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5 kitchen pendant lighting ideas to illuminate your space in style

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In recent years, kitchen pendant lighting ideas have proved one of the most popular fixtures in spaces of every style and size. Illuminating the space while creating an eye-catching design element, pendant lights are the must-have kitchen feature.

There may be no shortage of kitchen lighting ideas, but pendant lights are fast becoming the most popular. Descending above an island or hanging at various heights around the room, kitchen pendant lighting is more versatile than you might think.

From sleek, contemporary designs to more traditional and decorative fixtures, we’ve asked interior designers and kitchen experts for their favorite kitchen pendant lighting ideas to find the best ways to illuminate your space in style.

5 Kitchen Pendant Lighting Ideas

Kitchen pendant lighting ideas vary from simple, understated designs to more statement pieces, so there’s something to suit every style and space. Consider the space you’re illuminating and how your lighting needs to function for different uses before you buy.

1. CHOOSE SIMPLE, UNDERSTATED DESIGNS

Pendant lighting can add style and ambiance to a kitchen, but be careful the fixtures you choose work in cohesion with the space, rather than overwhelming it. Opt for something simple and sophisticated to avoid detracting from the other decor.

‘Keep pendant lights subtle and not too overpowering even though the urge to really make your mark with these is hard to resist. Don’t be set on the three lights over a kitchen island combination, try to be less obvious and go for simple understated, and beautiful,’ suggests Helen Parker, creative director at deVOL Kitchens.

A simple white pendant light has been introduced in this kitchen – the white of the shade lifts the room without taking away from the moody color scheme of the space.

2. HANG PENDANT LIGHTING ABOVE AN ISLAND

For a classic design, hanging kitchen pendant lighting above an island is a wonderful way to add plenty of light and center the room. ‘Pendant lights are always a great ‘go to’ choice for above an island. Whether using a single pendant or multiple, they really make a statement to the finished design,’ says Elizabeth Sherwin, creative director of Naked Kitchens.

If you do opt for kitchen pendant lighting above an island, consider the height and spacing of each fixture to ensure it helps rather than hinders. ‘Think how low you would like the pendant to hang – be careful not to block the view across the island, however, you can generally hang it a bit lower than usual,’ advises Elizabeth.

‘It’s always great to have the pendant lights on a different lighting circuit than the other ceiling or wall lights to zone the resultant light. Just having the pendants lit makes for a super cozy kitchen space for entertaining,’ she adds.

3. EXPERIMENT WITH RISE AND FALL PENDANTS

Kitchens have become multifunctional spaces – alongside cooking, they are often used for dining and socializing, too. As such, kitchen lighting needs to cater to all of these uses, and rise-and-fall kitchen pendant lighting is a great way to do so.

‘Rise and fall pendants are the perfect solution for combined eating, cooking, and entertaining spaces; simply lower to create intimate, atmospheric dining zones and raise for a broad spread of shadow-free task lighting for food preparation and daytime meals,’ says Charlie Bowles, director at Original BTC.

This is a versatile lighting solution for kitchens with more than one use, rather than rewiring. Opt for a full set of rise-and-fall kitchen lighting pendants, or simply add one or two in the areas where you are most likely to use them.

4. HANG KITCHEN PENDANT LIGHTS OVER A DINING SPACE

Kitchen pendant lighting can also be introduced to zone different spaces, especially if different areas of your kitchen require different lighting. If you have a dining nook in your kitchen, introducing pendant lights can add ambiance to the space.

‘I think pendant lighting in a kitchen is lovely – I especially like to use them over a kitchen island or banquettes. It’s key to offer a variety of lighting options for various needs and moods,’ explains Natalie Rebuck, principal designer at Re: Design Architects.

Depending on the lighting you have used throughout the rest of your kitchen will alter the pendant lights you might use above a kitchen seating area. ‘I would look to put two to three matching pendants, or one beautiful, interesting piece that gives the perception of pendant lighting over the dining space,’ Natalie adds.

5. DON’T ADD MORE THAN THREE PENDANT LIGHTS

Kitchen pendant lighting adds a final, decorative touch to a scheme. There are so many different ways to make a statement – this kitchen scheme pairs various finishes for a more eclectic look, while other spaces might benefit from matching lighting and hardware, or even an injection of color.

‘Kitchen pendants are like a great pair of earrings. They finish off the look and give that layered look. They also are very functional,’ says Sallie Lord, of GreyHunt Interiors. When it comes to introducing kitchen pendant lighting, Sallie says it really depends on the kitchen. ‘We suggest pendant lighting if it needs one, two, or three lights,’ she adds.

This certainly applies to standard-size kitchens, but if you have an extra large space or a long island, extra pendant lights might be needed, as long as they are the right size and layout.

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