Thoughts on my new working light

My primary purchase at Harrogate was a new, floor-standing working light. I’m hoping it will make a difference to working during the poor light of winter, since otherwise whole days go by when it is too dark to embroider.

Lighted Magnifier

Lighted Magnifier

First of all, if you’re thinking of getting one, think as hard as you can beforehand about what you want it to accomplish and when you will use it. Then if you can possibly go somewhere to meet your potential lights, do so. The technology has been changing a great deal, and there are several varieties on offer. The advantage of doing this at Harrogate was that The Craftlight Company had a whole stand of different types of light, and several people available to talk to.

My choice has now arrived, and I have to say that the early signs are good. The reach of the light from the source is much better than on my old desk-lamp type working light, which would be fine for a desk based form of craft but isn’t so good for embroidering at a floor standing frame or even in an armchair. It was easy to set up, and I’m beginning to learn what adjustments have the better effect. Since the lights are set around a magnifier, I have the option of using it as a standard lamp or as an illuminated magnifier, and I’ve yet to settle on my preferred option.

All this is being complicated by the fact that I have a new prescription for my embroidering glasses!

I do, however, offer one warning – apparently the light is also good for sufferers from SAD. I remember reading once that such lights are most beneficial when used at particular times of day. It’s certainly a very “wake-up” sort of light, and I’ve come to the conclusion that I’d better not use it after dinner, because the one time I did, I was awake for hours longer than I wanted to be!


  1. Lady Fi says:

    A light that helps you see and makes you feel happier – brilliant!

  2. jenclair says:

    I have one good light, a small Ottlite that helps with hand work. I’d love to have another one for my desk area. Maybe for Christmas? Glad you have found an antidote to the poor seasonal light, Rachel!

  3. Dima says:

    I never thought about SAD when buying a light. I use an Ottlite but sometimes think the light might be wrong for the time of embroidery I do.

  4. I had read about lights to counter SAD – but I hadn’t thought that they would keep you awake f you used them in the evening! Iy makes such a difference to have a good light that helps see your work.

  5. Catherine says:

    I love a good embroidery light and think my next purchase will be one with the magnifier and light all in one.
    I know what you mean about waking you up! When I stitch at night (which lets be honest is most of the time), I do struggle to sleep more so than normal. But I’m such a dreadful sleeper anyway, so it’s just one more thing. I hope you find your ideal setting for working with it!

  6. Glenis says:

    Useful thoughts Rachel, thanks.
    I skipped Harrogate this year, and then discovered only this week that my floor-standing light has died while I wasn’t looking. But after your advice, maybe I won’t just dive in and mail-order a new one…

  7. Carolyn Foley says:

    I had a light like this back before there were lights for embroidery. It was a light used by instrument fitters in the workshops of the alluminium plant and was called a “Maggi Lamp”. It was a desktop model and I remember the base was extra heavy. It was fantastic for embroidery and the only drawback was that the florescent light tube was hard to replace and it got hot in summer. Did you get a florescent or LED light?

  8. Good light is really important for fine work. I think glaring light, e.g. from a computer screen can prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep. Maybe best to use the light on dark DAYS only.

  9. Sue Jones says:

    Looks good – and a sneak preview of a chubby Pharaoh in progress, too!

    I don’t find mine keeps me awake, although it is quite strong daylight LEDs. I’d be lost without it, both for embroidery and reading in the evenings. Coffee at night, now….

  10. Yes, I find that I no longer have the winter blues since installing a daylight tube on the ceiling of my studio. However, I can’t use it late in the evenings, or I won’t sleep. Which is rare for me, so really noticeable.

  11. Meredithe says:

    So glad your new light is proving its worth. It’s so important to have a great lamp to work under.

  12. Sheryl says:

    I think a floor standing working light must go on my Christmas list this year. I work in a bad light in the evenings and it would also help my winter SAD. Sounds like you are enjoying experimenting with your new acquisition.

  13. Susan Nixon says:

    That looks like it really is a great light. Let us know if you continue to like it, over time.