4 factors to consider when choosing the perfect chandelier

October 17, 2014

The right chandelier makes a dramatic statement, but it's important to choose one that aesthetically fits the dimensions and existing decor of your living space. Here's how to choose the perfect chandelier for any room.

4 factors to consider when choosing the perfect chandelier

1. Size

When it comes to choosing a chandelier, the size of your room is crucial.

  • If the room is small, a too-large chandelier will overpower the decor, and may also provide an overabundance of light.
  • If the room is large and the chandelier is too small, it will look woefully inadequate, and may not supply sufficient light for the space.
  1. Calculate the diameter of the room by adding the width and length together.
  2. Convert the result into inches or centimetres, and you'll have an appropriate measurement for your chandelier.

Using this method for a room that's 10 feet (3 metres) long by 10 feet (3 metres) wide, you can safely choose a chandelier that's around 20 inches, or 50 cm, in diameter.

  • The exception is a dining room chandelier, which should measure roughly half the width of your dining room table.

2. Height

Another important factor is the height of your ceiling.

  • Decorators agree that after measuring the distance from the ceiling to the floor, you can allow approximately three inches of chandelier per foot.
  • In other words, a room with a 10-foot ceiling can easily accommodate a chandelier that's 30 inches long (76 cm).

How high should you hang a chandelier in the dining room?

  • You can eyeball it, but you'll want to make sure that it's not so low that it will overwhelm your table — and your guests. For best results, leave about 30 inches (76 cm) from the lowest part of the chandelier to your dining room table, according to many lighting retailers.

3. When more is more

For smaller rooms and narrow corridors, consider installing several small-scale chandeliers rather than a single large fixture.

  • This also works for irregularly-shaped rooms, or rooms that are rectangular or oblong in shape.
  • Kitchens and dens can especially benefit from this scheme, as several chandeliers will provide more-efficient task lighting for work areas.

4. Find the right match

That crystal Victorian chandelier may look stunning in the showroom, but chances are that it will look sadly out of place in your modern chrome-filled living room.

  • Try to match the style to your existing decor, or your chandelier will have the appearance of a lovely gemstone in a mismatched setting.
  • Fortunately, chandeliers come in a wide variety of styles to match just about any style of room decor, from Victorian and Art Deco to French Provincial, Mediterranean and contemporary.

A worthwhile investment

A beautiful chandelier is a fabulous investment for a home, because it can transform any room into a true showplace.

With a bit of planning and measuring, you're sure to find a chandelier that not only suits your living space, but one that you can fall in love with as well.

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