Pendant light size 'rules' in relation to island.

kellienoelleFebruary 21, 2012

I have found lots of info about heights to hang, but not much about general "rules" about pendant size in relation to the island. My island is about 65" x 30", we are planning for 2 pendant lights and the electrician appears to have placed them roughly 36" apart. What size of pendant should I be looking at?

If it matters, in my preliminary search, I seem to be drawn more to spherical shapes, so will probably have roughly the same width as height.

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I would draw this out yourself but I would want between two and three "widths" of whatever pendant you chose to fit between them, as a minimum based upon how they sit on the overall length of the peninsula. I think three + widths is good unless you are going for an overscaled look

You could go very small with something that was spherical and elaborate (like the Schoenbeck crystal orbs, not that I am suggesting them) and go larger as you get simpler, but I would generally want the breathing room I mentioned above.

So if you had a 6" orb: there would be 30 inches between them because 3" of each orb would be inside the 36" boundary. If you went with a 12" orb they would have 24" between them which would be the absolute max I would go with a big plain globe, (12" is Big")...8" orbs would give 28" in between.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2012 at 11:02PM
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Oh lord, math makes my head hurt ;)

Thanks for the advice, I was hoping to be on a smaller scale simply due to cost. I don't want them to be overscale, but don't want them to look lost and lonely either. So, it looks like those that are in the category of "mini-pendants" would work (my wallet likes the sound of that).

    Bookmark   February 21, 2012 at 11:21PM
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I am a visual person. I need to see to really feel it.
If you can search for the pendants you like or search
on google for pendants over islands (kitchens of course).
See what you like for a pendant. And then find out the
measurements. Take a cardboard box or paper bag to
create the size and approx shape. Hang it in the space
above your island to get a feel for the size you like
or dislike.

Of course math works too but I like to see to really feel
the space. Pyschological I guess. Or maybe just pyscho.


Here are a few spherical shaped pendants maybe you would like.

Here is a link that might be useful: Buying and Determining Height for Kitchen Pendant Lights

    Bookmark   February 22, 2012 at 9:10AM
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Oh, boxer, the pendants in your first pic are gorgeous!! Any idea where you found that photo? Any leads that might get me info on those pendants would be much appreciated!
:) [Sorry to highjack, kellienoelle!]

    Bookmark   February 22, 2012 at 9:59AM
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Oh, nevermind. :( Found the pendants on, and they're $650 each!!!

    Bookmark   February 22, 2012 at 10:13AM
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Thanks for the pictures boxer! I finally got my husband to sit down and look with me to get a feel for his preferences and it seems that he favors the industrial look. Maybe not my first choice but definitely something that I had been looking at as well. I like that second one (Thomas O'Brien Hicks?), but a little too pricey for me (was hoping to stay under $300 each). Husband likes the RH Benson Pendants, which come in 7" but I am a bit concerned about how "direct" the light will be and if it will illuminate the entire island. Also think #10 would be a nice compromise, where did you find it?

    Bookmark   February 22, 2012 at 11:19AM
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Any thoughts on this one? My husband likes it, the price is right, but unfortunately it is 12", so at the upper end, but maybe it will work. I read that hanging some balloons from the ceiling in a similar size is a way to get a general idea, so maybe I will try that.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2012 at 12:16PM
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Something to keep in mind about the one you just posted. It will only throw light down. If you have other lighting, no problem. Before this reno, we had 2 copper lights that the light only shined on the counter and the other one was over the table. There was no other was very dark, except under the lights.

But those are beautiful.

I'm going through the same sort of thing trying to figure out how big my chandy can be over my 4x8+ island.

Good Luck

    Bookmark   February 22, 2012 at 12:48PM
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I love that light!

    Bookmark   February 22, 2012 at 1:01PM
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We have some recessed lighting, are adding in lights in our lighted uppers, under cabinet lighting, over the sink lighting, all in addition to the pendants so I think we will be OK if they only light up the island. Since we are going with darker cabinets I was paranoid about it looking to dark so fingers crossed that I will have enough lighting!

Question though, I have been looking mostly at nickel/chrome finishes figuring it would match the faucet, appliances, and cabinet hardware. Then I had a big "aha" moment when I walked into the kitchen and glanced at the ceiling fan in the attached eat in are with an oil rubbed bronze finish. We have the exact same ceiling fan in the family room, which is visible, but not completely open to the kitchen. I hadn't planned on replacing them. So...they have the same option in oil rubbed bronze (unfortunately for about $30 more), would that look ok with my finishes? or should I consider sticking with nickel/chrome and just changing out the ceiling fan instead? My cabinets are cherry stained med/dark, so the oil rubbed bronze would tie in with them, color wise.

Boy, I am really tired of making decisions! Just when I think I am narrowing things down another pops up!

    Bookmark   February 22, 2012 at 1:04PM
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