Toronto’s best stores for lighting right now
1270 Castlefield Ave., 416-783-4100
This custom lighting and glasswork shop has a gallery aglow with glass, porcelain and metal pieces by Canadian designers, with a few Israeli and Czech pieces thrown in for variety. Owner Orly Meyer is happy to make recommendations: among them are a glass pendant chandelier by AM Studio and Karli Sears (from $180), and an LED light fixture made from nickel and Mylar ($4,900).
Union Lighting and Furnishings
1491 Castlefield Ave., 416-652-2200
Union’s 100,000 square feet of space houses literally thousands of lighting options, home accessories and furnishings. Eco-conscious shoppers can stock up on timers, Energy Star fixtures and compact fluorescent light bulbs. Book a consultation for advice on everything from simple lamp placement to control systems that allow you to turn on the house lights as you pull into the driveway.
1461 Castlefield Ave., 416-651-6570
Sescolite’s robust 20,000-square-foot showroom is devoted to every permutation of lamp you can conceive, from classic to mid-century to contemporary. But if you need something bigger or more singular, they also do custom work. Brands include Hudson Valley Lighting, an elegant line that’s heavy on brass, nickel and art deco elements; in contrast, fixtures by Troy Lighting have a steampunk feel.
Paul Wolf Lighting and Electric Supply
425 Alliance Ave., 416-504-8194; 555 Eastern Ave., 416-466-9957
This independent shop, which mainly sells to the trades, stocks all manner of lighting needs—fixtures, fuses, batteries, bulbs—and items like ceiling fans and programmable thermostats. Paul Wolf also offers better prices than the big-boxes, accompanied by outstanding service—including a 24-hour number for emergencies.
317 Adelaide St. E., 416-955-8282
Furniture retailer Radform is a one-stop shop for modern design aficionados. Its lighting selection is particularly impressive: Owner (and architect) Golbou Rad acts as a curator for the store, drawing inspiration from a life spent travelling and living abroad. The result is a slate of pendants, lamps and fixtures that—in many cases—are not for the aesthetically faint of heart. Case in point: a bulbous, aluminum hanging fixture by the Italian designer Lapio Ciatti, measuring a striking five feet wide.
5 Mill St., 416-628-6718
Artemide’s Distillery shop is dedicated to the Italian lighting brand, whose greatest hits include the Tizio halogen desk lamp (now also available in LED) by Richard Sapper (from $450) and the Logico series, with its soft nimbus curves glowing in white.
267 Niagara St., 416-745-5656
Boundary-pushing options include giant bulb-shaped outdoor lighting by Ares, and designer Ron Gilad’s series of ring-shaped tube lights, which appear to pierce the walls like hoop earrings.
383 Adelaide St. W., 416-408-3995
Sistemalux, which is based in Montreal, rose from humble beginnings to become a major producer of ultra-modern sconces and recessed lights. In-house manufacturers collaborate with designers to produce minimalist objects whose clean Italian lines blend easily with the company’s architectural aesthetic. The store also has similarly sleek pieces by iGuzzini.
1549 Avenue Rd., 416-782-1129
A midtown mainstay, Royal has thousands of floor and table lamps, wall sconces and ceiling light options. Of particular note is the extraordinary lampshade collection and a range of lighting designed for under cabinets. Royal Lighting introduces about 100 new items each month, and hundreds more are on sale at any given time.
3075 Dundas St. W., 416-766-5500
There’s a lot of character packed into this Junction shop’s 1,000 square feet. Eclectic Revival specializes in vintage and restored fixtures: the store’s owners keep a selection of vintage and antique shades and fixtures on hand for restorations and repairs, while the showroom is stocked with lamps and chandeliers dating as far back as the early 1900s.
4 Carlaw Ave., Unit 7, 647-725-3275
Lighting gurus Virginie Jaran and Glenn Boccini run this 6,500-square-foot gallery near the Gardiner, mixing household names (Liteline, Eurofase) with luxury collections (Linea Light, Luceplan). Popular options include sculptural fixtures by Sonneman, an iconic line from the U.S. that riffs on European modernism and contemporary architecture.