“As a child I was totally crazy about Spirograph,” says French designer Julie Lansom. “If I added up all the hours I spent drawing with a Spirograph, it must have amounted to at least a year of my life.” We had a hunch that was the case: Her handwoven Sputnik Lamps call to mind 3-D versions of Spirograph designs, not to mention Soviet satellites.
The daughter of an art dealer, Julie grew up in the countryside near Montpellier, France, surrounded by antiques and objets d’art. These days she prowls the antiques shops of Paris, where she lives. The notched wooden frames of her hanging lights were inspired by one of her discoveries: “I found a 1960s woven pendant lamp, but the lamps back then were often made of poor materials with sad colors and lifeless shapes. I wanted to modernize the design by focusing on color palettes and a selection of distinct shapes.” Have a look at her results.
Photographs by Amandine Paulandré for Julie Lansom.
Above: Julie Lansom’s Sputnik Lamps range in price from €230 to €700, depending on the dimensions, and can be ordered directly from the designer.
Above: It takes Julie four days to create a single Sputnik Lamp–and about eight hours alone are devoted to weaving the yarn. “Making things by hand is therapeutic for me,” she says. “It’s my own way of meditating.”
Above: The lamps are cotton yarn on an MDF frame. Julie works with a carpenter in Paris to design and build the structures, and each is customizable: Clients get to choose the shape, color of wood, and yarn palette.
Above: Named after the first orbiting satellites, the lamps are infused with “the retro-futuristic spirit of those ships,” Julie says. “I like to see each lamp as its own flying saucer or UFO.”
Above: Julie often asks clients to send her photos of her lights in their homes. “Each one is like a baby to me.” To see more of her designs, go to JulieLansom.com.
Are your rooms right for one of Julie’s designs? Read Remodeling 101: How to Choose an Overhead Light Fixture. For another updated sixties look, see Organic Modern Crocheted Lamps from London. And for hundreds of other options, browse the Pendant Lights in our photo gallery.