Pendant lights, chandeliers and designer hanging lamps have a certain otherworldly charm. Not only do they look gorgeous, but are also quite effective in terms of lighting up a wide variety of interior spaces.
What are pendant lights?
Pendant lighting is a subset of indoor lighting décor that includes conventional and modern lighting fixtures that hang from the ceiling, lighting up a room or any other indoor space. From restaurants and retail outlets to traditional houses and ultramodern homes, you will see them everywhere. Modern pendant lights have become an integral part of interior décor and for good reason. Let’s take a quick look at some of the most essential aspects of pendant lighting, including:
- The concept of pendant lamps
- Variety of pendant lighting available in the market
- Key features and aspects to consider when shopping pendant lights for your space
What is the difference between pendant lights and flush mount lamps?
Modern pendant lighting fixtures are not to be confused with flush mount lights. While flush mount lights are installed directly into an opening in the ceiling, pendant lamps typically hang from the ceiling and are suspended using cables, cords, chains or wires. Flush mount lamps give you the impression that the light is coming directly from the ceiling, while pendant lights are explicit in nature and often used to not only illuminate spaces, but also add aesthetic value to them.
Types of pendant lights
Pendant lighting has evolved over the last few decades and there is no dearth of options when it comes to the range and variety of beautiful pendant lights available in the market.
Modern pendant lighting comes in different shapes, sizes, styles, colors, designs and finishes, including the following popular types:
- Contemporary pendant chandeliers
- Downlighting pendant lights
- Inverted bowl pendant lamps
- Mini pendant lights
- Linear pendants
- Cluster pendants
Types of base and component material
The body of a pendant light is as important as its light source or the actual light, since it is what defines the look and style of the lamp.
Modern pendant lamps and chandeliers are made using different types of materials to make the base and components durable, resilient and aesthetically pleasing to the eye. Here are the most common materials used:
Types of shade material
As is the case with the material used for the manufacturing of a chandelier or pendant light’s base or body, the shades, too, are offered in a wide selection of materials or finishes. Here’s a quick look at the material your are likely to find your favorite pendant lampshade made of:
What kind of shade you should choose would largely depend on what kind of look and lighting you are aiming for. It is also important to take into consideration the décor style that you have established in the room. Make sure you pick a decorative hanging light shade that complements the interiors and enhances the aesthetic value of the décor in addition to providing effective lighting.
Where to hang pendant lights?
Ah, the all-important question – the placement of your decorative hanging lights! This is perhaps one of the first questions you need to ask yourself before you actually select a pendant light or chandelier for your home. Many traditional and mid-century house owners love decking up their space with majestic chandeliers. The more contemporary-style homes or ultramodern houses in urban settings have moved towards installing chic pendant lamps.
The primary question you should answer is – which room requires a pendant light and for what purpose? Here is a list of indoor spaces that are popular destinations for pendant lighting:
- Living room
- Lounge area
- Dining room
- Kitchen island
- Dining table
- Kitchen sink
Size and brightness
How bright should your pendant lights be? How big should your pendant lamps be? What size should your chandelier be? Well, the fundamental way to figure out the ideal size for your home pendant lighting is by gauging how large or small the said room is. The bigger the room area, the bigger the size of your chandelier (and vice versa). The same applies to the brightness aspect. If the region is spread out in terms of length and breadth of the room, you would need more light (compared to smaller areas).
Most modern pendant lights and chandeliers are dimmable in nature, meaning you can adjust the light intensity and brightness according to your needs and preferences. You can also choose to install a separate dimmer on the fixture for added control. However, make sure you check whether the light you like offers this customizable option. Dimmability is also important since it allows you to set the tone or mood in a room. Depending on what time of the day it is and how much natural light your indoor spaces get, you can then adjust the pendant light’s output accordingly.
How many pendant lamps are enough?
Before getting to the number of lights, it is essential that you answer this question – what is the purpose you want the contemporary pendant lights to serve? If you are looking for a pendant lighting solution that serves as the primary source of illumination in a room, you might want to look at potent options or go for more than one single hanging lamp. If you are looking to layer your existing lighting with some more modern hanging lights, you can experiment with one or more pendant lamps.
With a plethora of choices available to you, it might seem befuddling. However, there are three basic options to choose from:
- Single: One single pendant lamp that provides direct lighting.
Singlependant lights are ideal for smaller areas. A relatively larger pendant lampcan also prove to be enough for a room (depending on the size and purpose).
- Linear: A series or row of equidistant pendant lightsthat help light up a longer length.
Linearlighting is a popular choice for task lighting in areas such as the kitchenisland, bar and dining table.
- Cluster: Abunch of designer pendant lights that provide effective illumination when hungtogether.
Cluster lighting works best if you are looking for a lighting model that shines bright and looks stunning as a decorative fixture.
Modern pendant lighting tips
- Make sure you look at features like accessory availability, warranty and ease of installation when you pick a pendant light.
- It is best to consult a lighting expert to assess things like placement, assembly and installation of contemporary hanging lights. When you order a pendant light online, it might need to be assembled. While most modern fixtures are easy to assemble and install, it is recommended that you hire a professional to do this.
- Ask your lighting expert or interior designer what the ideal height of your chosen pendant light or chandelier should be. While this would largely depend on the purpose of the lights and the dimensions of your unique indoor space, there are some thumb rules that you must follow.
- If you pick multiple modern hanging lights or pendants for one area (linear lighting), make sure they are evenly spaced out.
Lighting trends: What is in?
Here is a handpicked selection of beautiful designer pendant lights, chandeliers and pendant lighting ideas for inspiration:
FLOS is a premium lighting design company that offers a wide selection of contemporary pendant lights, decorative hanging lights and chandeliers for a variety of interior spaces. Now that you are equipped with the basics of pendant lighting and chandeliers, take a look at some more bestselling and award-winning modern pendant lamps crafted by world-class lighting designers in association with FLOS here.