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The Home Depot

Importance of Great Foyer Lighting

Pro Referral > Home Guides > Interior Decoration > Importance of Great Foyer Lighting
Importance of Great Foyer Lighting

First impressions make a big impact, and when friends, family, and prospective home buyers come to your home, your foyer is responsible for the initial image they have of your home's interior. This makes foyer lighting an integral factor in the overall impression visitors will have of your entire house.


Lighting this particular area of the home must be done carefully, but it doesn't have to be difficult! In fact, foyer lighting is easy if you know your options and understand a few basic lighting principles.

  1. 1.First Foyer Lighting Option: Chandeliers

    Foyer lighting is easy if you know your options and understand a few basic lighting principles.

    Whether lavish or rustic, chandeliers are the classic choice for lighting a foyer. Obviously, the dimensions of the space you have to work with will play a big role in the size a chandelier will be, but the feel of the rest of the home should play an equally significant role in the style of chandelier you choose. Failure to match the style of your chandelier with that of the house in general can actually lower the amount of value the new fixture will add to your home in addition to giving guests a somewhat awkward impression of the house as a whole. In a foyer, the bottom-most part of hanging lighting should be at least seven feet above the floor, equal in inches to the sum of the width and length dimensions of the room, and reflect the feel of the majority of other interior spaces.


    Note: If the dimensions of the space prohibit the installation of a chandelier, a semi-flush fixture can make a limited floor-plan look grander without using up too much overhead space.

  2. 2.Wall Sconces

    In most foyers, wall sconces are not a practical replacement for overhead lighting. However, well-placed sconces can create powerful accents as well as highlight specific features of the space. If they are architectural features, family portraits, or hanging artwork, wall sconces can single these items out and make them focal points of the room. Even if you prefer to keep the décor on your walls to a minimum, the light these fixtures provide can create a striking effect on its own--and unlike heavy chandeliers, wall sconces are extremely quick and easy to install in almost every room.

  3. 3.Natural Foyer Lighting

    In some foyers, natural light already plays an important role in creating the overall atmosphere. Since it is unlike any manmade light (as well as absolutely free and environmentally-friendly, to boot!), homeowners who do not already have natural light in this space will certainly want to find a way to bring it in. Adding a decorative stained glass window is certainly one of the most traditional (and expensive) ways to do it, but simply replacing a solid wood entry door with one that incorporates frosted or etched glass can have a similar influence without all the fuss.

  5. 4.Hiring an Interior Designer

    Of course, a professional who has been trained to create striking spaces can be an extremely valuable tool when it comes to foyer lighting. In fact, this is one area of the home where a professional eye can be particularly helpful while still working with a budget. Since many foyers are relatively small to begin with and as most of these spaces can benefit immensely from inexpensive upgrades performed in the right manner (choosing the precise shade of paint for the walls and ceiling, placing a mirror in just the right spot, etc.), even homeowners who have never used an interior designer before may opt to do so here. In many cases, homeowners will realize that a seasoned eye can pick up on small changes that will make a huge impact on not only the room, but on every visitor who enters it!

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