DINING ROOM LIGHTING 3 hacks for lighting the dining room
Think again if you thought the only point of dining room lights was finding the perfect pendant light to install over the dining table. No, lighting the dining room is also about adding a cosy, comfortable atmosphere to the rest of the room, whether that’s a battery lamp placed on a side table or an LED strip light to enhance a glass display cabinet.
In contrast to the living room, the focus in the dining room is on area lighting - especially the pendant light above the dining table. The important thing to remember about your choice is how well it lights the dining area - and how it works with other lamps and lights in the room. And with lights available in all sorts of styles and designs, including vintage, country house and industrial, there’s something for everybody.
Typically, the table is the centrepiece in the dining room. Whether it’s a simple or grand dining table - the dining area deserves its own light. The best choice for this is a pendant light. And the shape and size of the table should determine whether you choose single or multi-bulb dining room lights.
It’s not only the dining table that needs lighting. The rest of the dining room must be well lit too. Wall lights with pleasant indirect lighting add shape and warmth to the room. A floor lamp next to a sideboard also creates this cosiness. And adding spotlights to your dining room lights via a track system is a modern way to discreetly bathe the dining room wall in light.
However, dining room lights are more than just lighting a table or the walls. It’s also about highlighting crockery cupboards, sideboards and display cabinets. To do this effectively, coloured or white lighting, with the help of LED candles, picture lights and LED strips are ideal for drawing attention to a painting or for lighting the insides of cupboards and display cabinets.
The right lighting for the dining table
A pendant lamp is an ideal way to light a dining table. Its downward light cone illuminates the table and the immediate area around it before gently fading away. The further down the light hangs, the more focused the light cone becomes. However, the hanging light shouldn’t interfere with you making eye contact with the person opposite.
The minimum distance from the tabletop to the lower edge of the pendant lamp should be approx. 60 cm.
Single-bulb pendant lights
You can get by with a single-bulb pendant light if you have a round or small, square dining table. When placed centrally above the middle of the table, it radiates the light evenly to the edge of the table and chairs.
A single cone of light isn’t enough to bathe the entire dining area in evenly distributed light with a large table. In these instances, multi-bulb or several single-bulb models placed next to each other are a better option.
The wider the table, the more individual dining room lights are needed.
In addition to the central pendant light above the table, the dining room should also have other light sources. Wall lights that give out indirect light are ideal for this. Spotlights, floor and table lamps and wire or track systems can fulfil this function too.
A contrasting light between the dining table and the rest of the room that’s pleasing to the eye.
Accentuate details with multi-faceted accent lighting
As mentioned, dining room lights aren’t just about lighting the table. It’s about the surrounding pieces of furniture, like display cabinets, china cabinets and sideboards too. Even artwork on the wall, personal mementoes, pictures and chest of drawers should attract attention in the room through additional lighting choices without significantly changing the lighting conditions.
Table lamps on chests of drawers and side tables are a great way of adding cosy, relaxing accent lighting. Depending on personal taste, table lamps can be decorated in different styles in the dining room - from Scandi to natural chic and country house flair.
Trendy wireless table lamps can be used in places where cables either look messy or cannot reach without causing a trip hazard. One alternative is battery-powered candles. Or for truly inspirational ideas, our Lights2Go range has a selection of wireless lamps you can move and place elsewhere whenever the feeling takes you.
Coloured or white LED strips look beautiful on shelves or inside display cabinets. And they’re even more practical when controlled via a smartphone that allows you to set the light colour or determine when the light automatically turns on and off.
Recessed or surface-mounted lights are ideal for furniture with shelf surfaces and solid shelf boards because they cast a warm glow across the surfaces. This guarantees your favourite porcelain cups, ornaments and trinkets are one of the main highlights of the room.
Anyone who values upmarket furnishings will undoubtedly want to decorate their dining room walls with paintings and prints. Picture lights are the best choice to show off your favourite purchases, picture lights - mounted directly above the object.
LED candles and tea lights placed directly on the dining table or on a dresser, sideboard, or shelf bring a relaxing ambience with their natural-looking flicker. And thanks to their energy-saving technology, you’ll rarely, if ever, have to replace them.
FAQ: Frequently asked questions about dining room lights
What should you look for when choosing a dining room table lamp?
When selecting the pendant lamp, you need to know what type of dining table you’re trying to light. If it’s a long dining table, multi-bulb pendant lights are perfect. For small, square or round tables, a single-bulb pendant light is sufficient.
When it comes to design, personal taste is what counts.
How high must the light be suspended above the table?
The pendant light should be suspended at a minimum distance of approx. 60 cm from the tabletop - measured from the lower edge of the light. This ensures eye contact with the person opposite isn’t impaired.
Also, the lower the light hangs, the more focused the light beam will be.
How many lumens should a light for the dining table have?
For a standard table size, e.g. with 6 seats, a brightness of 800-1000 lumens is sufficient. For cosy hours after dinner, dimmable lamps are recommended. This way, the brightness can be individually adjusted depending on the situation.
What bulbs belong in dining room lights?
Dining in cosy light and presenting dinner in a visually appealing way is a must for any dinner party.
So, it’s important to consider:
● pleasant light colour, for a cosy light atmosphere about 3000 Kelvin, which corresponds to a warm white light colour
● high colour rendering value, at least Ra >80, so that food doesn’t appear bland and unnatural, but tasteful and natural
How do I find the right lighting concept for my dining room?
As in other rooms, the lighting concept should consist of general, area and ambient lighting.
Since a dining table is obligatory in the dining room and forms the focal point, a pendant light should be selected as area lighting depending on the table size and shape. To provide the whole room with light, and prevent the contrast of the pendant light’s light cone, wall lights with indirect light output are a good choice.
Floor lamps or spotlights, for example, can also serve the same purpose. For cosy, individual accents, choose table lamps.
To light cupboard interiors, LED strips are a popular choice. And wireless Light2Go lamps and LED candles are ideal for brightening areas where cables look messy or hazardous.
What materials are used for pendant lights?
For the dining room, there’s no limit to the choice of materials for pendant lights. Popular are lights made of wood, which provide a warm lighting effect. But lights made of glass - from coloured or textured glass to opal glass - are best sellers too. For those looking for industrial chic, our selection also includes pendant lights made of concrete or metal.
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