Dining Room Delights

The dining room table is a multi-functional and, at times, even magical place. It is where we gather, eat, talk, celebrate, and linger—sometimes for hours on end. As such, it’s a space that should be comfortable and conducive to many moods and occasions, and one of the most important elements in creating that type of place is finding the perfect lighting fixture. As shown in the Westbrook Interiors-designed room above, selecting the right lighting piece is a functional necessity as well as a way to finish a space thoughtfully and beautifully, and when done right can take a room from simply pretty to spectacular.

A modern space from NICOLE HOLLIS relies on exaggerated scale and interesting juxtapositions: a giant mirror next to a dinner table; two high-backed parlor chairs pulled up to an oversized picnic-esque table and bench. The two giant black pendant lamps seem to fit perfectly in size and style, and the pattern of pairs at the table combined with the grouping of vessels of varying shapes and sizes makes the entire scene feel just right.

The modern fixture in this other Nicole Hollis design is practically ready to take flight. It balances the substantial built-in drawers and cabinets while drawing the eye upward.

LAMPS & LIGHTING’s sophisticated iron gold-leaf sphere is self-contained, and a great choice for above a kitchen island, which, with the addition of a few barstools, can sometimes serve as a dining room stand-in. In multiples, the sphere can work well when hung above long, rectangular surfaces, thus providing enough light and matching the scale of the space below. Luna Globe Chandeliers, available from R. HUGHES, were featured in the 42nd Annual Kips Bay Showhouse (the featured room designed by Matthew Quinn of Design Galleria Kitchen & Bath Studio). We particularly like how the globes play off the tiled wall.


We love statement pieces that can serve as both focal point and lighting source. The KATHERYN ROBERTSON-designed room (above, left), mixes natural materials and rectangular shapes with a metallic, cylindrical fixture, creating intrigue and an unexpected addition of reflected light. Modern elements elsewhere in the room (note the black walls and bold, striped curtain) make the mix of soft and hard a divine juxtaposition. The Jonathan Adler Sputnik Chandelier (above, right), available from BISCUIT HOME, is a special piece that will add a touch of drama to any dining space.  

DWELLING & DESIGN (top, left) and LAURA LEE CLARK INTERIOR DESIGN (top, right) bring us elegant, traditional lighting fixtures. We especially love how the thin, tall chandelier placed in a white room with high ceilings at just the right height ensures that a visitor will look up and see the whole room, including the artwork hung just below the base of the fixture.

TCHOUPITOULAS FINE FURNISHINGS’ Dove Chandelier has a traditional shape but warm, whimsical glass dove elements. The clean, 34″-diameter fixture is a true statement maker; we would hang it low (relative to the table) for maximum effect.


When considering a non-traditional dining area, we sometimes look to non-traditional materials. LIZ CARROLL INTERIORS makes use of a shell disc chandelier while South of Market considers a straw “bird nest” piece and a long “trough” fixture. Natural materials can often soften a light, and these are ready to glow.