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Thursday, February 9

for your reference: choosing the correct chandelier size

Welcome to All in the Detail... I am so glad you are here! 

There are basic rules to consider when choosing the correct size chandelier for a room, but each room will present a different situation and many elements within each room may need to be taken into consideration when making your final decision.

Is the lighting fixture going to be a focal point in the space?

What kind of lighting settings are you trying to achieve?

Should the fixture be centered in the room or centered in consideration of the room' s elements?

How to Determine the Appropriate Size Chandelier

Chandeliers are available in various styles, colors, forms and sizes. The finish choices vary too; from bronze, metal, crystal, glass, ceramic, gold and more. Your first consideration, however, should be determining the appropriate sized lighting fixture to use.

There is an easy way to determine how tall your chandelier should be. A popular trick used by interior designers is to measure the height of the room and allow 2.5 to 3 inches for each foot of height. So, if your room has a 9-foot tall ceiling, you would want a lighting fixture that is about 22.5 to 27 inches tall. When you have extremely tall ceilings, you can add a couple of inches to the height of the chandelier. Consequently, if you have a very low ceiling, you'll need to get a fixture that's a couple of inches smaller.

The overall size of the room also has a big impact on the size/diameter of the lighting fixture. Choosing one that's too large can make the room look crowded, and one that's too small will come across as inconsequential. The chandelier needs to be proportionate to the room size. Size also depends on where the chandelier will hang.

A Dining Room Chandelier

The lighting in a dinning room space should take advantage of the space and its needs. It is also an area where function and aesthetics are important as well. A typical dining room setting is used for many everyday activities like eating, reading, and entertaining company. Using light fixtures that are multifunctional is key for this area.

A chandelier in a dining room should hang approximately 30 inches from the table top surface and should be about 12 inches narrower than the width of the table it's hanging over. This 30 inch rule will ensure that you can still see your dinner companions and it will give you enough space to fit a tall centerpiece under the chandelier. When you put one light fixture over a small dining room table, hang it over the exact center of the table.

If you have a very long dining room table, it is possible that you would like to choose two smaller chandeliers and center them over each end of the table. To do this, you'll first need to measure the length of the table. Write down the length and divide it by three. For an easy example, let’s use a 9-foot long table and divide it into three sections of 3 feet each. Starting at one end of the table, measure 3 feet in and center one of the fixtures on the ceiling over that 3 foot center mark. Measure another 3 feet down the table and do the same thing with the second fixture. Putting only one light fixture over an extremely long table can diminish its effect and may cause the entire room to seem off kilter.

Chandeliers in Other Rooms

Choosing the right chandelier for rooms other than the dining room is tricky, as you don't have a table to help with measurements. The chandelier should be centered in the room (unless very tall furniture are present within the room, for example a four poster bed) and be at least 7 feet from the floor. This will keep you and any of your guests from banging into it.

You'll have to rely on room measurements alone to determine the proper size for the lighting fixture. A simple way to determine what size fixture you will need is to measure the length and width of the room in feet and add those measurements together. You'll then need to transcribe that total amount to inches. The resulting figure is the diameter size of the chandelier you should purchase. For example, if your room is 10 feet by 7 feet, you would add that together to get 17 feet, transcribe this to inches and purchase a fixture that is 17 inches in diameter.

When you put a chandelier in a room that doesn't already have a ceiling light fixture, I suggest you bring in a professional electrician to make sure that the wiring is properly done. (Electricity is NOTHING to play around with in a DIY project)

Keep in Mind:

… Additional lighting might be needed to accommodate all your needs such as task and accent lighting. Not only tables need lighting; other areas like serving counter tops could use recessed down lighting, tabletop lighting or pendants place above the surfaces.

… If your space has a lot of natural light, using a dimmer switch on a chandelier will be helpful. A dimmer saves energy and helps control the levels of luminance needed in the space throughout the day.

… The interior ceiling when installing a chandelier fixture.  If the ceiling is not a flat surface or at the standard height of 9 ft, additional components might be needed to hang and install the fixture at an appropriate height. When purchasing a chandelier fixture make sure there are adjustable rods or other needed components available. Make sure you know the height of your ceiling in the space.

… If your ceiling surface has a vaulted ceiling or a standard flat ceiling surface, the difference might create a challenge when installing a fixture.
 
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