Monday, June 30, 2014

The Orb Chandelier from Ballard Designs

The new house is still a work in progress, but the last week has been really fun. We rented a U-Haul and vacated the storage unit we rented two years ago when Keith moved in with me. We set up the guest bedroom. And, best of all, we hosted our first overnight guests. Keith's parents visited us over the weekend and helped us with some home improvement projects. Keith was so proud to finally show his parents our house!

On Saturday afternoon, Keith and his father removed the big, ugly, off-center florescent light fixture in the kitchen and replaced it with the Orb Chandelier from Ballard Designs. I had my eye on it for months, and I finally snagged it on sale a few weeks ago. If you like it too, I have good news: It's easy to install. Keith and his Dad swagged it from a hook so they could hang it in the center of the room without moving the electric box. The chandelier is open and airy, and it provides a lot of light. The crystal at the bottom is the perfect finishing touch. I'm very happy with it.

A word about the orb chandelier: If you purchase it, or another fixture with completely bare bulbs, I strongly recommend frosted light bulbs. When we hung the fixture, we put in clear 40 watt GE Reveal bulbs. I normally love the clean white light you get from Reveal bulbs, but in this case the undiffused light was too harsh. It was almost painful to look directly at the chandelier. The next day, we put in 60 watt bulbs with frosted glass. The light is brighter, but much gentler on the eyes.

The bad news? When they removed the old fixture, we discovered that the ceiling used to be mauve. MAUVE! *shudder* It's a big room, and I can't imagine that gross pink spreading over the entire ceiling. Can you? Luckily, we have a lot of leftover white ceiling paint. Since we want the paint to go on nicely, we're spackling, waiting, sanding, and repeating. And repeating. And repeating.

Once the orb chandelier was up, Keith and John took down the eyesore of a chandelier that hung over the kitchen counter. Aside from being ugly, it was off-center, and it visually cut the room in half. I wanted two small, evenly spaced pendant lights over the counter instead. So they measured, cut a hole in the ceiling for the second light, went up in the attic, and added an electric box for the new pendant. They made it look so easy! I was in awe. There's just one problem: We haven't found the right pendants yet. Right now, we have a goofy pair of light bulbs sticking out of the ceiling. Progress isn't always pretty. But I'm glad the chandelier is gone. And hey, if you've seen any pretty pendants, please let me know.

My Mom made a big contribution to the house on Saturday, too. But I'll save that for tomorrow.

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