What Lamps for my Lighting Fixtures

Here at Essential Supplies UK, we stock a wide range of lighting and lamps, so we thought of creating this article to answer your most asked questions and give you some inspiration to spruce up your lighting! Read on to find out more…

Outdoor Lighting

Outdoor lighting can be a brilliant way to elevate your garden for summer (and even through winter). Both festoons and fairy lights can bring an ambient feel to any venue. They can elevate a simple outdoor seating area into an ambient space, perfect for summer evenings. They also work great for winter too, as they can be used to light up your garden when the dark evenings set in. Here’s some inspiration for you to inspire you to get the best out of your outdoor decor.


Festoons are brilliant for adding a very fun feel to your decor and can make your space a real showstopper. Our festoons are super popular with wedding venues and marquee companies, however, that doesn’t mean you can’t bring the same feel to your own house or gardens. If you are looking to use festoon, then take a look at some inspiration below to create your own Love Island-esque decor to illuminate your garden!

Festoon Design 1
Festoon Design 2
Festoon Design 3

Fairy Lights

Typically associated with Christmas time, fairy lights are a perfect way to bring a delicate sparkle to your outdoor decor. However, they aren’t just for the festive season! As shown below, they are very versatile and are a brilliant way to highlight any garden feature, like a pergola.

Fairylights Design 1
Fairylights Design 2

Indoor Lighting

Indoor lighting can make just as much of an impact as outdoor lighting as it can make a statement! You can do this by creating a lighting centrepiece with some pendant drops or funky filament bulbs which can take centre stage when people enter the room.

Funky Filaments

If you want to make a modern statement but also keep your decor sleek and smart, funky filament bulbs can work perfectly. They come in a range of colours, shapes and sizes and can be used in very creative ways. They can also be used in festoon if you wanted to add a stylish element to your outdoor decor.

Funky Filament
Funky Filament 2

Vintage Lighting

Vintage light can be brilliant to add some simple but statement lighting to any room. All you need is some pendant lamp holders, some statement lamps and something like a piece of driftwood. See our blog here on our vintage lighting how-to.

Vintage Design 1
Vintage Design 2

Now you’ve got some inspiration for your lighting, you’ll probably have a few questions about what kinds of lamps you need, or what shape bulb you would like? Well for more information about anything lighting, read on below!

What Lamps do I need?

That depends on a few different factors, like what fitting the lamp holder is and what shape or colour of light you want. We stock BC and ES lamps in different colours and styles, which you can view here. Warm white and cold white are usually the most popular as they are quite traditional. You will also want to know what shape light you want and whether you want dimmable or non-dimmable.


Lamp types

What's the difference between warm white and cold white?

The difference between the two types of lamps is that one is significantly cooler toned than the other. Cool white, the brightest and closest to natural daylight can look great in modern display designs. For example, when used on retail shop floors with glass or crystal objects, or even food counters. Additionally, in theatre, the right kind of cool white LED lighting can project a frosty wintery scene.

Warm white is excellent for creating a cosy warm atmosphere, for example, a warm summer evening in the garden. It looks good and makes you look good as the warm effect illuminates skin tone quite nicely. An arrangement of Festoon or Fairy lights creates an ambience to soften the mood. Check out our Festoon Lighting at its best blog.

Cold White is typically a higher colour temperature whereas Warm White is lower. While you might not think of a warm temperature is low, you need to flip your thinking. Here is a handy chart that illustrates.


Lamp types

What lamp is best for outdoor use?

There are many different types to choose from and using lamps outdoors is possible however make sure you consider the setting. Festoon Lighting is a great way to set a cosy mood in the twilight hours if it's an outdoor restaurant or beer garden. Uplighters can also bring life to nature. Use some white or even green illumination projecting next to some plants for a beautiful night time effect.

Check out our blog on Pub, Restaurant and Beer Gardens for some great ideas on outdoor lighting. But also, don't forget to check if your lighting is IP rated for where they go. The level of IP rating will indicate how waterproof the holder will be, so the higher the IP rating, the more waterproof it will be.


Lamp types

What does the IP rating mean?

The IP rating on a lamp holder indicates how waterproof the holder will be between the lamp holder seal and the lamp. The higher the IP rating, the more protected it will be. The IP rating is made up of two numbers, the first one is how much it protects against solids, like dust, and then the second digit indicates its protection against liquids.

Have a look at the chart below to understand better, where you can place your lighting fixtures.


Lamp types

Do I need dimmable or non-dimmable lamps?

This will be a decision on whether you would like the lighting fitting to be dimmable or not. Dimmable can really set the mood. Bringing down the lights in the house might also bring focus to a particular area you want when under a spotlight. The room or hall is refocused toward that point. Dimmable lighting is great for more than one purpose, as you can choose the brightness of the lighting, making it perfectly adaptable.

You need to be careful though as not all lamps are dimmable. Since the introduction of LED lamps, some are not designed to dim unlike the older tungsten lamps (where they all dimmed). We check and ensure our lamps work with dimmers we supply and label them clearly. Find out more on our Dimmers Blog here .


What kind of lamp wattage do I need?

If you're shopping for a new lamp then they'll be LED, as opposed to older tungsten lamps mainly thanks to their energy-saving capability. The LED technology has also come a long way since they were first introduced; beyond the days when LED lamps flickered when dimmed. Just make sure you use a professional dimmer and choose "dimmable" only lamps as some still cannot. So you know, a 40W old incandescent lamp equates to 6-9W in LED. Check out the conversion chart below:

Watts (IncandescentWatts (LED)Lumens
40 w6-9 w450 lm
60 w8-12 w800 lm
75 w9-13 w1100 lm
100 w16-20 w1600 lm
150 w25-28 w2600 lm


ES (Edison Screw) or BC (Bayonet Cap) lamp fitting?

That depends on which lamp holder fitting you've got. If, for example, you had a festoon with BC lampholders, then you would need a BC lamp to fit. Pars and stage lighting might look a little larger but they're fit for the job. Check your fixture in case certain types of lamps are needed. Otherwise, go nuts! So long as your lamp corresponds to your lamp holder then it will be fine. Check out the lamp fitting examples below:


Lamp fitting types

Can’t find an answer to your question? Or looking for a specialist lighting setup? Then get in contact as we’ve got years of knowledge here at Essential Supplies! You can either give us a call on 01752 817 140 or send us an email at sales@essentialsupplies.co.uk