Whether you are building a new home or just giving your current home a makeover, today's consumer has an almost unlimited amount of lighting options to choose from. How does one decide, between all the companies vying for your business? To make your decision making process simplier, consider these 5 factors:
Quality of Materials
The best craftsman in the world cannot produce a lighting fixture that will endure the test of time, if they start with inferior raw materials. No amount of skill and artistic ability can compensate for substandard product components. If you are shopping for metal lighting, consider where it was manufactured, steel/metal products produced in USA, Canada & Europe tend to be of higher quality than those produced in Asia. If you are shopping for wood lighting fixtures, consider the type of wood being used; hardwoods have much more strength and durability than, softwoods like pine and bamboo. For lighting fixtures, solid wood products tend to be superior to manufactured woods, such as partical board, and wood veneers.
Quality of Workmanship:
After you have narrowed the field by sorting out lighting manufacturers who use inferior quality product components, consider the quality of workmanship. Fixtures produced by inexperienced laborers, or on assembly lines where quantity is the number one priority tend to have visible defects. Does the fixture look cheap, or inferior? Are seams and corners flawless? Even the untrained eye can spot major flaws in workmanship. To produce a superior quality lighting fixture requires, years of experience and it requires time to do it right. This can be done in assembly line manufacturing facilities as long as quantity is not the number one goal, however often times you will find handcrafters are higher skilled and pay more attention to detail.
Amount of Illumination Required:
Light fixtures can be made of the highest quality materials, and be made by the most the best craftsman, but if they aren't designed to produce the type and amount of light needed for your application, you will be disappointed. With the introduction of LED lighting getting a suffcient amount of light from a fixture has become easier, but you still need to consider how much light your application requires and how much the fixture produces. This article may be helpful. How Much Light Do I Need?
As you consider your lighting options, your budget will help you to narrow your choices. However, be careful about cutting corners when it comes to lighting, poorly illuminated homes create an uninviting atomosphere for you and your guests. The saying you get what you pay for applies well to light fixtures. Poor quality fixtures cost less to produce and therefore they can retail in box stores for less than half the cost of a quality light fixture. Purchase the highest quality fixtures your budget allows, the beauty and proper illumination they add will be well worth the price.
Last but not least, consider appearance, a stunning light fixture can be a decor focal point. The type of material the fixture is constructed of can help you accomplish the look you are trying to achieve. Wrought iron fits in a broad spectrum of decor styles from primitive lodge styles to class and elegance, crystal shouts style..., wood chandeliers are extremely versatile, from country/primitive, to elegant colonial style, to southwest and lodge, even modern/contemporary. Because of the vast array of wood species and finishes available wood chandeliers fit into most any decor scheme and tend to create a warm inviting atmosphere in any setting.