June One to Watch: Jonathan Coles Studio

For his lighting studio, Jonathan Coles aims to balance imagination with meticulous attention to detail

Words by Cathy Hayward


Launched in 2006, Jonathan Coles Lighting Studio was formed after Coles had worked in the lighting design industry with respected names and high-end clients. Throughout his early years he did everything from robotic lights for the Design Museum to creating products for Mathmos, the original Lava Lamp Company. As Coles’ reputation grew, invitations to design independently followed, leading him to eventually set up his own studio, which is based in Henley-on-Thames. Coles launched his first collection of products at Decorex in 2017, and the collection of light fittings has expanded since then. He leads a team of designers, engineers and craftsmen who share his passion for experimenting with light.


Coming from an artistic family spread across four generations, Coles grew up surrounded by creative minds. He also attended art school in Oxford and gained a degree in three-dimensional design at Middlesex University. As the lead designer of his own studio, it has been his mission to make products that complement, transform and define a space using a perfect balance of imagination and meticulous attention to detail. Speaking of his work, Coles says: ‘Our lights are carefully designed and engineered at studios and workshops in Henley-on- Thames. We want to create engaging products that showcase our craftsmanship, understanding of light, and use of materials.’


Fresnel Pendant collection
Illuminating the prestigious V&A Members’ Room in London, this elegant glass pendant, inspired by lighthouse lens design, emits a soft, warm 360-degree light effect. The formed Fresnel glass, available in three lengths, hangs over a solid, machined brass or stainless steel cap and base finished with a scrolled effect. The Fresnel light is available as a table light or wall light

Copper Leaf chandelier
Inspired by the arching branches of autumn trees, this modular wall light is made from hand-planished, heat-coloured copper. The product can be configured in size to each project, starting with a five-leaf design. The process was developed through experimenting with expanding 2D forms to give volume and with hand-beaten copper to create feathered, organic edges

These delicate pendant lights are handmade from mouth-blown glass, with natural internal fractures to refract and reflect the light, giving the feel of woven silk threads. They come with a dimmable warm-white LED light core and an uplight element suspended with 2m of braided metal cable, matching metal ceiling mount, and LED driver




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