Lighting Tips for the Entrance & Foyer
The entrance to your home should be welcoming and make a statement about who you are, even if it’s not the primary entrance to your home. The front entrance is a way of transitioning from the outside world into your space and can set the stage for the entire home.
Specifically, a well-lit entrance will help guests to find your home and help you to identify and welcome them. A wall lantern should be hung on each side of the front entrance (a single lantern for secondary entrances is fine). The size of the lanterns should be between 1/3 to 1/6 the size of the door, this can depend on the style and scale you want to convey. Lanterns should be hung approximately 66 inches above the threshold.
If you have a porch or an overhang use a lantern or a flush mount fixture if there are height constraints. It’s a good idea for the exterior to coordinate with the interior for a cohesive look. You also may consider installing a dimmer switch for the exterior lights. Just as is the case with your interior space, you may want to adjust lighting levels according to your needs.
Landscape lighting is also an important component. It can help with way-finding and increase safety. Make sure to light the pathway and any surface transitions or steps. Pathway lights can be spaced 8 to 10 feet apart.
On the interior, you can create a sense of drama or welcoming with the lighting. A beautiful chandelier can set the stage or for smaller entrances, a flush mount or semi-flush ceiling fixture will work. To determine the size, add the length and the width (in feet) of the foyer together. This number is the proper width (in inches) of the fixture you need. The bottom of the fixture should not be below 7 feet above the floor. If there is a window above the door, hang a chandelier or lantern to be centered in the window so it is visible from the outside.
You may also want to add wall sconces on either side of a mirror or artwork. Select a size and scale appropriate to the space and place these approximately 60 inches above the finished floor.
The proper lighting is the finishing touch to any design and will help to convey the feel and effect that you desire for your spaces, indoors and out.
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