Monday, January 13th, 2014

by Littman Bros Lighting

LED Bulbs

So you think you’re going green? You recycle, eat organic, turn off your lights and even switched them to compact fluorescents (CFLs) to conserve energy. But are CFLs still the best choice when trying to conserve energy? Replacing fluorescent bulbs with LEDs is a good step towards the green direction.

A CFL equivalent to 60 watts saves about $55 a year in energy costs while an equivalent LED bulb saves $185 – even the best CFLs only last 15 thousand hours and when they burn out they require special care. CFLs contain a small amount of mercury, which is toxic and bad for the environment. Still think you are green? Most LEDs last 50 thousand hours before losing intensity; this is adds up to about 27 years when it is on for an average of five hours a day. No maintenance, no trash and lower energy costs – LEDs are the light source of the future.

Remember when switching from incandescent or compact fluorescents to LEDs, make sure you look at the lumen output of the LED bulb you are switching to; often times LED bulbs, depending on the lumens, don’t provide a sufficient light output compared the CFLs or incandescent bulbs.

Tuesday, December 31st, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

Outdoor Lighting Checklist

Using different light sources to layer your exterior lighting is a key component when lighting your outdoor space. Layering your outdoor lighting design, from outdoor wall sconces to path lights and spotlights add depth and interest to your home without appearing like a landing strip. No single light source can perform all the lighting functions needed around your landscape. Here is a checklist to assist in creating a lighting scheme for your landscape that provides safety, security and style:

1. Plan the lighting for your exterior patio, kitchen, water features or sculptures first. An effective lighting design accentuates your landscape and provides useful lighting for you to enjoy your space.

2. Try to get everyone involved in planning the lighting scheme for your exterior space; this would include the homeowner, contractor, landscape professional and lighting designer. If you are a DIY type of person, keep all hats in mind, this will ensure a cohesive design where all elements work seamlessly with one another.

3. Create a lighting plan that works from all angles; when you are in your garden, looking at your house from the street, or inside your house enjoying your landscape.

4. Your exterior coach lights flanking the entrances to your home should be the only light sources that are seen. Everything else should be soft washes of light that create a calming environment without blinding your guests. Shielded light fixtures with light directed up or down will create this effect.

5. Be mindful of the color quality of light on your plants – incandescent fixtures create a warm light that becomes even warmer when they are dimmed. This can make your plants look sickly, so try a daylight blue color correcting filter to eliminate the amber quality. You can also opt for LED landscape fixtures which do not change color when dimmed and will save you money in operating costs.

6. Locate light switches by all major entrances – front door, garage, etc. A “panic” switch in your master bedroom is also a great security measure for you outdoor lighting.

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.

Friday, December 6th, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

Outdoor Lighting

Outdoor lighting is about safety, navigation, and definition of space and when implemented correctly your exterior lighting will define your entrances and offer a smooth transition from your interior space.

It should be noted that entrances should be well lit with wall or hanging lanterns – this will give you ample light for you and your guests. Layers of light are just as important on your exterior as they are in your home and the architectural details, corners of the home and pillars, should be washed with light; landscape spotlights or security lights placed close to the home will give this effect. These select tips will highlight your home and create definition.

Deck Lighting

Lighting allows your guests to navigate through areas of your home and yard by creating visual cues to a destination point. Light a walkway with path lights, step lights or indirect LED strip lighting. This will ensure you and your guests feel welcome and arrive safely. How does lighting give clues that you have reached your destination? Using multiple, low intensity light sources creates layers and interest, making a place more inviting. Indirect lighting should be used to create general lighting in the space, which can be achieved with LED strip lighting under a ledge or retaining wall. Step lights or deck lights can also be used to create small pools of light, which truly adds to the dimension of the space. Path lighting can continue into a space, highlighting low lying flowers and try to place spotlights on tall landscaping and architectural details. If there is a fountain, statue or fireplace these should be up-lit with spotlights or well lights. When these soft light sources are used in combination with each other they create a warm, welcoming environment with interest and definition.

Monday, November 25th, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

eurofase-micro-led-pendant

Eurofase is certainly one of the leading manufacturer’s in LED lighting applications as they have made sure to offer their customers a widespread collection of LED products that are efficient and of course fashion-forward design’s in lighting; they combine trendsetting designs with LED capabilities.

Eurofase LED lighting is featured in a variety of their newer decorative collections, such as Aria and Micro, as well as recessed lighting, outdoor lighting, like their line of Axiom LED outdoor uplights, and under cabinet lighting; the best part about these products from Eurofase is that they are functional while still having a very contemporary and fashionable design.

axiom-led-uplight

Eurofase makes sure to have the most talented designers on their team who do the most thorough research on LED innovations and technology.

According to eurofase.com, designers at Eurofase have the most complex yet gratifying jobs. Eurofase has said, “Not only does it take a lot of creativity and meticulous detailing, but also a lot of research.”

A lot of research on not only LED technology but market trends as well, in order to stay ahead of the curve of this ever-changing market.

Eurofase has recently introduced a new Fundamental Architectural catalog that includes an extensive line of LED concepts and designs in a variety of unique and fashionable styles. Eurofase is making sure to continue their presence in the LED market with novel ideas an even more innovative designs for the future, providing the industry with products that are truly a synthesis of technology and purpose, which of course staying trendy.

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

Fredrick Ramond Zen Collection

Hinkley Lighting is at the forefront of LED lighting and not only provides consumers with a variety of LED products but also incorporates beautiful design aesthetics to their products as well.
Hinkley offers more than 100 LED options in their landscape lighting line of deck, path, step, spot and brick lights, their very functional line of the Nexus LED landscape lighting system as well as interior lighting styles in a variety of eco-friendly textiles.

