Table Lamps: They’re Just Another Form Of Clutter

Over the years I’ve owned a few table lamps. I’ve also got rid of a few table lamps. I really don’t like table lamps. They just take up table space. I wish all living rooms had overhead lighting.

Table lamps: Photo of living space with several table lamps.

Awhile ago I wrote a couple of posts about things I don’t like in my house:

Let’s add table lamps to the list. Most generally, table lamps are illogical. If things always went my way, I’d own few, if any.

Of course it all depends upon your home’s lighting. I think I’ve owned several sets of lamps because some places don’t have overhead lighting in the living room. Whoever designed those places should go live in a dark cave.

Why I Dislike Most Table Lamps

  1. They take up table space: So you have an end table. Now you need a lamp? Why? It takes up space. There’s no room for your current book and your laptop. How convenient is that? If your home has adequate overhead lighting, there’s no need for table lamps. The only exceptions to the rule might be a desk lamp and a bedside lamp. They might actually serve a purpose.  
  2. They get knocked over: Most everybody has broken a table lamp sometime in their life. If you want one good reading light next to your reading chair, get a solid floor lamp. It’s less likely to get broken and more adjustable for reading. There’s really no need for more.  
  3. They’re more than you need: In the photo in today’s post, count the table lamps. (It’s not my home.) I see at least three. I also see a whole lot of overhead lighting. If you have decent overhead lighting, you really don’t need three table lamps. I know, it’s traditional. Just break the tradition
  4. They’re ugly: Okay, not all table lamps are ugly, but I’ve seen a bunch that are butt ugly. The ones I’ve owned seem to slowly make their way to charity. Now I know why. Deep down, I find most table lamps to be unattractive. Maybe, I’m weird.

All You Really Need Is Adequate Lighting

My living room has one light in the middle of the ceiling. It lights the whole room. It’s also adjustable so I can have lower lighting when I choose. Why would I need table lamps? I do have a floor lamp that I keep next to the desk, but it serves the purpose of lighting the writing surface.

The only place in my home where I keep a table lamp is on my bedside table. It’s small. It serves a purpose. I can turn it on before I switch the overhead light off. Then I can get to my bed without stubbing my toe on the bed frame. That’s priceless!

If you want to create a minimalist home, get rid of table lamps. Now just don’t get me started on area rugs.

Check out this simple and beautiful slideshow presentation: 

Keeping life simple leads to happiness and productivity. Clutter leads to chaos and anxiety. If you’d like to learn more about the connections between happiness, simplicity, and productivity, check out my free ebook:


  1. Dan, I’ve been reading your blog for some time now since I first discovered it in 2015. I enjoy your posts. Your writing is very insightful- you give me a lot to think about. This is the first time commenting for me. Dan, you’re not weird. Most table lamps that I’ve seen nowadays ARE ugly! I don’t like them too much either, especially the ones that emit that annoying buzzing/vibration type noise when in use! And they DO take up too much space. I agree with you on the bedside lamp, and desk lamp as well. Please keep up the decluttering posts!

  2. Dat ziet er goed uit zeg! Erg mooi. Ik heb bij de lampen gekeken en naar mijn bescheiden mening zou de stalen (dus lichte) lamp prachtig staan boven jullie eettafel. Ik zou juist niet voor de lamp met drie lampjes (begrijp je wat ik bedoel 😉 gaan. Dat maakt het wat fragieler. Een grote stoere lamp vind ik persoonlijk heel mooi. Maar again, dat is mijn mening.

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