The Nifty Rule for Figuring Out What Size Light to Hang

Whether defining a dining area or fancying up a bedroom, a chic ceiling light can totally make a space. But over or undershoot on scale, and you can bet on things looking wonky. Luckily, interior designer (and Coterie member) Marie Flanigan has a foolproof rule for picking the perfect size fixture: Length of room (in feet) + width of room (in feet) = ideal diameter of light fixture (in inches).

Let's break this thing down, shall we? 

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perfect scale pendant light 1
Courtesy of Marie Flanigan Interiors

Step 1: Measure The Length Of Your Room

First up, figure out the length of your room in feet. 

perfect scale pendant light 3
Courtesy of Marie Flanigan Interiors

Step 2: Measure The Width Of Your Room

Next, do the same for its width in feet. 

perfect scale pendant light 2
Courtesy of Marie Flanigan Interiors

Step 3: Add Measurements Together In Inches

Last, simply add those two numbers together and swap feet for inches: That's the diameter of your dream light. “When ideal proportion is the goal, I always turn to this tried-and-true equation," explains Marie. “This master bedroom was roughly 18’ x 22’, so using our little trick, the central chandelier should be approximately 40” in diameter (18 + 22 = 40)."

See how the fixture looks completely in proportion to the space? And as a result, the entire room just oozes polish? The more (hacks) you know, guys. 


Home Editor

From 2014-2019 Grace Beuley Hunt held the role of Home Editor covering interior design, styling, trends and more.