Gallery and Museum Lighting

Nov 26, 14 Gallery and Museum Lighting

Art is in the eye of the beholder, but without accurate lighting the beholder may miss the brushstrokes. Whether it’s a small scale gallery or a full-size museum, appropriate lighting ensures artwork is seen at its fullest enchantment.  Just recently, Michelangelo’s painted ceiling of the Sistine Chapel was updated using 7,000 LEDs. The ceiling was fading from sunlight exposure, and standard halogen lighting. With the switch to LEDs, this classic work of art is being seen in a completely different light.  So, if you’ve been considering changing the lighting in your gallery or museum, here are a few reasons to move towards LEDs.

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How to Light your Jewelry Display

Nov 05, 14 How to Light your Jewelry Display

Blue diamond engagement rings should speak for themselves. So should the other gorgeous jewels inside the cases across your shop. Yet even with unique hand cut diamonds and superb pricing, your merchandise still has to leave a ‘sparkle’ in the customers’ eyes. The most common sentence uttered in a jewelry store? “It just doesn’t shine enough.”

One of the biggest attractions when visiting a jewelry store is seeing the dazzle of the diamonds. Without that dazzle, no matter how lovely or interesting the jewels being sold are, individuals are not as attracted to the merchandise. Lighting plays an especially crucial role when discussing the “four C’s” of diamonds, which are clarity, cut, color and carat. For each of these qualities to be seen properly, diamonds must be placed in the proper lighting. Lighting in the store and inside of display cases should complement diamonds , and  entice buyers.

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Something Old, Something New, Something Lit, and Something Blue

Wedding Lighting with Color Splash

Wedding Lighting with Color Splash

June is quickly approaching; which means wedding season is upon us! Every girl dreams of the perfect wedding. Once the infamous question has been asked, the details of flowers, invitations, and napkins consume her mind. One minor detail that can make all the difference in the world is the lighting. Here are a few ideas to give your wedding lighting that extra sparkle.

Add a Splash of Color

While frantic about most things during wedding preparation, brides will always be sure of one thing, wedding colors. Why not enhance your wedding decor with colored bulbs? Whether you choose LED, halogen, or incandescent bulbs, adding a little touch of color to your wedding lighting will give your wedding originality. Place them in areas where you are looking for a colorful accent or back light.

Get Creative with Christmas Lights

What? Yes, use your Christmas light strings! Everyone has their Christmas light strings stored in their attic; get more use out of them! They may not seem like much, but they can make all the difference at your wedding. You can use them as an accent with tulle or line them along railings. Icicle light curtains are a stunning addition to wall decor, adding a distinguished ambiance with a simple elegance.

Charm with Candlelit Ambiance

The Uttermost cast iron and wood candelabra makes a beautiful, unique wedding centerpiece for reception tables. It has a rustic appeal with iron candle holders, finished in black, and a wooden base. Adorn it with white flowers or place a satin fabric around it to add a delicate touch to this stunning piece. For convenience, try battery operated LED candles with a flicker effect.

Dazzle with Twinkling Light Spheres

With a 12-foot lead wire, twinkling light spheres are a one-of-a-kind original! These intriguing light spheres come in a wide variety of colors and shapes, bringing a distinctive character to any festivity. The bulbs of the light spheres give off a stunning glitter effect, augmenting your wedding lighting. Hang them in a gazebo or off of trees, if you are outdoors, or over your reception tables, if you are indoors.

DIY Jar Lights

DIY Mason Jar

DIY Mason Jar

Jar lights make beautiful centerpieces for wedding reception tables. They are easy to make and add a simple, yet enchanting appeal to your wedding decor. Here’s what you need:

  • 0.5 gal. Mason Jar
  • Battery-Powered Light String
  • Rubber Band
  • Ribbon (color optional)
  • 3 8×8 in. Squares of Tulle (color optional)
  • Wire (optional)

Insert the light string into the jar. Place the tulle over the top of the jar and secure it with the rubber band. Tie the ribbon around the top of the jar to add ornamental detail. If you are interested in hanging it, wrap a thin wire around the top to create an arch; then tie the ribbon around it.

If you have any ideas you would like to share about wedding lighting, let us know in the comments section or send a message on Facebook, Twitter, or Google Plus!

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Beam Angle Explained

Jan 18, 13 Beam Angle Explained

Reflector bulbs are more than just floodlights and spotlights. Like any light bulb, they come in shapes and technologies to fit any application. Two cases in point are the PAR and the MR16. These common bulbs, whether halogen, CFL, or LED, are highly specified, containing engineered surfaces that control the beam of light to an angle so precise it takes seven different classifications just to explain their possible uses!

Very Narrow Spot (VNSP)

The very narrow spot is just like it sounds. At 7 degrees or less for an MR16 or 15 degrees or less for a PAR lamp, this reflector casts an intense, focused beam without a square inch of wasted light. Bulbs with a VNSP beam angle are often used to highlight a small statue or figure on display in a museum or in a jewelry store to make diamonds “pop.”

Narrow Spot (NSP)

landscape lights

Photo by RBerteig (flickr)

Like the very narrow spot, the narrow spot is most popular in commercial applications. At 8 to 15 degrees for an MR16 or 16 to 30 degrees for a PAR lamp, the reflector casts a beam slightly less focused than a VNSP. Look for bulbs with an NSP beam angle in retail settings highlighting a special or sale item or in landscape bullets illuminating a sign or garden feature.

