Friday, December 27th, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

Design Pro LED Kitchen

LED tape lighting is an excellent product for both accent and task lighting applications in various rooms within your home. It is roughly only one quarter of an inch wide and about an eighth of an inch long; the size allows the tape to be hidden practically anywhere that you want to create a glow of light without showing a fixture. LED strip lights can be used as accent lighting, which adds drama to a space by creating visual interest. Accent lighting draws attention to specific objects or areas in a space like shelving, nooks, and glass cabinets.

LED tape lighting is very easy to install – all that is needed is a hidden power source so that you can store the driver out of sight. The low voltage wire that runs from the driver to the starting point is so tiny and inconspicuous; it is barely noticeable. The low-voltage wire can also run from one lit space to the next should you have a break in areas. The tape itself is a peel and stick application, just make sure to dry fit the tape before installation.

When installing LED tape lights, make sure to get high quality LED tape like Kichler’s Low Output LED Tape in order to get both the energy savings and longevity of the diodes; lower quality LED strips have been known to have diodes burn out prematurely. The great benefits of LEDs are that the power consumption is a fraction of incandescent and there is no maintenance with bulbs that need to be chained out. Take advantage of both benefits and get a system that will last.

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

Living Room Lighting

Lighting is no longer just about brightening up a space, it has become so much more than that; it is about layering and balance; positioning your light source. You can have a room filled with all different types of lighting and still be missing the mark. Some rooms would benefit from lighting that draws attention and creates style within a space, while others need subtle fixtures that are restrained and delicate. There are also the different types of lighting that help to develop the layers within a space – ambient, task, accent and decorative lighting.

Ambient lighting is the most general lighting, creating the overall, general light within a space. This general lighting can be accomplished with sunlight, cans or lamps. Another common type of lighting is task lighting, which would be lamps on a desk or pendants over an island. The next two types of lighting create depth and interest in a space, accent and decorative lighting; accent lighting is used to accentuate an object or element in a space, think picture lights over paintings or puck lights in glass cabinets. Decorative lighting is purely ornamental; one of the most common applications is cove lighting above cabinets or in tray ceilings.

Getting a feel for the different layers of light is one thing – but how do you use them in a space? This all depends on what room you are trying to light as well as the look that you want to create. Here are some general guidelines for each space:

Dining Room Lighting

In a living room or family room you will want to light three of the four corners of the space, this can be accomplished using a combination of table and floor lamps, wall sconces and overhead lighting. Shaded lamps will create good reading light for the direct area while torchiere lamps will light up more of the room. Wall sconces and overhead lighting should be put on dimmers; this gives you more control over the mood and function of the room.

In a dining room the main source of light is over the table and should be put on a dimmer and lowered for entertaining purposes; this dimmer light promotes socializing because it is calming and flattering. Additional lighting should be placed on the edges of the room using torchiere lamps on a buffet table or accent wall sconces.

Ambient and task lighting are most important in the kitchen to assist with cooking. Many people congregate in the kitchen while entertaining and that is why accent and decorative lighting really help accentuate the space. Recessed lighting or an overhead semi-flush mount can create a great amount of ambient lighting; be sure to place these on a dimmer so that they can be nice and bright while cooking and dimmed while entertaining. Pendant and under cabinet lighting create additional lighting where tasks are performed, these can also be dimmed down while the overhead lights are off creating a backdrop while the party is perhaps eating in the formal dining space.

I have been asked if recessed lighting is sufficient in a bathroom – the answer is absolutely not. While you will want recessed lighting in your shower (and if the bathroom is large enough throughout the space), it is not good lighting for applying makeup and is far from flattering when you look in the mirror. Wall sconces are the absolute best for a bathroom; they create a warm flattering wash on your face. When wall sconces are not possible, a vanity light is the next best thing.

