How to Light a Room

How to Light a Room properly

One thing in design we can’t live without – good lighting. It’s one of the most important elements in design, and yet most homes are either under-lit or you can use their space as a landing strip for an airplane. We would like to give you some simple ways to figure out not only how much light a room needs but what type of lighting you need.

To start you really need to determine what the room is going to be used for. There are four basic types of lighting which will help you understand how lighting is used. Sometimes you can use more than one type of lighting in a room.

A dramatic light fixture creates a focal point in a room

Ambient Lighting

This is considered general lighting. It includes recessed lights, soffit lighting, track lighting, sconces, chandeliers, and pendant lights.

2015 Southern Living Idea House designed by Bunny Williams in Charlottesville, Virginia

Task Lighting

Lighting that is used for specific tasks such as cooking, office or school work, reading, grooming.

This type of lighting should make it easy to see the things you are working on. Some task lighting is in the form of table lamps, pendant lights or under-cabinet lighting.

Accent Lighting

Is used to highlight an object or an area of architectural interest. Accent lighting is usually about three times brighter than ambient lighting.

Natural Light

This is the light that comes from the windows, doors or skylights. It can vary in brightness because of weather and time of day.

The Formula for Lighting a Room

As a general rule, there is a formula to calculate how much light you need in a room:

Room length X Room width x 1.5 = Amount of wattage to light a room

So if you have an 18’ long room x 12’ wide room multiply times 1.5 = 324 watts, that’s how much wattage is needed to adequately light the room. You can divide that lighting into more than one source. 2 Lamps @ 150 watts each and 1 lamp @ 60 watt would be more than adequate light for the room.

Lighting Each Room

Welcoming Entryway from Ballard Designs

Foyer/Entry

Try hanging a Semi-Flush Ceiling Mount or a Chandelier in the foyer. Measure the width and the depth of the foyer and add it together. The diameter of the chandelier should not exceed the sum of the two numbers (10 + 15 = 25) so the Chandelier diameter should not be any wider than 25”. We have given you the formula for figuring the wattage – so don’t forget to calculate it as well. If your foyer is small, try a pendant light, two wall sconces or even two buffet lamps on a side table for an inviting entrance.

Entryway from Barbara Westbrook's Gracious Homes

Hallway/Stairway

Pendant lighting is a great lighting source in a stairwell. As far as the hallway, there should be a fixture every 8 to 10 feet. The most popular hallway lights are flush or semi -flush ceiling lights. For a different look, try wall sconces that wash the walls with light for a dramatic effect.

How many stools can fit in your kitchen

Kitchen/Dining Room

Kitchens need bright, general lighting as well as good task lighting. If you are looking at pendants over an island, they should be about 36” above the surface of the island. Just make sure the lights do no hang too close to the cabinet doors, otherwise, you may not be able to open them fully. Let’s say your counter area is 60” long, and you want three pendants divide 60” by 3. So the center pendant should be at 30” then the end pendants should hang at 10” on one end and at 50″ on the opposite end. For food prep try under-counter lighting. It is great task lighting. When you install lights under your counter, make sure that you pull them forward to the front of the cabinet for maximum illumination. If you have a table area or separate dining room, a chandelier (no more than ½ to ¾ the width of the table in diameter (with a maximum of 150 watt lighting capacity) should do the trick. The chandelier should be hung between 30 to 32 inches above the surface of the table. Always install a dimmer switch on high wattage chandeliers and pendants so that you can control the amount of light needed.

How to light a bathroom properly

Bath and Vanity Lighting

Other than the kitchen, excellent lighting is essential for performing personal tasks in the bathroom. Whatever your style, lighting for the bathroom has become a primary part of bath design. The best way to light a vanity is with sconces above the mirror (1, 2, 3 or 4 light sconces are available). You can also mount them on either side of the mirror. A good rule of thumb is to keep the size of the lighting in proportion to the size of the mirrors. Your bath will probably require some form of overhead lighting. For that spa like quality, try a chandelier that coordinates with your vanity lighting. You can also use a ceiling mounted fixture. Think about adding a dimmer switch for those times when you crave that special spa experience. It can really set the mood.

