Know your decor: 10 Facts about Oil Lamps

A lot of people think that oil lamps are old-fashioned and outdated, but they’re not! In fact, we just bought one for our living room. And it’s amazing how much more natural the light is than anything electric.

Know your decor: 10 Facts about Oil Lamps, Zazzy Home

Here are 10 interesting facts you may not know about the humble oil lamp.

1) Oil lamps have been around since before 2600 B.C.! Back then, they were used on boats and things. They were also used in candle form to light up dark catacombs, or underground places like dungeons and caves

2) Oil lamps can be used for emergency lighting. You can buy oil lamps that are self-contained and do not need a flame to light them. This makes them great to have as working flashlights in the event of a power outage! And they’re usually cheaper than regular flashlights, too!

3) The Romans were big fans of oil lamps-they used them as streetlights!

4) Oil lamps usually give off more light than candles. This makes them a great option to have during power outages or if you just want enough light to read or see what’s in the kitchen without your house being entirely lit up.

Know your decor: 10 Facts about Oil Lamps, Zazzy Home

5) The first oil lamp was invented in China-but the Romans made them popular.

6) Modern oil lamps are safe to use, but you can also get antique ones that still use whale or bear fat for fuel!

7) You don’t need to touch the wick when using an oil lamp since it’s not designed like a real candle. It just needs to be warm for the oil to flow.

8) Oil lamps can also be used as decorations; you can buy them already made out of glass, or you can make your own!

9) Some people use oil lamps instead of candles because they think it’s more environmentally friendly. And while this is a good idea, it’s also important to keep in mind that oil lamps can sometimes use more fuel than needed because they don’t have automatic shutters on the bottom, which are a part of many modern candles.

10) More often than not, oil lamps are pretty cheap. They’re also easy to clean and maintain-just make sure you buy lamp oil from a hardware store and not regular cooking oil.

Know your decor: 10 Facts about Oil Lamps, Zazzy Home

I hope this was helpful for anyone who’s looking to pick an oil lamp out! If you want, share this list with your friends on social media so they can get the most out of their new lamps, too. Oil lamps are a great idea for bedroom nightstands or kitchen counters and make great gifts for people who are hard to shop for!


Claire is a blogger, writer, and designer with a passion for making the most out of any space. She's worked in interior design and maintenance for over a decade, and has learned how to make the most of even the smallest room. Claire shares her expertise, where she offers tips and tricks for creating beautiful, functional spaces on any budget. When she's not blogging or designing, Claire enjoys spending time with her family and friends.

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