How to Effectively Light a Dining Room



Here is a topic that somehow never fails to split homeowners right down the middle – is there really a “right” and “wrong” way of lighting a dining room? The answer naturally depends on personal preferences and perspective, but the simple fact of the matter is that if you wish your dining room to be the most atmospheric and enjoyable place it could possibly be, then the answer is yes – there is indeed a “right” way of getting the job done.

Try to think of it this way – there is a huge and important difference between the overall atmosphere created in a stylish café or a restaurant and the general look of a fast-food joint. Not that you would probably want to go as far as turning your dining room into an expensive dining establishment of course, but it nevertheless illustrates just what a huge difference the right lighting and ambiance can make.

So assuming you have already ticked the right boxes with contemporary interior lighting, just what precisely should you be trying to do to give your dining room the same opulent makeover?

1 – Focus on the Table

Well, perhaps the most crucial rule is that of selecting lights for the dining room that will work with the table itself – and not the whole room in general. If for instance you have a rectangular table, the most suitable lighting fixture will be most likely linear in design. And if you happen to own a round table, lighting fixtures like chandeliers tend to work best. It is not a case of completely ignoring the rest of the dining room, but rather focusing primarily on the dining table itself.

2 – Size Does Matter

Still on the topic of the dining room table, it is a good idea to make sure that regardless of what kind of lighting fixture you select, it is around 30 cm smaller than the dining room table in all dimensions. In a working example hence, if you were to have a table that is 120 cm in length, you would want to make sure that the light is a maximum of 60 cm in length. Overdo things and the whole look of the room will become crowded and cramped.

3 – Dimmers

Never underestimate the effect and importance of dimmer switches in terms of dining room lighting – something that is very often forgotten about completely. Chances are the dining room table and the meals served will differ in nature from one time to the next. From family suppers to romantic dinners for two to the weekly poker games and so on – all examples of the kind of cases where you will not regret being able to change the intensity of the light. So no matter what type of lighting you go for, make sure to install dimmers for maximum convenience and versatility.

4 – Up-lighting

There is a good reason why most upscale restaurants tend to reply on things like small table lamps, candles and other examples of up-lighting to keep things lit – it is hugely flattering. When the face is illuminated from below and the light is rather soft in nature, it does a miraculous job of hiding a hundred and one imperfections and signs of aging. This naturally might not be the first concern that comes to mind when trying to illuminate the dining room at home, but if you’re trying to create that cosy and appealing dining experience, up-lighting can make a huge difference. So along with the primary lighting sources you might have in mind, think about additional and alternative sources as well.

5 – Multiple Sources

Continuing that point, just as is the case with all other rooms of the home it is beneficial to think about installing multiple lights in order to achieve the maximum positive impact in the room. Multiple light sources will reduce shadows and cut the need for intensive light, allowing the dining room to be warmly and gently illuminated instead.

6 – Feature Lighting

Last up, bear in mind that there is always the option for including some additional feature lighting in the dining room to highlight specific items or areas of interest. Whether it is your favourite ornament, particular paintings on the wall, the desk by the window or really anything that is something of a focus point for the room, light it up with its own lighting source and the impact might just be incredible.