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Lighting & Design Glossary

C
Cane Glass

Technique of using colored glass rods to create unique art glass patterns; canes of glass can come in intricate and distinct patterns, such as the varied helix-twists of ballotini, laticcino or zanfirico.

Canopy

A usually decorative plate that coordinates with the rest of a hanging ceiling light, installed flush to the ceiling to finish the look by covering any hole, wiring, etc.

Case Glass

Glass composed of two or more layers of glass in different colors (top layer is sometimes cut away to allow second layer to come through as background/contrast).

Cast Glass

Molten glass poured into a mold (sand cast) or kiln-cast using the lost wax method.

Casual

Design theme that describes any lighting fixture with soft, unobtrusive design, versatile enough to allow it to blend into the background of a wide variety of settings. Typically also has a relatively low price point.

CE Mark

CE Mark on a lighting product certifies that it has met European Union (EU) lighting safety requirements. The CE mark isn't used as an official certification for products in the United States.

Ceramic

Composed of clay, such as pottery and brick, prepared by heating and then cooled to reach its usable, hard state. Comes from the Greek word keramikos, meaning "of pottery" or "for pottery."

CFL

An acronym for Compact Fluorescent, used when defining what type of bulb is used in a fixture. CFLs often have a medium base size, compatible with most fixtures that require Edison-type bulbs.

CFM

CFM stands for cubic feet per minute (it is also referred to as airflow). The measurement is taken when the fan is on its highest speed and uses both the volume of air and the rate at which it moves. Learn more about fan CFM.

Chinoiserie

From the French term signifying "Chinese-esque." Especially popular in the 17th and 18th centuries due to increased trade with East Asia, it is an ornate European design style that includes elaborate and fanciful Chinese-inspired motifs. Other characteristics include heavy gilding and lacquering, blue and white color palettes and asymmetrical forms.

Cladding

Covering one material with another to achieve a unique, often fluid effect.

Classic

Also known as Traditional lighting. Classic lighting designs are reminiscent of past styles, with traditional warm colors and stylized looks.

Clear

Transparent, colorless.

Color

On Lumens.com, color refers to the hue of a light fixture's shade or primary color of the entire fixture. To narrow results when searching for a specific look, try searching by Color.

Color Temperature

Color temperature indications the relative color that a light source has. It is measured on the Kelvin temperature scale. It may seem paradoxical, but light sources that are usually referred to as having a warm light are actually lower in color temperature -- usually around 2700-3000 K. The higher numbers (over 5000 K) tend to have a cool blue light.

Console Lamp

Designed to set on a buffet table, console or credenza. Also known as Buffet Lamp. Traditional Buffet Lamps are taller and thinner than standard table lamps, with smaller shades, too.

A product design or room decor that reflects what is most in style today. Contemporary lighting designs are usually sleek and uncluttered, and they often include natural wood or silver finishes, neutral colors and simple lines.

Cord and Socket Set

A bulb socket complete with a corresponding power cord; the working part of a light fixture. UL certification requires a cord and socket set to come as a single unit with the socket permanently soldered to the cord. Also known simply as a socket set.

Cord Cover

A cord cover often accompanies a pin-up kit for a wall sconce. The cord cover, which is usually metal, is affixed to the wall, with the cord hidden inside. It neatly covers the electric cord as it heads down to the wall outlet plug.

The Cottage style is eclectically based on several locales...a traditional English garden cottage, an American Craftsman bungalow (cottage), a modern traditional country cottage. What makes them similar is an airy, fresh and relaxed feeling, as if the cottage is on permanent vacation.

Cove Light

Refers to any kind of fixture that can be installed in a cove ceiling. The purpose is to both provide hidden ambient light throughout a space and to highlight the unique architecture of the raised ceiling. Rope lights, light strips or button/puck lights are most often used as cove lights.

Craftsman

A style of architecture and design popularized by Frank Lloyd Wright, defined by bold lines, a simple appearance and handmade components.

CRI

CRI = color rendering index. This number, which can go from 0 to 100, measures the ability of a light or bulb accurately renders colors. The high the number, the better, with most quality bulbs these days measuring at least in the 80s.

Crossbar

A bracket for mounting a fixture to the wall or ceiling. Usually a straight metal bar with a series of holes for securing it first to a junction box, and then a light fixture to it.

Crystal

At Lumens, crystal refers to the high quality transparent glass used as part of chandeliers, sconces and other lights (as well as in fine glassware). This crystal has a high degree of brilliance and optical purity, and it has a unique and much celebrated way of magnifying and transforming normal light.

CSA Mark

A safety accreditation from the main Canadian lighting safety testing company, Canadian Standards Association International. It's most often used to certify that a lighting fixture conforms to Canadian safety standards.

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