Living Room & Foyer Chandeliers Guide

Published By: Shades Of Light

Date Published:

Last Updated: March 07, 2022

Choosing a Beautiful Living Room or Foyer Chandelier

Modern black chandelier in a neutral living room

Transverse Waves Chandelier in a calm neutral living room

Your home is your haven, but while your lighting should be comfortable and suited to your living arrangements, there is no reason you can’t wow guests with statement-making pieces that define your style. The living room, foyer, and entryway are fabulous rooms to flex your design skills and hang striking chandelier fixtures that will give your home an unforgettable edge.

How to Choose a Chandelier for a Living Room

As you brainstorm living room lighting ideas, don’t discount the drama and style of a living room chandelier. Your living room is very possibly the most versatile and oft-used room of your home; the high traffic and flexibility of this room make it a great place to show off a dashing chandelier. These dramatic fixtures are meant to be seen and hanging one (or more!) in the living room gives this fixture the visibility it deserves. Any chandelier mounted in a living room is sure to be admired and appreciated frequently in your day-to-day life as well as during any hosting events you take on (in the hopefully not-too-distant future!).

Find a Chandelier Style that You Want to Show Off

As you narrow your search for the perfect chandelier, consider the overall style and vibe of your living room. For sleek, modern looks, choose minimalist fixtures with metallic finishes, like chrome, polished nickel, and black chandeliers. If traditionalism and glamor are more your speed, your look won’t be complete without a sparkling crystal chandelier. Coastal and boho inspired décor are beautifully accented by natural materials like driftwood and rattan. Whatever your design aesthetic, you can find a chandelier to match—or contrast—your own unique look.

Urban Globe Radial industrial living room chandelier

8-light Urban Globe Radial Chandelier for an industrial chic living room

Find the Right Size Chandelier for Your Living Space

While the spectacle of chandeliers makes them a more obvious choice for large living rooms or formal living rooms, plenty of chandeliers for small living rooms are available to bring big style to petite spaces. To determine exactly what size chandelier you need for your living room, add the length and width of the room together—the answer in inches is the proper diameter of an appropriately sized chandelier. (So if your room is 15’x15’, look for a chandelier that is 30” in diameter or width.) For small rooms, search for mini chandeliers, lanterns, and drum chandeliers, which all tend to be smaller than traditional chandelier silhouettes and make great additions to updated and contemporary rooms.
Mini Gold Leaf and Crystal living room chandelier

Gold Leaf and Crystal Mini Chandelier for a glamorous small living room

Consider Your Living Room Chandelier Height Requirements

Living room chandelier height should be at least 7 feet

The bottom of the Gallant Garyantes Chandelier hangs 7 feet from the ground.

The height of your chandelier will depend on a few different factors that work in tandem to create a comfortable, safe, and stylish room. The most important rule to remember is to always mount your hanging fixtures high enough that they do not create a hazard for people passing beneath them. Generally speaking, this means the bottom of your chandelier should never be hung lower than seven feet from the ground—the one exception is if you choose to hang your chandelier over a tabletop, in which case the bottom of the chandelier should fall around 30-36” from the table surface. Following this guideline, if you have standard eight- or nine-foot ceilings, the bottom of your chandelier should fall roughly 84” from the floor. For tall ceilings, add three inches to this number for every extra foot of ceiling height past nine feet. (This calculation can require a few steps! For example, 12’ ceilings are 3’ higher than 9’ ceilings, and so would add an extra 9” of height—3” for every extra foot—to our initial 7’ measurement, for a total of 93” between the floor and the bottom of the chandelier.)

