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  • Writer's pictureSarah Pence

The Lighting Installation Guide

Lighting. It's essential. It's a foundational element in any space. And it can be hard to choose the right one. Then, once you've found it - how the heck do you install it?! What height should it be? How much space should you allow between lighting and other elements in the space? I'm going to share a few #designersecrets with you on how to do those things and do them WELL. And, because sharing is caring, I'm also going to share some *shoppable* content below where you can snag some great pieces for your space! Are you ready? Let's get to it!


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Wall Mounted Lighting


We'll kick things off with wall-mounted lighting. This can be such a great way to add an element of light and accentuate an area of your home without having to worry about taking up space or working around outlets. However, it's got to be done right for it to work. As you can see in the graphic below, installing your lighting properly around the other pieces in the space is a crucial part of creating this look. In this case, we're working with a sideboard and a large piece of art(this would be gorgeous for an entryway, ya'll. Who wouldn't want to be greeted with this beauty?). You'll want to map out these pieces first so that you can be sure the lighting is installed in the proper position to tie into the decor vignette you've created. **Please note: When hanging art or installing a wall-mounted light fixture, you'll want them to be at "eye level" (60-66 inches from the floor), which depends heavily on the height of the person installing it so be sure to use the measurements below just as a starting point and a guide based off of the average height of most people to give yourself a range in which to measure before you start the installation.

Pro Tip: If you don't want to fully commit to this look and install the light fixtures with electricity running to them, you can install the fixture directly to the wall and use battery operated puck lights like these to give you the same look without the full electrical install.

Dining Room Lighting


The dining room is one of the rooms I get a lot of lighting questions about because it's so important for it to fit the space AND the table properly. It's also, like the kitchen, where we gather with friends and family, so we want it to be a well-designed space. Whether you're working with a round or rectangular table, you'll want to first be sure to follow the measurements in the guide below to make sure you have a properly sized light fixture. After that, you can refer to the suggested heights below to hang them. No one wants to popped in the head while reaching for seconds of your famous mac-n-cheese so be sure to take into consideration the height of your ceiling, your table, AND your family members.


Pendant Lighting


Speaking of places we gather with my favorites things: family, friends, and FOOD - let's talk pendant lighting. I love a nice bar seating area with pendant lighting and just the right stools, but it's got to be the right height or, again, someone's going to leave the party with a goose egg on their forehead and that could really put a damper on the evening. Depending on the size of your bar area and the size of the light fixtures you plan to install, you'll want to choose 2-3 pendant lights so that you have enough light without crowding the space. Below you'll see two examples of properly space pendant lighting. And, of course, you'll be able to shop the look if you want to re-create it in your own home!


Table Lamps


Lastly, let's talk about table lamps. This is another one of those subjective things where you'll really need to base your selection off of the height of the table you're placing it on and the height of your family members. As a guide, when shopping for table lamps I like to narrow down my searches based on the height of the table I'm working with in the space and then adjust as needed. For example, if I'm looking for bedside lamps and my tables are 24 inches tall (putting them at or close to the height of the mattress), then I'm going to narrow my search to lamps that are the height of the table + 2-3 inches which would make the proper lamp height around 27 inches. However, if you're taller than average and like to read in bed a lot, then something a tad bit taller may be better suited for you.


Whatever lighting you decide to install, ALWAYS call a licensed electrician to be sure that it is properly placed with the appropriate grounding wires, etc. Electrical work should be done by a skilled professional to protect both you and your home.

Well, there you have it, folks! Your guide to all things lighting! I hope this was a helpful post to guide you with your next lighting selection and installation. Be sure to SAVE this post for later and follow PCI on social media for more interior design tips!

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Until next time,

Be Well. Stay Kind.

And Keep Dreaming.


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