pendant lighting hanging over a kitchen island

Pendant Lighting

Originally contributed by Jeff Butler • last updated 3/16/2021

If you’re looking for a way to brighten up the space over your kitchen island, you may want to consider using pendant lighting. These light fixtures are perfect for highlighting and warming up a space that could otherwise be left in the shadows. One common concern around this type of lighting is whether or not it is in or out of fashion. The truth is, these lights are always in fashion, especially when they’re used to properly accent the overall style and theme of the room.

Definition

The term pendant lighting typically refers to a type of single-bulb light fixture that hangs alone from the ceiling. They are sometimes hung in groups, and typically with the lightbulb covered by a pendant shaped light shade. These light fixtures can be found in any room in the house, but they are most commonly found in the kitchen and the dining room. Pendant lamps come in a variety of designs and styles, with farmhouse pendant lights and pendant track lighting as two common examples. Other types of modern pendant lamps include both rustic and industrial designs for indoor and outdoor use. Installing these hanging fixtures can require some skill and knowledge, but both DIY and plug in versions are readily available.

What’s The Best Pendant Lighting?

If you’ve decided to go with pendant lighting for your next project, you’ll quickly find out that there is a wide selection to choose from. Choosing the right fixture always starts with personal preference. But there are a few things you may want to consider before spending your budget to find out it wasn’t right for you:

  • What’s the purpose of your pendant lighting? If you’re installing your fixtures over a workbench or a prep table, you may want to consider something in the way of task lighting. Whereas, if you're trying to create a more welcoming atmosphere, you may want to try fixtures that brighten up the whole room.
  • In order for pendant lamps to really shine, they need to be at the right height so your eyes catch the light in just the right way. Typically, they should be hung slightly above average head level. This allows the light to peak out from under the shade and not shine directly into the eye. Be sure you get pendant light fixtures that adjust to your desired level.
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