Elysion Ltd have a long established relationship with Curiousa & Curiousa, having provided the company with bespoke metalwork for their stylish lights since their foundation. We were approached by Esther, the company owner and principal designer to survey, design and install the spiral chandelier support early last year, for a prestigious new house being built overlooking the Solent in Lymington.
Following a site visit with Esther and her client Rachel Beckett Interiors in early summer we had to arrive at a solution for a rather challenging brief – the chandelier support had to all be as minimal as possible to transmit the maximum amount of light. They asked us whether we could actually make the suspension into a spiral shape, allowing the light through but also allowing the shades to cascade into the stairwell in a spiral formation.
After surveying the site we worked with Esther to come up with a solution that she was happy looked good but we knew would work with the site location and weight of all the 23 hand-blown glass shades that would hang from the suspension piece.
This piece had to be finished to an extremely high standard, both to compliment the exquisite jewel-like shades, and the particularly high standard of finishes on the house itself. The build also had to be structurally adequate to support the weight of the shades in the desired pattern and location. Lastly it had to allow access through the top in many positions to allow the extensive wiring to be completed and cables to be run to the incoming cable position.
The choice of means to suspend the chandelier itself was relatively simple – we decided to use slender stainless steel cables with yacht rigging screws – this would allow the suspension points themselves to be as visually inconspicuous as possible, provide us with a degree of tolerance and adjustment, whilst also being in keeping with the maritime nature of the properties location.
The chandelier spiral itself was more of a challenge, as we not only had to be able to manufacture it accurately to quite a complex shape, we also required access to all surfaces in order to polish and re-finish all the visible surfaces on completion of the fabrication.
It was decided that we would fabricate the spiral as a box section, from 3mm thick stainless steel to provide the necessary strength. Using our extensive 2D and 3D CAD skills, we proceeded to model the spiral itself, as a basic box section – from this basic model we were able to then determine the best way forward both to allow manufacture and minimise the refinishing required.
Following this, it was to be that both the top and bottom spirals would each be laser cuts, cut directly from our CAD model – this would give us the necessary level of accuracy required to ensure that all the holes for the lights themselves were not only in the correct locations, but also the threaded spacers between top and bottom faces located and registered with each other with a very high level of accuracy. This ensured that the access sections of the top plate could be easily removed and replaced as necessary.
To accompany this, the sides of the box would be formed from flat bars – rolled as required to suit the many different radii of curves on the job, and butt welded together at the ends to provide a continuous side, before re-polishing. Close examination and tweaking of the model also allowed us to adjust the sides so that they projected past the bottom plate to give a slight lip. This allowed a little more tolerance to the fabrication, but more importantly allowed all the welding connecting the sides to the base to be completed to the inside of the tube, with no visible weld to the outside, thus making the refinishing process considerably easier.
Laser cuts and appropriate flat bars were ordered, and fabrication was commenced in the manner envisaged. Both during and on completion of the fabrication, all the welds and visible surfaces were re-finished as required, after which a trial assembly and disassembly were carried out to ensure that no distortion had occurred. Following very careful visual inspection, the completed unit was delivered to Curiousa for the installation of the light flexes and connecting cables.
Several weeks afterwards we collected the completed light ready for the installation on site following a very early start the following morning. Access to the roof-light was provided by a three storey birdcage scaffold within the stairwell, allowing safe access to all areas of the ceiling void to allow the suspension cables to be positioned easily and accurately, before the spiral chandelier itself was hung from them.
Once hung on the suspension cables, the chandelier required minimal adjustment to ensure that it was flat and level, before we dropped the light flexes for the shades and lamps to be fitted by Esther at a later date after the scaffold had been removed. Installation was completed on target by mid-morning and we set off on a four-hour return trip to our Derbyshire base.
If you found this post interesting and would like to contact Elysion Ltd regarding a project, call us today on 01629 820030
Steve did a top job with the stainless steel barrier. The work was so good that the boss, Ian, would like you to provide a quote for another other style barrier.
The staircase that you created is fantastic and perfectly in keeping with our barn. I would definitely recommend Elysion to anyone looking for a similar service, many thanks.