This week on The Block 2023, we saw some gorgeous pendants in living and dining rooms and learned a great deal about the importance of lamps from judge Neale Whitaker. And no, before you wonder, Neale is not sponsored by Beacon - but we do love him for the value he places on great ambient lighting!
Don't miss the highlights of this week's episode, from furniture choices to lighting solutions that elevate these stunning spaces.
Kyle & Leslie - House 01
Kyle and Leslie, renowned for their elegant style, tackled the task of revamping a compact living and dining area with flair. They started the week with a secret weapon - their stunning $16,000 custom-made Christian Cole dining table, a prize from their Week 1 victory. This exquisite piece served as the focal point for a room bound to make an impression.
Initially, the judges acknowledged the challenge of working with limited space but couldn't help but praise the craftsmanship. The uplights on the rough plaster wall, in particular, earned admiration for adding a touch of sophistication to the area. But despite their efforts, the judges pointed out that the floor plan didn't fully maximise the room's potential, potentially impacting their auction prospects.
A standout feature in Kyle and Leslie's living and dining space was the strategic use of MFL strip lighting. This choice not only infused a sense of luxury but also showcased their meticulous attention to lighting.
Looking upward, Darren marveled at the geometric elegance of the curved shelves and panelling in the ceiling and walls. The graceful intersection of curves created a captivating design element. However, the judges did mention that the overall space felt confined, highlighting the importance of thoughtful room planning.
Get Kyle and Leslie's look
- Mona wall bracket: These are the uplighters Darren admired. If you're aiming for a sleek and minimalist up-lighter that casts a wide spread of dimmable light, Mona is the perfect choice. It's both elegant and powerful, making it ideal for lighting large surfaces and rooms while minimising visible glare.
- Fjord pendant: Inspired by nature, the Fjord pendant is a masterpiece crafted from gypsum and concrete, resembling organic, pebble-like shapes. Available in various finishes, including white, clay, stone, and black, it offers a luxurious touch to any space. The stone and black finishes even feature naturally formed pitting that adds to the overall charm.
Leah & Ash - House 02
Leah and Ash brought a vibrant touch of "BrisVegas" to their space, and the result was impressive. Their mission was clear: infuse personality into every nook and cranny. From the stripy step to the bulls-eye artwork and grand chandelier, every element was a statement piece.
Leah's vision for multi-coloured chairs, large painted mirrors, and the grand Aspen pendant paid off beautifully. It might not be everyone's taste, but it's precisely what makes this room stand out. Darren's reaction upon entering was an enthusiastic laugh – a positive one, of course! Shaynna described it as "phenomenal," and Neale couldn't contain his excitement either. This daring lighting played a crucial role in elevating Leah and Ash's space to another level. Shaynna was delighted with the placement of the fixtures, and Neale couldn't contain his enthusiasm, especially for those lamps. "We rarely see lamps in corners on The Block, and it's pretty fundamental," he beamed. It's evident that the right lighting can make or break a room, and Leah and Ash nailed it.
Get Leah and Ash's look
If you're inspired by Leah and Ash's daring design, Beacon Lighting has you covered to recreate a similar vibe in your own space. Check out these featured products:
- Aspen pendant: This pendant light encapsulates vintage charm with handmade, sloped glass and soft ribbed detailing. It's available in antique brass with clear glass.
- Marlowe table lamp: For an elegant touch, Marlowe balances classic lines with contemporary curves and is perfect for side tables, nightstands, or desks. The aged bronze finish adds opulence to any space.
- Centaur floor lamp: With individual heads in antique brass and a marble base, Centaur is an excellent choice for small rooms or dark corners. Its adjustable arms allow you to focus light precisely where you need it. Three lights in one - it’s a dream lamp for Neale Whitaker!
Kristy & Brett - House 03
This week on The Block, Kristy and Brett brought a touch of tranquillity and elegance to their living space with a stunning choice of lighting and a harmonious colour palette. Behind the cameras, our Lighting Designer, Anton, talked to Kristy and Brett about their lighting plan and was disappointed that they didn't follow his advice to improve their lighting. During their conversation, he emphasised the importance of choosing the right downlights to create a relaxing ambience. Anton stressed that ambient lighting is essential in rooms meant for relaxation and highlighted the significance of using lamps to set the right mood, a point the judges echoed in last night's episode.
