Clear winners – why, where and how to hang clear blown glass pendant lights

clear winnersFor timeless style, nothing beats a pure, clear blown glass pendant. Here’s a guide to how to use clear ceiling lights, and what makes them so special…

Brass and glass go beautifully in lanterns, and chandeliers are spectacular – but sometimes you want the pure stuff. At Pooky we’ve become aficionados of beautiful, hand-blown (well, actually mouth-blown) glass: it has that lovely quality of feeling crafted and handmade, but also very smart.

So if you’ve never considered hanging a whacking great piece of glass above your dining table, or a trio of dinky pendants along a corridor – here’s an expert guide to the why, where and how of clear glass pendants.

Why choose clear blown glass pendants?

It’s easy to fall in love with blown glass – here are just a few reasons why…

1) They work with any kind of interior look

The simplicity of clear glass means that a pendant works in virtually any kind of interior, from very eclectic, maximalist rooms to minimalist and modernist, and from vibrant colour-fests to all neutral schemes.

2) Clear glass pendants can ‘open up’ a space

If you want to make a small space feel bigger – or indeed make a big space feel even bigger – then a classic interior design trick is to use glass: reflective mirrors of course, but also transparent furniture (such as glass coffee tables) and fixtures. A clear glass pendant spreads light around but doesn’t ‘interrupt’ the eye’s view across the room, opening up the space.

An extra tip: use a long pendant flex to emphasise vertical space if your room lacks square footage (and for even more tips, see our guide How to use lighting to make a room look bigger).

Saladin pendant light in clear glass... We don't think that Maths teachers had a name for this shape, but sometimes shapes just work!

3) They bring form and shape into a space

Because a clear glass object has no colour, its other attributes, notably texture and shape, are more prominent. ‘Form’ is a key but often underappreciated element of interior design: a clear glass pendant gives you a chance to bring some really interesting geometry into your space.

4) They exude craft and artistry

Traditional glass-blowing is a highly skilled craft, and that artisanal aspect is really apparent in a pendant. Highest quality molten glass is individually blown into a mould, and then finished with great care and skill. The result is an object in your room that feels like a unique, crafted artefact, because that’s exactly what it is.

5) They’re timeless

Clear glass pendants are completely trend-proof, because their beauty consists in their simplicity and timeless elegance. They’re pleasing on the eye when unlit, and just lovely, glowing balls of light when turned on. You can pass them on to your grandchildren...

Bastille pendant in clear glass - with its ridges and furrows, there is nothing straightforward about making the Bastille - it takes considerable skill and finesse, but the result is most definitely worth it.


Where (and how) to hang clear glass pendants

You can put clear glass in any room, but here are some of the classic spots for maximum impact…

1) Over a dining table

Hang a single pendant light over a small or round dining table. As a rule of thumb for the height, you want the bottom of the light to be about 30 to 34 inches above the table if you have an 8ft ceiling. If your ceiling is higher than that, add three inches in pendant height for every foot of ceiling height – so if you have a 9ft ceiling, the pendant should be about 33 to 37 inches above the table.

See more clever ideas in our post Tips for lighting a dining room.

rumeliRumeli pendant light in clear glass - Similar in shape to some wine demijohns, the suggestion of drinking vessel means it looks splendid in a kitchen or kitchen-diner

2) Across a kitchen island

The classic pendant arrangement is a row of three pendants, hanging around 30-36 inches from the top of a kitchen island and spaced around two feet apart. (But you can play around with different heights and use pairs instead of three. Read more ideas in our guide How to light a kitchen island - inspiration and ideas for pendants and more and check out the Equilibrium rise and fall pendant set for inspiration - it’s quite something!) 

3) In an entrance hall

Go for a larger clear glass pendant to make an entrance hall space feel bigger and brighter. The hallway or porch is a good place to go for something unusual and striking, for an instant statement. (See more tips in our guide How to light an entrance hall.)

Pecadillo pendant light in glass with brass. Glass with a difference:  original and stylish, the Pecadillo is a cascade of classy glassy joy.

4) Along a corridor

Smaller glass pendants are gorgeous when strung along a corridor in threes or fours. There’s something about following a row of lights that creates an almost magical feeling.


5) In the centre of the sitting room

There’s nothing quite like a beautiful statement light in the middle of a sitting room for providing a focal point. If your taste doesn’t quite extend to show-stopping chandeliers, then a hand blown glass pendant is a lovely, subtle alternative. Go as big as you can, however… (See more in our guide Sitting room lighting - ideas and inspiration from the interior design experts.)

Zindarella pendant in clear glass (also image top). It's all about the shape!

One final tip… don’t forget the bulb

One notable feature about clear glass pendants is that they expose your lightbulb – so don’t forget to pick a bulb that looks good. These days great-looking LED bulbs are very affordable as well as long-lasting and efficient. See Pooky's handpicked range of beautiful lightbulbs here.

Browse Pooky's full range of clear glass pendant lights here.


See also:

How to clean glass pendant lights 
How to light a kitchen effectively and beautifully
How to light a kitchen island - inspiration and ideas for pendants and more
Tips for lighting a dining room