Fredrick Ramond Loft Pendant

Some of Hinkley’s newer LED products unite the brands classic, stylish and chic designs with the modern-day technology of LED lighting.

Hinkley’s luxury line of Fredrick Ramond Lighting came out with a collection of pendants known as Loft; each Loft pendant is made in the U.S. from select grade solid maple, walnut or cherry wood and each includes an energy efficient LED light source. Fredrick Ramond also came out with the series of Zen products that “is the ultimate in eco-chic.” Each Zen fixture is constructed with sustainable, environmentally friendly bamboo and is made in the U.S. while utilizing an LED light source.

Along with these newer collections, Hinkley continues to grow its long line of LED landscape lighting while continuing to create cost-effective LED lighting in chic styles; they hope to make the majority of their fixtures LED compatible by next year. Hinkley Lighting is making sure they have a vast impact on the LED lighting market with all of their products in the coming years.

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

Kichler Lighting introduced a new line of LED landscape lighting at this summer’s International Lighting Market and this new line, known as Radiax, definitely generated a lot of interest among industry professionals.

Kichler Radiax

Kichler’s Radiax LED landscape technology has the greatest lumens per watt in the industry; its design utilizes innovative optics that increases light output while consuming fewer watts. This new technology drives more output from their LED chips creating a more focused light at a cooler temperature. While the chips themselves run cooler, this does not affect the lights color.

The Radiax, a Kichler exclusive design, controls the color rendering and offers their lights in three different Kelvins. The new Radiax design takes a traditional 75watt PAR 30 fixture that costs about $40 to power a year and drops the cost output to $11.53 a year with this novel lighting technology – this cost comparison is focusing on energy alone. According to kichler.com, lumens are an enhanced indication of a light’s brightness.

“..At Kichler, we’ve engineered a solution to get the most lumens with the least amount of wattage. Our Radiax TM optic drives increased output from our LED chips, creating more focused light at a cooler operating temperature.”

Kichler’s Radiax truly focuses on how the light makes consumers feel as well as the type environment they want.

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

LBL Mademoiselle Pendant

The summer 2013 Dallas Market Lighting Show just wrapped up and this year was overtaken by two very different looks. On one hand you have the restoration and simple classic style and on the other there are the more modern sculptural pieces. These fun and modern pieces that have little in common with the conventional chandelier are being referred to as “Generation Z.”

Crystorama Solstice Pendant

The statement pieces are reminiscent of sculptures and jewelry; some of this movement is fueled by the switch to LED lighting. Fixtures are no longer confined to the dimensions of a standard light bulb. These fixtures can be thin and sleek, more about form than function. LBL’s Mademoiselle collection is a great example of this; the body is a sleek linear line that houses a slim LED light source. It is then draped in more than 30 feet of metal links that incorporate Swarovski Elements crystal accents.

Sonneman’s Starflex is another collection that is influenced by the evolvement of LED. This fixture is composed of select arms of thin LEDs that flex into different positions, giving the fixture multiple looks and silhouettes. Corbett and Troy Lighting have a few more artistic and sculptural pieces in this year’s collection too; the Poetry collection from Corbett features a basic shape of an orb which is the definitely a popular form in lighting this year. It is a sculpture made of hand crafted iron rods with piercing delicate and beautifully finished silver leaf planes. Solstice by Crystorama bridges the two styles – the collection is sculptural in shape but encompasses a simple classic chandelier within.

Thursday, May 16th, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

CFL Bulbs

The introduction of the CFL into residential homes has brought some great attention to color temperature; before the compact fluorescent light bulbs were popular, there were not as many options in color temperature for bulbs. The incandescent bulb has been THE residential light bulb for decades, which produces a warmer light at 2700k and has become the color we associate with warm and inviting homes. Light color is measured on a temperature scale referred to as Kelvin (k) – the higher the Kelvin the cooler the light output. Bulbs with a Kelvin of 3500 or lower will output an amber hue, 3500 to 4100 will produce a white hue and anything over 4100 will look blue.

Today there are so many light bulb choices that you truly can find a color that matches your preference. Although incandescent bulbs are typically at 2700k, they now offer bulbs with a purple coating; this unique coating filters out the dull, yellow rays revealing truer colors. Halogen light bulbs are more like natural light than the incandescent bulb at 2800k. When CFLs were first introduced they were only offered in cooler tones, once they were able to manufacture the energy efficient bulbs at 2700k to 3000k CFLs became more popular. This growing popularity is because we have come to associate warmer light with a welcoming home. LED bulbs are the next big thing in energy saving technology, which are becoming increasingly popular light bulbs as their color temperature lowers into the 2700k to 3000k range and slowly become more affordable.

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

by Littman Bros Lighting

House of Troy Picture Light

LEDs are the newest and most talked about energy saving technology for lighting today – they use approximately one tenth of the power of an incandescent fixture. This amount of energy savings is not only great for the environment and your wallet but this new technology also influences the designs of light fixtures.

There are fewer design limitations with the use of LED lighting; the lower energy consumption frees the light fixture from being attached to a power source. Fixtures are now able to be completely mobile without sacrificing their operational time and batteries last so much longer. LEDs are also so much smaller than even halogens, which allows for sleeker, thinner and smaller light fixtures.

A great example of LEDs influencing fixture design is the Slim-Line LED Picture Light by House of Troy. This wonderfully versatile picture light features a cylinder that holds the LED bulbs and it is approximately one inch in diameter and it runs off of 4C batteries. Older picture lights like this were much bulkier in design and shape, sitting at approximately three inches in diameter and they only ran for about six to eight hours before the batteries needed to be changed.