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Pendant Lighting

Pendant lights are very popular for use over kitchen countertops or islands.

Transform Your Space with Decorative Pendant Lighting

Pendant light fixtures are also referred to as suspenders or drops. A pendant light is essentially a lone fixture, dangled from the ceiling by a type of rod or chain. Known to provide good general and task lighting, pendants are commonly used in kitchens, over dinette sets, and even in the bathroom.

Pendant lights are very popular for use over kitchen countertops or islands. When used in conjunction with dimmers, kitchen pendant lights can provide the sort of brightness ideal for chopping vegetables, studying for a test, or paying bills, as well as (when dimmed) the sort of warm glow desired for cozy and mellow moments. Over a kitchen island, pendants are often used in rows of three or more of the same fixture, to create a dramatic look.

Kitchen pendant lights are available in a startling array of sizes, shape, and colors. Brushed pewter, Tiffany, and polished nickel pendants are popular for kitchen use, but the choices are endless, ranging from contemporary to Old-World styles.


Many of today's pendant fixtures are crafted with such care they could actually be room decorations all by themselves.
Among the many options gaining in popularity, putting recessed cans in kitchen and living areas to better balance the light, installing track lighting above areas you want to highlight, putting up picture lights to showcase photos and artwork and adding pendants that will allow you to showcase a small area. These days, lights are being hung over islands and peninsulas in kitchens, and in rooms dedicated to entertainment, over bars and gathering spots in basements.

"When you think of a pendant, the image that comes to mind is probably a small, obscure fixture hanging from the ceiling to light a specific area, but these days they are anything but obscure," says Rey-Barreau. "They are fashion statements."

Pendants are now available in all shapes, sizes and looks ranging from traditional to eclectic.

"The pendant offerings we have found our customers reacting favorably to have been those with a color pallet consistent with an Asian Fusion, Retro and Tuscan/Mediterranean style. Those utilizing calming neutrals with clear hues infused with light are popular as well," says Cory Echito, product development manager for Juno Lighting Group in Chicago.

Marc Pfeiffer, national sales manager for W.A.C. Lighting in New York, says the hottest sellers right now are small pendants featuring colored and multi-colored glass. "People are seeking out the most unusual fixtures they can find and putting them up not just for the purpose of lighting a room, but also to be conversation pieces," he says.

Pendant fixtures made of metal can give a room an almost gothic look. Ceramic fixtures can be painted any color under the sun.

"If you're looking for a more unique look, a popular material to go with is Murano glass that is hand-blown in Italy," says Ray-Barreau. "Each one is an original work of art."

Some Murano fixtures feature a single color of glass blown into a bell- or bowl-shaped fixture. Others are tapestries of color twisting and turning into unusual shapes. Once you hang the pendant up and add a light bulb, color dances across the ceiling or wall where the light is pointed.

Just as varied as the colors and materials available for pendants are the methods of display. "A lot of people are putting up not one, but two, three or even four pendants in a circle or row to emphasize a space," says Pfeiffer. "Some people hang each of them from single channel fixtures. I've also seen them displayed on tracks."



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