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  • 01.26.11

An Eco-Friendly Lamp for People Who Hate CFLs

This clever design creates the illusion of a soft, round glow using the aesthete’s public enemy No. 1: an energy-efficient bulb.

An Eco-Friendly Lamp for People Who Hate CFLs

Chances are you got rid of your incandescent lights awhile ago, unless you run a twee restaurant in Brooklyn or you hate the planet (or both). But it wasn’t an easy parting, was it? Those inefficient old bulbs are, in a word, gorgeous.

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Studio Stadtpark, in Austria, has heard your cries and designed the next best thing: Sympathy for the Bulb, a lamp that radiates light like an incandescent, using bulbs that won’t destroy the earth.

The trick is a cutout in the center of the lamp that mimics the shape of a cartoonishly big incandescent. Screw in a CFL or some other energy-saving bulb, and its light fills the cutout, creating the illusion of a soft, round glow. Cue the Marvin Gaye.

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Of course, the lamp can’t replicate everything that makes incandescents great — their delectably warm tone, for one. In a sweet (if somewhat misguided) doxology for incandescent bulbs a few years back, Slate‘s Ron Rosenbaum wrote: “A lamp fitted with an incandescent bulb and dim translucent shades casts a lovely, painterly glow on human faces, while the light of fluorescents recalls a meat locker.” In which case Sympathy for the Bulb will cast the best damn painterly glow a meat locker ever saw.

Unfortunately, the lamp’s not for sale (at least not yet). Check back on the designers’ website for updates.

[Via Core77]

About the author

Suzanne LaBarre is the editor of Co.Design. Previously, she was the online content director of Popular Science and has written for the New York Times, the New York Observer, Newsday, I.D.

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