Red campaign chest in a neutral living room

 

Living Areas – Living Room, Family Room

Most living areas of the house require adequate lighting for reading or other tasks, in addition, some low level, glare-free lights needed for television viewing. To figure out how much lighting you will need in the space, follow this formula :

Room Length x Room Width x 1.5 = Amount of watts needed to light the space

This should help you determine how much lighting you will need in the area. Make sure that you have adequate lighting for reading and other tasks. You can use lamps that have a 3-way switch which will give you a wide range of illumination. Try keeping the lamps proportional to the tables they are sitting on. The bottom of the lampshade should be at eye level when you are seated. Floor lamps are another option when table space is at a minimum. There is usually some form of overhead lighting so try keeping it as a decorative accent and use a dimmer switch so you can change the mood of the room. If all of this seems complicated, a good rule of thumb is to have 4 lighting sources in a room to produce adequate lighting.

Use a task lamp to create directional lighting in areas where you are working

Home Office

Adequate task lighting is the key to a functional office space. Lamps are the best option to achieve good task lighting. Desk lamps should be about 16” above the work surface to maximize efficiency and reduce glare. If overhead lighting is needed there is recessed lighting or track lighting which will allow you to direct light in the areas that need illumination. It is always a good idea to place overhead lighting on a dimmer to control the brightness, and a home office is no exception.

Ambient bedroom lighting using Suzanne Kasler's Gourd Lamp

Bedrooms

Most bedrooms have overhead lighting. When choosing a ceiling fixture, look for something decorative that fits the style of the bedroom. Chandeliers are very popular and look opulent in the bedroom. Don’t be afraid to go for it! Again, make sure whether you choose a chandelier, semi-flush or a flush mount fixture, you install a dimmer switch. It will give you options from bright light all the way to a soft, moody glow. Bedside lighting is also important. It provides you with additional lighting for reading. For maximum illumination, the lamps should be no further than 12 inches away from the side of the bed. Try choosing bedside lamps with three-way switches so you always have the level of light needed for reading, etc. No room for a bedside lamp, try wall mounted sconces. You can purchase either plug in or hard wire versions that look stylish and keep your bedside tables free for that stack of magazines you’ve been wanting to read.

So as you can see, lighting is a critical part of decorating your home. If you choose new lighting, try to be consistent with the style and finish of the lighting. If you love traditional lighting in antique bronze finish, then try to keep all fixtures traditional in style with an antique bronze finish. As with any electrical changes, make sure you have a licensed electrician do the installations. Safety always comes first.

Lighting can truly make or break a space. If you are feeling that your space just isn’t working for you, look at the lighting first. Make sure it is adequate and has the ability to create variable light (dimmers). Not only will it give you the ability to create a welcoming beacon, it can create many different levels of light compatible with your lifestyle. Just knowing the few formulas we gave you can create an environment that is pleasing to your family and your guests. So take a good look at your home, make a few small lighting changes and see what happens!

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How to Decorate Team

How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.

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  1. Reply

    Deborah Adams

    April 4, 2018

    It was really helpful to know that it’s ideal to add a desk lamp on your office space which must be about 16” above the work surface to make sure that your office space will have an adequate task lighting. My husband told me that he wanted to use our library so he can still work even he’s at home. I want him to have a functional and comfortable office area in our library, so I’ll make sure to shop for a desk lamp and consider your tips on placing it on our office table. Thanks!

  2. Reply

    TINAMARIE

    September 12, 2017

    Thank you so much for such a great article on lighting! You covered every room for me and now I know exactly how much lighting I need in every space. Please when you can do a lighting article on the outside of the home as well for I am struggling, there as well. Especially, when it comes to lighting the back of the house?

    Thanks again Ballard

  3. Reply

    Joan Medbery

    January 10, 2017

    Please help ! Our dining area is 14×45 with dark ceiling that peak ! First light we bought gives no light at all even adding led bulbs. How go I figure the high ceilings.

    • Reply

      Annika Dupree

      June 8, 2017

      Joan,
      We would love to help you light your dining room! We offer a free design service in which our interior designers pick out furniture, fabric, and accessories. Just send in your question along with a picture of the space here, and a designer will reach out to you with your design solution!