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

Kitchen Lighting

The real estate collapse has caused more people to stay where they are and renovate instead of going on the hunt for something totally new. Whether people are renovating to make their house into their dream home or prepping to sell when the market turns, there is no doubt there is a rise in updating and renovating the home. Today, we find that the most common rooms for renovation are kitchens and baths; they are the selling features of the home and therefore create the most equity and return on investment.

Lighting is an important part of any renovation project – many older spaces, especially kitchens do not have enough lighting and a dark and shadowy space can make a home feel dated, cramped and dirty. Enhancing your home with the right amount of both task and ambient lighting can add to the perceived square footage by brightening and lightening up a space. Recessed lighting is a great way to create even ambient lighting; recessed lighting in a kitchen should be placed around your cabinets and workspace and should be placed according to their size. For example, six feet apart for 6 inch cans, five feet for 5 inch and so on. Smaller, more modern recessed lights should be placed closer together because Halogen and LED bulbs have a narrower spread. Under cabinet lighting is also a great addition for task lighting and eliminates shadows created by the upper cabinets; self-adhesive LED strips are a great under cabinet solution as they are indiscreet and smaller in size. Energy efficient LED lighting draws four or fewer watts per foot and has an average life span of 40 thousand hours or 15 years of regular usage. Task lighting is also needed over any islands or peninsulas and can be achieved easily by using hanging pendants or mini pendants and doing so will also create some visual interest.

After adding additional lighting you will want to update your original fixtures: Dropping your center light fixture slightly (within 16 inches on an 8 foot ceiling) will allow a cast of up-light on your ceiling, which creates a softer ambient light that will combat any shadowing from the addition of the recessed lighting. Up lighting has also become the more desirable type of lighting over the kitchen dining area; you can achieve this through simple bowl fixtures or a chandelier, and don’t be afraid to dress up your lights with newer, elegant designs.

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

LED Under Cabinet Lights

Under cabinet lighting used to be hardwired toward the back against the back-splash in a kitchen area of the home, the light was then angled forward towards the front of the counter top and also into the kitchen. If you have a close table or seating area to this spot in your kitchen, this under cabinet light would go directly into your eyes; this direct harsh light can be avoided with LED or Xenon strips mounted towards the front of your cabinet with the light directed straight down at your work surface. The lumen output of the LEDs is equivalent to the fluorescent lights but they do not have the same harsh glare – the LEDs seem to appear not as bright as the fluorescent’s because they lack this glare. Place a white object underneath both fluorescent and LED under cabinet lights and you will see that the light output is equivalent and the quality of the LED light may even be a bit warmer and have a truer color spectrum.


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Wednesday, July 17th, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

Kichler LED Tape

LED Tape lighting has various applications; any small space that needs ambient lighting is the perfect spot for these tiny flexible lights. LED is now bright enough for task lighting over kitchen counters and desks; it is a flawless under cabinet lighting solution. Unlike halogens, LEDs will not get hot and warm your cabinets, adding that unnecessary heat. They also draw significantly less power and with a lifespan of 40,000 hours they are maintenance free.

One of the brightest under cabinet LED tape lights is from Kichler Lighting, and only draws 4 watts per foot. Kichler’s LED tape lights, like the other’s on the market, is dimmable provided you purchase a dimmable driver. Drivers are a necessary component for tape lighting as they run on 12 volts unlike the 120 volts that run through your house. When designing or remodeling your kitchen, place power in each section of independent cabinets – this power source could be located above the fridge or microwave or in an accessible basement ceiling.

Kichler Under Cabinet Lighting

Most tape lighting is flexible and customizable for any kitchen. They are provided with cutting locations every 3 inches and various connectors to jump around appliances and breaks in the cabinets. What sets Kichler tape lighting apart from its competitors is the color temperature and light output; Kichler LED tape lighting comes in a few different color options: 2700K, 3000K and 4000K. If you like the warm glow of incandescent light bulbs go with the 2700K – 3000K is a true white and looks great on white back splashes. The 4000K is like the older LEDs, a nice cool white color.

