Too tired to pick

greenhavenApril 30, 2014

I want to choose two pendants to go over my island, the only place really lacking light in my kitchen. I would also like to repeat it with one over the sink where I currently have a can light.

Because it is open to the dining room it should be able to be made cohesive with whatever lighting I use there when I replace the hideous shiny, fake brass chandelier that hangs there now.

Most of these are from lampsplus, a couple from another site. I will just give them numbers cuz I am lazy and tired.

If you wish you can refer to the link for some photos of my kitchen in progress. It is mostly traditional, with a touch of rustic/farmhouse.

They are in no particular order, although now that I think I am doing the basket-y-looking tile for my "rug" I think the natural textured ones would lend some good cohesion? Tie-in? Repetition? Whatever. You get the picture.










Here is a link that might be useful: My thread with kitchen pics near the end

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You need to give some thought to exactly what kind of light you want from these fixtures. The punched metal pendants will send light up to the ceiling and straight down to the counter, giving you a column of illumination. The solid metal fixtures will direct light exclusively downward, flaring out, and the Edison bulb fixture will send light everywhere, like an unshaded bulb on a wire. I am myopic thus particularly susceptible to glare, so I only look at light fixtures that can be fitted with diffusers.

I know you're tired, but you need to think (and perhaps read) a little more about the lighting. People here will be better able to help if you describe the lighting scheme you already have in place on a diagram of the kitchen.

Good luck, and hang in there!

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 12:54AM
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I Iike number 3 best. The first one makes me think I wouldn't be able to get the dust cleaned off (when it occurred to me after a year that I really should dust them).

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 12:56AM
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I like # 4, 5, and 9.

# 4 would send light all around because of the clear glass. # 5 would send the light down but spread it out since it is an upside down cone shape. I love that one, but do you have any other copper items in the kitchen?
# 9 will shine down like #5 but I think you may see lights on the walls/cabinets with the cut out parts. Those little slivers of light would bug me. Maybe it just looks like they are hole punched though. They look like galvanized metal. Do you have any items that look like galvanized metal?

All of the lights that are cylinders will do a spotlight effect. You may have a few darker spots, but it depends on the size of your island.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 1:34AM
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I like #2 bc I think it would disperse the lighting bc it has a cover over the bottom. It also looks very nice.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 7:30AM
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I'm with Peke, #4, #5 and #9 are my favorites, but I would choose #5, mainly because I would not want to clean #4 and the light from the cut outs on #9 would bug me.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 9:03AM
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EAM44 thanks for the excellent points! Definitely worth considering since I was mainly thinking of aesthetics. I did not place too much concern on the quality of light because it is more dim than dark. I still am not going to be fanatical about it but the diffused or spotlight, etc. are important considerations. I will attach a photo of layout when I get to my computer, but basically it is a three by four island in a nine by eleven kitchen that is open to the dining room. The light from the dining room chandelier is too far and too dim for task lighting. At the island the flourescent light box (four feet? Five?) Is bright but behind me. Surprisingly it gives plenty of light for perimeter work while leaving my island dim.

The point about cleaning the textured ones is good, too.

Peke, I have no copper or galvanized metal, but both are pretty dark finishes. I have black wrought iron look handles on my cabs and drawera, stainless finishes on aink faucet and appliances. I would not mind the light through the punched shades, it is one of the things I like about them.

I think, based on observations offered, that I am fully prepared to eliminate numbers seven and ten based on too much focus/diffusion and not enough. Those principles also make number four a contender for elimination although that is one of my favorites. I know the clear glass has little diffusive properties, but what about the seeded finish?

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 9:17AM
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This is basically the layout. There is a can light in the soffit above the sink and window and the fluorescent light box on the ceiling between island and stove.

DR chandelier way da heck out der, but to be changed as soon as I recover from the trauma of the kitchen (wow a lot has happened since that pic!):

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 10:09AM
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I'm happy to be helpful!

From what I have learned surface mounted ceiling fixtures don't provide great light, and they're horrible in terms of ambiance. Would you consider changing out that fluorescent light box? What you really want are LED Retrofit Downlights (can lights like the one over your sink, only LED) over your stove, and possibly over your island, and maybe some tape LED lights under your upper cabs.

If budget is an issue, and when isn't it, you might want to choose track lighting, a favorite of architects and very flexible for any lighting scheme. You can use multiple lights and direct them however you would like. If you are choosing pendants for decorative purposes you can go with anything you like once there's adequate task lighting. But once there's good task lighting, you won't need them...

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 12:52PM
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Just a note about a pendant over your sink...I have a soffit and swore up and down that I wanted a pendant light instead of the can we already had. Well, I searched and searched to find just the right pendant, and I did find it. BUT, it blocks my view out the window and into the back yard. Guess what I have back? A LED can light.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 2:54PM
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bcafe, that is too funny! For some reason it was just the other day that I realized that the middle sashes of the window cross right in front of my line of sight. I jokingly told DH we needed to replace it with a full-view casement and I got The Look.

