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Is a Chandelier Right for Your Space?

Cristal chandelier by Cattelan Italia

From classic crystal chandeliers that bathe a space in glittering light, to contemporary pendants like luminous works of modern art, hanging light sources draw the gaze upward and inspire a feeling of awe. Originating from the French word for “candle holder,” the earliest recorded chandeliers hung in castles and cathedrals, and were made of a wooden cross-shaped frame with inset candles.

Today, chandeliers come in a variety of forms and materials, though they are still associated with ornateness and luxury. Pendants are a similar form of lighting, though they tend to be a bit less intricate and more modern in appearance than chandeliers. Pendants also usually have a single light, while chandeliers have multiple lights, often branching out from a central hub. Both chandeliers and pendants can be a powerful tool for lightening up a space and adding instant style.

But how do you know if a chandelier or pendant is a good fit for your home? Read on to discover Copenhagen San Antonio sales associate Graciela Soto’s tips for what to consider before buying these pieces, as well as her recommendations.

Practical Considerations

A chandelier or pendant will typically look best hanging from a ceiling at least 10 feet high, Soto advises. However, depending on the light, an 8-foot or higher ceiling could also work. If you are mounting the chandelier over a dining table, make sure there is roughly 3 feet of clearance between the table and the light.

These are not necessarily strict rules, though. Basically, you want your light to be situated high enough to draw the eye upward and provide good illumination for the room. You also want to make sure nobody will hit their head on the light by accident.

If you’re wondering whether your ceiling can support the weight of a chandelier or pendant, Soto says, “Most homes are structurally prepared to hold our varied lighting choices.” Within the ceiling of your living and/or dining room, you’ll typically find an electric box. This box provides power and structural support for ceiling lights and fans, and in most cases, it will work with a chandelier.

However, if you’re considering an extremely heavy chandelier, you should contact a professional for additional support options. You should also plan on having your light professionally installed, unless you are very comfortable working with electrical systems.

A final word of caution: Hanging light fixtures should never be turned or spun around on their cords, as such motions increase the risk of the fixture falling. These lighting choices will do best in environments with minimal chaos and mischief.

Exploring Style and Design

Today’s chandeliers and pendants come in a range of styles from traditional to contemporary to industrial, making it easy to find options that work with the aesthetic of your home. Soto says, depending on what style of light you choose, “You can make a room glamorous, inviting, romantic and even sexy!”

Soto recommends the Cristal Chandelier to “provide instant visual glamour” to a space. This stunning Italian piece by Oriano Favaretto has a frame hung with strands of crystal beads that provide sparkling illumination.

While these iconic crystal chandeliers emanate a shimmering, jewel-like light, modern pendants can give off a light that is more muted and even, though just as bright. One example is the Bolero Pendant, which Soto says, “will add an interesting focus to any area with its bold geometric lines.” This industrial-inspired pendant has a series of nested ivory shades that evoke modern architecture while softening the light within.

Another Option: Floor Lamps

If you don’t think a chandelier or pendant is right for your space, but you still want a source of overhead illumination, consider an arc-style floor lamp. Compared to a typical floor lamp, arc lights have a curved design for a dramatic look, and a tall height that can mimic the effect of a chandelier or pendant.

The Astra Floor Lamp was inspired by mid-century lighting and features a curved chrome frame and an oblong shade that casts a luminous glow. Soto praises it as “a timeless Italian design that will flow in any corner of your bedroom, living or family room.”

For an edgier look, consider the Zed Floor Lamp, with its sleek, angular black frame and embedded LED that is wide enough to shine light over a generous area. “This lamp will give you a perfect industrial look which is great for any office or reading corner,” Soto says.

It can be a major step to decide whether you want to add a chandelier or pendant to your space – or if you’d rather go with a floor lamp. Fortunately, the sales associates and designers at Copenhagen are always eager to help. With 8 years of experience working at Copenhagen, Graciela Soto proudly stands behind the pieces she sells. She says, “We know that all our furniture pieces and decor are of unique design with the highest quality – which is why I truly love working here, assisting my customers, and finding the perfect pieces to complete their vision.”