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Tips to Select the Right-sized Chandelier

Mukulika Mukherjee
Selecting the right-sized chandelier for your room can be tricky if you aren't familiar with the formula used to calculate the same. Here's an insight into the world of chandeliers, and guides you on how to choose the right one for your room.

Did You Know?

The largest chandelier in the world, the Reflective Flow, weighs 39,683 lb., and is installed in the Ali Bin Khalifa Al Hitmi & Co building in Doha, Qatar.
A chandelier is nothing but a beautiful light fixture that is mounted on the ceiling. Vintage chandeliers were designed to hold several candles. However, modern chandeliers use lamps instead of candles, and are available in several designs and sizes.
Now, you must be wondering what's the big deal about the size of the chandelier that you choose to put up in a room. Well, the simple answer is that it is important to choose a chandelier of the right size, because choosing the wrong size does nothing to enhance the beauty of your room.
The method to calculate the right size of chandelier for your room is fairly easy. Lucky you! All you need to do is take a few measurements and put them in a simple formula. Here, we shall see what goes into it all. So, let's get started!

Calculating the Right Size for Your Chandelier

There are mathematical formulas for determining the right size of the chandelier for the dining room and the foyer. Here, we shall look into each one of them.

For the Dining Room

If you wish to mount the chandelier above the table, take the width of the dining table into cosideration. If it's a circular table, consider its diameter.
Now, divide this value by 2 to get the required diameter of the chandelier. Let's consider an example.


Say, you have a dining table that is 48" long and 36" wide. In that case, the diameter of the chandelier is as follows:

Diameter of the chandelier = Half the width of the table = 36/2 = 18".
Now, say, you have a long dining table (that has a length of 100" or more) and you wish to hang two chandeliers above it. In that case, you need to divide the width of the table by 3, to get the diameter of each chandelier.
Let us consider another example.


Say, you have a dining table that is 100" long and 48" wide. In that case, the diameter of each chandelier is given as follows:

Diameter of the chandelier = 1/3 the width of the table = 48/3 = 16".

For the Foyer or Entry Hall

For the foyer or entry hall, you need to consider the dimensions of the room. 
Now, in that case, the formula is pretty simple. All you need to do is find the width and length of the room in feet. Now, add the two values. The result is the desired width of the chandelier in inches. Let us take an example to elucidate this.

Say, you have an entry hall that is 9' x 7'. The correct diameter of a chandelier for this area would be:

Diameter of the chandelier = 9 + 7 = 16.

Hence, a chandelier that is 16" wide would be just perfect for this area.

For a square room, multiply the length of one side by 2, to get the correct width of the chandelier.

Calculating the Height of the Chandelier

Now, having determined the correct diameter of chandelier, you need to ascertain the correct height of the chandelier? Is that really important? Well, it is, and you must do some quick math before you know for sure.
To begin with, the height of the chandelier is directly proportional to the height of the ceiling of the room. In other words, the higher the ceiling of the room, the taller should be the chandelier. Note that the total height of the chandelier also includes the length of the chain used to hang it from the ceiling.
Now, you might be wondering, "How tall is too tall?" The answer is to allow 2.5" to 3" for every foot of a room's height. Let us consider an example to elucidate this further.

Say, the height of your room is 8 feet, which is the standard height of ceilings in the U.S. In that case, the height of the chandelier should be anywhere between 20" (8 x 2.5) and 24" (8 x 3).

Placing the Chandelier

Once you have chosen a chandelier of the right dimensions, the next task is to place it at the correct spot.

For the Dining Room

When putting up a single chandelier above the dining table, place it above the center of the table, with a minimum gap of 30" between the tip of the chandelier and the table top.
When putting up two chandeliers above a relatively longer dining table, place them such that each one is centered to one half of the table. Don't forget to keep a minimum gap of 30" between the tip of the chandeliers and the table top.

For the Foyer or Entry Hall

When putting up a chandelier in the foyer or entry hall, place it at the center, keeping a minimum height of 7' between the tip of the chandelier and the floor.
Note that a chandelier cannot be the sole light fixture for larger spaces, and you must add additional fixtures to brighten up the space. A chandelier that is in stark contrast with the color scheme on the walls is not desirable as it would draw unnecessary attention and serve as the sole focus of the room.