Hanging Light Fixtures

Written by Beth Hrusch
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Hanging light fixtures are one way to provide ambient lighting for a room. Their function is to brighten the entire space, but in effect, they often serve as task lighting as well. When placed over a table or kitchen island, for example, a hanging fixture casts light down onto a surface to help the guest or cook perform tasks. Thus, they are useful for both general and specific lighting needs.

Two Types of Hanging Light Fixtures

There are two basic kinds of hanging fixtures, the main difference being that of style. Chandeliers are a style of hanging fixture in which several decorative fixtures are attached to a single rod, usually by use of arms that extend from the rod outward. It is a traditional shape, used for centuries in homes and public spaces, and is often highly embellished. Because of this, chandeliers generally give a curvaceous and elegant feeling to a room, even when the design is contemporary.

The other basic style is the pendant fixture. A pendant, in lighting as in jewelry, is always a single fixture that hangs directly down from the chain or rod attached to the base. This design gives these hanging light fixtures a simplicity that the chandelier naturally lacks. Pendants are a good complement to both modern and traditional interiors, as the style of fixture varies from simple to ornate.

Hanging light fixtures are one of the options in lighting that will provide both general and task light. When placed above a surface, they put direct lighting right where it is needed. Yet, they can serve just as well when asked to brighten the entire room. They add interest by bringing a vertical element to the horizontal plane of the ceiling, and work well in any decor.


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