Determine the Level of Light You Need in Your Living Room

You should also consider exactly the type of lighting you expect from your chandelier. If your room gets lots of natural light and has other light fixtures layered throughout the space, chandeliers that function primarily as decor pieces rather than a main light source bring a big design impact and supplement ambient lighting. If your room is on the dim side, chandeliers with a higher lumen output may be needed. The location of the chandelier will also come into play here—chandeliers hung over sofas should offer ambient uplighting to prevent casting harsh shadows on friends and family sitting beneath them, while chandeliers mounted over tables, desks, or end tables can double as task lighting and can often have lights that shine directly down on the surface below. For the best experience, install your chandelier on dimmers so you can have complete control over the ambiance of your space.

Linear Sprawl decorative living room chandelier

Linear Sprawl Chandelier – A modern fixture with decorative value

Modern Balance Beam energy efficient living room chandelier

Modern Balance Beam Chandelier – A minimalist fixture with energy-efficient lumen output

How to Choose a Chandelier for a Foyer

Rattan chandelier in a natural neutral foyer

Rattan Tulum Chandelier in a natural neutral foyer

The entryway of your home is another ideal area to mount a stunning chandelier. Foyers set the design tone for your living space and are perfect for wowing guests with your personal brand of creativity! And in some homes, foyer chandeliers will up the curb appeal since these gorgeous fixtures can be seen through windows. As you consider foyer lighting ideas that appeal to you, take a close look at chandeliers that provide much-needed illumination and glitz and glamor. It’s important that this area of the home is well lit. However, since the primary purpose of that lighting is to keep walkways safe and functional, you should face fewer demands for directed task lighting and should instead search for fixtures that shed diffuse ambient lighting.

How Do I Choose a Foyer Chandelier?

Your perfect foyer chandelier should match the overall ambiance of your home. Modern foyer chandeliers look best with other contemporary or minimalist styles but can also add an element of suave sophistication to a more elaborately decorated room. If your home exudes a more rustic panache, choose farmhouse foyer lighting or a charming French country chandelier to underscore the bucolic tone of this design trend. For traditional homes, choose a glimmering crystal chandelier for a timeless and elegant mood. Determining exactly what type of impression you want to create with this fixture is the first step in finding a chandelier you’ll love to show off for years to come!

Jute Veil Chandelier for a rustic or bohemian foyer

Jute Veil Chandelier for a rustic or bohemian foyer

Harrington Lantern Chandelier for an elegant traditional foyer

Harrington Lantern Chandelier for an elegant traditional foyer

What Size Foyer Chandelier Should I Buy?

Large adjustable height foyer pendant

Luxe Patina Metal Drum Shade Pendant with adjustable hanging height

Once you know what style chandelier to search for, determine the best size and shape for your room. Foyer chandeliers are sized the same way we size living room chandeliers—in other words, add the length and width of the room together and the sum in feet is the diameter of your fixture in inches. If you are torn between two differently sized fixtures for your room, err on the side of the larger fixture. Chandeliers are meant to bring drama to a space and a chandelier that is a touch too large will be more visually pleasing than a chandelier that is a touch too small.

The height of foyer chandeliers is determined the same way we determine height for living room chandeliers, but be aware of the function of this room as you hang your fixture. If there is any chance that hanging your fixture at 7’ will interfere with the walkway, don’t be afraid to hang the fixture higher to avoid any accidents. If you are seeking foyer lighting for low ceilings, consider a convertible or flush mount chandelier that can be mounted directly to the ceiling. These fixtures have all the spectacle of a traditional chandelier but fit more easily in low spaces.

How to Select Two-Story Foyer Chandeliers

For foyers and entryways comprised of two stories, large foyer chandeliers are guaranteed to make a big impact. Mounting a chandelier in two-story foyers is in fact a little simpler than mounting a chandelier in single-story foyers! Simply hang the chandelier so the bottom of the fixture is even with the second story of your home. This type of space is particularly well suited to tiered chandeliers or chandeliers with tall designs. Use the above formula to determine how wide your chandelier should be, and the rest is up to you!

Minimalist Iron Ring Two Tier Chandelier for two story foyer

Prism Faceted Glass Layered Large Chandelier for two story foyer

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