Size It Right: Lighting Guidelines for Kitchen Islands, Dining Room Tables and Foyers

Progress Lighting explains the recommended hanging heights and sizing guidelines for chandeliers, pendants, and foyer lights for dining room tables, kitchen islands, and foyer front entrances.

lighting size guidelines

Three popular places to install statement lighting, the "wow" pieces that express your home's style and personality, are over kitchen islands, dining room tables, and entrance foyers. And there are plenty of fantastic fixture options to enhance those spaces while providing plenty of light for guests and family.

Frequently asked questions include what size fixture to buy and how high to hang fixtures. Here are some sizing and hanging heights guidelines for kitchen islands, dining room tables and foyer.

Hanging and Sizing Chandeliers Over Dining Room Tables  

Farmhouse Dining Room Chandelier Lighting

Featuring Gulliver

Chandeliers over the dining room table usually provide a dramatic focal point and task and general lighting for the room. Use the table under the chandelier to serve as a guide for selecting the chandelier's size by measuring the width of the table and subtracting 12 inches. For example, if your table is 42 inches wide, your chandelier should not be more than 30 inches wide. The bottom of the chandelier should hang between 30 to 36 inches above the table.

Kempsey Canopy Dining Chandelier Lighting

Featuring Kempsey

You can also design a chandelier using three or more pendants hung at varying heights over a dining room table by purchasing a canopy kit. These kits allow 3 to 6 pendants to be hung together in a line or a circular group. Or install the pendants individually to create a custom lighting design.  

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WATCH: Chandelier hanging heights and sizing tips

How to Hang Pendants Over Kitchen Islands

Kitchen Pendant Lighting

Featuring Parkhurst

Pendants are versatile lighting options for many rooms in your home. Smaller-scale "mini-pendants" look great when hung in groupings of 3 or more over a kitchen island or table. Medium and large pendants can be hung in pairs to make a dramatic statement. To size pendants, keep in mind that pendants should be at least 10 inches smaller in diameter than the width of the countertops.

To install pendants over kitchen islands:
  1. Measure 12 to 15 inches in from either end of the island's edge.
  2. Space the pendants evenly within that span.
  3. If you're hanging three island lights, make sure that the middle pendant is centered over the island.
  4. The bottom of the pendant lighting should hang 30 to 36 inches above the island or dining table.
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WATCH: Pendant lighting trends and sizing tips

How to Properly Size and Hang Foyer Lights

Play Room Foyer Flush Mount LightingFeaturing Delayne

Chandeliers, pendants, convertible fixtures and semi-flush mount fixtures are popular choices for foyers. These fixtures have the light source, shade and other decorative elements suspended from the ceiling by rods, chains, or additional extensions. The resulting gap between the light and the ceiling offers a visually dynamic effect.

Select the foyer light's size by adding the length and the width of the room together (measured in feet), then converting that measurement to inches. For example, a 10 x 10 foyer equals 20 feet, which translates to a fixture size of approximately 20 inches in diameter.

As a rule, keep 7 feet of clearance from the floor to the bottom of the fixture because people may walk underneath it. If your ceiling is higher than 11 feet, divide the vertical space into thirds, positioning the chandelier two-thirds of the distance from the floor.

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WATCH: Close-to-ceiling lighting trends and hanging tips

Discover more lighting fixture sizing and hanging guidelines here.



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