Crystal is considered by many to bring good luck and has always been prized for the way light shines through it showing every colour of the spectrum. Now you can add this feature to your home no matter what the style or type.
A crystal ceiling light is usually a strong frame housing the light bulbs surrounded or dressed with cut crystal. This frame needs to be strong as lead crystal is very heavy. The crystals refract the light produced and spreads a myriad of sparkling colour into your room.
Lead crystal has been around for a long time and is greatly prized for its lighting properties. Examples of Egyptian leaded glass have been found dating back 3000 years. By the 12th century, the Egyptians were producing very high quality lead crystal. Today, Egypt produces nearly 80% of all lead crystal with some of the highest quality crystal still being produced there.
Lead crystal is basically molten sand mixed with lead. The sand makes glass whilst the lead adds the sparkle that we associate with lead crystal glass. The more lead that is added to the mix, the higher the quality of the crystal. It is widely recognised that 24% lead content and over gives the best quality crystal. Once produced the crystals are then faceted like a diamond so that they maximise the rainbow effect that the light produces when it shines through.
Louis XIV is believed to be the first person to use crystal lighting in his palace at Versailles in the 14th century. He commissioned the first large drop chandeliers made from solid gold surrounded by masses of heavy lead crystal.
The weight of the crystal can be considerable. Higher quality crystal is considerably heavier that crystal of a lower quality. On larger crystal fittings the crystal can account for 75% of its weight, amounting to 20Kg or more.
Today there are many styles and finishes available at a price to suite everyone, so it is very easy to install a crystal light in almost any room. Fortunately they no longer need to be made from solid gold. Modern manufacturing techniques mean that they can now be plated or painted in almost any finish imaginable.
Some people are put off by the thought that the crystals have to be removed every few weeks to be cleaned. Nothing could be further from the truth. It is really quite simple to keep it looking as good as the day you bought it. There is a full article in our buying guides that explains how to clean crystal light fittings.
If you require any further help or advice on crystal ceiling lights, please contact us for friendly, honest and down to earth advice.