From industrial-style toggles to custom colours, there are now a host of alternatives to the standard white box switch. Check out our edit of the best brands for stylish switches, or scroll down to read our expert guide to choosing switch plates for your home…
6 OF THE BEST LIGHT SWITCH BRANDS
Whether you want colour, simplicity or something a little more traditional…
Dowsing & Reynolds
Founder James Dowsing-Reynolds creates design-led but affordable switches,
dimmers and sockets in black, white, gold and silver, as well as tarnished copper. Single copper socket, £17.99, dowsingandreynolds.com
This family-run Suffolk-based company’s slim line switches can be used in tight spaces, between door frames or next to cabinetry for example. Two-gang toggle switch, £47.70, jim-lawrence.co.uk
For the ultimate in contemporary design, try this Belgian company, which produces handmade products in brass, exotic skins and woods – it ships to the UK.
‘Neva’ switch, £75, luxonov.com
Holloways of Ludlow
The best place to find Bakelite switches. Front plates are available in a range of wood finishes, ready for painting. Switch on oak, £31.50, hollowaysofludlow.com
This UK company does a wide range of streamlined styles in various materials, but its colour offering is particularly strong. It also carries ‘Les Couleurs’, a modernist-inspired range based on Le Corbusier’s famed palette. LS990 Les Couleurs Cerulean Blue ‘1931’, from £55, swtch.co.uk
Buster & Punch
The brand’s signature knurled dimmer knobs and old school toggle switches take inspiration from retro audio equipment and coordinate nicely with the firm’s range of bulb lighting. Available in a range of hardwearing finishes including anodised and smoked bronze. 3G Dimmer Brass, £165, busterandpunch.com
The insider guide to choosing light switches
Still not sure which style is best for you? We asked the experts for their top tips…
Why change your light switches?
‘As an architect, details like these are super-important, which is why we designed our own,’ says Massimo Minale, an architect who founded Buster & Punch, which makes chunky metal light switches that take their cue from amplifier knobs.
‘If you want to make a statement there are plenty of designs that will do just that,’ adds Mark Holloway, owner of Holloways of Ludlow. ‘Industrial styles and bronze are popular right now, but if you’d rather render the switches virtually invisible, match them to your wall colour or look for transparent plates.’
Where should I place my light switches?
There may be lots of new design options, but the best way to position switches and sockets in a room remains the same. ‘Think about how you use the space, and map out where the furniture will be,’ says Holloway.
‘Plan socket placement to minimise trailing cables. Lights may need a two-way switch, so you can control them from different doorways, or the top and bottom of stairs.’
Minale advises dimmer switches inside the room, rather than at the door. ‘A toggle or rocker switch by the door gives instant illumination, but consider a dimmer by the bed, sofa or dining table so that you can control lighting levels from where you are sitting.’
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