Choosing the Best Size & Height of Kitchen Pendant Lights

Kitchen pendant lights can be the jewelry of the kitchen. Aside from being a decorative light, it is also an important fixture that can help with everyday tasks and a lot more. They come in different forms and decorative styles that can provide great lighting in the kitchen, just like the pendant lights that offers. When choosing kitchen pendant lights, there are different things you need to consider, such as the type of illumination you need, the shape, the color, the style, and more. But among the different things to consider, one of the most important is the size.

The size of a pendant light is very important, especially if you will be hanging it over the kitchen island. Today, kitchen pendant lights are bigger, and kitchen island lights are also becoming a home décor statement more than just task lighting. With this, it is even more important to know how to choose the right light size.

If you want to know how to choose the best size and height of kitchen pendant lights, read on as we are going to give you different tips that you can follow, also you can read Vintage lighting from Trainspotters for get more ideas.

What is the Right Height of Pendant Lights for Your Kitchen?

When it comes to determining the height, there are two approaches that you can do, and they rely on the primary functional role of your pendants.

  • Pendant Lights as Task Lights

Task lights are used to illuminate the island clearly. It means that when they are placed too high, they will lose brightness. With this, task lights are usually hung 30 to 36 inches above the counter. You can place them somewhat in the line of vision. That’s why most people choose slim fixtures that will not intrude on conversation.

Also, if bright bulbs are hung higher than 36 inches above the counter, note that you can see the inside cover, even up to the bulb. Therefore, if you want your lights to be higher, it’s better to use a long, narrow shade opening that will not expose the bulb from as many angles or supplement the task lighting with other sources.

  • Pendant Lights as Decorative Statement Fixtures

You can hang decorative statement fixtures higher and less visually intrusive. But it is still important to hang them far enough below the ceiling to make them look elegant. The height for decorative pendant lights varies depending on the style. But as a general rule, it should hang at least 12 to 18 inches below the ceiling plane for a typical 8-foot ceiling. If you have a higher ceiling in your kitchen, you can add 3 inches or more for every foot. This way, the light will not look like it’s hugging the ceiling unnaturally.

There are also pendant lights that have a decorative chain. For these types of fixtures, you can hang it as low as in task light heigh or somewhere in between to expose more of the chain. Also, remember that many pendant lights have a significant minimum distance they must hang, while others have no range at all. It is also best to check that part before hanging them all.

How to Know the Best Size and Height to Hang Kitchen Pendant Lights

If you want to find out the exact size and height of pendant lights for your kitchen, you can measure it out with just a few tools. You just need to have a measuring tape, a mechanical pencil, any paper with a cutting grid-like wrapping paper, and graph paper. Here are the steps you can follow:

  • Measure the width and length of the island.

First, you need to measure the total width and length of your kitchen island. You can write it down on paper to remember it.

  • Determine the size options for the pendant.

With the measurements of your kitchen island, find a pendant light that is to the right scale of your kitchen island. You can also draw the size of the island on a piece of graphing paper to get a general idea of scale, and then draw the pendants. Use about 25% of the length of the island to find the right size of pendant. For example, if your kitchen island is 5ft or 60 inches long, the best pendant light should be no bigger than 15 inches in diameter or square.

  • Test the size of the pending using wrapping paper.

To try the size of the pendant, lay a cutout of the size on your actual island. Use a grid backed wrapping paper to test it. Mark the size of the pendant on it and cut out the paper to size. After that, lay it on the island and see how it fits on the width. Look on the longest side, too. Ensure that you have enough space all the way around the edges of the island. One great tip is to hang the pendant light about 8 to 12 inches in from each end of the island. This way, they will not hang too close to the end.

  • Know the hanging width of the pendant lights.

The distance between the pendants vary. Most of the time, they hang somewhere between 24 inches to 30 inches apart, depending on the length of your kitchen island. It’s up to you how far apart or how close to each other you want the pendant lights to be.

  • Know the hanging height of the pendants.

To know the right height to hang a pendant light, you need to start measuring from the floor. You need to hang a pendant light high enough off of the floor so that when someone stands by the kitchen island, they will not look directly into the light bulbs or the fixture.

As we’ve mentioned earlier, kitchen pendant lights usually hang about 30 to 36 inches above the counter. But it is still important to take the total measurement from the floor to the bottom of the pendant. The ideal height is usually about 69 to 72 inches from the floor to the base of the pendant light.


When shopping for kitchen pendant lights, it is indeed important to take into consideration your island size, height, and as well as the height of your ceiling. We hope this article will help you in choosing the best size and height of pendant lights for your kitchen.