A - Au Courant Interiors stunning handcrafted jeweled motifs are driven by a love of craft and physical materials, and the hands-on approach to creating chandeliers.
Q - What is a handcrafted chandelier?
A - A chandelier is defined as a branched, often ornate, lighting fixture suspended from a ceiling. The word chandelier is from the old French meaning “candle holder.”
Handmade processes and aesthetics have been returning to design for a decade or so. Creatively, we have reached something of a watershed. This return to humanistic and tactile sensibilities – a partial reversal of modernism’s sterility and machine-made aesthetic – sits alongside a new wave of technology that places control and ingenuity back in the hands of the individual.
Q - What are chandeliers used for?
A - Chandeliers are a great source of general illumination, and the use of a dimmer switch (look for the special controls needed for non-incandescent bulbs) can create just the mood and atmosphere you are looking for – whether it's a gentle cascade of light over a romantic dinner party or a bright and lively glow for a family dinner. Historically, chandeliers have usually been found in the dining room. New designs, such as mini-chandeliers, and forward-thinking design trends have moved the chandelier out of the dining room and into the rest of the house.
Q - Where should I consider using a chandelier?
Vanities or bathrooms
Large great rooms
Q - How do I determine the proper chandelier width for a foyer?
A - This is pretty easy. Just add together the length and width dimensions of the foyer area. What you get is the proper diameter for most any chandelier you’ll need there.
Example: The area is 12′ x 16′. Added together this equals 28′. Therefore, the foyer's chandelier diameter should be approximately 28” in width.
Q -What about the height of the chandelier?
A - This depends on the height of your foyer ceiling. Always keep in mind that the bottom of the chandelier should be at least 7′ from the floor. That may mean you need a flush mount (mounts directly against the ceiling), a semi-flush (also known as close-to-ceiling fixture, which hangs a few inches below the ceiling) or, if you have a tall ceiling, a 2-tier or 3-tier chandelier. If there is a window above the front doors, center the chandelier so it can be seen from outside. If the foyer is extra-large, you may also want to include wall sconces in the foyer. Install them against the wall approximately 60” from the floor and 6′-8′ apart.
Q - How do I determine the proper size chandelier for over a dining room table?
A - Here, as in the foyer, the dimensions of the room dictate the width (diameter) of the chandelier. If that doesn’t appear to fit because of the size of your table, use half the table width for the chandelier’s diameter. The bottom of the chandelier should be no lower than 30″ above the tabletop.
Q - When should I use a dimmer switch?
A - Although dimmers can be used in every room, we put this question here because the dining room will be the location of many varying activities. Intimate dinner party? Dim the lights. Children working at the table on their homework? Bring up the wattage!
Q - Will a chandelier be enough light?
A - You should make sure the chandelier has enough wattage. Multiply the length times the width of the room. Then, multiply that number times 1.5. That gives you the amount of wattage you need to light the room properly for general illumination. Example: A room is 12′ x 16′ (12 x 16 = 192). Then multiply 192 x 1.5 = 288 watts. That means an 8-light chandelier using 40-watt bulbs would give 320 watts, which is even more light than needed. If you’re not comfortable with the amount of light, you can add wall sconces, portable lamps or recessed lights to add more light and amb