Sure, you can make a dramatic first impression with a four-tiered chandelier, but it may not be the right fit for your entryway. There are a variety of foyer lighting ideas that may better suit your modern style. Plus, remember, there are many factors to consider when choosing foyer lighting, including the scale of the space.
Before diving into what fixtures work best to brighten your home, let’s review the where, why and how of lightweight foyer lighting.
Where: Proper Placement for Your Foyer Lighting
No matter what type of foyer lighting you choose, the placement is key. Generally speaking, you want the bottom of your pendant or chandelier to be at least seven feet above the floor. Even if you have eight-foot ceilings in your entryway, that seven-foot clearance will ensure your fixture isn’t a hazard to tall guests walking through.
If your ceilings are somewhere between nine and 12 feet high, you can afford to lift up the light another six inches. At 7-1/2 feet above the ground, your fixture can illuminate the entire space, so you always have a well-lit entrance.
For a two-story foyer, take your light fixture up to the top level. The bottom of it should hang level with the bottom of your second story. If you’re not sure where that starts, simply measure eight feet up.
Why: The Importance of Scale & Proportion
You might be wondering why all this measuring and masterminding even matters. Simply put, scale and proportion are fundamental design elements that transcend across all styles and art forms. These are concepts which interior designers, architects, and artists use every day to create eye-catching visuals.
How does that translate to your foyer lighting? Let’s break down the terms and take it from there.
Scale refers to the size of an object in relation to the known size of another object. For instance, the height of kitchen counters is standardized based on the height of the average human being. Or, when determining what size ceiling fan you need, you would compare it to the shortest wall in the room.
Proportion, on the other hand, is the relationship between the size of two objects when there is no standard size to reference.
In the case of lighting, fixtures come in all different shapes and sizes. And, as we’ve already established, there is no one standard height for entryway ceilings. Not to mention, the square footage of a foyer can vary widely from house-to-house.
As you decide which type of lighting you want, you will need to consider whether it fits the size of your foyer and how it affects the overall proportions. A two-story entrance can handle a four-tiered crystal chandelier because it fills up the empty space of those tall ceilings.
Of course, size isn’t the only factor. Proportion is also affected by your color palette and décor accessories. A foyer with crisp white walls and a mirror already feels clean and bright. Adding an oversized, grainy wood orb could weigh down the room. Instead, you would want to consider foyer lighting ideas that are equally as light.
How: Characteristics of Lightweight Foyer Lighting
When you’re trying to establish an airy entryway, there are a few key features that are guaranteed to set the tone. Look for the following shapes, colors, and materials at the start of your search.
- Shapes: Open cage designs are a smart, modern choice. Think of a square lantern without the glass panes. Primarily, geometric shapes of all kinds are welcomed in a pure-and-simple space.
- Colors: Monochromatic color palettes are popular, as they help keep the foyer looking fresh and clean.
- Materials: Light and shiny metals are the most common, though you might see matte black used if it has a connection to another element in the room.
What: 7 Foyer Lighting Ideas for an Airy Entry
Put all these tips and tricks together, and you’ll find yourself looking at fixtures very similar to the ones below. These seven foyer lighting ideas have everything it takes to brighten your entryway without overwhelming the overall design.
There’s nothing fresher than Mother Nature herself and Corbett Lighting knows it. That’s why they designed the Serenity pendant with a gold leaf finish and natural stone coins that call to the sea. Hang this refreshing piece in a foyer with porcelain or ceramic floors to play up the organic earth tones.
Even though this cage design is inspired by traditional style, its nickel finish, straight lines, and tailored corners give it a modern edge. During the day, sunshine will bounce off its shiny frame to fill your foyer with a natural glow. If you add this polished pendant to an all-white entry, the space will feel bright all night.
Like a real carousel, this seven-light chandelier will keep your eyes moving all around the room. With the forged steel arms, it provides just enough contrast to catch your attention. Not to mention, the yellow-gold center and candle bulbs draw you in with their hypnotic warmth. Use this darker-toned fixture to balance an already-bright foyer without bringing it down.
The Alpine pendant ticks all the boxes. For one, it has that open-air cage design and neutral, monochromatic color scheme. But you also can’t miss the repeating square geometry. In fact, the crystal cubes are so clear, this foyer light could be an ice sculpture. Let it cool down dark wood floors or illuminate a jewel-toned wall color.
There’s a lot to unpack from this see-through suitcase. For one, its leather-looking straps are really a matte black metal that’s accented with old brass rivets. Compared to the original industrial pendants, this one remains lightweight with an open design. Of course, you can always go lighter with the polished nickel finish, which offers a purer profile.
Neither paint nor wallpaper will take away the fact that the Deryn chandelier is one of the airiest foyer lighting ideas you can find. This inverted diamond floats like a feather in your foyer, thanks to its four clean lines, simple structure, and antique grey finish. Let it accent a coastal-style space or refine a rustic entry.
Nature strikes again. This time, it’s more about the profile than the materials. The staggered stems give the illusion that light is going to bloom at any moment. And when it does, the faceted glass will refract, sending a soft glow in all directions. Meanwhile, the black orb holds it all together, grounding the foyer fixture to its natural roots in traditional design.
These foyer lighting ideas showcase what it means to lighten and brighten your entryway. You’ve worked hard to clear out the space, making sure guests don’t walk into a cluttered, claustrophobic foyer. Why undo all that with a dense chandelier or wood-framed pendant? There are plenty of pieces that are open, airy and perfectly aligned with your modern home. You just have to keep looking up.