While the judges admired many aspects of Kristy and Brett's living space, they did mention the need for more nuance in the lighting layout. Neale even pointed out that the room was "crying out for a lamp." This is a valuable lesson for all of us – lighting can make or break the ambience of a room, and it's essential to find that perfect balance.
Get Kristy and Brett's look
Now, for those of you who want to recreate Kristy and Brett's chic living room vibe, we recommend our MFL strip lighting and the MFL By Masson Gypsum ribbed pendant, an embodiment of the ever-evolving minimalist trend. Its ribbed finish adds a subtle sculptural element that elevates the simplicity and beauty of contemporary design.
Steph & Gian - House 04
Steph and Gian take on the challenge of transforming their space into a stunning Japandi-inspired sanctuary, and we were delighted to see our beloved Tamarind pendants showcased above their dining table.
One of the most daring moves of the week was Steph and Gian's decision to rearrange their floor plan. They shifted the dining room to where the original kitchen was planned, creating a unique separation between the spaces with a niche bench and a double-sided fireplace. As an architect herself, Steph recognised the significance of getting this right, and it's a decision that could either pay off big or come back to haunt them in kitchen week.
Shaynna and Neale had mixed reactions to Steph and Gian's design choices. Shaynna loved the Tamarind pendant light hanging over the dining table, appreciating the fabric element.
Steph's signature finishing touch of luxe minimal styling with earthy undertones was evident throughout their space. It created a unique blend of sophistication and natural beauty that aligned perfectly with the Japandi theme.
Get Steph and Gian's look
The team chose our Nevada wall light, a modern arm wall bracket that has a switch on the head to turn the light on and off. It is clean, simple, and minimalist - ideal for incorporating into a Japandi-style suite of rooms.
Neale loved the Arc LED floor lamp in the living space, but was quick to point out that it was sadly hidden by dry bamboo that shouldn't be in the room - we agree, they should let the lamp shine on its own.
But the real star of the show in this space is the Tamarind pendants. Tamarind is a Beacon favourite; created in collaboration with local artisans and small community collectives, the Tamarind collection captures Indonesia's artistic heritage, perfect for achieving an organic, natural, or Japandi aesthetic.
Eliza & Liberty - House 05
This week, Eliza and Liberty took on the challenge with a clear vision, and the result was nothing short of impressive. In their own words, it was "overwhelming," but the sisters managed to deliver a room that truly wowed the judges and viewers alike.
Their chosen floor plan consisted of a large living space seamlessly integrated with an additional dining area, all adorned with stunning wood panelling throughout. Neale couldn't help but express his admiration for the artwork, describing it as "magnificent." He went on to commend the sisters for creating a "perfect, elegant, and contemporary dining space." The proportions were just right, evoking a sense of grandeur that was expected and appreciated.
Shaynna praised the flow of the space, particularly noting the step down to the expansive living area. It was a design choice that made the room feel connected and functional. Darren, too, was impressed by the aesthetic and proportions, hailing it as the most generous lounge room he had seen that day. The minimalistic styling, though understated, left a lasting impact and drew everyone into the space.
However, Neale did have one minor quibble - the absence of lamps. He emphasised the importance of lamps in creating ambience in a living room, stating, "Maybe by the 20th season of The Block, the contestants will have learned that lamps create ambience." It's a lesson for future contestants to keep in mind!
Get Eliza and Liberty's look
The team chose our Helix pendant for their dining space. Eventually. First, they had selected a different pendant, but behind the scenes, there was a bit of drama involving lighting choices. Another of our lighting designers, Mandi, took a late-night trip on Saturday to help with a change in lighting plans. The Helix circular pendant that now hangs over the dining table turned out to be a smart choice, with its modern sculptural elegance and soft brass details to add drama and warmth. Hat’s off to Mandi for getting the girls the right pendant for the job!
That wraps up another week on The Block 2023. And if you take nothing away from last night’s episode, take this: please, for Neale Whitaker’s sake if not for your own, put in a lamp!