  4. Reply

    Sandra

    October 24, 2016

    I know this is about lighting, but I want to ask about the bedroom wall finish on the photo that looks like painted wood that has been sanded. How was this look actually accomplished?

    • Caroline McDonald
      Reply

      Caroline McDonald

      November 11, 2016

      Sandra,
      This is a salvaged wood, but you should be able to create a similar look by painting the natural wood, then removing the paint with a sander.
      Best of luck!

  5. Reply

    Ferne

    September 10, 2016

    What size semi-mount fixtures should I hang in my 19 x 23 living room? I want to hang two to replace exisiting ceiling fans. Thank you.

    • Caroline McDonald
      Reply

      How to Decorate

      September 12, 2016

      Ferne,
      As a general rule of thumb, you can add the width and length of your room together to get the width of an appropriately sized light fixture. In your case, you’re using two flush mounts, so we would suggest 2 20″ wide fixtures since the combined width and length of your room is 40″.
      Does that make sense?

  6. Reply

    Marita

    September 7, 2016

    I have a corner breakfast nook that we like to read at and work from. The table is 6’x7′. Ceiling is sloped- low end is 9′ to high of 12′. What size chandelier or lighting should I go with that is dimmable (so can turn up to read and turn down to dine) ? Thank you for your help.

    • Caroline McDonald
      Reply

      How to Decorate

      September 15, 2016

      Marita,
      The rule of thumb is to choose a light fixture that is one half to three quarters the width of your dining table. It sounds like you have a pretty large table if it’s 6 feet wide so a light fixture anywhere from 36-54 inches wide would work in your space!

  7. Reply

    Maggie

    September 3, 2016

    Hello, I am looking at the Hadley 4-light pendant for our foyer. Not sure which size to purchase. The foyer is 8ft X 8ft with a 9 ft ceiling. Thanks in advance!

    • Caroline McDonald
      Reply

      How to Decorate

      September 15, 2016

      Maggie,
      Since your ceiling is 9 feet tall, we would suggest the small version. The larger pendant would have to be hung right up to the ceiling to leave enough clearance for your head, so you would have to remove most of the chain. Use the smaller version and leave about 6-8 inches of chain.
      Best of luck!

  8. Reply

    Sherry

    July 16, 2016

    Hello, I have an 11 x 11 dining room with 8ft ceiling. I have 59.75 round table w chairs that is the only piece of furniture in the room. I really like the orb style fixtures so I was wondering if you thought 27.75 x 30 fixture with 6 lights is okay or too big. Thank you.

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      July 25, 2016

      Sherry,
      It’s definitely not too big! We very often hang our Orb Chandelier over our Andrews Dining Table which is 60″ and it’s a perfect fit.
      Happy Decorating!

  9. Reply

    Donna

    April 9, 2016

    Yes, they would be matching chandeliers. The one in the living room would partially go over a piano and the one in the dining room would be over a table. It would look odd if one is higher than the other since it’s one big room.

    Thanks for your advice!

  10. Reply

    Donna

    April 7, 2016

    Hi! I have one big room that includes a dining room and living room with 10′ high ceilings. I want to put two chandeliers – one in the dining area and the other in the living room. Do I hang the chandeliers at equal height?

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      April 8, 2016

      Donna,
      Are you wanting to put the same chandelier in each rooom? In other words, will they be matching? If so, we would suggest hanging them at equal heights, assuming the one in your living room won’t be hanging directly over something like a sofa. In general, we would suggest to hang light fixtures at the appropriate height for that room, but since it sounds like you are wanting matching chandeliers, that might be a little odd.
      Best of luck!

  11. Reply

    Phyllis

    January 31, 2015

    I want to hang two pendant lights over my dining table which is 40 by 72. what size pendants should I buy

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      March 25, 2015

      Hi Phyllis,
      Depending on how visually heavy the pendant you’re interested are, we would suggest something 10-15 inches in diameter. If the pendants are glass and a little lighter, you could probably go larger, but if they’re opaque or dark in color, you might air on the smaller side.
      We hope this helps!
      The How to Decorate Team

  12. Reply

    Karen

    January 13, 2015

    I am trying to select lighting for reading. It needs to be ceiling mounted, as I have no outlets near my seating. I was considering track lighting. I have 12 foot ceilings. What do you suggest for adequate reading light for aging eyes?

