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Lighting Trends and Advice

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What to do with Bathroom Lighting

June 10th, 2010 · Bathroom Lighting

When lighting a bathroom the first and most important focus should be on the vanity lighting.  Ideally a vertical fixture should be hung on either side of the mirror.  This allows for light to be evenly distributed across ones face.    The fixtures should be mounted approximately 5.5’ above the floor (eye level), and 36-40” apart.  This helps to eliminate shadows under the eyes and chin.

In situations where installing fixtures on either side of the mirror is not possible due to size and installation constraints the next best option is a light hung directly over the vanity.  It should be hung 75-80” above the floor.  In larger bathrooms the horizontal fixtures can be used in conjuncture with the vertical lights to give additional overall illumination to the space.  A bare minimum of 150 watts of light should be used in lighting the vanity it is always safer to error on the side of too much wattage.  In cases where the home owner finds that there is too much light either lower wattage bulbs can be used or a dimmer installed.  It is always easier to reduce the wattage of a fixture once it’s installed that to figure out how to increase the amount of light if the fixture installed is inadequate.

For additional bathroom lighting, lighting in the shower and over the bath tub, recessed is the ideal option.  For the shower and tub make sure a wet rated model is selected.  The only place recessed is not ideal is over the vanity, It has a tendency to cast shadows onto the face making personal grooming tasks such  as shaving an make up application to be more difficult.

Some clients prefer a little more glamour over the tub and may request a hanging fixture such as a crystal chandelier, or pendant light.  Make sure any hanging fixture you choose is UL approved for a wet rating otherwise for safety and code reasons should not be used in that application.

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Using Ceiling Fans Correctly

June 2nd, 2010 · Lighting Tips

As summer approaches many of us are trying to find ways to cool our living and work spaces effectively but affordably. Replacing an existing ceiling light with a ceiling fan could be the answer.  Ceiling fans are extremely energy efficient, using less energy than a 100 watt light bulb, and they can reduce the demands on both our air conditioners and furnaces.

In the summer the air movement created by a fan can make a 79 degree room feel like it’s  72 degrees, and by raising the thermostat you could save up to 30% on your air conditioning bills.   According to one energy company the average fan costs 1 cent an hour to operate in comparison to 16 cents for a room air conditioner.  Since heat rises in the winter reverse the blades direction to push warm air down which can also help you save on your heating bill. In addition to their economic benefits ceiling fans can add style and design to any room.  The design and finish’s they are currently available in are endless and can fit any décor.

Here is a list of tips to keep in mind when selecting a ceiling fan.

The pitch of the blade determines the amount of air that is moved, the greater the pitch the greater amount of air movement.  Typically you want the blade pitch to fall between 12-15 degrees.  A  14 degree blade pitch will move between 8,000 to 9,000 cubic feet of air per minute.  The higher the blade pitch the higher the quality of the motor needs to be.  If the motor is not sturdy enough to accommodate the blade pitch the life of the fan will be greatly reduced.

The blades of the fan should be anywhere between 7 to 10 feet above the floor.  For projects with high ceilings purchase an additional down rod to accommodate the additional length needed. The chart below gives down rod length suggestions.

Ceiling Height    8′     9′    10′    11′    12′    13′   14′   15′     16′+

Rod Length        3″   6″     12″   18″    24″   36″   48″   60″    72″

Always remember to keep recessed cans 6 inches to 1 foot away from the tip of the fan blades.  This will eliminate the strobe effect that not only can be annoying but also cause headaches.

When selecting a fan you what to keep in mind how the fan will look in relation to the size of the room. The size of the fan is more of an aesthetic question than that of performance.  A smaller 30”-42” high quality ceiling fan can move as much air if not more than a low quality 60” fan.  The larger the room the larger the fan.  If maximum air movement is the objective,  make sure the size and motor fit the room, and if the room size requires use multiple fans to achieve maximum air flow.

Room Size   6′x8′        8′x10′      10′x10′     12′x14′    16′x20′>

Fan Size     29″-42″     40′-50″    42″-52″    50″-60″    50″-60″

# of Fans         1                1                 2                 2                3

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Minka Group – The Art of Decorative Lighting & Fans

February 16th, 2010 · Energy Star Lighting, Modern Lighting

Who says you can’t be all things to all people? The Minka Group family of businesses offers decorative lighting and fans to serve any style, function or price point. Products from the Minka Group are available under the brand names Minka-Lavery®, Metropolitan™, Ambience®, Minka-Aire®, The Great Outdoors® and George Kovacs®. Each brand offers the same quality and workmanship that are synonymous with the Minka name.

Here are just a few items from each brand that illustrate the breadth of assortment & superior design:

Minka-Lavery offers an extensive collection of creative designs and timeless classics. Their collections include chandeliers, flush & semi flush lighting, bathroom lighting, pendant lighting and outdoor lighting. Hundreds of Energy Star certified fixtures are available for indoor & outdoor use. If you are looking for portable lamps & décor, you will now find Ambience® under the Minka-Lavery brand.

Minka Lavery

Minka Group   The Art of Decorative Lighting & FansMinka Group   The Art of Decorative Lighting & FansMinka Group   The Art of Decorative Lighting & Fans

Belcaro Five Light ChandelierAgilis Black Semi Flush Ceiling Light Cashelmara Chrome Four Light Bath Fixture

Ambience by Minka-Lavery offers timeless design, style, and function in lighting, mirrors and decorative accessories. Ambience offers affordable fashion that ranges from pieces that are highly ornate and traditional, to pieces that are sleek & contemporary.


Prussian Gold TableMetropolitan Cherry Floor LampBrushed Nickel Table Lamp

Minka-Aire – “The art of air management.” Fans are offered in a broad range of unique designs that utilize form, function and fashion. They offer fans that are not only great looking and powerful, but are also extremely quiet.

Minka Aire

Supra 44-In. Oil Rubbed Bronze Ceiling Fan with Medium Maple Blades42-Inch Gyro Wet Indoor Outdoor Oil Rubbed Bronze Ceiling FanConcept II Flush 44-Inch Ceiling Fan

Metropolitan Lighting offers antique reproduction lighting fixtures from alabaster, brass, bronze, iron, wood and mouth blown glass.  They offer the perfect fixtures to add classic elegance & romance to your space.


Vintage Six-Light Clear Glass Crystal Chandelier Vintage One-Light Wall SconceMontparnasse Flush Mount Ceiling Light

George Kovacs has been known for high quality, contemporary lighting for more than 50 years. Simplicity, subtle sophistication and clean lines help to define the George Kovaks style.

George Kovacs

Kimono Five-Light Chandelier- Antique BronzeCounter Weights Brushed Nickel Trestle Pendant Bath Art Chrome One-Light Bath with Case Etched Opal Glass

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