To me, the biggest difference between traditional and modern lighting fixtures is innovation. Lovely as they may be, and often grand and stunning as they are, there isn’t a whole lot of variety in traditional lighting fixtures in shape, style, form, or material. But with modern lighting, the sky is really the limit – modern designers embrace any and every type of light, no matter how unusual or even wild the design, and use them to turn a utilitarian light socket into a stunning, artistic focal point. Spiral pendants are one great example of this. With sinuous lines and a totally unique shape, they’re definitely eye catching, and anything but ordinary.
Traditional lighting fixtures are overwhelmingly uniform, if not outright symmetrical. Classic crystal chandeliers are designed with tiered, radial arms, while even most pendant lights are pointedly made to match, with lights hung at the same height an equal distance apart from one another. Spiral pendants chuck all this convention to the wind, varying the height of each light and the spacing between them to form a descending spiral of lights.
Shop Lighting Pendants by Zuo Modern:
How Many Lights?
What I particularly like about spiral pendants is that even the style itself is quite versatile. I’ve seen ones with as many as a dozen lights down to as few as three – it all depends on how grand the style and how large the space. Ones with dozens of glass globes catch the light and are reminiscent of more traditional spiral chandeliers, while simple three-light spiral pendants like the one above simply offer a fresh, slightly asymmetrical twist on the conventional three-light pendant.
Shop Lighting Pendants by Landmark Lighting:
Of course, how tall a spiral pendant is depends a little on how many lights it has – a 3-light spiral pendant is going to be a lot smaller than one with 6 or 8. Even so, the height varies between fixtures with the same number of lights as well; while 3-light fixtures tend to hover around a foot tall, larger fixtures can range anywhere from four to eight feet, depending on the distance between each light and the distance from the highest light to the ceiling.
Shop Lighting Pendants by Eglo:
Small Spaces, High Ceilings
Of course, there are more reasons for these changes than pure style. Modern design is more prevalent in urban spaces than rural ones, and urban spaces tend to be on the smaller side. By extension, a grand, five tier entryway chandelier might look lovely in the foyer of an old Victorian home, but might very well not even fit in an upscale urban loft. If you have decently high ceilings but not an unlimited amount of floor space, spiral pendants are an excellent alternative to a more traditional chandelier, as they’re very tall, but also typically compact in width.
Making A Table Ornament
Even without high ceilings, spiral pendants can still make a lovely statement piece – you’ll just need to be sure not to put one where you might walk into it or bump your head on it. With a lower ceiling, consider placing a spiral pendant over a table – either a dining table or a coffee table or game table. This allows the lowest light to hang just above the center of the table, so the lights seem to cascade down onto it, but well out of the way of anyone sitting or walking past.
Shop Lighting Pendants by Nuevo:
While most spiral pendants are strung up on thin, transparent threads, a small subset of them are built with much smaller lights fixed to much larger, thicker spokes. Rather than the sinuous, gravity-free appearance of other spiral pendants, these have a heftier, more masculine appearance, reminiscent of a basket weave or wheel. Like pulley lights, these are better for a slightly industrial style rather than a posh and polished urban chic.
What do you think of spiral pendants?