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      March 3, 2015

      Hi Karen,
      It’s very difficult to suggest lighting options without seeing your room. Track lighting could be a good option, but you could also look into a wall-mounted swing arm sconce that you have hard-wired by an electrician. This would make it possible for you to place a reading light right where you need it, and a swing arm sconce allows you to control the direction of the light.
      Hope this helps!
      The How to Decorate Team

  13. Reply

    meghan

    December 9, 2014

    Hello- I am wondering if there are any good guides for determining how big a flushmont fixture should be? My room is about 11 x 11?

    Thanks!

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      December 17, 2014

      Hi Meghan,
      Unfortunately, we don’t have any guides for determining the proper size of a flush mount light, but we will look into creating one. Great suggestion! As long as you have enough room for height clearance in your space, you should be fine on installing whatever height fixture you like. A good rule of thumb for any light fixture is to add the length and width of the space and that should equal the chandelier’s diameter in inches. So the diameter of your flush mount fixture could handle a fixture up to 22 inches in diameter!
      Hope that helps,
      The How to Decorate Team

  14. Reply

    Meredith

    June 11, 2014

    Hi
    Love all your help! my room is 13 by 10 with 8 1/2 foot ceilings. it is fair to say the light needs to be at least 23 inches in width ? What it is a drum light ? I assume that means the width of the shade.

    Also sounds like the wattage should at at least be 195 total? (13 by 10 by 1.5?) Am i on the right track?

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      June 27, 2014

      Hi Meredith,

      We would love to help you pick the right size light fixture for your space. In fact, we have an entire team dedicated to helping customers solve decorating problems in their home. If you go to this page and complete the form, someone from our Design Solutions team can get back to you with a answer to your question!

      Looking forward to helping you with your space,
      The How to Decorate Team

  15. Reply

    Alice

    May 31, 2014

    Where do I place my sconces? I have a large mirror centered on my wall (it takes up one third of the wall), how far off of the mirror should my sconces be placed?

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      June 6, 2014

      Hi Alice,

      Thanks for your comment. We would love to give you some guidance in regards to hanging your sconces. Our design services team actually does just that, so they can create a full plan for you. You’ll need to submit your questions using this form and our team can get working on it. Usually there’s about a week turn around!

      Happy Decorating,
      The How to Decorate Team

  16. Reply

    Ashpreet

    May 19, 2014

    my office length is 4.5 inch and breadth is 11 inches that means 4.5×11″. i want to fit led ceiling lights in my office, so how many Watt of light will be fit in the office.? please give me the right suggestion as soon as possible..!

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      August 28, 2014

      Hi Ashpreet,

      Hi Debra,

      Thanks for your comment. We actually have a free service for our customers called Design Solutions where offer problem solving and design plans. We’d be happy to make a suggestions for lighting in your space. Simply complete this form, and our Design Solutions team will create a plan for you!

      Happy Decorating,
      The How to Decorate Team

  17. Reply

    Heather

    May 17, 2014

    Hi, I’m considering the Elkridge Rectangular Chandelier for my kitchen. Our kitchen is 21.8×13, but the actual “dining” portion is around 10.5×13. We have a farmhouse table (72″x36″). Do you think the Elkridge would work or is it too big? I’m looking for something on the more modern / industrial type style. WE also have an island in the kitchen area that I’m wanting to get pendants for that would complement our kitchen fixture. Any guidance would be greatly appreciated!

    Thank you!

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      June 6, 2014

      Hi Heather,

      Thanks for your comment. We would love to help you decide on a chandelier for your kitchen. We love the Eldridge Chandelier and think that’s a great choice, but if you are worried about the size, our design services team can create a full plan for you. You’ll need to submit your questions using this form and our team can get working on it. Usually there’s about a week turn around!

