with your existing décor. There is a wide array of floor lamp styles to choose from, making it easy to find something that suits both your interior décor and your lighting requirements.

With that said, the following are some of the most common floor lamp styles on the market:

1. Mid-Century Modern

First made popular in the 20th century, the mid-century modern style has seen a major comeback in the 21st century. This style is categorized by clean lines, a neat look, and an emphasis on function and form. Nowadays, homeowners love this style for its modest appearance.

Mid-century modern floor lamps appear uncluttered and offer exceptional versatility, making them suitable for virtually anywhere in your house. If your floor lamp needs stem more from function rather than looks, a mid-century modern floor lamp is an excellent choice. Oftentimes, you’ll find tripod, arc, and even traditional club floor lamps with a mid-century modern style.

2. Mission & Shaker Style

Inspired by ‘Craftsman furniture’ or the Arts and Crafts’ movement of the 19th century, Mission Shaker lamps have a very unique look. The distinguishing features of this style are seamless geometric shapes and clean, neat lines. If you enjoy artisanal décor pieces that offer a touch of local heritage and culture, Mission Shaker is a wonderful style of choice.

As an added bonus, there likely won’t be a replica of the Mission Shaker floor lamp that you find – which is an excellent advantage if you’re looking for something one-of-a-kind for your living space.

3. Scandinavian

Believe it or not, there is much more to Nordic or Scandinavian style décor than IKEA. Similar to mid-century modern floor lamps, this style is characterized by simple, distinct lines and minimalism. One of the greatest benefits to Scandinavian style floor lamps is that it allows you to experiment with multiple design elements and styles in a space. Not to mention, this style is wildly popular right now in interior design.

Therefore, if you want to experiment with your living space and have a floor lamp that will go with virtually any style, consider Scandinavian.

4. Country

When we refer to a country style, it is open to interpretation based on the culture of your part of the world. Regardless, all forms of country-style floor lamps will feature many of the same attributes – including a rustic, naturalistic feel, muted colors, and a worn-down, unpolished appearance. It has a relatively vintage look that will create a cozy atmosphere and pair well with similar décor items.

With that said, country-style floor lamps are ideal for rooms that have an open floor plan. High ceilings, big windows, and minimal furnishings all lend well to the overall country theme.

5. Tiffany

Created by Louis Comfort Tiffany, Tiffany glass refers to a particular style of decorative, stained glass from the 19th century. Tiffany pieces are highly sought after and original Tiffany floor lamps, in particular, could cost you anywhere from thousands of dollars to millions. For this reason, Tiffany items are seen as a piece of luxury and are very popular among celebrities and other wealthy individuals.

However, for the budget-conscious, there is a wide array of dupe Tiffany lamps available for a fraction of the price. “Tiffany-style” lamps can be found from a variety of online retailers and at various department stores. There is also a wide assortment of glass shade options to choose from, making it easy to find a copy that looks almost identical to an original piece.

6. Bohemian

Although the bohemian style isn’t for everyone, many enjoy the expressive display. This style of floor lamp is characterized by bright, mismatched colors, patterns, and textures. Oftentimes, a home with a bohemian aesthetic will feature a combination of patterns and colors to create a very eclectic, chaotic look.

When it comes to bohemian-style floor lamps, they usually have a unique texture and design elements – from shells, to rattan, to beads, to upholstery fabric, and more! If you have a love for all things unique, eclectic, and maybe a bit unconventional, consider purchasing a bohemian floor lamp.

7. Industrial

Similar to country-style floor lamps, industrial style offers a rough-hewn look. Though, these lamps are usually incredibly durable and will not fall apart easily. In most cases, industrial floor lamps are made out of cast iron or unpolished wood. Though, you may also find these lamps made out of bronze, steel, aluminum, copper, or other metals.

A simple Edison bulb is, oftentimes, a defining feature of this style of floor lamp (as pictured above).

8. Contemporary

The term ‘contemporary’ refers to styles and designs that have been created in the latter half of the 20th century up to present day. It is a blank term that can be interpreted in many different ways, depending on culture, location, current design trends, and more. However, like mid-century modern and Scandinavian designs, minimalism is a major distinguishing characteristic of contemporary floor lamps.

These floor lamps also typically feature clean, defined lines and come in neutral hues. Though, since contemporary is such a catch-all term, there are exceptions. You may also find a floor lamp that is more interesting and livelier, but still falls under the contemporary category.

Floor Lamp Materials

Another way to categorize floor lamps is based on the material it is constructed out of, which has a huge impact on the lamp’s durability, price, and overall appearance. Fortunately, there are plenty of options to choose from, so you’ll have no trouble finding a floor lamp material that fits both your needs and your budget.

