Choosing the Right Size Hanging Light

Wrought iron hanging lights are a wonderful addition to any home or cabin, adding greatly to the ambiance of a room. Selecting the right size hanging light appropriate to the dimensions of the room is important in order to achieve a balanced look. Too large and the light will overpower the room. Too small and the light will look out of place. Fortunately, if you follow a few simple guidelines, choosing the right size light is an easy task.

Wrought iron chandeliers are a favorite hanging light for many. When placed over a dining room table, the chandelier should hang about 30 to 36 inches from the tabletop, depending on the height of your ceiling. As to size, the chandelier should have a diameter at least half the width of the table, but less than the width of the table by 12 to 16 inches. For example, a table 48 inches wide would look best with a chandelier at least 24 inches in diameter, but no more than 32 to 36 inches in diameter.

For chandeliers, pendant lights, hanging foyer and hallway lights not positioned above tables, the fixture should be hung at least 7 foot from the floor to prevent anyone from hitting their head (ouch!). As a general rule, to determine the right size, simply measure the width and length of the room in feet and add the two dimensions together. The total of these two dimensions can be used as a good guide for the appropriate diameter of the light fixture in inches. For example, a 10 foot x 12 foot room would look best with a 22-inch diameter chandelier.

Therefore, with the above as a guide, for rooms 10 foot x 10 foot you want to select a hanging light 18 to 20 inches in diameter. For rooms 12 foot x 12 foot, go with a hanging light 22 to 26 inches in diameter. For large rooms 14 feet x 14 feet or more, choose lighting fixtures that are 24 to 36 inches in diameter or more. For very large rooms with high ceilings, grand wrought iron chandeliers with 48 to 60 inch diameters make excellent choices. Keep in mind the style of hanging light you are choosing when determining the right size for your room.  For visually heavier fixtures, you will want to stay with the smaller of the recommended sizes. For visually lighter fixtures you will want to go with the larger sizes in the range to maintain a balanced look.

In my next post I will provide some tips on wrought iron pool table lights, kitchen island and bar lights.

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