      Happy Decorating,
      The How to Decorate Team

  18. Reply

    Nicolle

    May 13, 2014

    I am trying to choose lighting for a space that serves as both a living room and my formal dining room. It’s just 1 big room with a large dining room table (seating for 8) in one portion of the room and a sitting area w/ an apartment size sofa at the other end w/ a coffee table and some accent chairs. I got an idea to put a light fixture in each area – 1 over the dining room table and one over the sitting area. My question is: Do they need to be the same chandelier? Even if they’re different sizes, should they be the exact same chandelier?

    Thanks for any insight!

    Nicolle

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      June 6, 2014

      Hi Nicolle,

      Thanks for your comment. We totally understand that sometimes lighting can feel overwhelming. Our design services team would love to give you guidance in regards to a lighting plan! You’ll need to submit your questions using this form and our team can get working on it. Usually there’s about a week turn around!

      Happy Decorating,
      The How to Decorate Team

  19. Reply

    Diana

    April 29, 2014

    My bedroom is 18 feet by 12 feet and the ceiling height is 9.5 feet. I am looking at a drum shade pendant to hang in the centre of the room, which is over the bed. My options are either a 22 inch or a 30 inch diameter drum shade, which have a total minimum hanging height of 18 inches. Which diameter would you choose.

    Many thanks
    Diana

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      August 28, 2014

      Hi Diana,

      Hi Debra,

      Thanks for your comment. We actually have a free service for our customers called Design Solutions where offer problem solving and design plans. We’d be happy to help you pick a pendant for your bedroom. Simply complete this form, and our Design Solutions team will create a plan for you!

      Happy Decorating,
      The How to Decorate Team

  20. Reply

    Patricia A

    April 6, 2014

    Hi, I am looking for pendants for a family type restaurant, with high ceilings. Is there any special formula that should be used for determining lighting? Thanks.

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      How to Decorate Team

      April 7, 2014

      Hi Patricia,

      We would love to help you with your decorating dilemma. If you submit your question to our design services team using this form, someone from our team will create a design plan for you!

      We look forwarding to answering your questions!
      Best,
      The How to Decorate Team

  21. Reply

    Mary

    February 23, 2014

    My great room is 24 x 26 with coffered ceilings. But if you minus the walkway it is 22 x 24 area. What size chandelier would be good?

    • How to Decorate Team
      Reply

      How to Decorate Team

      March 6, 2014

      Hi Mary!

      It sounds like a grand room with lots of potential! Our general rule of thumb for selecting a chandelier is to add the length and width measurements of the room together, and your chandelier should be about that diameter. We have a few options that might work for your space:

      Our Cosette 10-Light Chandelier, our Extra Large Orb Chandelier, or our Laurenza 12-Light Chandelier.

      Hope that helps.

      Happy Decorating,
      The How to Decorate Team

  22. Reply

    Christy Johnson

    November 8, 2013

    i AM TRYING TO PRINT UP CLAIRE CHANDELIER PETITE #LC207 TO SEND TO MY SON TO BUY ME FOR XMAS. IT LOCKS UP AND WILL NOT LET ME PULL IT UP. WHATS WRONG?

  23. Reply

    Terri Tackett

    September 15, 2013

    Hi — Need help deciding which Ballard chandeliers to purchase. The living room has 20 foot high ceilings and is soon to have a 12 foot high stone fireplace at one end with rustic mantle. The entry way also has a 20 foot high ceiling. The dining room, however, while very open to the other two rooms, only has an 8 foot ceiling. I want to buy lighting for all 3 rooms, in an elegant rustic style. I am thinking of the Lourdes 12-light chandelier for the living room and the entry way, and then using the Tallia 6-light chandelier for the dining room. (Complicating things still more is that the kitchen is also open to these rooms and has an existing chandelier that I like that is very similar to the Tallia.) Will the Lourdes and the Tallia look good within view of each other? Or is there a better combination? Thanks so much!

  24. Reply

    carmen

    October 3, 2011

    Hi, My master bedroom is only 8′ in height. I had wanted to use the six arm claire but was told by my electrician that it would be too long so I have to go with a shorter fixture. With an 8′ ceiling, what is the appropriate length for a chandelier? My husband and I are short and we are the only ones using our room….thanks much.