Here are some of the most common materials used in the construction of floor lamps:

1. Metal

Nothing exudes strength and magnificence quite like a metal floor lamp. These lamps are specially designed to enhance your interior décor, while also adding additional visual appeal to the space. Consider this: a stunning arc floor lamp made out of a gleaming chrome or copper material. That lamp will surely make a statement in your living space.

If you’d prefer to keep things more subdued, you can opt for a floor lamp with a sleek metal pole design that will effortlessly blend into any décor style.

2. Wood

Depending on the type of wood that is used and how it is carved or treated, a wood floor lamp can look either contemporary or have a more rustic appeal. A rough-hewn species of wood will pair well with rustic or country-style décor, while carved or sanded wood will complement a more contemporary or mid-century modern style.

3. Ceramic

Ceramic is typically paired with a lighter-weight material to create the base of a floor lamp. In some cases, the ceramic material may be more of an accent to the rest of the lamp rather than encompass the entire base. While there are some floor lamps that are made completely out of ceramic, these models typically take up much more floor space and have a high price tag.

As a result, ceramic floor lamps are ideal to be used as a statement piece in your living space.

4. Stone

Like ceramic, stone floor lamps are much more expensive than any other materials. They are also typically a bit bulkier, as the bases are literally set in stone. In most cases, the base of the floor lamp will be made out of marble, while the pole and lampshade are constructed out of a lighter weight, and less pricey, material. However, you can find floor lamps where the entire base is made out of some type of stone.

Stone floor lamps offer a very unique, impressive look that will speak volumes in terms of your design taste. So, if you’re trying to enhance your interior décor, this is an excellent option.

5. Paper

Believe it or not, there a number of tower floor lamps that are made out of either a thin tissue or rice paper. Underneath the paper, these lamps have a wire base that helps to maintain the shape of the lamp. These lamps are ultra-lightweight, inexpensive, and easy to transport from room to room as needed.

However, paper floor lamps offer little in terms of durability, as the paper is very delicate and can be easily punctured.

What Types of Light Bulbs Should I Use For My Floor Lamp?

To enjoy the proper functionality of your floor lamp, it’s important that you select the proper light bulb. Here are some of the main floor lamp light bulb options you have to choose from:

1. Incandescent

Invented by Edison in the 1800s, the incandescent bulb is the original form of the light bulb. These bulbs are what inspired the modern lighting inventions that we see today. Although incandescent bulbs are considered very inefficient, you can typically still find them at your local home improvement centers. They are one of the most affordable options and produce a cozy, warm glow that many homeowners prefer.

Though, their lack of energy efficiency is the primary reason why incandescent bulbs are no longer viable. Not to mention, they have a very short lifespan. However, small incandescent lights are often still used in chandeliers and candelabras. Therefore, if you want that old-world, timeless charm in your home, an incandescent bulb may be a reasonable option.

2. CFL

Compact fluorescent bulbs, or CLFs, were first introduced as a more energy-efficient alternative to traditional incandescent bulbs. Because of this, nowadays, the majority of floor lamps feature this type of bulb. They have a compact design and can fit inside of the same socket as their incandescent counterparts. This means that if you have an old floor lamp that is currently using incandescent bulbs, you can easily swap it out for a CFL to make it more modern and energy-efficient.

The way these bulbs work is that they create the same light output, but require less energy to do so. They also last much longer than incandescent bulbs. However, the major downside to CFLs is that they contain a small amount of mercury. As such, it is very important that these bulbs are properly disposed of or recycled. Regardless, compact fluorescents deliver a cool-toned light, which may or may not work with your interior design aesthetic.

3. LED

When it comes to the energy-efficient of LED light bulbs, both CFLs and incandescent bulbs are miles behind. In fact, if your floor lamp has a traditional socket, it is highly recommended that you opt for an LED bulb. For starters, these bulbs can last up to 20 years (if not longer) and use very little energy when compared to other alternatives. Additionally, LED bulbs do not contain any mercury, making them a much more environmentally friendly lighting option.

Initially, when LED bulbs first hit the scene, they were rather expensive. However, due to increased production and supply, you can easily find a whole pack of LED bulbs for a pretty affordable price – oftentimes less than five dollars a piece.

4. Xenon

Although xenon bulbs fall under the same category as incandescent lights and operate similarly, they derive some energy from xenon gas. In most cases, these bulbs are used for car headlights. However, there are some floor lamp models that require xenon bulbs. When compared to standard incandescent bulbs, xenon lights tend to have a longer life span. They also won’t get as hot to the touch as halogen bulbs do.

With that said, xenon lights may be a viable choice, depending on the type of floor lamp that you purchase – especially when you consider the fact that they can last up to 10,000 hours.

5. Halogen

While an unconventional choice, like xenon, halogen bulbs may be required depending on the type of floor lamp that you have. In most cases, these models will have a different socket that will only fit halogen lights. As their name suggests, halogen bulbs contain halogen gas. This fact makes them more energy-efficient when compared to both traditional incandescent bulbs and xenon lights.

