Pendant Lighting Hanging Light Fixtures Kitchen Favorite Lamps 2021

Pendant Lighting

Pendant Lighting Hanging Light Fixtures Kitchen Favorite Lamps 2021

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The word “pendant” typically refers to a piece of jewelry that dangles from a chain around the neck.

Similarly, a pendant light hangs from …Shop pendant lighting at Guaranteed low prices on all modern pendants including mini, bowl, drum, globe, cluster & more + free shipping on …Pendant Lights: Hanging Light Fixtures Keep your pendant lighting simple with a mini pendant style like halogen mini pendant lights, or make a bold statement with large pendant styles like oversized drum shade pendant lights.

Pendant Light Size

To help find the right pendant light size, consider the location and the purpose of the light. Pendant lights range in size from 5 inches to 43 inches wide. For pendant lights installed above a dining table or countertop, typical hanging height is approximately 24 inches to 30 inches. Most pendant lights come with extension rods or an adjustable chain so you can alter the hanging height as needed. Be sure the light doesn’t block the view of people seated at the table or island, and that it doesn’t hang so low people bump into it.

Pendant Light Styles and Finishes

Pendant light with glass shades over an island.

Style: Style is the most common characteristic when shopping for hanging lights. Pick a style you like and one that works with the rest of your décor.

  • Traditional Pendant Lights: Traditional hardware has a more ornate and classic look. Ranging anywhere from farmhouse to antique to rustic, this style is more detailed and has more embellishments.
  • Contemporary Pendant Lights: With clean lines and a sharp, minimalistic look, contemporary or modern hanging lights are simple and understated.
  • Transitional Pendant Lights: Combining traditional and modern, transitional allows you to mix elements of both styles for a personalized look.
  • Unique Pendant Lights: If you’re seeking a more informal and fun look, unique fixtures allow you the most personalization.

Within each style, there are various themes you can choose.

  • Farmhouse
  • Coastal
  • Vintage
  • Industrial
  • Wrought iron
  • Novelty
  • Various others

Finishes: Pendant lights come in a variety of finishes. Take a cue from the existing finishes in your home. If the door handles and cabinet hardware are all in brushed nickel, choose lighting fixtures in a complementary finish. Popular pendant light finishes include:

  • Oil-rubbed bronze
  • Polished chrome
  • Brushed nickel
  • Polished nickel
  • Black iron

Shades and Accessories

A pendant light with glass shade above an island.

Shades: Pendant light shades come in glass, fabric and metal. Mini pendant lights sometimes come with the shade sold separately so you can mix and match. Fabric shades provide more diffused light and are nice for bedrooms. Look for a fabric shade with metal or wood panels for a stylish look. Metal shades look great in the kitchen for an industrial motif. Popular pendant light shades include:

  • Colored glass
  • Frosted glass
  • Smoked white glass diffuser
  • Tiffany-style glass
  • Linen
  • Burlap
  • Polished chrome
  • Oil-rubbed bronze

Pendant Lighting Buying Guide

Pendant Light Accessories: To add extra flair, mount a decorative ceiling medallion to give a larger inverted pendant light or pendant light with a shade a polished look.

Wall Plates: Consider matching your wall plate to your new pendant lighting finish.

Types of Pendant Lights

Pendant lights with shades pointing up (uplight) are designed for ambient light, and those with shades pointing down (downlight) provide task light. Use pendant lights in the bathroom, bedroom, dining room, foyer, hallway, kitchen, living room, game room, or bar for ambient lighting and in the dining room, kitchen, or game room for task lighting. For more information on lighting your home, check out Home Lighting Tips.

Mini Pendant Lights

Mini pendant light with glass shade.

Mini pendant lights can be used solo or in a group for the task and accent lighting. Install a single mini pendant light above a sink or desk, or in a row above a breakfast bar or kitchen island. Mini pendant lights are also compatible with track lights. Mix mini pendant lights in with track light heads to have a mixture of task, accent, and ambient lighting.

Island Pendant Lights

Island pendant light and Edison-style light bulbs.

Island pendant lights provide the same task lighting as mini pendant lights, except a single fixture. They typically have two or three light sources and, in addition to an island, can be used above a desk, bar, or in a game room for a pool table.

Pendant Light With Fabric Shade

Pendant light with fabric shade.

Pendant light with fabric shade adds a luxurious look to the traditional pendant light. These pendant lights provide ambient lighting and can be used in a foyer, living room, kitchen or bedroom. Try one as a substitute for a chandelier above a dining or breakfast table.

Multi-Light Pendant Lights

Multi-light pendant with glass jar lights.

Multi-light pendant lights provide ambient lighting with three, sometimes up to 10, light sources stemming from the same fixture. This type of pendant light can also be used as a chandelier alternative.

Inverted Pendant Lights

Inverted pendant light with glass shade.

Inverted pendant lights project light up for ambient lighting. An inverted pendant light is similar in style to a semi-flush-mount light except that the fixture hangs from a chain instead of mounting directly to the ceiling. Popular spots for inverted pendant lights include a dining room, a foyer and a breakfast nook.


A dimmer switch allows you to change the mood of the room. Check the packaging to see if the pendant light is dimmable.

Lighting Collections

If you find a pendant light you like and need other lighting fixtures, check to see if it’s part of a collection. Lighting collections offer fixtures in the same style and finish for many areas of the home. For more information on lighting options, check out Lighting at a Glance.


Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for step-by-step directions, safety, warning and caution information. If in doubt, consult a qualified electrician.

Interior Lighting Installation

Light Bulbs

Don’t forget light bulbs. Things like color temperature, lumens, and wattage all play a factor in your room’s quality of light. Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and compact fluorescents (CFLs) help lower energy costs. Both have a lower wattage but provide the same light output as higher wattage incandescent bulbs. LEDs are also cool to the touch. In general, look for a warm white color temperature for living rooms and bedrooms, bright white color temperature for kitchens and workspaces, and daylight color temperature for reading nooks and studies. For more information on light bulbs, check out the Light Bulb Buying Guide.

Is pendant lighting out of style?

Absolutely not. Pendant lights are still very much in style for their intended use. In fact, they are growing in popularity.

How big should pendant lights be over the island?

As a general rule, you’ll want at least 30″ to 36″ clearance between your surface and the bottom of your fixtures. Small islands (4 to 5 feet long) usually do well with one large or two medium pendants, while larger islands can handle two larger or three medium-sized pendants.

What size should pendant lights be?

Quickly, to determine the proportional height of your pendant fixtures to your ceiling height, take your ceiling height in feet and multiply by two and by three.

Pendant Lighting
Pendant Lighting
Ceiling Height (feet)Range for Height of Pendants (inches)
714″ – 21″
816″ – 24″
918″ – 27″
1020″ – 30″

Do you need an electrician to install pendant lights?

Installing a pendant light in a drop ceiling is more complicated than just hanging it from your ceiling. That’s why we recommend you use a licensed electrician to avoid electrical faults. Poor electrical work means you might have loose connections or faulty wiring, and these run the risk of creating electrical sparks.

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