    • Reply

      Ballard Designs

      October 4, 2011

      Carmen: We agree with your electrician – safety first! Have you looked at our Ceiling Mounted Lights? The Anastasia Ceiling Mount is 11 3/4″ in height and may be okay, our Claire Ceiling Mount is 10 1/2″in height – although the bottom of the light should be at 7 1/2′ – either of these lights are a bit longer – so the choice is yours. Let us know how things work out.
      The Style Studio Team

  25. Reply

    Emmie

    September 25, 2011

    A couple more questions, please! How high should my chandelier hang from a my kitchen island? Is it also 36 inches? And where do you position 2-light wall sconces on either side of a fireplace mantle?

    • Reply

      Ballard Designs

      September 26, 2011

      Emmie: The chandelier should hang about 36″ from the top of the island – just make sure that it clears any cabinet doors, etc. Nothing is etched in stone, so if you feel it needs to be a bit higher make that decision. As far as sconces on either side of the fireplace – the standard for a wall sconce is about 5 feet from the floor to the middle of the sconce – however hanging depends on the height of the mantel as well as the height of the ceiling. There really are no hard-fast rules as each fireplace is different. One thing to make sure of is the size of the sconces should be in harmony with the size of the space. We wish we could give you a concrete answer, but your best bet is to get an electrician to help you make the determination.
      The Style Studio Team

  26. Reply

    jeani

    September 7, 2011

    our dining room is 15 x 15 with a large hutch along one wall. The dining table extends to 148″. It’s a tight fit, but during the holidays we need every inch. (one end opens into the foyer so there is some breathing room) I saw the formula for chandelier size and hanging height, but i’m wondering should I be hanging two chandeliers instead of one. Thanks so much

    • Reply

      Ballard Designs

      September 8, 2011

      You certainly could hang two chandeliers if you wanted. But without the dimensions of the table, we are at a loss as to what size you should choose.
      The Style Studio Team

  27. Reply

    Lori

    September 6, 2011

    Dear Style Studio Team.
    I redecorating my Formal office. I have dark hand scraped wood floors without a in floor source of electricity. How would I float a Bourdonnais desk in the center of my room and be able to rest task lighting on the desk and minimize the visual of a cord?

    • Reply

      Ballard Designs

      September 6, 2011

      Dear Lori: You can get a Floor Cable Protector at your local Home Improvement Store which will protect the cord and keep it flat to the floor. Short of having a plug installed in the floor – this seems to be the best alternative.
      The Style Studio Team

  28. Reply

    Emmie

    September 3, 2011

    My living room is 20×16 and has a 12 foot A-shaped ceiling. I purchased the 9-arm Grand Claire gold chandelier. How many feet from the floor should it hang?

    • Reply

      Ballard Designs

      September 6, 2011

      Dear Emmie: The chandelier should hang at least 8′ from the floor.
      The Style Studio Team

  29. Reply

    LKN

    August 21, 2011

    I am looking for a lamp for a console behind a living room sofa. The room is large-24 X 14, with 12 foot ceilings. The sofa sits in the middle of the room. The console table height is 38W X 15.25D X 28H. Should I get the 23-inch or 27-inch Suzanne Kasler Gourd lamp or the Madison?

    • Reply

      Ballard Designs

      August 22, 2011

      Dear LKN: Due to the size of the rooom, you should go with the taller Gourd Lamp. The Madison is the same height as the large Gourd Lamp – so it is just a matter of personal taste. Another option available are the Chartres Buffet Lamps which could be placed on either end. They have a smaller profile but are taller at 30″. Hope this information helps.
      Sincerely,
      The Style Studio Team

  30. Reply

    Stephanie

    August 16, 2011

    I also have a question about the chandelier size I need for my dining room. The room is 11 x 13, with 9 foot ceilings. I have a dining room table that is 42 inches wide. I am looking at the Lourdes Chandelier. Do I choose the 8-arm or the 12-arm? Thanks!!