Thursday, April 4th, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

Ambient Lighting

Lighting is no longer just about lighting up a space with general lighting, it has become so much more than that – designer lighting is meant to enhance a space and add purpose to your home. With the various kinds and styles of lighting come alternative lighting designs and variations other than general lighting or ambient lighting. Other common stylish lighting distinctions are task lighting, which would be achieved with lamps on a desk or pendants over an island. Accent lighting and decorative lighting are two more types of lighting that create depth and interest in a space – accent lighting is used to accentuate an object or element in a space like picture lights over paintings or puck lights in glass cabinets; decorative lighting is purely ornamental, one of the most common applications is cove lighting above cabinets or in tray ceilings.

There are different designer lights that can create these various lighting types in a space, the most common being chandeliers and lamps. You can also consider using different style like flush and semi-flush fixtures that sit closer to the ceiling. For accent and task lighting, wall sconces are a great choice and add wonderful depth to your space and pin lights, which are small compact lights, are typically used for accent and decorative lighting. With your outdoor areas, consider wall lanterns or outdoor hanging lanterns to hang from the ceiling or wall. When picking out your designer lighting it is important to consider the function you want, size and materials of the light and how they will fit in with the current décor of the space.

Saturday, February 16th, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

Under Cabinet lighting not only adds a functionality of lighting that every area could use, but also adds that flair and luminescence that only a certain type of lighting can truly achieve. It adds an illumination that not all lighting can produce; it’s a unique style and distinction you’ll want to have. Add under-cabinet lighting and transform your kitchen, bathrooms, home offices and studies and well as laundry rooms. Here are a few ideas for you to choose from with the help of our lighting professionals at Littman Bros:

Under Cabinet Lighting

LED Under Cabinet Lighting

-Energy efficient and definitely the trend in under cabinet lighting right now, LED bulbs have an extremely long lifespan and offer a white-blue light or often replicate the warmer glow of incandescent bulbs.

-Although a little pricier than most bulbs, LEDs will save you energy and more money in the long run because of the longevity.

-Try LED tape lighting, stick lighting or spot lighting for your under cabinet areas

Fluorescent Under Cabinet Lighting

-Not quite up to par with LED under cabinet lighting, but fluorescent lighting is more efficient than incandescent and also lasts longer – this is why fluorescents are more expensive than incandescent bulbs.

-Your options are fluorescent puck lighting or linear under cabinet fixtures.

Incandescent Under Cabinet Lighting

-A popular choice in under cabinet lighting because of its affordable prices as well as easy to handle and offer a variety of options.

-They have a shorter lifespan and are not very energy efficient but xenon and halogen versions do last a bit longer and are considered a little more efficient.

-Choose from puck lighting, light strips or linear fixtures.

Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

by Littman Bros Lighting

We have made sure to keep up to date with adding new products to littmanbros.com and we couldn’t disappoint this month. We have added some very functional and stylish new products from AFX Lighting including the simplistic yet refined Enzo collection, the chic line of Dayton pendants and the Hilcrest collection.

AFX Enzo Mini Pendant

ENZO – The Enzo collection features a colorful assortment of mini pendants; each mini pendant has a specific color of nested frosted glass in a tinted elliptical glass that is suspended by an eight foot adjustable cord. The variation of colors and simple silhouettes allow for a very contemporary vibe in lighting. These mini pendants will work wonderfully over any kitchen island or bar top to add that required illumination those areas need so much.

AFX Dayton Pendant

DAYTON – This line of pendants known as the Dayton collection are truly sophisticated designs in lighting. They are finished in a chic satin nickel that shines against the clean white linen drum shades; a very contemporary shade design. Although the pendants feature contemporary silhouettes, they can be more of a transitional style that will be a great addition to any foyer kitchen or great room. The pendants are available in 24” and 30” diameters.

