How to Select the Correct Size Chandelier for Your Table

A chandelier is a significant statement in the decor of a room.

The chandelier complements the table.The chandelier complements the table.
The size should be in balance to the room and the table over which it hangs. Choosing the correct size is easy if you take a few measurements and follow a few guidelines. The style of the room dictates the style of the chandelier, but the size guidelines are constant across all styles.

Measure the width of the dining room table to determine the diameter of the chandelier. The diameter should be half the table width. For example, if the table is 48 inches wide, the diameter of the chandelier should be 24 inches.

Measure the wall height to determine the length of the chandelier. The chandelier length should be between 2 to 3 inches for each foot of wall height. For example, if the walls in the dining room are 12 feet high, the chandelier best suited to this room will be 24 to 36 inches long.

Use the room dimensions as an alternate method of determining chandelier diameter. Add the measurement of the width and length of the room, assume this number is inches, not feet, and use this as the diameter. For example, in a room 12 feet wide and 10 feet long, the chandelier should be 22 inches wide, derived by adding 12 plus 10. This measurement is useful in rooms where there is no permanent table or the table has not yet been chosen.

Use the height of the walls from the landing to the ceiling to determine the chandelier length if hung over a landing table in a stairwell. The diameter of this chandelier should be calculated based on the room size; in this case, the room is the landing itself. If the landing is 6 feet wide and 10 feet long, the chandelier should be 16 inches in diameter.

Use 1/3 of the table diameter as the guideline for chandelier diameter if two chandeliers are required and hang them equidistant from the center of the table.

Rectangular and oval chandeliers should be no less than half the diameter of the table. If the diameter comes to within 12 inches of the sides of the table, that is the same space that should be left exposed at the ends. For example, if the table is 48 inches wide and 60 inches long, a rectangular chandelier should be no more than 24 inches wide and 36 inches long. (The width divided by two equals 24 inches for the diameter. This chandelier will come to within 12 inches of the edge of the table. The table length is 60 inches; subtract 12 inches at each end to equal 36 inches.)

Things You Will Need

  • Metal tape measure
  • Paper
  • Pencil

Tips

  • The bottom edge of the chandelier should be 30 inches from the surface of the table.
  • If there is no table in the room, the bottom edge of the chandelier should be no less than 6 1/2 feet from the floor.

Warning

  • Chandeliers are heavy and professional installers should be used.

About the Author

Linda Erlam started writing educational manuals in 1979. She also writes a biweekly newspaper column, "Design Dilemmas," in the "Lakeshore News" and has been published in "Design and Drapery Pro" magazine. Erlam is a graduate of the Sheffield School of Interior Design and is a practicing interior decorator and drapery workroom operator.