Custom Collaboration with Borden Lighting

The following photographs are selected from the many custom designs built by Borden Lighting and the original company Nova lighting. The examples represent a range of designs resulting from our 44 years of collaborating with architects, interior designers, lighting consultants, and electrical engineers. We hope you find this portfolio a valuable reference tool. To make the most use of the material, please review these guidelines...

Early Design Ideas...

The designs shown can be a starting point for schematic ideas and discussion with our factory project managers by phone, fax, email, and pdf.

For any custom fixture we review we will need approximate dimensions and fixture quantity, finishes, lamping desired, and location of the fixture(indoor, outdoor damp, outdoor wet).

We may make recommendations and suggest ways to handle some aspect of the fixture for technical reasons, but first let us see what it is you want and intend for your project design. We will start a feedback loop from this beginning.

Can You Afford Custom Lighting?

To really know the answer, send your design sketch, or 1 or 2 ideas out of the examples provided, to your Borden Lighting representative with the information required above, and we will be happy to put together a budget quotation. Rather than send too many examples, give us a high-end and a low-end design to look at. Again, we need quantity, finish, lamping, and location to be able to discuss pricing.

Protecting Design Rights

As architects ourselves, we have maintained a close alliance with the architectural design community and recognize and defend the proprietary rights to original lighting design. While many of our examples are generic in nature, many were designed by professionals like you. We publish these projects as a general contractor might publish a portfolio sampling built work, to show our range of capabilities, and because we are proud of the work we have done in collaboration with firms like yours. (This is why we always show the credits on a fixture.) In our experience, if a designer uses an idea from among these examples, it is always a point of departure for a new idea that assumes its own direction. If, after developing a design with us, you would prefer more protection than the website photo copyrights give you, please discuss the matter with us.

Value Engineering

The cost of a custom fixture can seem very high, and you may be surprised to learn what factors led to the end result of your efforts. Often there are hidden reasons, such as the current record high costs of copper-based metals. Rather than lose completely the design you envision, let us make an attempt to "value engineer" the design with you before estimating, with the goal of saving your design intent. Remember, you are far better off going through a little VE with us up front, than to suffer through it in the hands of a contractor later.


Custom delivery times range from 12 to 18 weeks from the point of release of the order and receipt of an approved drawing from you. The overall timing is affected by the complexity of the fixture and the quantities involved. Prototypes will add to the above timing. Before the manufacturing clock can start, the design has to be finalized, the estimating completed, the quoting finished, the order placed, the submittals drawn and submitted, and the release and approvals received back. This sequence alone can take weeks, and any design changes will interrupt and add to overall leadtime for the work. Please review the time available for your project with your representative before spending the effort to develop the designs. We may be able to suggest a more practical approach using a modified standard fixture, which can have a substantially shorter leadtime.

If you have a project you would like to discuss, please contact your Borden Lighting representative, or contact the factory directly attention Allen Reaves, Project Manager for custom work. Allen's email address is