Each home is different and lighting choices are best made to accentuate the design and also provide functional lighting.
Many people who shop for Chandeliers will pick a fixture that is either over sized for the room because it look attractive in a show room or they will pick one that requires supplemental lighting.
This normally results in costly returns with restocking fees if your supplier will even accept a return on a special order item or having the most expensive light fixture in your home go unused most of the time.
How to select the right size Chandelier
Online shopping will give you a preview of some of the selections you have.
There are many different styles that will match your decor from classic to modern.
Once you have selected the style of fixture that you think you want you will need to reduce your selection by the width and height of the fixture.
You will also need to understand the size of bulbs and the lumens that the fixture will emit. Remember if the fixture is to be dimmed you will need either an incandescent bulb which are now getting harder to find or you will need florescent bulbs that can be dimmed OR you will need a fixture that can limit output to fewer bulbs.
Once you have some idea of how much light your fixture will put out you can place some table lights in the same area to get the idea of how much light will be produced.
If your fixture is used in a large entryway and the maximum rating is 300 watts and you expect to use florescent lights that have a higher output per watt then you should understand if you will be installing a fixture that can signal boats at sea or if it will provide enough light to allow proper use of stairs and the ability to access closets or congregate with friends.
The same is true for your kitchen or dining room lighting or lighting that you place in hallways. The fixture must first be functional to some extent but match your decor.
Measuring the proper dimension of the lighting fixture
Now that you know how much light you need to light the area properly you can find the appropriate size of light.
This is pretty easy to do and its much like a child’s school project.
If you attach a string to a hook above the area where the light will be you can attach a cardboard or paper facilely of the light you want to install.
The shape does not have to be perfect but you should get both the width and height of the fixture that you have fallen in love with. If it is wide or tall and thin then construct your paper shape to approximate the size.
A 3 dimensional shape is best but if you are not very good at crafts then get some contractors paper and cut out the shape and hang it from the ceiling.
Now you can see just how big the light will be by stepping back and imagining the fixture. Now imagine 300 watts of light coming out of it.. is it too much or too little?
Even if you setup a lighting template and approximate the amount of light with table lamps you are still likely to be slightly off in your selection.
Unfortunately Lighting Companies do not provide plastic mockups that you can install on loan from your lighting supplier. Until they do the selection of the perfect fixture will always be based on a lot of planning and a little luck.