Spot (SP)

The spot, though primarily used in commercial applications, also shows up in homes from time to time. At 16 to 22 degrees for an MR16 or 31 to 60 degrees for a PAR lamp, the reflector casts a medium-sized beam. Bulbs with an SP beam angle are used in stores to highlight a special or sale area or outdoors to illuminate an architectural feature.

Narrow Flood (NFL)

Fireplace Spot Light

Photo by ell brown (flickr)

Businesses and homeowners alike find uses for the narrow flood. At 23 to 32 degrees for an MR16 or 61 to 90 degrees for a PAR lamp, this reflector casts a medium-wide beam. Stores use an NFL beam angle to highlight a display table, while homes might use this bulb in recessed eyeball lights to illuminate a painting over a fireplace mantle.

Flood (FL)

This true “floodlight” has wide variety of applications. At 36 to 45 degrees for an MR16 or 91 to 120 degrees for a PAR lamp, the reflector casts a wide beam. Bulbs with an FL beam angle can be seen in everything from pendant lights in coffee shops to recessed lights in living rooms.

Wide Flood (WFL)

Need a lot of light? There are worse options than the wide flood. At 46 to 59 degrees for an MR16 or 121 to 160 degrees for a PAR lamp, the wide flood has a dispersed beam to cover a large area. Bulbs with a WFL beam angle are common in many general illumination applications from motion-sensing lights above garage doors to recessed cans in auditoriums and movie theaters.

Very Wide Flood (VWFL)

recessed lights

Photo by mccun934 (flickr)

The very wide flood finds its way into specialty applications, more often than not. At over 60 degrees for an MR16 or over 160 degrees for a PAR lamp, this reflector casts an extremely wide beam. Bulbs with a VWFL beam angle are used to illuminate without highlighting any particular object or area. They’re good options for outdoor flood lighting and low-ceiling recessed lights.

Keep in mind these designations vary slightly from manufacturer to manufacturer. Some brands, like Ushio, throw them out altogether for their simpler system of “narrow,” “medium,” and “wide.” Also note that just because a bulb may have a commercial application, that doesn’t mean you can’t use it in your home. Use reflectors to make your walls a canvas for your lighting ideas, and be sure to share those ideas with us on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, or Pinterest!

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How to Identify Halogen and Xenon Bi-Pin Bulbs

Jan 11, 13 How to Identify Halogen and Xenon Bi-Pin Bulbs

So one of the bulbs in those little “puck” lights under your kitchen cabinets or the light in your desk lamp has burned out. You may have even had a burn-out with a landscape bullet light. Once you figure out how to get the fixture apart, you find a tiny bulb with two pins you don’t recognize. Now what?

Sure, you can throw the entire fixture out and just get a new one. That may be easier, but it definitely won’t be cheaper. What happens when the bulb burns out again (which it certainly will)? Are you going to just keep buying replacement fixtures?

Relax. We at 1000Bulbs.com have you covered. Identifying and replacing your existing bi-pin xenon bulb (sometimes called ’2-pin bulbs’ or ‘T-bulbs’) is easier than you think. Just follow these five simple steps:

Step 1: Measure the Pin Spacing

How far apart are the pins from each other? You can figure this out by getting a ruler and measuring the space between the pins. The space between the pins is measured in millimeters. Write this measurement down as it will help you find the right base type.

Step 2: Determine the Bulb Voltage

Check the fixture housing or socket and see if there is a label that tells you the voltage of the original bulb. The label will most likely have a UL or CSA symbol. If it’s not on the fixture, try to find it on the bulb itself. When you find the voltage, write it down. If you can’t find the label or the label doesn’t list the voltage, don’t worry. You may still find the correct bulb with some tips coming up in step 4.

Step 3: Check the Pin Type

Now check the pins on your existing bulbs. Are they straight or looped? Most bi-pin bulbs will have straight pins, but there are also bi-pin bulbs that have looped pins. Knowing if the pins are straight or looped will help you to further narrow down your bulb selection. Along with your pin measurements and voltage, make sure to jot down if your pins are looped or straight.

Step 4: Find Your Bulb

Now that you’ve got the bulb spacing, pin type, and (hopefully) voltage, it’s time to find your bulb. If you measured 4 millimeters between pins, that means you have a G4 base bulb, which comes in 6, 12, or 24 volts. If your measurement is just a hair wider than 6 millimeters, you have a bulb with a G6.35 base, which comes in 12, 24, or 120 volts. A measurement of 8 millimeters means you have a G8 base xenon bulb, which only comes in 120 volts. Looped pins spaced 9 millimeters apart means you have a G9 base bulb, which also only comes in 120 volts.

Step 5: Install Your Bulb

After you’ve figured out what bulb you need, installing it is simple. Your fixture has a glass lens that fits over the bulb. After you remove the lens, insert the new bulb into the socket and replace the lens. Be careful not to touch the bulb itself, as the oils on your fingers will damage the bulb, shortening its life and maybe even causing it to melt. Some bulbs come with a wrapping around the bulb to prevent damage when installing them. If your bulb didn’t come with a wrapping, wear gloves or use something to wrap around the bulb, but be sure to remove the wrapping after you install the bulb.

That’s all there is to it. Remember, replacing your bulb is much cheaper than replacing the whole fixture. While replacing the bulb may not be as easy, after a few times, you’ll get the hang of it. If you have any questions about these bulbs or just questions in general, don’t be shy! Drop us a comment in the box below or reach out to us Facebook, Twitter, or Google Plus.

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