Lighting often falls by the wayside when putting together a room, when, in fact, it should be front and centre. Practical yet ambient illumination is most effective when combining several sources – such as lamps, uplights, pendants and spots – with a central control that can dial each of these up or down depending on the required mood.
Failing this, a simple duo of ceiling and floor or table lamps will produce easy atmosphere. These 10 spaces deliver divine dining room lighting that’s attractive even when unlit.
10 Ideas for Divine Dining Table Lighting
1. Light up a lantern
If your dining room is simply decorated – or you’re a fan of whitewashed, beachy schemes with a dash of black – then a statement lantern light could be your go-to.
This linear style mirrors the length of the dining table, while working with the horizontal wooden panelling behind to ground the open-plan space and create intimacy at mealtimes.
A jute rug provides a warming, rustic touch: choose one that’s large enough for chairs to be pulled back and still remain within its boundaries.
2. Make it midcentury
Scandi-style interiors look best with sleek light fixtures that have a midcentury feel. These prismatic pendants are made of glass, porcelain and cast iron, giving them a substantial, yet unimposing quality.
In order to hang your lights low, you need to be certain of the placement of your dining table before fitting. Try marking out your proposed layout using masking tape on the floor to gauge positioning.
3. Go large
Could you install a jumbo chandelier?
Similar wooden beaded styles to the one pictured require significant ceiling height and a dose of courage, but their tactile shape meshes well with interiors ranging from farmhouse to contemporary.
This dining space engages a trio of treats, including rattan chairs, exposed joists and a vintage kilim, that weave in layers of textural interest.
4. Crave characterful accents
Fans of quirky styling with a bit of DIY thrown in may wish to take a leaf out of this dining area design. Glass pendants are placed below a roof window for bauble-like allure.
Winding the cables around a horizontal pole allows for bespoke placement and an artfully undone finish.
This type of installation is perfect for bringing character to an extension, cross-back chairs, exposed brick and parquet flooring all add lived-in ambience to a new addition.
5. Make space
As a material, glass should be top choice whenever you want elegant impact without heaviness.
Even small spaces can get away with transparent pendants because they preserve sight lines across the room.
These globe-style fixtures bring barely-there illumination to the combined kitchen and dining space without creating visual barriers.
6. Look beyond the obvious
Those living in cottages or homes with low ceilings could consider options other than hanging fixtures to illuminate their daily dining.
This demure space uses both wall lights and spots to provide a highly adjustable lighting scheme.
It’s possible to source surface-mounted wall lights with a decorative (exposed) cable if you don’t want to undertake messy building work.
7. Pick your palette
This two-tone scheme uses grey and white to striking effect.
By sticking to a limited colour palette, the sculptural silhouettes of the Wishbone chairs, tulip table and bell-shaped light become the focus.
If you prefer more saturated shades, you could achieve a similar look with other colour combinations, such as navy blue and white, or green and black. Remember to add natural elements for softness.
8. Include elementals
For drama without dark colours or showy sparkle, try a chandelier with an elemental feel.
This capiz shell design suits a neutral setting of grey and stone tones; its round shape complements the dining chairs.
You could achieve a similar look with a smaller pendant – just match the scale of the light to your table and the room’s overall size.
9. Create contrast
If you like to keep your décor pared right back in order to go wild with statement accessories, this dining space is your holy grail.
The oversized factory-style fixture could seem overwhelming in a home filled with pattern, but here it punctuates the pale room, drawing all eyes to the dining table.
Muted pastel seat pads make the chairs decorative while preserving the room’s utilitarian edge.
10. Open the crayons
Those who crave colour may wish to investigate this rainbow-hued display.
The bright cords and fixtures are eye-catching but a simplistic bulb design maintains a hint of minimalism.
You could stick to one colour or choose two or three favourites for a less Crayola-esque, but still vivid impression.