Double Take: Unexpected Kitchen Lights
Big, fancy or one-of-a-kind pendant lights take kitchens way past cooking stations
Houzz contributor & founder/ principal designer at KitchenLab | Rebekah Zaveloff Interiors. We're a Chicago based interiors firm specializing in kitchens & baths – the rooms which often begin as the focal point of many of the projects we design & manage. We create a link for our clients between the design process & the construction process which is often missing & we offer tailored interior design services for adjacent rooms or whole houses depending on the scope of the project. We love to mix styles and make our spaces feel like they "grew there" and were collected over time. We also offer e-decorating services through our company Design in a Bag. Visit me at http://kitchenlabdesign.com http://designinabag.com Our work has been featured in Kitchen and Bath Ideas Magazine, Dream Kitchens,...
Houzz contributor & founder/ principal designer at KitchenLab | Rebekah... More »
As a kitchen designer, I look at a lot of kitchens and kitchen products. I'm always on the hunt for inspiration, especially for things like counter stools and pendant lights that haven't been seen a million times. When it comes to lighting, there are often architectural restrictions like ceiling heights, island widths, and sufficient wattage — details that can really cramp a girl's style! Glass and metal are the standby materials for kitchen pendants, for an obvious reason: they're easily to clean. But occasionally it's worth it to go for beauty over function. Here are a few unexpected kitchen pendant lights that fit the bill.
Fabric: These oversized pendants add a natural, earthy, and feminine feel to this kitchen. Whether these are linen or burlap, it doesn't matter — they're wonderful. I wasn't surprised to find out these pendants were custom made. (Though my first thought was, "Are these new from Restoration Hardware?") Sometimes it's worth going custom so that you can have something no one else has. See more of this house.
Tip: Consider Scotchguarding your fabric pendants and dust them regularly to avoid that dust/grease combo that's so prevalent in a kitchen's hard-to-reach spots.
Fabric-wrapped chandeliers are everywhere these days, and they add a lot of elegance to an otherwise utilitarian space. Be warned though: Chandeliers typically don't have a lot of wattage, so be sure to have additional can lights to fill in the gaps.
Tip: An adequate ventilation system in the form of a kitchen hood will help keep the dust/grease combo from settling on your fabric pendants.
The singular chandelier: Chandeliers have made their way into kitchens as kitchens have become extensions of the family room, rather than just a place to cook. Adding a single delicate, tiered chandelier to this kitchen defines the space and treats the island like a dining room table.
This funky/glam/modern chandelier also makes this island feel like a dining room table and gives this sleek modern kitchen a formal elegance.
A faux-candle style chandelier like this could easily be seen over a dining room table. This kitchen would look like many others if it had the typical two metal or glass shade pendants hanging over the island.
Modern chandeliers can be used as side-by-side pendants if the scale works. When you're searching for lighting, don't limit your search to "pendants" alone. Look under "chandeliers" as well and check their diameter.
Tip: Mock up a light with a piece of cardboard and hang it over your island to help you visualize the light in its setting and make sure the size works.
Play with scale: Playing with size is always a great to make your space look unique. Most people play it safe, especially when it comes to lighting. These two huge pendants set further towards the ends of the island give this kitchen a completely unique look.
Small, undersized pendants often look best in multiples of three. Here they're staggered in height as well as color.
Sculptural: Rather than picking a light for actual illumination and tasking, consider picking a piece that makes a sculptural statement, such as this Orchestra Light. Be sure you have ample can lights to fill in!
These sculptural, cloud-like Logico pendants are often seen over dining room tables, but used in duplicate here over this super-long island, they make an unexpected statement.
More: 23 Real-Life Kitchens
How to Get the Kitchen Pendant Lights Right
Lights Go Gargantuan
Photos: Browse more kitchen designs
Ideabook published on Sept. 27, 2011.
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