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Keeping it Light: Kitchen Chandeliers and the Details We Obsess Over

IN THE KITCHEN, 5 things to think about when you’re choosing lighting for your kitchen, starting with the chandelier.

#1 CHANDELIER DIMENSIONS You can see a long lantern in this photo above. We knew the space could handle a fixture about 36-48” long x 24-28” wide or we could have a 28” round chandelier. How did we know that? It’s based on the size of the space and the table the chandelier would go over. The fixture wants to be at least 12” LESS than the width of the table. And we knew a 36 or 42” wide table could fit here. As far as the length goes, we knew we could fit a 72 or 84” long table, so we could fit a 60” long light fixture if we wanted but it’d have to be light in design. If you like a ‘heavy’ looking chandelier you may want to make it slightly smaller than if you chose something ‘light’ like the lantern style piece in this photo. Because this is light in style & design it works here.

#2 FURNITURE DIMENSIONS We estimated that a 84-96” x 36-40” table would fit perfectly in this space. How did we figure that out?

We did a floor plan so we knew to leave 36” of space from the edge of the table to the edge of the next thing, the wall, the island, the window, a sideboard to circumnavigate your table and chairs. That is to say, leave 36” of space for someone to get in and out of their chair. If you’re not in the business of doing floor plans try this; Put blue painter’s tape on the floor mapping out the furniture arrangement you’re thinking you want. You may not be able to do a furniture plan but THIS is a fantastic trick and I use it often when I think the layout is going to be a little tight. It allows you to experience how it will feel in the space. You can walk through and around the -taped out - furnishings in the room to know it’s going to work.

#3 STYLE This black cabinetry along with the black patterned floor was such a strong feature, we knew we needed some black accents in the room. Coordinating that with the black down rods of the seeded glass pendants over the island felt like a great mix. In the additional photos of another Kitchen you can see we matched everything. The Pendants to the Chandelier that hangs over a soon to arrive table. The ‘style’ of these were so specific we liked them together being exactly the same.

#4 WATTAGE/LUMENS Knowing and understanding Wattage, Lumens, CRI and foot-candles is necessary to understand how we measure light. For your Kitchen specifically what you want is a source of light where you’re working.

-at the sink, -at the range or cooktop, -at the Island and -at the table.

And a very good helpful way to calculate for how much light to design into a kitchen would be to take the room size 15 x 25 = 375

Then take that number and multiply by 24 to arrive at the number of Lumens required 375 x 24=9000. For another quick guide figure that one watt produces about 14-18 lumens. So, you can estimate that a 100 watt bulb is the equivalent to between 1400-1800 lumens.

Often we refer to This Old House for help.

#5 KNOW YOUR BUDGET Make a list of everything you’re hoping to purchase. In a program or app like iMAC Numbers or EXCEL, put a cost next to it and total things up. Now you have a list of costs. As you search for fixtures, the minute you find something and learn the price, you’ll know how much you are over or under your budget.

Photo - Crystorama website Jayna 4-light chandelier

Because we like to share & are routinely searching for fixtures in the lighting world, here are a few of our go to websites; Visual Comfort, Tech Lighting, Sonneman, Bover, Mooi, Crystorama, Hammerton and Generation Lighting Ochre, Alison Berger, Collura & Co, Light Art


Gretchen Reinheimer Design

Creating extraordinary spaces together


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