However, these bulbs heat up very fast and can burn the user if they’re not careful. Therefore, if you have small children who may be able to reach your floor lamp bulb, it’s best to opt for a cooler type of light bulb.

Floor Lamp Shade Considerations

Although not all floor lamps come with lampshades, many of them do and you should be aware of your options. Fortunately, lampshades are not permanent components of a floor lamp and can be easily replaced if they’ve become damaged or you want to update the look. With that said, continue reading for our full guide on choosing the perfect lamp shade for your floor lamp – a section that will certainly come in handy down the road when you’re looking to give an old lamp a much-needed refresh.

1. Size

For starters, the size of the lampshade is very important to the overall look of the lamp, as you don’t want to buy something that is too bulky for a lamp with a very slender build. You’ll want to consider both the height and width of the lampshade in order to select the right size. Consider these basic rules when you’re trying to determine the right size lampshade for your floor lamp:

  • The lampshade should completely cover both the socket and the light. If the shade is too small, it will look awkward and unpleasant.
  • For best results, look for a shade that is approximately one-third or one-fourth of the height of the entire floor lamp. Anything smaller and the shade will look too small in comparison to the rest of the lamp. Meanwhile, anything bigger and the shade will be too overwhelming.
  • When it comes to width, make sure that the shade isn’t wider than the widest point of the base of the lamp. Also, to avoid burning the shade, select something that is around three inches wider than the bulb. As a general rule of thumb, the wider the shade, the more light that will be dispersed into the room. Though, it’s important that the width of the shade is appropriately proportionate to the rest of the lamp.

2. Shape

Generally speaking, the shape of the lampshade should reflect the overall shape of the floor lamp. More specifically, a curved lamp or a lamp with a base made out of stacked spheres will pair well with a round-shaped lamp shade. On the other hand, a square shade will work much better with a base that features clean, straight lines.

Try to go with your instinct in this case and find a shape that takes after the whole design of the lamp.

3. Material

The material that the lampshade is made out of plays a crucial part in the effectiveness of the floor lamp. It will be the determining factor in how bright your floor lamp is. With that said, the more opaque that the lampshade is, the less light the bulb it will deliver. To enjoy the full potential of your floor lamp, consider a lampshade that is completely see-through or mostly translucent. For example, linen, cotton, and wool are often an excellent choice for having a lamp with a high brightness level.

4. Color

In addition to the material, the color of the lampshade will also dictate how bright your floor lamp is. For instance, a dark-colored shade will decrease the intensity of the light while a light, or otherwise pale-colored, one will allow for more light to be diffused into the space.

Additional Floor Lamp Considerations

As indicated above, each floor lamp type, style, material, shade, and even light bulb offers its own unique aesthetic. It is crucial that you select a floor lamp that not only looks visually appealing to you, but also complements the room you intend to place it in. It’s not uncommon to find a floor lamp that looks incredible in photos, but out of place or the wrong size when you bring it home.

With that in mind, here are some additional considerations to make when you’re choosing the best floor lamp for you and your space:

1. Cost

The price of floor lamps tends to vary wildly – from affordable, largely functional units, to thousands and even millions for vintage works of art. Generally speaking, the more intricate the design or desirable the brand name, the pricier the floor lamp is going to be. Though, if you want your floor lamp to serve as a statement piece in your living space, you may be more comfortable with spending a bit more on a fantastic design.

2. Height

Height is an important consideration when it comes to floor lamps. As a general rule of thumb, the higher the light source, the wider the light will spread throughout the space. While a high floor lamp may work great for ambient lighting, it isn’t as well-suited for task lighting when you need the light to be closer and more directed.

You also want to think about the scale of everything else in the room. For example, if you have very low-profile furnishings, a tall floor lamp is going to look awkward and out of place. Though, some floor lamps have adjustable poles, which can come in handy if you like to switch up your space often.

Finally, you want to select a floor lamp where the light source is hidden from your line of sight. This means that if you’re standing near the lamp, there should be no unsightly glare and the light source should be fully covered by the shade.

3. Size

In addition to height, the size (or spread) of the floor lamp is important to keep in mind. For instance, torchière or club lamps will take up very little floor space because of their vertical design. Whereas, arc or even tripod floor lamps will take up much more space because of their horizontal orientation. With that said, it’s essential that you know exactly how much space you have to fit a floor lamp. That way, you can choose the appropriate size accordingly.

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Jessica Stone
Jessica Stone

Jessica considers herself a home improvement and design enthusiast. She grew up surrounded by constant home improvement projects and owes most of what she knows to helping her dad renovate her childhood home. Being a Los Angeles resident, Jessica spends a lot of her time looking for her next DIY project and sharing her love for home design.

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