AFX Hilcrest Spotlight

HILCREST – The Hilcrest collection is unique because it features both pendants and spotlights, very creatively designed in both lighting types. The spotlights, or low voltage rail system, features spot heads that are fully adjustable and come in very unique colored glass options (they are available with or without the colored accents). They are designed to rotate 360 degrees and pivot 90 degrees and utilize energy efficient fluorescent 13W bulbs. The great part about Hilcrest is that you can use the spotlights in the same area as you choose to place the sleek and modern low voltage pendants. They feature colorful hand-blown glass accents of amber, green or white set against a satin nickel or bronze finish.

Check out even more AFX Lighting products just added to Littman Bros today. They are all just as stylish and elegant as the Enzo, Dayton and Hilcrest collections.

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

by Littman Bros Lighting

The kitchen is a space in the home that attracts the most people – cooking, eating, working and entertaining are all rolled up into one room in a household and that is why it is an area that should be adequately lit. Kitchen island lighting can be a hit or miss; more often than not island lighting should be noticeable and project ample light in a stylish and decorative manner.

Hudson Valley Beacon Kitchen Island Lights

Pendants and mini pendants are the top choice when choosing the right island lighting and if you want that lighting to truly pop and achieve that commanding and impressive appearance most kitchens need, here are a few examples you can go with:

• Hudson Valley’s collection of globed pendants from their Beacon Collection will add a unassuming yet industrial ambience as it complements an array of different styles.

• Achieve a truly rustic look with the Brindille Collection from Hubbardton Forge. The twig like look of the hammered metal stems of these mini pendants attracts the eye in a nominal way.

Schonbek Matrix Kitchen Island Lights

• The pronounced and romantic style of the Point Claire Collection from Kichler Lighting will create a contemporary appeal with the discernible crystal branches the glimmer against the pendants chrome buff. The white fabric shades add a hint of warmth alongside the crystal details.

• Create a dazzling touch to your kitchen island with the unassuming yet sparkling mini pendants from Schonbek’s Matrix Collection – each fixture comes with 50 unique and beautiful crystal colors. Although the crystals will standout, the petite size of the mini pendant can accomplish that subtle drama in the kitchen.

Friday, February 10th, 2012

by Littman Bros Lighting

This is the time of year when lighting manufacturers across the United States meet in Dallas, Texas to showcase their new releases at the National Lighting Convention. In a venue that more closely resembles a shopping mall than a convention, industry leaders set up beautifully elaborate installations and compete for the attention of retailers from around the nation. This year, the buzz surrounded some unique styles and designs.

Greek Key, a design generally associated with the world of fine art and ancient sculptures, has now found a seat as one of the most sought after styles of the year. Blending the style of ancient relics with the contemporary styles of modern lighting, light makers such as Uttermost, Eurofase, and Elk are creating beautiful lines of transitional lighting fixtures that are proving to be as popular as they are unique. Known as meander in the art world, these geometric borders were commonly found in the pottery of ancient Greece, the Shang Dynasty, and now the lighting in your home. While walking around the convention, it is noticeably incorporated in table lamps, floor lamps, wall sconces, and just about every other type of light.

Littman Bros. Lighting, based in Schaumburg, IL has been making their way to the Lighting Convention for over three decades. Noticing the varying trends every year, Owner Dan Littman said “It’s exciting to see what the newest industry trend is going to be. This year, everyone seems really excited about Mercury Glass Lamps.” While circulating the many booths at the show, Interior Designers, Store Owners, and Manufacturers seemed to be pretty infatuated with this unique style of lamp. Mercury glass is a blown glass with a double wall. Liquid silver or silvering solution is added for decorative affect. Companies such as Dimond and Kichler are using these manufacturing techniques to create beautifully colorful or clear glass pieces that absorb and reflect the illumination. It is really no surprise to see so much excitement about these lights.

Littman was also excited about the abundance of fixtures using new material such as leather. “I’m glad to see manufacturers are still being innovative with materials. It makes designers and customers excited to keep coming back to the store.”

Staying current with lighting trends at the Dallas Lighting Market has enabled Littman Bros. Lighting and littmanbros.com to continually be a premier source for designer lighting from around the world.