    • Reply

      Ballard Designs

      August 17, 2011

      Dear Stephanie: The 12 arm Lourdes Chandelier is the correct size for your dining room as well as your dining room table.
      The Style Studio Team

  31. Reply

    annie

    August 10, 2011

    My son is becoming an electrician – and I am sending him this website to read! What great information!!! I love the formulas to help…as always, Ballard’s Style Studio ROCKS!!!

  32. Reply

    suzyq

    August 5, 2011

    Is there any rule of thumb for size and height of lamps on a nightstand next to a king-sized bed? I think my lamps may be too small. Thanks!

  33. Reply

    Ballard Designs

    February 2, 2011

    Dear Chitchatcat: Sometimes overhead lighting can be harsh. If you find a terrific semi-flush mount like our Anatasia Light, you may fall in love with your foyer light! Look for a light that covers the bulbs rather than one that exposes them as this will soften the light source. We also love the idea of a small console with a lamp. Because it is ambient (mood) lighting it has a softer effect on the space. So the choice is up to you. We hope these suggestions help with your decision.
    Happy Decorating!
    The Style Studio Team

  34. Reply

    Chitchatcat

    January 30, 2011

    My front door enters into the living room of my very tiny apartment. There is a garish harsh flush mount fixture on the ceiling right at the doorway. Should I just scrap the overhead light – will it end up looking harsh no matter the style of fixture – in favor of a sconce or a console with a table lamp?

  35. Reply

    Ballard Designs

    January 20, 2011

    Carol: Your chandelier should be between 24 and 32″ in diameter for the size of the table. The bottom of the chandelier should be between 32 and 36″ above the table top so as not to be in your eye line. Hope this info helps!
    Sincerely,
    The Style Studio Team

  36. Reply

    Carol Kirschner

    January 20, 2011

    Your room examples and tips are invaluable. Please tell me if I am ok with a 6 arm chandelier of glass and metal over your 48 inch Rudolph round table. How high off the table should it hang? The ceilings are 8 feet. Thanks.

  37. Reply

    Ballard Designs

    November 10, 2010

    Karen: We feel that you should use the 13′ x 16′ dimensions of the room to determine what size chandelier you should have. If you add the two dimensions, the diameter of the chandelier should be no larger than 29″ in diameter. The 9 arm Talia is 28″ in diameter and the 6 arm Talia is 25″ in diameter. You can actually use either Talia Chandelier in this area. If you ceiling height is lower, the 6 arm would work but if you have tall ceilings (10′ or above) then you may want to consider the 9 arm Talia.
    The Style Studio Team

  38. Reply

    Karen Lee

    November 5, 2010

    How do I figure the right size chandelier for my dining room? My table is 45″w x 64″long (without leaves). The room is 13′ by 25′, but the dining area is a 13′ x 16′ section of that larger room.
    I’m thinking about the 6-arm Talia chandelier which apparently is 25″. Too big? Too small? Just right?

  39. Reply

    Karen

    November 5, 2010

    How do I figure the right size chandelier for my dining room? My table is 45″w x 64″l (without leaves). The room is 13′ by 25′, but the dining area is a 13′ x 16′ section of that larger room.
    I’m thinking about the 6-arm Talia chandelier which apparently is 25″. Too big? Too small? Just right?

  40. Reply

    Randy

    October 22, 2010

    catalog imagery looks great

  41. Reply

    Anne Murdoch

    October 14, 2010

    But how do you figure the correct size of a chandalier? Isn’t there a formula about the size of the room, the size of the table, etc. There is nothing worse than a fixture that is either too big or too small.
    Help!

  42. Reply

    Ballard Designs

    September 21, 2010

    Dear Aung: As with any formula, you have to take into consideration your room size along with how you will be using the room. The formula we use is a basic general plan for lighting a room, but if you have an unusually high ceiling, you may need additional lighting for the room. The formula we use is for general lighting in a standard room with standard ceiling height. This is just a starting point for lighting a room, there are many factors that may increase or decrease the amount of lighting needed.
    The Style Studio Team

  43. Reply

    aung aung

    September 20, 2010

    can we considered room high in this formula(Room length X Room width x 1.5 = Amount of wattage to light a room) ?

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