EAM44, I have considered changing the fluorescent box out. It is not horrible in terms of fluorescent light fixtures, but it is, well, a fluorescent box. I'll have to think about it some more. I definitely wanted pendants mostly to be a design feature, but functional lighting is foremost, of course.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 3:21PM
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I have a close-to-ceiling light fixture over my sink. It hands down no farther than the top of the window.

I happen to like 10, but that might not be in keeping. I thought it was very clever. There are some lovely lights in your collection!

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 4:36PM
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I had a fluorescent box light. Getting rid of it was one of the best things about my remodel. It was hideous, but I blocked it out because I didn't want to see it.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 4:48PM
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I vote #4.

Do you mind sharing where it's from? I'm currently searching for pendants as well, I feel your pain! :)

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 5:25PM
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This is a terrible way to pick your light fixture. Scale is very important and you can't gauge that this way. For what it's worth I like 4 and 8.

If it seems like I'm in a foul mood it's because I am. I've been in one all day. Ever since I looked at this post this morning on my two hour commute to work, followed the link to what I thought were going to be pictures of your kitchen, and instead saw you standing there joyously standing there with your horse. Do you know how that makes someone feel when they're commuting to work?! Jealous......that's how. Jealous, all day long. it makes me think all people don't waste four hours a day commuting to work......they get to have horses. So yes....this is the mood I've been in all day thanks to you and your horse. I hope you enjoy you're light fixtures.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 5:35PM
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I like #4 - will go well with your hardware, gives good light and is not too fussy for your country home.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 5:43PM
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My vote is #3--directs light down, picks up some of the black of your counters but also has the warmth of copper with it, and finally, it is consistent with the country look you want.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 7:48PM
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Another vote for #4.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 8:16PM
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I like 4 and 8. They both go with the drawer and door pulls. It seems to me that the "pros" use lighting and handles to match. I could be wrong. But... they do pull the two together. I've really enjoyed your thread. You've made such amazing progress. And the photo of you and your horse was wonderful. Your smile shows how happy you are to have her home. Keep up the good work, we love to read your posts and can't wait for the reveal!

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 9:05PM
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Sweet tea, that one is from Lamps Plus:

There seem to be a lot of votes for number four, and that makes me happy. But magsnj makes a good point about scale, so I should look into that. not sure how to other than getting the dimensions of the piece off the website and seeing some similar pieces of the same size IRL.

magsnj, I am sorry. :o( I do have poop on my shoes now, does that help? Four hours of commuting would put me in a foul mood, too. As a matter of fact I know I could never do it.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 9:28PM
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I'm no lighting expert. Aesthetically I like 1 and 2 really well :)

Good luck and take a break if you need to so you don't regret your decisions. This from someone who starting in August of last year and still isn't done. DIY ain't for wimps. Or in my case people in a hurry.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 9:32PM
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It helps a little bit.........


When I tried to gauge how the scale would look for my pendants, I got the dimensions and found a box or made a box that had the same dimensions and had someone hold it around where it would hang.....and I stood back and looked :) To make the box I just took the widest and longest measurements....I didn't mess around with things having a narrow neck or something like that....that's too much even for me.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 10:02PM
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Thanks for sharing! I'll definitely check that out. Good luck making your decision!

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 10:13PM
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I'm having trouble picking lighting too Greenhaven, so I have trouble giving you confident advice on this. I really agree with the advice that scale is SO important - so mocking it up with hanging boxes or balloons the size of the fixture you're considering would be very helpful. Ideally, even a printed photo of the fixture - to scale - attached to a box. Sounds silly but stuff like that really helps.

I am on the fence about having pendants over the island at all. Feels like they would need to be hanging too high to not be in people's sightlines. Then they wouldn't look right with our 8' ceilings. So consider what would be in the sightlines when using the island. In our case there is a large mountain view window across the room when standing in the kitchen at the island, so pendants may not make sense for us.

I liked the look of #9 if the proportions are right. I love the exposed bulb look so much, but I guess it would bother me if I was chopping carrots with a non-shaded bulb in front of my face.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 1:27AM
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I think that you have already been convinced, but all I could think about with all of the textured/baskety choices ones was "impossible to clean". I like to clean my fixtures.

I think that #4 is the prettiest, but would have to see the light quality in person. I also am sensitive to glare. #2 seems the most practical, and classic yet attractive (and similar to what I chose, although mine doesn't have a diffuser. I had to try 2-3 different bulbs before I found one that didn't bother my eyes because there is no diffuser). #9 I do like too and don't think the cutouts would bother me (although I think the height of hang would be critical to that)-- but again, the bulb is exposed.

Proportions really are critical too, both in giving adequate light, fitting the space and also in coordinating with other fixtures. My pendant over the sink's down rod seems just a bit too skimpy over the beefier pulldown faucet.

And, after I was all finished with my reno, I saw a pendent that was similar to mine but with a much prettier shade. So, take your time and browse a bit more!

    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 4:50PM
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