January 1, 2010, Newsletter Issue #183: Chandelier Heights

Tip of the Week

When you're hanging that decorative chandelier, don't hang it too low, since the bulbs can create a large glare. Chandelier height depends on the style of the chandelier--crystal, simple, many-armed, elaborate. It also depends on the height and decor of your dining room. You wouldn't hang a small pendant chandelier near the ceiling in a simply decorated room!

A rule of thumb for crystal chandeliers: If your dining room is eight feet tall, hang the chandelier 30 to 34 inches above the table. If the ceiling is more than eight feet high, shorten that chandelier chain by an additional three inches. (You can also use a two-tier chandelier.) The chandelier should also be higher if it's a "bowl" style and you can't see through the glass. In an eight-foot-high dining room, most chandeliers will hang about 30 inches above the dining room table.



Tip: The San Francisco Chronicle suggests using two pieces of cardboard the same length as the width of an open chandelier and cutting slots in them to make an "X"--this represents your chandelier arms. When you hold up the "X," the bottom should be at a comfortable height when you're seated at the table.

For a bowl chandelier, you can hold an open umbrella, which usually is as wide as your average bowl chandelier, upside down over your dining room table and try for a height you like. Measure from the bottom of the open umbrella to the dining room table surface.

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