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Multipoint Pendants

A multipoint pendant gives you three (or more!) light fixtures in one. Here's how to develop an eye for the right choice

multipoint pendant lights
Photo by Wendell T. Webber
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Will It Put My Table in a Good Light?

 

Will It Put My Table in a Good Light?

Part chandelier, part track light, and part DIY design, today's multipoint pendants offer the convenience of a single connection with the impact of up to 12 bulbs. You choose the canopy, fittings, and shades and decide how to arrange the pendants: at the same height, staggered like wind chimes, or offset to give each one its own profile. Stringing these multipart confections together can be a challenge, making installation perhaps best left to a pro. But before you get to that stage, follow these tips to make sure the fixture fits your space.

Cameo pendants with Mirrored Canopy by WAC Lighting.
Part chandelier, part track light, and part DIY design, today's multipoint pendants offer the convenience of a single connection with the impact of up to 12 bulbs. You choose the canopy, fittings, and shades and decide how to arrange the pendants: at the same height, staggered like wind chimes, or offset to give each one its own profile. Stringing these multipart confections together can be a challenge, making installation perhaps best left to a pro. But before you get to that stage, follow these tips to make sure the fixture fits your space.

Cameo pendants with Mirrored Canopy by WAC Lighting.
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In the Store

 

In the Store

1. Check the lumens.
Bulbs may be fluorescents, xenons, LEDs, or low-voltage halogens with a transformer. When controlled by a compatible dimmer, three 400-lumen bulbs will provide both task and ambient light, a plus in a dining spot that doubles as a workspace.

2. Ask about assembly.
Canopies and fittings come in different finishes, and shades in different styles and colors, as well as sizes, which influence how closely they can hang. The upshot: A three-light fixture may have up to 20 parts.
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The Right Fixture

 

The Right Fixture

3. Plan ahead.
So-called quick-connect fixtures are designed for easy installation. But glass shades, bulbs, and bulb guards can be fragile, and then there's the matter of cutting each cord to the proper length. Tip: Never leave an electrician home alone without guidance on how the pendants should be arranged. 4. Assess the ratios.
Canopy width and pendant length should be proportionate to the space—a 2-foot canopy over a 5-foot table, for example. Start with the height of the lowest pendant—at eye level above an island, say—and work up. Keep in mind that pendants look best when viewed from the side, not up against the ceiling.
 
 

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