Exterior Light

June 18th, 2010

If you somehow haven’t noticed, I really like The Ace Hotel in Palm Springs. So, when it came time to figure out some exterior lighting for the house I deferred to The Ace and the industrial lights installed outside their room doors. I loved the simplicity of the design, the industrial quality and the low, low price. Easy to source, we just went to Home Depot and bought a set of four.

Vapor Tight!

When we bought the Brick House there were no exterior lights installed, just a bunch of empty holes with cables strung through. About a year ago we tried to install some exterior lights and went TOTALLY CRAZY. The wiring was so funky that the lights would just stay on or sometimes one would shut off and two would go on and after about a week of fiddling with it we gave up. It was stupid and we were stupid.

Now that most of the painting is done (we still have a little more to go – it’s never going to end) we started talking again about the stupid exterior lights. Knowing that we were not qualified to deal with this problem we talked our electrician buddy Chris to come out and try and figure out what the hell was going on.

Installing them was pretty easy and figuring out what was wrong with the wiring was also pretty easy for Electrician Chris. I guess they were wired for Photocells or something. Whatever. We are dumb.

We did end up adding an extra light to the corner above the patio since the whole side yard is pitch black at night. Electro Chris tied this light into the other garage lights like magic! Custom shit.

I know the garage doors are all atrocious and the patio is a mess, but look, we have lights. After two and a half years of living in the dark, we have exterior light! This is a big deal. Go 2010 Year of The Exterior. GO.

We don’t have to stumble around in the dark to take out the trash anymore. Huge achievement.

Yep. They work best at night.

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  1. John on 06/18/2010:

    Beautiful Lights, nice work again! It really suits the Brick House. I think I may pick up a couple for my place.

  2. Brismod on 06/18/2010:

    They look great on your house.

  3. jenny on 06/18/2010:

    looks cool.

  4. Holly on 06/18/2010:

    Hey that is my outside light. I love them too! I wish Home Depot carried a wall mount version.

  5. ModFruGal on 06/18/2010:

    Yay…those are perfect..it’s the little things isn’t it? Holly…I used the wall mount version at my last house…maybe it was Lowes, but they exist and are under $10. Look online?

  6. KeLLy Ann on 06/18/2010:

    That’s Great!
    Thanks for the idea, I’ve been wondering what to do with our outside.

  7. Anna @ D16 on 06/18/2010:

    That is exactly the kind of light I have on reserve for my back porch, except I found them in yellow. Definitely on the (enormous) project list for this summer.

    Isn’t it maddening when you can’t figure out some electrical thing and you spend HOURS trying to get it right, and then a real electrician comes in and does it in, like, three seconds? And then talks about how easy it is. Sigh.

    (As always, your place is looking GREAT.)

  8. John on 06/18/2010:

    I wonder if it can mount from the side like the Ace hotel picture or only from the top?

  9. Lauren on 06/18/2010:

    Love these lights! This is one of the few (very few) products HD carries that falls into the modern-yet-industrial category.

    (John – we mounted ours from the side (like this: http://chezerbey.com/2010/02/28/porch-progress-trim-and-paint/), but you might also look at RAB (http://www.rabweb.com/product_line_detail.php?prodline=WALL). I think they’re probably a bit more expensive, maybe $50?)

  10. Conan on 06/18/2010:

    My god! Paint those garage doors already!

  11. THE BRICK HOUSE on 06/18/2010:

    Conan, come on over and help. It’s only like a 100 degrees – so painting is tons of fun right now.

  12. nic on 06/18/2010:

    i have 2 similar lights up on CL right now.

    i too was inspired by the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs to get them.

    mine mount from the side, not the top, but they can obviously point cage up or cage down.


  13. JJ on 06/18/2010:

    ahhh, it kicks ass. I wanted to put one of these in my bathroom. Marine Chic.

  14. modernhaus on 06/18/2010:

    Don’t practical projects like this make you feel like such a big girl? Sort of like, “Look at my legitimate home with it’s legitimate electrician-installed working lighting, instead of the jerry-rigged Home Depot floodlights we plug in when people come over”
    I want to be legitimate some day, like you. 😉

  15. THE BRICK HOUSE on 06/18/2010:

    I do feel pretty legite with our new lights!

  16. Coletta on 06/18/2010:

    those are awesome….
    did you know that i hate you for having a husband that actually WANTS to be a part of the home improvement process.
    we have lived here for over a year with a house in need of so many repairs and upgrades and a yard that is still mostly dirt..all because my husband thinks he should not have to DO anything and will ignore any needed improvements because as long you pretend you don’t see the shower surround coming loose from the wall then it must not really be in need of repair..and hey..dirt..it’s so easy to maintain..why bother with plants or trees or a deck..hell…anything for that matter.

    hmm..i am a bit angry today..sorry!

  17. spinsLPs on 06/18/2010:

    Better stock up on those incandescent light bulbs! You won’t be able to buy them soon.


  18. amy t on 06/18/2010:

    Yes! i love ‘marine’ lights, as i call them. Now you need a bright orange door ….

  19. Kerry @ just-you-wait on 06/19/2010:

    These look great! Much better than living in the dark! 🙂
    When I first moved in to my place, the only ‘exterior’ light on the front of the house was a ‘clip-on’ type lamp, plugged into an extension cord some moron had run through a hole drilled in the nearby window frame, and then plugged into one of those light socket-to-outlet adaptor thingies in the entryway. Ridiculous, not to mention dangerous!
    Paying an electrician to wire in a real exterior light was one of my first expenses as a new homeowner, but now I’m really wishing I had my own Electrician Chris. After living here for a year, I’d love to add a bit more light out there!

  20. John on 06/19/2010:

    thanks Lauren, nice links!

  21. Rhonda35 on 06/19/2010:

    If you look at the photo of the packaging for this light, it states that the light can be ceiling or wall mounted. I assume it can be mounted on a wall just as it is in the photo of the light next to the orange door. Am I confused about what John is asking??

  22. THE BRICK HOUSE on 06/19/2010:

    It just doesn’t bend like the other one. It would stick straight out of the wall.

  23. Fiona on 06/20/2010:

    Oh the sweet relief of finally caving and hiring a professional.

  24. Tonia on 06/20/2010:

    I love it, you guys are and have done a fabulous job.

  25. Karrey on 06/21/2010:

    Love the lights, and I would totally kill to have as many windows as you guys have.

  26. Holly on 06/21/2010:

    Thanks for the tip Modfrugal!

  27. Logan on 07/26/2010:

    I’ve been trying to find vapor lights for my exterior lights also. I saw these at Lowes and Home Depot but I didn’t like the grey plastic. I found galvanized old steel ones online but they’re pricey. I’ll just have to continue searching flea markets and yard sales. Cool house!

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