chandelier size guide

To choose the right chandelier for your space, you’ll want to keep several things in mind: the chandelier’s location, the height of your ceiling, and whether it will hang in a dining room, great room, or foyer.

Chandelier Sizes for Dinning Rooms

Be sure to measure the height of your ceiling when determining the best chandelier size. For dining room lighting, the standard is to have the bottom edge of the fixture 32-36″ above the table. At this height, it lights the table while staying above the line of sight when you’re seated. Be sure to note the “overall height” measurement in each fixture’s specifications.

Here we’ve calculated the maximum height fixture you can use, and still clear 32″ above the table:

CEILING HEIGHT MAXIMUM CHANDELIER HEIGHT
8 Feet 32 inches tall
9 Feet 44 inches tall
10 Feet 56 inches tall
12 Feet 80 inches tall

Just make sure the light fixture has enough illumination for the size of the room, and hang it no more than 36” above the table. In a very large dining room, consider adding wall sconces or buffet lamps for additional lighting.

High-ceilinged dining rooms have a lot of area to illuminate, so consider a two or three-tier design. A tiered chandelier may have from 16 to 36 lights, or even more.

Over Dinning Table

Choose a chandelier that’s at least 6” narrower than your dining table. Rectangular tables typically measure anywhere from 32” to 48” wide. If your table is 42”, the maximum width of a light fixture should be 36”.

Round or Square Dinning Table

Keeping the size of the room in mind, choose a chandelier measuring ⅔ o ¾ of the distance across the table. For a 48” table, the ideal size light fixture is 32” to 36” in diameter.

Linear Fixtures For Dining Tables

For long and narrow tables, linear-design light fixtures are a stylish solution. Make sure your chosen fixture is long enough to illuminate the entire table. Two-thirds of the table’s length is the perfect proportion for linear lighting. If you have an extra-long table, consider using a pair of linear fixtures or a series of pendants.

Living Rooms and Great Rooms

Chandeliers installed in living rooms should be at least seven feet high, tall enough for people to walk underneath them. Depending on the furniture layout, one large chandelier can provide general lighting; or, use smaller chandeliers above seating and dining areas. Measure the space to determine exactly how much light you’ll need. Consider two-tiered chandeliers for ceilings ten feet or taller.

Foyers and Entries

Chandeliers for entries and foyers need to be seven feet off the floor for people to walk below them. If you only have eight-foot ceilings, look for a 12” tall light fixture. For nine-foot ceilings or taller, a chandelier is a great option. If you have a stairwell, or ceilings over ten feet, consider a tiered chandelier to light up your entire space.